Sunday, December 21, 2008

Four of Three Stockings

I set out to complete three stockings and I've done it. The plain stocking was done last and will eventually be decorated for ME. Hadn't planned that, but I wanted to photograph a stocking in steps for a tutorial. I photographed each stage and wrote notes as I knit. I'll post the tutorial as soon as I can. From right to left the stockings are : Binary, Plain, Claymore, Dragon. The reverse sides of the stockings are done in knotwork, which I will photograph and post later.

I really liked the fact that these stockings were knitted flat. The flat surface made it much easier to decorate and I could customize each stocking for the recipient. I can also go back and make changes. The leg and foot sections were seamed separately. I'm already planning on adding something to the foot of the Dragon stocking- as soon as I figure out what motif would look good.
They'll never me done......

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Three Feet

Here's the current state of the stockings. The photo on the top right shows the stocking for my younger son. He's chosen a heraldic dragon motif. The original graph is from "The Tap-Dancing Lizard", but I have modified it slightly to fit the stocking. That means I can't see straight enough to follow the graph exactly.
On the lower right are the Binary and Claymore Stockings. Technically, these are ready for finishing, but I'm not done yet. The Binary version has a seed stitch cuff, chosen because it lies flat and stiff. I am surprised that this cuff tends to have a diagonal slant. I'll need to add a few stitches to keep the cuff in place. The Claymore was chosen by my son to highlight a new anime series. Since he's half Scottish, the claymore works very well. The Claymore has a ribbed cuff. I still want to add something to this one.
I think that I will do celtic knots on the reverse of all the stockings. TBA. There may be a fourth stocking in development.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Binary Stocking Progress

This is the binary stocking so far. The message reads Happy New Year on this side. I've added a toe and cuff. The toe is stockinette while the cuff is seed stitch (lies flat). Next I will add the heel. When seen in r4eal life, the embroidery has more "texture " than I would like. I may embroider the reverse side of the stocking in red for a low-contrast effect. The message will be in Irish Gaelic. Although my husband is Scottish, Scots Gaelic writing is too long to fit on the stocking. The encoded text will read "Pog mo thoin" which will remain untranslated. Be assured that it is appropriate for the recipient.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

The No-Commitment Christmas Stocking

I've been feeling so guilty for years. When I was pregnant, I knit a beautiful, Fair-Isle, wool Christmas stocking. Then I had to go and have TWO children. I have bought stuff at craft shows, but there is such a difference between the stockings. In fairness, the Fair-Isle stocking is tucked away with the other "Thou shalt not touch" items.

In the interest of destashing...I'm making stockings. I have six non-matching skeins of red wool in my stash. I'm sure that I intended to make a red sweater at some time. This would have been a serious offense. The yarn color is labeled "Tomato" and that is exactly what I would have looked like. In wool.

The stockings are "no-commitment" because I'm figuring out the design as I go along. I knit a flat length of stockinette, with stitches reserved for Elizabeth Zimmerman's Afterthought Toes and Heels. I can duplicate stitch a message or graphic, then seam and finish. Each family member gets a say in the design on their stocking- up to a point. This one is for my husband. He is a programmer so he gets Binary code. The message is up to me. Since he is Scottish, one side will read "Auld Lang Syne'. The reverse side is, classified. If he gets me mad.... imagine the possibilities...


Still engaged with the barcode expressed in knitting idea. So far I have learned that barcode is difficult to process with human sensibilities ( obvious to everyone else, but I had to do it myself). The photo shows, from left to right, a swatch done positive/negative, the current graph, the current knit. The swatch taught me that for this pattern, it doesn't matter which color is dominant. The dominant color will will be determined later. My first graph was accurate in terms of line spacing. I was able to truncate the pattern to fit on legal paper without losing the sense of the design. Finally, to redeem myself, the actual piece is going to become a mini scarf with openings for my iPod and cellphone. The scarf is a double knit tube, which hides yarn ends and allows me to do single-row stripes. Anyone who has read this far should be congratulated. I know I'm on a hopeless tangent.

