Calorimetry, Again

Last week I made another Calorimetry.

It was really more as a test of the yarn than anything. I kinda lost my love for the pattern after my last attempt. But it’s a good swatch alternative. I want to find a non-wool yarn that is stretchy enough to make Tubey. Bamboozle is a mix of bamboo and elastic.

Though I used a smaller needle size it still came out a little big.

Unfortunately, it grew even more when I washed it. I’m not sure if I’ll frog this or not. But it served it’s purpose. I know the yarn won’t work for Tubey. It’s not elastic enough.

In the meantime, the first of Dad’s socks are past the heel. Though I know I’m the anomoly, with my very narrow feet, I can’t believe how big these are. They’re freakin’ huge! There’s not much chance I’ll have the pair done by the weekend. Good thing I bought Dad a birthday present!


Finished, blocked and photographed:

Pattern: Top-down Fitted Sweater from Yarn magazine issue 11.
Yarn: Bendigo Woollen Mills Allegro in ‘amethyst’
Alternations: I added two more increasing rounds to the yoke before dividing for the body and arms. I accidentally did five instead of four decrease rounds for the waist shaping, so I did the same number of increases. I also did six instead of seven repeats of the lace for the hem and sleeves. All I can say is, it was a pretty distracting week.
Summary: I love it. It fits perfectly. I love the simple geometric lace details. The yarn softens up beautifully after washing, too.

Once I’d finished knitting this, I was a little naughty and started a couple of small projects. Well, the first one had to be done because I need to judge the suitability of the yarn for the intended project in case I encountered it going cheap during my travels. The second is to give my hands a break from knitting Dad’s socks. The third… well, it’s kind of a recycling thing.

More on those soon!

Double the Fun

A few weeks back I attempted to do some weaving utilising the second heddle kit on my Ashford Knitters Loom. I wound up cutting the warp off the loom and deciding to do the project – wine bottle cosies/carriers in double weave – on the table loom.

Well, gradually over the last week or so, I got the warp on the loom and started weaving:

And I discovered that double weave is a lot of fun. I’m weaving a tube. How cool is that?

Unfortunately the tube wound up considerably wider than a wine bottle, or even a fat champagne bottle, but that’s okay. I considered this first one a sampler. After a wash (during which lots of dye came out – but this is cheapo yarn) it shrank and I was able to estimate how many ends to remove to get the right sized tube.

And now I’m working on the second one.


Endless Stocking Stitch

As predicted, the knitting is crawling along. First, Amethyst:

Which is mainly stocking stitch. That first sleeve seems to have taken for-e-ver, despite the fact that it’s all I’ve been knitting. But I don’t get more than an hour or so of knitting per night now. Just the during the news, if I’m not eating dinner.

Second, Dad’s Socks:

Which I frogged back to the toe after taking this photo. The stitch pattern, while simple, made for a rather lumpy, thick fabric, and I know Dad won’t like that. So back to plain stocking stitch for these, too. It’ll be better for travel knitting, too.

(Oh, that’s right. They’re blue. I decided against grey. Blue is more his colour. And I have reinforcing thread in blue, but not grey.)

An additional step…

Yesterday I decided to wet the Ruffles Scarf and block it. You see, the ruffles were a bit lost in the general crumpled texture of the scarf, and I suspected that was because there were a lot of spin cycle creases in the fabric.

Turned out I was right. After blocking the ruffles were the main textural feature. It was also interesting to find that one of the handspun stripes had felted and shrunk a bit more than the other. I was able to even them out a little, too. Much better! I’ve added a photo to the last post to show the difference.

The beau just came upstairs with a parcel. I felt a half second of hope that my new toy had arrived at last. But no, I could see straight away that the parcel was too small.

It’s 18 days since I ordered it. The site says it ships after 7-10 days. I’m guessing that means it takes 7-10 days to get to the shop, plus local interstate delivery to here. Should I be worried? How long would you wait before you sent a query email?

Mind you, once it does get here the anxiety over whether it’s been lost or something will be replaced by wanting to play with it when I have to work. At least while it’s not here I can’t be tempted!

Ruffles Scarf

The scarf I’ve been trying to felt went in a hot wash with the sheets yesterday, and that seemed to do the trick.

