Saturday, December 29, 2007

Finished: Flower Basket Shawl 3

Pattern: Flower Basket Shawl by Evelyn A. Clark, from Interweave Fall 2004
Yarn: Alpaca Fashion by Schachenmayr Nomotta
Color: #122
Price: around 5 €/50 g
Amount: 3
Needles: 5 mm
Gauge: MIA :D
Dimensions: It's 118 cm wide and from the top center to the tip it measures 59 cm.
Modifications: I knit the second chart only 4 times instead of 10. I also did not start with the recommended provisional crochet cast-on. I tried another cast-on that does not require waste yarn (good, very good :)) You start with a circular needle and a slip knot. Then you take your working yarn and wind it around the two needles. Every loop will become a stitch. In the picture you can count three loop on each needle. Pull the second (lower) needle, the one with the slip knot, through all the loops till they rest on the cord. Start knitting the stitches on the first (upper) needle. I found my edge looked a bit nicer, but that might also be due to the thicker yarn. But in any case, you do not have to have to use waste yarn, which means you do not have to look for it (waste yarn is not always there when you need it, in my case at least).

What can I say, I have already knit two other Flower Basket Shawls, I just like the pattern. When I saw the yarn, I immediately thought it would look beautiful in this pattern. It's also easy to memorize and I wanted something that would knit up quickly (my aunt saw the Hydrangea Lace Scarf and mentioned that she also wanted to have something to wear around her neck). I also love the color. It's a very warm deep yellow with slight variations in color. And of course, nothing beats the soft cozy feeling of alpaca.

P.S. I think this cast-on only works well if you use thicker yarn. I did another Shetland Triangle with Misti Alpaca in laceweight and tried to do the cast-on with this method and it was a very fiddly thing. The crochet cast-on is probably preferable if you use thin yarn.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Finished: Esther Williams Hat

Pattern: Esther Williams Hat by Laura from Poor Miss Finch
Yarn: Lang Yarns Baby Alpaca, 170 m/50 g
Color: Grey
Price: around 5 € per ball I think
Amount: 2 (I used the yarn doubled)
Needles: 3.5 mm
Gauge: A very good question... Let me think... :D I cast on 114 stitches instead of 96 to make the hat fit
Size: There is just one size. My hat fits like a glove. :)
Modifications: Cast on 114 stitches and had to adapt the decreases. No biggie.
Comments: Nice pattern, although as alala said that with the short hair I might run risk that it looks like a chemo cap. I think it looks like a bathing cap. Surprise, surprise, afterall the hat is named after a swimming star. To my defense, the hat does not look like a bathing cap if your hair is longer. A girl with long curly hair from my stitch 'n' bitch meeting tried my hat and she immediately got compliments. Some hats look good with short hair and some look better with longer hair. That one probably belongs to the latter.

I like the hat a lot, not so much because I want to look as if I was wearing bathing caps, but the yarn is so wonderful soft. If you have ever worn a hat made of alpaca, you'll never go back to letting anything else touch your head. It's warm and it feels so incredibly nice. So, I wear it, but I try to hide it under a hood. Yeah, lately I've been favoring comfort and warmth over vanity, but still. The hat really does not look good with anything I'm wearing at the moment, but I can't resist its softness. Maybe I should get more of this yarn and knit a matching scarf, but I actually like the red scarf.

I got told that my face looks slack in my pictures and that a good trick is to act an expression.

Trying to look like I'm this harmless friendly person that you would like to meet. (Hahaha :D)

My skeptical look, full with expectations that you are surely going to wreck.

Spot. on. :D

*sulking* You have disappointed me. *booohooo*

Ok, now give me my Oscar. :D

For a profile view:

And although I'm a bit late - Merry Christmas to everybody! :)

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Finished: South Bay Crochet Beret and my Amor Intenso Scarf

Pattern: Crochet Beret from South Bay Crochet
Yarn: Schulana Tweed Lux, 85% virgin wool, 10% silk, 5% cashmere, 110 m/ 50 g
Color: #05 charcoal
Price: I'm not sure anymore, maybe about 7 € for a skein, must be so pricy for all the expensive stuff like silk and cashmere. The yarn is ok, but well, it's not causing me to gush about it. I mainly bought it because it had the right color, was tweedy and had the right weight.
Amount: 1.1 skein (I had to start the second one because of the brim I think)
Needles: 5 mm hook (you can all be so glad that I'm on Ravelry where it's supereasy to enter the details for your projects, because I have such a lousy memory; just yesterday I entered the information for a scarf I had knit like a couple of weeks ago and I just couldn't remember the needle size anymore...)
Gauge: I got told that it's not so important, because you can increase until it's big enough and then you decrease. What I can tell you is that the maximal number of double crochets between the front post double crochets is 8. After that I started decreasing.
Dimensions: The circumference is 24 cm.
Modifications: If you follow the original pattern you will get a spiral pattern. I somehow felt that I did not like the spiral pattern, but I was not not following the instructions on purpose, so you probably will have to pay very careful attention to the instructions if you want to get it right (but what is right anymore, I like my version better :D). I will include here the notes I made on Ravelry for this project:

I'm doing the front post double crochet (fpdc) on top of the fpdc from the previous row instead of on the following double crochet (I used this online tutorial - - because I just couldn't figure out how to do a front post double crochet ). It doesn't create a spiral, but looks much better I think. TheWilk told me about her modifications, but the instructions are a tad confusing I think, because without thinking too much and simply following the directions I did the same thing as she did.
It also seems that I only made one row of single crochets instead of two.

My notes seem a bit messy, but the pattern is really easy and I was able to finish the beret in a couple of hours.

I forgot, the second knit item I wanted to post about is my scarf. I call it Amor Intenso Scarf for the colorway of the yarn.

Pattern: Mine, see below
Yarn: Handspun bulky from, 135 yard/ 100 g
Color: Amor Intenso
Price: $6.20
Amount: 2 skeins
Needles: Like I said, I can't remember, probably 6 mm
Gauge: Not important
Dimensions: about 24 cm wide and 2 m long
Modifications: None

DSCN4512, originally uploaded by projektleiterin.

The colors are gorgeous, aren't they? :)


Cast on 27 stitches (I used the backward loop cast on). Knit 3 rows in garter stitch for the edge.


  1. Row: Knit
  2. Row: Knit 3, purl 3, * (knit 3, purl 3), repeat from* to the end

Repeat the pattern till you nearly run out of yarn. The pattern should end with the first row. Now knit 2 rows in garter stitch and cast off with a technique whose name I just can't remember anymore. :D Ok, I'll try to describe it: Knit 2. * Insert left needle into the second and first knit stitch and knit (as if you were knitting them through the back, it's just that the stitches are mounted differently). You have one stitch on the right needle again. Knit another one. * Repeat from * Break yarn and pull through the last stitch. Voilà, finished! :)

More information about the sweater that I'm wearing here.

Ugly acrylic yarn to give away

I have this super ugly acrylic yarn. If you want it, you can have it. Just promise you will pay for the shipping and this beauty will be yours.

On the needles: a lily of the valley lace stole

One of the current projects I'm working on.

The pattern is a variation of the Lily of the Valley Stole from the book Lace Style. My inspiration for using this yarn (laceweight from in the colorway: hortalizas) was this absolutely stunning Swallowtail Shawl, a shawl that also happens to feature the lily of the valley pattern. I love the little nupps and I love the combination of these rich dark red tones and the green. Don't the nups look like little roses?

Lily-of-the-valley lace stole, originally uploaded by projektleiterin.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Um, shit, I just messed up my template?!?! :o

Um, shit, I just messed up my template?!?! :o Guess, this will have to do for the moment... *sigh*

Edit: Ok, I made some changes.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

A fun survey

A survey game from Victor's blog.

01. Can you cook? I think I can prepare a meal that most people would eat.
02. What was your dream growing up? Being a famous scientist (don't ask me what I want now...)
03. What talent do you wish you had? Spontaneously I would say, a good memory.
04. If I bought you a drink what would it be? You mean an alcoholic one? A cocktail maybe? I don't really drink a lot.
05. Favorite vegetable? Tomato
06. What was the last book you read? I think "Lying on the couch" by Irvin D. Yalom was the last book I finished reading completely. I really liked it.
07. What zodiac sign are you? -
08. Any tattoos and/or piercings? My ears are pierced.
09. Worst habit? Procrastination or indecisiveness - I can't decide right now, can I tell you this later? :D
10. If you saw me walking down the street would you offer me a ride? To be honest, no. I neither take rides nor do I offer them and I also discourage other people to do it.
11. What is your favorite sport? Running or swimming?
12. Negative or optimistic attitude? I'm extremely mood, but I would say the optimistic attitude is probably a teeny-weeny bit dominating.
13. What would you do if you were stuck in an elevator with me? Start talking to you.
14. Worst thing to ever happen to you? Being in love with the wrong person
15. Tell me one weird fact about you. I feel a certain reluctance eating berries that have been processed, like in yoghurt, cake, jam, etc.
16. Do you have any pets? Yes.
17. What if I showed up at your house unexpectedly? At the moment - don't. Otherwise - come in!
18. What was your first impression of me? Nicer than what I had expected from your self-description on Ravelry.
19. Do you think clowns are cute or scary? I think a bit scary.
20. If you could change one thing about how you look, what would it be? I don't want major changes, so I only wish my hair wasn't so flat.
21. Would you be my crime partner or my conscience? Conscience!
22. What color eyes do you have? Brown
23. Ever been arrested? No.
24. Bottle or draft? ?
25. If you won $10,000 today, what would you do with it? Put it in my bank account and donate a part.
26. Would you date me? No, you don't like kissing girls. :D
27. Where's your favorite place to hang out? I don't have any place I really like to hang out. I like the sea though.
28. Do you believe in ghosts? I am afraid that I totally irrationally do.
29. Favorite thing to do in your spare time? Probably knitting or reading.
30. Do you swear a lot? Yes. :o
31. Biggest pet peeve? Not sure, the choices overwhelm me. :D. When people don't do what I tell them although it's good for them?
32. In one word, how would you describe yourself? Nice.
33. Do you believe in/appreciate romance? Oh yes, totally.
34. If you could spend 12 hours with me and ask/do anything you like, what would it be? Teach me Thai and show me how to spin.
35. Do you believe in God? Agnostic.
36. Will you repost this so I can fill it out and do the same? Yeah, doing.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Rockin' Boy Blogger Award