Autumn Colors

This is the Moebius that I started to use up the variegated yarn that I bought in a fit of bad judgment. As is typical with variegated stuff, it looks good on the skein and turns into schmutz once knit. Mixing it with a chocolate brown wool, seed stitch and slipped stitches really helps. This is nearly mindless knitting. It'll take me forever to finish because there are 500 stitches per round and I have more interesting things to do. Also, I finally broke down and bought a 40-inch circular needle. I have no idea how I managed to knit my first moebius without a long circular before. Maybe this approach will work when I get back to the leaf obsession.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Slow Going

I am now paying for my past indiscretions. I started a Moebius scarf using chocolate brown wool and a variegated yarn. My intent is to use up the variegated stuff in a decent-looking project. I use alternate bands of the brown and variegated yarns. The color "blotches are further broken up by the use of seed stitch and slipped stitches. This technique works well and I'll post a picture as soon as the project is big enough to photogragh. The moebius has about 500 stitches per round, so it's a slow process.

On the design front, I'm stil working on the barcode project. It has been harder than I thought. Barcodes contain a LOT of information in a small space. When I expressed the code as knitting, I got a monster. First off, there is the problem of knitting single row stripes and all the loose ends vs. doing two-row stripes and doubling the size of the knitting. Even with strategic cheating the chart went from 124 rows to over 200. Not fun at all.

I've also discovered, that on an expanded scale, the stripes don't LOOK like a barcode. I'm working on a compromise between an "accurate" stripe pattern and something that "looks like a barcode". I did side-by-side samples that had the stripes inverted, that is, black on white vs. white on black. They are indistinguishable.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Over and Out of My Hands

I finished this and turned it over to the recipient. I remembered to get a photo before it left my possession. It is up to the recipient to figure out the message. He knows what should be there but must figure out the exact order.

It's nice to get this done. It felt so good in my hands that I have a bit of the same yarn to make something smaller for myself.

I always worry that my work isn't good enough. In this case, the model started stroking the scarf and commented how nice it was. I think the recipient liked it too.

I'm ready for something new.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

New Code

Looks like I can knit these. The large logo is code 128- a type of barcode. The tiny right side logo is the same text in Aztec.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Next Iteration

I'm spending most of my time working on the Binary Scarf pictured below. I have a deadline for that project. Otherwise, my mind is on other stuff. The whole leaf thing is postponed because I don't like it. I now have all these autumn colors and no project. After weeks of pouting, I've started a Vivian Hoxbro Marrimekko-style scarf in brown with insets of the leaf colors. I haven't firmly commited to the shape of the final object. I have also determined that my knit okra, (see earlier post) can become knit chili peppers if done in reds and oranges etc. Finally, some of the varigated horrors can be used to make pumpkin-gourd-squash cucurbitous objects.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

In Binary

Very relaxing this is. (channeling Yoda today) I've knit a long scarf out of Paton's Chunky Shetland Tweed. It's 6'4" long and about 12" wide. I'm adding a message in binary code to the body of the scarf. Finally, the scarf will be folded lengthwise and seamed up the back to hide the inner workings. The text is being done in brown with flashes of yellow (initial characters) and variegated greens. The text in the chart does not correspond to what is shown on the scarf, but it is a broad hint. The knit feels so good that I set aside a small portion of the yarn for myself. Otherwise this would be an 8' long scarf. No, I can't buy more, already bought out the entire store supply in that color. Got some green too. Holding this yarn puts me in a catlike state.... I'm purring on the inside.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Leaf Recycling

This is where I have progressed on the leaf issue. On the lower right is the current Green Man iteration. I'm trying to get the effect of a half mask right now. The results show exactly why cathedrals were carved from stone and not knit. The garland on the top right started out as part of a foliate face that became an Eden Scarf that is now destined to be frogged I also have some 14 skeins of autumn-colored yarns, begging for a project. I do not wear these colors much. I also have a pile of hideous multicolored leaves. I hope to have a new something/scarf in the near future as soon as I find something tasteful. What was I thinking.....

