Jobo Designs

Letting the crafty creative juices flow. Knitting, spinning, crafting, dyeing, rabbits, sheep and more!

9. March 2015 20:53
by Jobo

Sock Knitting Challenge - Pair 3!

9. March 2015 20:53 by Jobo | 8 Comments

I'm a little bit behind in posting my February socks for my self imposed Sock Knitting Challenge (to knit at least 12 pairs of socks in 2015!). 

I could blame it on the kiddos... but that's a little lame, right?  Sleep is for the weak... right?  zzzzzz.  There was a time in my life where I could polish off an entire pair of socks in a week.  This time, I was doing well to do the pair in the 28 day month.  I honestly just barely squeaked it.

February's Addicted to Sock Knitting KAL pattern was Heatherly Walker's "Love's Wings", which is another toe up lace/cable mashup.  I liked this pattern especially because of the variety of techniques.  I always find that this kind of pattern with the challenge of stitches and combinations keeps my attention better than a plain style.  I'm weird like that - I can knit interesting lace or complicated cables in half the time it takes to knit a plain ribbed sock.  Ribbing makes me want to poke my eyes out... but complicated lace where you have to follow every row of a pattern?  yes please!  It's a sickness...

The yarn I chose is KnitPicks Hawthorne... in a nice blue variegated.  I seem to have thrown out the ball band.  Woops!  I can`t remember what the colorway is and a lot of the blue and purple ones are similar.  I hadn`t used this yarn before, and found it to be ok to work with, though I found it to be a little splittier than Stroll.  I will definitely try it again though for it`s great shimmery, non pooling, rich colors!

Pair Three Success!  Onto March... and Pair Four!

21. November 2011 09:12
by Jobo

Fiddlehead Mittens? in Chroma

21. November 2011 09:12 by Jobo | 0 Comments

I made a pair of hand-dyed, hand-spun and hand-knit Fiddlehead mittens last year . It was an epic project, and every step was done by hand.  I love the results (which you can see here)  but when someone asked if I could make another pair, I didn’t really feel up to the challenge of doing it all the hard way again.  Don’t get me wrong - the first pair was a complete joy, it’s just that if I go through all of those steps to make another pair of mittens, I’ll likely want to be creating something more unique in the end.  I don’t tend to make the same thing more than once.

So, then the hunt began for some suitable yarn.  I could do as the pattern says, and just buy the 6 different colors and this would have been fine also, but I would have enough yarn to make like 4 more pairs (if the second pair is an unwelcome thought, believe me, the 3rd and 4th pairs would simply not get done) and there really isn’t any point in that. 

Then it occurred to me that I could get a color changing / color gradient yarn and use it for the contrast strand instead of all of the different solids!  I knew I wouldn’t really want to use something like Noro (both for the price, and the unpredictability of color sequencing) but there are a lot of different options out there now.  I can’t remember the name of the one I saw at Michael's but I believe it was mostly acrylic, so I didn’t bother looking any harder at it for this project.  I bet it would work lovely too (I think it was Impeccable, something like that).  The next yarn I saw that fit the bill was the new Knit Picks Chroma Worsted.  From the catalog, it looked like there were repeating colors in the ball, and there was also a white or chocolate brown option for the solid to match.  I figured this was a perfect chance to try it out, so I ordered a ball of the cream/natural and a contrasting ball with a variety of greens/blues/purples called “pool party”

Chroma Fiddleheads

So far things seem to be working out quite well.  I like the texture and softness of the yarn (though I don’t think it’s really all that rough and tumble it’s a barely together single really) and the way the gradient is running through the design.  The colors are different enough for the nice swirl pattern to still stand out.  I’ll be interested to see how the lighter green holds up in contrast to the white in the end. 

I’ve made it up past the thumb on the first mitten, and plan on finishing the pair for sure.  I am really enjoying doing colorwork on a pair of long circulars too no gaps in between DPNS, and no fussing with the beginning and ends of rows.  I still very much like working with DPNS, but circulars certainly have their advantages too! 

As the mitten progresses, I’ll post again!  I think these are going to look great in the end!

12. October 2011 03:58
by Jobo

Magic Mirror Mittens

12. October 2011 03:58 by Jobo | 0 Comments

Finally!  Having a new camera means that I can start showing off the more recent projects I've finished! 

I wanted to make a special gift for a really nice person for Christmas... preferably handspun mittens... but I knew that I just wouldn't have time to be starting something so detailed so late in the year.  So I decided I'd just pick a really classy pattern and buy some extra nice yarn and go from there.  I know it isn't quite as special as a completely custom design with handspun/handdyed yarn, but I hope this person really loves the mittens anyways.

Magic Mirror Mittens 1

I decided to go with a long-time favorite mitten pattern - Magic Mirror by Kristel Nyberg.  I've been admiring this pattern over on Ravelry for quite some time, but had not gotten around to making a pair.  I rarely knit with Sport or DK Weight yarn, so I think that was the main inhibiting factor as to why I had never tried them.  I love the way that the mittens are covered with cables - from cuff to fingers.  And of course, the backs are plain (read: easy and straightforward) so at least half of every row was a basic easy knit.  All of the cables are charted, which always makes the process easier for me since I'm such a visual knitter. 

For the yarn, I decided to order a few skeins specifically for this project.  I had been planning a Knitpicks order, so I just went with it and bought 3 skeins of Andean Treasure - 100% Baby Alpaca Yarn in "fog heather".  I figured that the extra warmth and softness of the alpaca would make these thinner mittens even more cozy.  I wasn't sure how much to order... but in the end I made each mitten out of a single ball of yarn, and used the third one only for the thumbs.  I suppose if I had shortened the cuffs by one cable twist repeat, I would have had enough with just two balls (but I'd have been really annoyed to find that out after having knit an entire mitten!)

The reviews on the yarn were mostly positive - "Knitting with Kitten" was my favorite comment.  So I hoped that it would be plenty soft, and not scratchy like some other alpaca yarns I have worked with (AhemBERNATalpacaCOUGH) and was not disappointed.  There is a little bit of gentle halo but no scratchy bits. 

Magic Mirror Mittens 2

The finished mittens blocked out quite nicely, and fit my hands perfectly.  I seem to have average ladies shaped and sized hands, so I hope they will fit the intended recipient just fine.  I worked the mitts on a set of KnitPicks Circulars, which was a first for me for mittens.  I've done lots of socks on Circs, but never really had the proper sized needles to do mittens.  I was quite pleased with the ease of working in the round, basically magic loop style, and the no-ladders finished look.  I will definetly look for more sizes of circs to make mittens with, especially for next time I do colorwork mittens.  I think this method would be perfect for something like a fiddle-head mitten or a Norwegian style mitten since I found the last time on DPNS, I had a hard time hiding the places where the needles separated.  I had loose and tight stitch ladders that even blocking wouldn't even out in some places. 

All in all - a great knit, great yarn, and beautiful finished mittens!  Scratch another holiday gift off my list!

Powered by BlogEngine.NET | Theme: Yoko by Elmastudio, adapted by onesoft