A while ago I blogged about the Rockin' Girl Blogger Award, which as the name already says, only goes to girls. A dear male friend of mine felt left out a bit and as I'm this supernice girl (hey, it's just the plain truth :D) and he's a supernice guy I thought I'm going to make him a button. So, Victor, here it is, especially for you:


The rules of the Rockin' Girl Blogger Award were that you could nominate five other bloggers. Hm, who are my favorites? Now, let me do some thinking as there are actually very few male bloggers that I read. Or hold on! Let me add some more rules first (somehow I love being first and being allowed to set the rules of the game :D). Don't give this award to any guy who:

a) thinks Bush is great
b) thinks it's ok to humiliate, torture, sodomize and do other inhumane stuff to people as had happened in Abu Ghreib or is happening in Guantánamo with the justification that American soldiers in Iraq are being killed
c) does believe that women have enough rights anyway and should shut up
d) is racist

because I can only bear this amount of stupidity and not more (I should better not have entered the political board of a certain forum today... ugh). That's about it, I guess (I might come up with other rules when I'm in bad mood and feel like letting it out on someone :D). Have I ever mentioned that some days I daydream about ruling the world as a benevolent dictactor? Knowing that I'm not flawless it might not be such a good idea, but really don't you also sometimes think that some people are so stupid they should have no rights at all and that everything would be better if you told them what to do? Why is it that I can be so blissfully ignorant of my own mistakes, but other people's stupidity has to be so obvious to me? :D

Anyway, here are the others on my list (although I so doubt that any of them ever reads knitting blogs :D):

* Satya, because he is cool and a fighter.
* Rob from No Cookies For Me, because he seems to be sincerely interested in feminist topics.
* Ben from Badscience, because he's so unbribable and you can't fool him with fluffy theories.
* Erich as the founder of Dangerous Intersection, where I troll the comment sections. :D

Grab your button and put it on your blogroll. :)

Edit: I just discovered that Roberta, who started the Rockin' Girl Award, was also so nice to start an award for the guys. As there is certainly no need for two awards, poor Victor will have to wait a bit more... Ok, hon, I'm sure you will receive it pretty soon! :)

Edit2: Seems like I got offical approval from Roberta. :)

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Finished: Lala Scarf

Pattern: "Lala Scarf" from "Greetings from Knit Cafe" by Suzan Mischer, pattern by Kat Coyle (she has a couple of other nice patterns in the book)
Yarn: Rowan Kidsilk Haze
Color: #580 "Grace" (main color), #606 "Candy Girl", #592 "Heavenly"
Price: $ 12 for 25 g (thank God you don't need that much yarn for the scarf)
Amount: plenty left for more Lala scarves
Needles: 6 mm
Gauge: looked ok to me
Dimensions: it's small (good grief, I'm lazy today, am I? :D I'm not going to measure it, but it's a cute little thing that is big enough to wrap around your neck)
Modifications: none

Lala scarf, originally uploaded by projektleiterin.

The scarf is a quick knit, except for the border, nearly 400 stitches to bind off, plus the loops. And personally, I don't really like the mohair, it's so thin and I'm afraid of breaking the yarn. And knitting very thin yarn with huge needles feels a bit awkward, too. It's the second time I've knit this scarf and I appreciate that it's knit with big needles, so the pain goes over fairly quickly, except for the last part, which drags on and on. But I do love the end result, so it's ok. :) I'm a bit surprised that the mohair doesn't itch, especially since I have a sensitive neck, but it seems that if you apply some lotion on your neck before wearing it helps.

Lala scarf, originally uploaded by projektleiterin.