Saturday, September 27, 2008


I have ruined my leafy garland. My yarn addiction activated and I sneaked out for a yarn fix. I KNOW better than to choose varigated yarns, having produced memorable uglies before. Even so, four new skeins of varigated yarn in lovely autumnal tones reside in my backpack. I now have eleven individally pretty colors. I must find a way to work with them. The variegated stuff is intended to provide transitions between the solid colors. So far, the varigated yarns are producing blobs of color that look like kitty spew in garter stitch. I am too embarassed to post photos until I have an improved version to post also.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Swatching My Life Away

I'm not actually doing anything right now. I just started a new job and am freaked out about that. It is normal for me to be an overly anxious, constantly worried control freak. Really, this was described on my nursery school reports card when I was three years old. I can't get used to the fact that this job is going well. My last job had me working for someone far more controlling than I am. Normal feels strange to me.
In my knitting life, I've been doing a ton of swatches for:

1. leaf shapes for a possible Green Man.
2. a Binary scarf for a friend

The leaf knitting has been frustrating. I've used all sorts of patterns and discovered that the pretty pictures in books or on the Internet show leaves that are sewn down or viciously blocked. I want leaves that function as... freeform leaves. I'll have to come up with a compromise that takes into account the nature of knit fabric. I'm also limited by the yarn I'm willing to buy. Pure wool would be best, but I'm not spending a fortune on a palette of Autumn colors (not yet). I've already got a palette of seven worsted weight yarns and another set of pearl cotton yarns. I will probably end up getting some shaded yarns, but that feels like cheating. A basic leaf shape seems to work best, in garter stitch. There are plenty of leaves piling up outside and I feel the urge to knit my own indoor pile....

The Binary swatch shows the effect of different colors on the background fabric. Note the red that fades right into the background. It's not the original yarn. Anyway, I'm waiting for my friend to choose a color for the numbers.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Knit Okra

All things Southern and all things knit. The photo at left is knit OKRA. I went to a new supermarket recently, one that has a distinct regional character. This market has specialties such as proper biscuit flour, and frozen, breaded okra. As I was making a totally Southern Sunday dinner (chicken, pulled pork, greens, cornbread, fried okra) I realized that okra looks just like ribbing.

The picture shown was essentially a tube of 2 x 3 ribbing, decreased down to a point. I started with 15 stitches on double pointed needles. I did decreases every inch or so then cinched the ends. The cavity can be stuffed a little if needed for support. Total length about 3".

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Final Fantasy Cactaur & Black Mage Scarf

It's done. I think. this scarf was knit for one of my kids. It's his call as to when it's really done. The base scarf is knit on 30 stitches, in seed stitch (to lie flat). The Cactaur and Black Mage motifs were added at what seemed like a comfortable "height" in the scarf. The Cactaur was started after 18" were knit. The Black Mage was started at a length of 5' and the chart was knit upside down so that it would look correct when worn. The final length of the scarf is 6'6", which simply reflects that I knit 2 full skeins of yarn.

Here are the details.
Yarns: Lion Brand Wool-Ease in Black, 2 skeins, small amounts of worsted weight yarn in sage green, yellow, and blue.

Needles: Size 8

The charted portions were knit in stockinette stitch. The "spines" for Cactaur's attack were simply lengths of yarn knotted through with a crochet hook and trimmed to an appropriate length. The spines may be changed to white, at kid's discretion. Finally, the cactus rib detail shown on the Cactaur chart is not in the final scarf. It was removed at kid's direction. The Mage needs an "attack" to add balance.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Flour vs. Fiber Doughnuts

I must get this right. I am obsessed with making fantastic doughnuts. This morning I made doughnuts using a "cake type" recipe from a usually reliable cookbook, The Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook, (approximate title). Better than the last time but not what I wanted. The first iteration of this recipe was made with self-rising flour, my frequent cheat. Awful! The flour was too soft (low protein content), so the doughnuts absorbed too much oil and were crumbly.