Here’s the Bendy yarn I ordered when I ran out of yarn, along with an extra cone of ‘almond’ for another project:

Here’s the scarf fresh off the loom:

Here’s a close up of the weave, showing the handspun stripes in the warp:

Here’s how the fabric looked after felting. The handspun felted and shrank, causing the superwash Bendy yarn to form ruffles:

And here’s the finished scarf:

And then, suspecting that a lot of the creases were caused by the spin cycle, I blocked it. This made the ruffles more discernable, instead of a bit lost among the general crumpliness:

It’s a wonderfully tactile scarf. The ruffles give an otherwise thin fabric some dimension and body, so the general feel is cushy. I’m happy with how this turned out, and I’d like to try it again with different colours for the feltable and superwash yarn. I reckon it would felt faster if the feltable yarn was fuzzy or a boucle yarn. And I’m picturing a scarf with black feltable yarn matched with a glittery superwash yarn.

I’ve been meaning to post…

… but everything I’ve been meaning to post about still isn’t ready to be posted about!

– The new toy hasn’t arrived. Which I’m a bit sad about, as today is the last day I’ll have for a long while that I might have been able to find time to try it out.

– The Ruffle Scarf is felting at a snail’s pace. I’ve put it in with three loads of washing so far. The ruffles are slowly forming, though, so I’m going to keep putting it through washes until it’s ruffly enough.

– Amethyst is slowly growing, but not in a way worthy of photographing.

– Dad’s Birthday Socks aren’t much beyond the toe. I’m about to start working evenings as well as weekends, so I suspect they’re going to become Dad’s Christmas Socks.

– I haven’t had time to set up either loom with a new project.

Bear with me, though. Soon I’ll be posting from the other side of the globe. It’s so nice to have that to look forward to, after all the work craziness is over.

In the meantime, here’s a photo demonstrating how my cat hints to me that it’s time to turn the heater on:

He has a point. It certainly gets chilly in here.


There weren’t any silver beads in my bead stash and I don’t have time to go shopping, so I stuck with a plain tassle on each end. I was impressed that I could remember how to make a tassle! I don’t think I’ve made one since I was a teenager.

Counting Down

I know from past experience that, if I don’t finish a project before I leave for a trip longer than two weeks, when I get back I’ll find I’ve forgotten what I was doing and why I was so enchanted with the pattern in the first place. With such a trip coming up soon, I’ve decided that I won’t start any new knitting projects until I finish everything on the needles.

This could be quite a challenge as it is, with my knitting time shrinking as the race to the work deadline eats up all my spare time.

So what is there to finish?

The Tassle Scarf, which is nearly done thanks to some unexpected sitting-in-the-audience knitting last night.

Amethyst (the top-down raglan). I’ve put the arm stitches onto a holding thread and started the decreases to the waist.

Dad’s Birthday Socks. Which I have to start again.

Why start again? Well, as I’ve knit them a memory has been slowly floating to the surface. A memory of showing the yarn to Dad, and Dad going ‘yurk!’. I’m not sure if this memory is correct. Maybe it was a different yarn. But the more I knit the more I was sure this yarn isn’t right for Dad. I kept knitting, thinking that I’d overdye the yarn. But that would be a shame, and I don’t think it would be enough to make them more Dad-like.

So I’ve selected some grey Patonyle. I’m going to use a simple stitch pattern to make the knitting more interesting without making it too time-consuming. And I’ll finish the socks I’ve started… some time. I’ll use them to check the fit for Dad, and tell him they’re not the ones he’s getting, then eventually find another home for them.

Swine Flu Masque

The beau and I went to Adelaide for the recent long weekend, to a convention where one of the events is a masquerade, which is usually a disco plus costume sort of thing. The theme of the masquerade was ‘the future of the future’.

That put me in mind of robots and lycra bodysuits, which really isn’t my thing, so I’d decided not to dress up. It’s not compulsary. But then, at the last moment I spotted this:

Swine Flu Masque by Homero Luna & David Castillo. (Unfortunately, when I washed it after the event, the blue cotton of the nostrils bled, but I doubt I’ll get a second chance to wear it – swine flu is already becoming Old News.)

It was a bit hit and got many laughs.

And had a special irony for me, as I suspect I would have been better off catching swine flu than the flu/cold/whatever I did catch. From what I’ve heard and read, it takes a couple of weeks to get over swine flu if you’re ‘young’ and healthy. I’ve lost five weeks because of the bug I had, and though I managed to gain a three week extension to my work deadline I’m going to have to work weekends and evenings until the end of July to make it.

My back is already acting up, and RSI would be a disaster right now. So there may not be much knitting, crochet or weaving going on around here. But there may be lots of stress-relieving stash aquisition.

And I’ve ordered something special and a bit indulgent to cheer myself up, that should arrive late next week. I can’t wait to show you!