Monday, October 24, 2016

Lazy Daisy Jones' Photo-a-Day Challenge Catch-Up

Catching up with Lazy Daisy Jones photo-a-day challenge for October. 

day 11 - pom poms

Skipped.  I don't have anything that incorporates pom poms!

day 12 - lace

Shoreline Lace Shawl test swatch.

day 13 - blanket

day 14 - fave color

day 15 - chunky

day 16 - new book


day 17 - yarn crush

day 18 - fave mag

Simply Crochet magazine, where this pattern for Just Pootling's autumn garland comes from.

day 19 - shawl/scarf

Nordic Shawl in progress

day 20 - vintage

day 21 - autumn color

day 22 - next project

Cheery Christmas baubles!  I've promised myself I won't start until November.

day 23 - mittens

Skipped.  I've never knit nor crocheted a pair of mittens.

day 24 - baby

Friday, October 21, 2016

FO Friday: Pumpking

Today's post was going to be in conjunction with yesterday's, and talk about tension, but instead we should talk about the wonders of blocking.

Today's F.O. is a pumpkin dishcloth!

Pumpking by Teresa Gregorio (from the Knit Picks Website)

Yarn: Lily Sugar 'n Cream in Hot Orange, and Brown
Needles: US 5 (3.75 mm)
Started: October 15, 2016
Finished: October 18, 2016

After I finished it, it curled so much I could sew it together and have a ball, and I thought it might be due to two things.  The first was tension.  I was using US 5 (3.75 mm) with worsted weight yarn, when the recommended needle size is US 8 (5.00 mm). I thought my tension, as well as using small needles with a thicker yarn was making it curl, but others on Ravelry made theirs with Sugar 'n Cream and US 5s and theirs came out flat.  

The second was a fault with the pattern, and that it would not lie flat since the side sections are not longer than the middle section, so it curls up because there's not enough stitches.  But after dunking it in water (no spritz bottles, it needed a full dunk!) and pinning and blocking it out, it now lies flat!  

So no matter the tension or the pattern, we got it to work.  

Thank goodness for blocking!

Thursday, October 20, 2016

#TBT Gretchen

Today's #TBT is a joint post with tomorrow's FO Friday, because we're going to be discussing tension.

Ah, tension. If only we all had the same tension, things would be so much easier.  We could all follow the recommended hook or needle size, and dive right in instead of making those dang gauge swatches.  I hate swatching; I never do it.  But I'm going to start needing to, because I'm going to start making project that require it it, like sweaters, and want to try more advanced techniques like stranding, and don't want all my hats to end up like Gretchen:

Poor Gretchen.  Why's it all pointy at the top? We'll never know.  Why's it huge and come down to my eyebrows?  Once again, we'll never know. No, we'll know. It's the tension! I didn't swatch, and it came out too big.  I probably should have gone down to US 6s for the ribbing, and used US 7s for the colorwork part, but I used US 8s and stuck for them the whole time, instead of using 7s for the ribbing like the pattern said.

Also, a funny story about Gretchen: I was in a daily group therapy program, and was working on it there, and everyone was so excited to see me knit and to see the hat progress, and then I show up with that thing when it was finished, that looks like a pointy beanie rather than a tam and had to model it for everyone.  I felt so silly because I didn't like the way the hat looked, but everyone was very kind and ooed and aahed at the appropriate times.

But I'm not that unhappy with it, even if I won't wear it.  I made this last year, and it was my first time knitting and really enjoying it in a very long time.  It was also my first colorwork project; we all have those funny looking 'firsts' that don't see the light very often.  (Still looking at you over-stuffed amigurumi bunny.)  The pattern wasn't very hard, I'll definitely do it again, perhaps in a blockable yarn (are hats easy to block?) and make sure I swatch this time!

Gretchen's Easy Tam by Lion Brand Yarn
Yarn: Lion Brand Vanna's Choice in Wheat; Loops & Threads Impeccable Ombre in Folklore
Needles: US 8 (5.00 mm)
Started: July 18, 2015
Finished: July 22, 2015

Monday, October 17, 2016

Mill Ends

Three things happened:  I was feeling a bit down, it was I Love Yarn Day, and I had just discovered Jo-Ann Fabrics sells mill ends yarn.

What are mill ends?  It seems as though mill ends could mean a lot of things.  It could be the end or a defective dye lot, the wrong color, missing yardage, discontinued yarn, overstock, or skeins that weigh too much or too little.  Either way, it's great, as you can get a good amount of yarn for $5 - $7, though be warned, they can be full of knots and other issues.

October 15 was I Love Yarn Day, and I wanted to treat myself, so I went out to my local Jo-Ann Fabrics to get a wreath form and one bag of mill ends. (Sticking to one bag was tough!)  I was pleasantly surprised with a large container outside the store filled with yarn in baggies for $5!

I came home with what appears to be two yarns held together, that unfortunately didn't have a yarn label:

Now we get into the fun What's This Yarn part of the mill ends journey.  There's a group on Ravelry called "Mystery Yarn" that can help identify what unknown yet lovely yarn you have, and they have tips to figure it out.

What I know so far about this yarn:

  • the yarn held together is 6 wraps per inch (WPI), which makes it super bulky. (x)

  • yarn A is red with flecks of sparkles.  It's 14 WPI, which makes it a fingering. 
  • yarn B is a very light pink, and intermittently very light blue.  It's 11 WPI, which makes it a DK. 
  • It really smells like wool.
  • On the one hand I think it's two different yarns that someone mixed together, but on the other hand it looks like it's been industrially wound.  It's not in cakes, it's in a ball similar to how Knit Picks Palette comes and it has that meshed together way of being wound that most yarns have pre-caking.  Maybe someone has a different ball winder I just don't know about!

So I'm a little puzzled on what it is, but it works up lovely.

I'm excited for this yarn, and I'm excited for this scarf.  I look forward to get more mill ends, as this was a great find, and it's a great way to get good yarn for cheap.

Have you ever tried mill ends?

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Showcase Saturday

Amelia Poncho (Adult) | Megan Meyer (Left in Knots)

Fruit Loop Shawl | Lazy Daisy Jones

Crocheted Radish | Twinkie Chan

Georgina the Hippo | Kerry Lord (Edward's Menagerie)

Disclaimer:  patterns and images featured in the Showcase do not belong to OnePinkHippo, they are the property of the stated and linked designer or artist.