Today's version (second iteration) was made using an all-purpose flour. The original dough was too moist (like a paste) so I added flour to made a soft dough. I rolled and cut the doughnuts before chilling. The results were OK, but reinforced the fact that I prefer a yeast-raised doughnut.

It's important to note that professional bakers do NOT use all-purpose flour. The protein content of flour formulations makes a huge difference in the final product. I spent the rest of the morning skimming the food science literature and perusing the King Arthur Flour Website.

I could probably do better with a knit or crocheted doughnut. Healthier too.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Plum Bag

I'm actually using this project. I knit it for the Ravelympics in one week. The bag is made of Paton's Soy Wool Stripes and Solids using one skein each of Plum stripe and solid colorways. The yarn was an impulse buy because I liked the color and wanted to try a soy blend yarn. I made a bag because the yarn is far too scratchy to go agains bare skin. It feels like Lincoln wool. The bag is lightly felted by hand. I'm am using this as a knitting bag. It needs a lining to keep knitting needles from protruding. Otherwise, I love it. The dimentions are 12"tall, 7"wide.

Ugh Update

These are the hat prototypes I've been working on for visor beanies. I am critical and just not satisfied with any of them. Surprisingly, the brim is OK. I'm picky about the crown decreases and the hems. The blue rolled brim hat has a sloppy crown decrease. The brown hat has a gathered crown which explains why people top hats with pom poms. The gray hat is an improvement. The crown decrease is neater, brim better, the hem is OK but has a tendency to flair out. The brown and gray models were made with an acrylic yarn which I do not like. The gray model is made with a wool/acrylic blend yarn which is better. Next versions will feature the best combination of features and better fiber content.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Ughs Everlasting

I am in such trouble. This week I got a request to knit a visor beanie just like the one that a member of the band Bellflur wears. In sheer vanity I quickly started a prototype and sent a message that the hat was ready BEFORE it was finished. It looks hideous. Version 2 is medium horrible. I am now working on version 3 with 24hrs left to go. I should know better. There will be pictures when the series is complete. BTW, the Ravelympics deadline is today. At least I had the foresight to join Team Slacker.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Let There Be Light

There are some real drawbacks to knitting with black yarn or other dark colors. It's best to knit in north daylight but not possible for evening knitters or most people probably. The lighting in my living room is either too bright or insufficient. Here's my solution. I found a headlamp-style book light. I can wear it on my forehead and aim the light right at the sweet spot. Of course I look utterly ridiculous. My family is so accustomed to me that no one said a word. That's scary. I think I need a baseball cap for camouflage.

In closing, these are my projects for Ravelympics- Team Slacker. Right on schedule so far, kinda sorta.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Irritable Pause

I am massively irritated by my life. Yes, yes, I'm taking steps to make changes. I am impatient, hence the irritation. Even doing my part, some of this is out of my control. Some of it I'm gonna mess up. Add some PMS into the mix...

Scarf Knitting- Got several projects going. The Cactaur/ Final Fantasy Scarf is progressing in length. I am also making design changes as I go. I am trying various details on the Cactaur until it looks right. I am also trying to add another character to balance the other side of the scarf. My son and I decided that Chocobo is too detailed for this project. The Black Mage is a better choice. I have a pixellated image that will be graphed.

Ravelympics- I'm knitting for the Slacker Team in Ravelympics. I've started a bag pattern that is low stress stockinette stitch. The only hitch is that I'm adjusting the color pattern to accomodate the amount of yarn on hand. I'm using Paton's Soy Wool Stripes (and Solids) in Plum and Geranium colorways. I've got just enough yarn to make a small bag in each color.

Other projects are in my head (development stages) or littering the landscape.

Stressors: I'm trying to lose weight (eternally), my bathroom is being renovated (since May) and each day has it's own momentum (prices go up), job hunting (rejection sucks, silence ain't so great either),

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Cactaur Scarf

I've been asked to knit a character from Final Fantasy. My son chose Cactaur as the motif for his scarf. Cactaur was chosen for it's simplicity. I was able to graph it easily. The scarf itself is progressing quickly. When complete, I'll post the pattern and chart. Right now, I'm still changing details. In future, I'm hoping to add at least one more Final Fantasy character, possibly Chocobo to another scarf. Recently, our family went to Otakon, the big anime convention in Baltimore. My favorite activity is watching the cosplayers promenade through the convention center. I took the scarf and made some progress. Here's my work in progress.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Knit Your Green Veggies

This is the purl side of the leaf.

This is the knit side of the leaf.

This project was inspired by a desire to knit kale and other green leafy vegetables. Kale was not a good first choice (in retrospect) because the edges are so complex. The ruffle edging has 400 stitches condensed down to 135. The finished leaf now looks more like spinach or chard. I like it, but it's NOT kale.

The following pattern was inspired by a Classic Elite Yarns pattern for a leaf sachet and two ruffled edgings from Nicky Epstein's book Knitting on the Edge.

Knit Leafy Greens Pattern

Lion Brand Wool-Ease Solids and Heathers, worsted weight yarn in Forest Green
Circular needle, size 9

For leaf center:

Cast on 5 stitches. Knit in stockinette for 3 inches ending with a purl (wrong side) row. Mark center stitch
Row 1- K1,K1 inc.1 (knit one from the row below), knit center stitch,k1, inc 1, K1, end with 7 stitches.
Row 2 and all wrong side rows- P.
Row 3- K2,K1 inc.1 (knit one from the row below), knit center stitch,k1, inc 1, K2, end with 9 stitches.
Row 5- K3,K1 inc.1 (knit one from the row below), knit center stitch,k1, inc 1, K3, end with 11 stitches.
Row 7- K4,K1 inc.1 (knit one from the row below), knit center stitch,k1, inc 1, K4, end with 13 stitches.
Row 9- K5,K1 inc.1 (knit one from the row below), knit center stitch,k1, inc 1, K5, end with 15 stitches.
Row 11- K6,K1 inc.1 (knit one from the row below), knit center stitch,k1, inc 1, K6, end with 17 stitches.
Row 13- K7,K1 inc.1 (knit one from the row below), knit center stitch,k1, inc 1, K7, end with 19 stitches.

Rows 14-24- Knit even in stockinette on 19 stitches.

Row 25- K7,K2 tog, knit center stitch, k2 tog, k7, end with 17 stitches.
Row 27- K6,K2 tog, knit center stitch, k2 tog, k6, end with 15 stitches.
Row 29- K5,K2 tog, knit center stitch, k2 tog, k5, end with 13 stitches.
Row 31- K4,K2 tog, knit center stitch, k2 tog, k4, end with 11 stitches.
Row 33- K3,K2 tog, knit center stitch, k2 tog, k3, end with 9 stitches.
Row 35- K2,K2 tog, knit center stitch, k2 tog, k2, end with 7 stitches.
Row 37- K1,K2 tog, knit center stitch, k2 tog, k1, end with 5 stitches.

Bind off remaining 5 stitches. This gives a blunt tip on which to sew the ruffled edging.

Ruffled Edging:

Cast on 400 stitches.
Knit 4 rows in stockinette.
Knit 3tog across row, ending with about 133 stitches (approximately)
Knit 3 rows in stockinette.
Bind off.


Fold ruffle in half to form a double ruffle of half the original length. I chose to fold the ruffle stockinette side inside. Whipstitch the cast on edges together to form one double layered ruffle. Sew the ruffle to the edge of the leaf shape, stretching or easing the fabric as needed. Weave in any loose ends.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Bitter greens

I've always had a problem with kale. My family, good Southern cooks that they are has always served a whole lotta greens, collards, turnip, mustard, kale, cabbage, beet, whatever. I don't like kale too much. I will admit that it is decorative. Anyway, I'm trying to reproduce kale in knitting and it ain't working so far. I've been able to form basic a basic leaf shape. I'm not happy with the curly edges of the leaves. So far, the ruffle patterns don't look right. I'm using worsted weight wool and ize 8 needles. I'm guessing that in order to get the right look, I neeed to use a much finer yarn. This was supposed to be quick and easy. I've seen the lovely Norah Gaughan Beet Pattern. I want to make kale by myself, with other species to follow. Photos will come later.

On a final note, I have a fondness for the Brassicans which include broccoli, cabbages, cauliflower, kale, mustard, collards, and more. They're all related. Powerful plants.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Someone Knit an IPhone

How cool is this? Someone has already knit an IPhone. You can find more photos and a step-by-step at Daddytypes. I am totally jealous that I didn't think of it. Of course I don't HAVE an IPhone yet either.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Alien Illusion Scarf

I finished this Alien Illusion Scarf a few days ago- except for some fringe (optional). As much as I love the look of the scarf, knitting 5 repeats of an 80-row graph was no fun at all. Took me several weeks just because of the tediousness. I even did side projects as an escape. The kids at school better go nuts when they see this.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Randy Pausch, unforgettable

Randy Pausch has driven me nuts since we were kids. He died this morning after a battle with pancreatic cancer. I really don't know what to do with myself.

I met Randy when I transferred to public school shortly after my mother's death. My Mom had cancer too. Randy and I were both in seventh grade, but didn't really become friends until eight grade. From then on, we saw each other in school every day until graduation.

Randy was a genius- seriously, his IQ measured off the charts. He told me and I believed him, particularly after sitting behind him in Trig. He's been described as "cocky and dismissive", which he certainly could be. Randy was also a conservative, superior, chauvinistic, geeky, awkward, uncool kid. He also had the gift of laughing at himself, which was necessary for a geek in a high school where athletics ruled.

In spite of his attitude, much of what Randy said was accurate. Eventually, I learned to appreciate this. (years later) Randy excelled at delivering "course corrections" that I used after I stopped being mad at him. He taught me a lot about how a gentleman should behave. We were competitors and always friends. I appreciated his open friendship in a time when there were few female and fewer African-Americans in advanced science and math courses.

We've had only a few contacts since college. I contacted him during his illness, and was happy to hear that he was still himself. I'm glad I got to say goodbye. Until recently, I had not realized just how much he meant to me. Randy had an enormous effect on who am have become. He always encouraged me. He absolutely made me more aggressive and competitive. (in a good way)

As I wrote earlier, my meeting Randy was linked to changes after my mother's death. His death, under similar circumstances is unnerving. I'm grieving for both of them.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Joined Ravelry at Last

I got my invitation to join Ravelry last week. I've known about it for a while but for some reason didn't "get it". I do now. I've been slowly exploring and finding more to like each time. I am particularly impressed by some of the groups, such as Knitting Genealogists. I didn't know there was a niche that small, even on the Internet. That group is one way to describe me. It goes withou saying that the Ravelry is another " go to" for my virtual yarn-creativity-pattern fix.

In the meantime, I am using great discipline by finishing my current project, an Alien Illusion Scarf for my son, before going on to the next project. It is two-thirds done and killing me. I desperately want to start something else. My workspace (read entire house) is covered with stuff I want to start. This summer's main task is to actually knit scarves and such to have ready BEFORE it gets cold. I've completed a grey wook scarf for my husband and a pair of mittens that will never be worn. (photos later) I still need to do a scarf for another son and then on to the experimental stuff!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Gauge Swatch ^$#@$&#!

The photo above shows a "swatch" that came out SMALLER than the graph. I charted that design on 10 x 10 graph paper. If knit to match the graph, the sample would have been a 2" x 3" rectangle. Instead it's about one third smaller. Sample knit with size 10 crochet cotton on size 000 steel needles. I was worried that I couldn't get enough detail in this project. That won't be a problem... I also managed to knit the chart backwards. I realized this above 3 rows into the chart, but decided to continue. At this gauge, I'm knitting out of sheer spite. By the time I finished this, my hands were cramped and my puncture wound from the day day hurt. Sheer spite.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Blood, Knit & Tears

Take note of the sharp points on the very thin needles. I have finally managed to injure myself knitting. A cable/internet service call and several days of PMS were contributing factors. This afternoon, we had a service technician call. As usual, my husband made sure that he was out of the house for this appointments(today is a weekend). Near the end of the service call, the tech asked me to sign the receipt. I refused to sign until all services were fully restored. Things got tense, but I eventually got what I needed. Shortly after the service tech left, I accidentally drove one of the pictured size 000 steel needles about 1/4-inch into the fleshy part of my palm. For once, I was shocked speechless. It wasn't as painful as you'd expect. My hand is bandaged and I am still knitting. The project is being knit in black crochet cotton, which is difficult to see and has NO elasticity. The early stages of this project are massively frustrating. I'm knitting out of sheer spite. Still, it was the most appropriate choice my stash had to offer.
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Sunday, July 6, 2008

Bacon Bookmark Photo & Graph

I used yarns from my stash for this project, Lang's Jawoll sock weight(doubled) in beige or white for the background and Brown Sheep NatureSpun sport weight in red or pink for contrast. Needles, size 4. Silly as it seems, I charted a piece of bacon for the pattern.
I knit the graph starting from both the short and long sides. The "raw" version of the bacon was knit in garter stitch, 10 stitches across for 60 rows, using the intarsia method of color changes. The choice of garter stitch produced knitting that lies flat. Because three different colors (white, red, pink) were used over only 10 stitches, knitting was annoyingly slow. The results were more successful.

The "cooked" version of the bacon was knit, using 60 stitches for 12 rather than 10 rows, to allow space for the cast-on and cast-off rows. This version was knit rapidly. I cast on and knit 3 rows in red. The remaining rows were knit in beige. I then used the chart to duplicate stitch the details in red yarn. I chose this method to avoid stranding yarn all across the back and to spare my temper for another use. Finally, because stockinette stitch curls worse than even real cooked bacon, I flattened the piece against a strip of sticky-backed felt.

A Second Helping of Knit Bacon

I've never knit food before. Currently, I'm trying to improve my diet by minimizing sodium, meat, and dairy. I am the only member of my household who is so inclined. I am surrounded by meat and meat-eaters. Knitting food is therapeutic. I take revenge in the fact that they don't realize how many vegan dishes are being served.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Knitted Bacon Bookmark

This blog comes from my internal monologue, the connections that happen in my brain. It makes sense to me, sometimes.

Recently, I saw a video clip entitled Bacon Challenge on YouTube. A Bellflur band member claimed he could consume 30 strips of bacon in one sitting. The video was the salty, dis-concerting record of a bad breakfast. The video brought up a childhood memory of a librarian saying that she had once found a strip of bacon left in a library book.

I love to knit. I love/hate bacon. I love Bellflur's music. The result is bacon immortalized in knitting. I've posted a photo of the project in two versions, "raw & cooked". Both versions were knitted from the same chart. The raw version was knitted in garter stitch starting at the short side of the chart ( 10 stitches x 60 rows). The cooked version was knit in stockinette stitch following the chart lengthwise using 60 stitches for about 12 rows. I also added a few increases/decreases at the ends of the cooked sample to keep the ends from being quite so square. I used yarns from my stash for this project, Lang's Jawoll sock weight(doubled) and Brown Sheep NatureSpun (sport weight). Needles, size 4. Silly as it seems, I charted a piece of bacon for the pattern, which will be posted in the near future.