Pic is courtesy of fbz, taken at the textile market in Benediktbeuern, yep, I haven't posted about it yet... :o Still need to upload the pictures. In the meantime, keep yourself entertained with the blog entries of Alala, BockstarkKnits, Tini, Deknit, and Elemmaciltur, some of whom I had the pleasure of meeting them there for the first time (of course, they are all totally adorable :) )

Sunday, September 09, 2007

My first socks

Pattern: Garter Rib Socks from "Sensational Knitted Socks" by Charlene Schurch
Yarn: A merino/alpaca 4-ply sock yarn from eBay
Color: Pink
Price: 7.38 €/100 g
Amount: less than 65 g
Needles: 2,5 mm
Gauge: 5.5 stitches/inch
Dimensions: European shoe size 37
Modifications: none

It's a great book. With the help of this book I managed to finish my first pair of sock. I have tried it before, but somehow I never really understood what I was doing... In this book you will find very clear instructions for various combinations of these factors:

  1. Foot circumference (5" - 12")
  2. Gauge (5.5 stitches/inche - 10 stitches/inch)
  3. Pattern with x stitches (4, 5, 6, 8, 12 stitch count repeats (or how do you say?), plus some Fair Isle and cabled pattern, etc.)
  4. 4 or 5 dpns or two circulars
For example, I had a gauge of 5.5 stitches/inch, the circumference of my foot is a around 8.5 inches, I wanted to use a pattern with 4 stitches and knit with 4 dpns. It was all in the book. I only had to follow the instructions and got my socks in the end. Oh boy, that's so easy. :)

Some of you might have remembered my post about a racist article in Medical Hypotheses. I've decided to write to one of the editors, Mr António Damásio, and ask him for a statement. Why him? Because I happened to have a discussion about him on another blog, he is famous enough that I recognize his name (I had no clue who the others on the editorial board were) and he has a good reputation as a scientist, which in my opinion implies greater responsibility for the things that happen in one's name, because the impact on the public is simply greater. There's a difference between reading racist articles in cheap magazines and reading them in an academic journal with an editorial board consisting of scientists (and no, I don't care that it's not peer-reviewed). And finding a name like his on the board is even worse.

He used to work at the University of Iowa, but has moved to the University of Southern California. I got his contact information from here (I'm not saying that you have to contact him, but hey, if you happen to be a bit pissed off, too, and have his email address handy...? :D).

Saturday, September 08, 2007

I'm a Rockin' Girl Blogger

Claudia nominated me for the Rockin' Girl Blogger Award (if you don't know what it is, I also had to google a bit, "So, if you’re a girl or woman and you blog and you have to rock, then you’re in" ).

I am now allowed to nominate five other female bloggers. Here's my list, in no particular order:

If it was allowed to nominate guys I would also nominate Victor. He's fabulous, because he has started at least as many languages as I and showed me how to spin last week.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Finished: Hydrangea Lace Scarf

Pattern: "Hydrangea Lace Scarf" by Eugen Beugler
Colourmart 100% cashmere, 3/28 heavy laceweight
Color: Shagreen
$34 per 150 g cone
50 g
Needles: 3.5 mm
no clue
25 x 137 cm
Modifications: None
Difficulty: Easy

I love this scarf. It's perfect. The green is perfectly light and delicate, the pattern easy to memorize. The blocking required more time and pins than usual, because I wanted to get the edge right.

From my last dyeing experiment.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Asian people and Down Syndrome

I read a review of an article today on that really upset me; not the post, but the article. It's published in Medical Hypotheses, an academic journal by Elsevier, and the title is "Down subjects and Oriental population share several specific attitudes and characteristics" (if you want to read the whole article go to the badscience blog post unless you have a subscription for this journal or want to purchase the article separately).

What it's all about:


Down’s syndrome is characterized not only by a typical “habitus”, mental retardation of variable gravity and several alterations of the cardiovascular, respiratory, gastrenteric and immunitary system, but also by specific attitudes and characteristics that are in common with the Oriental population. Starting from the origin of the term mongolism, replaced with other terms such as Trisomy 21, Down’s syndrome, and anomaly of Down because of the racist use made in the last century, we propose, in the light of modern knowledge about the heredity of features, a reflection on those aspects and attitudes which highlight a very particular twinning between a Down person and Asiatic peoples.
Proof of this claim:

Down persons during waiting periods, when they get tired of standing up straight, crouch, squatting down, reminding us of the ‘‘squatting’’ position described by medical semeiotic which helps the venous return. They remain in this position for several minutes and only to rest themselves this position is the same taken by the Vietnamese, the Thai, the Cambodian, the Chinese, while they are waiting at a the bus stop, for instance, or while they are chatting.

Where the hell did these dimtwits get their observations? Marco Polo? These bumpkins probably never set a foot to Asia.

There is another pose taken by Down subjects while they are sitting on a chair: they sit with their legs crossed while they are eating, writing, watching TV, as the Oriental peoples do.

I very much doubt that this is something that is passed genetically, rather it seems like a cultural thing.

Another aspect of Down person that remind the Asiatic population, are alimentary characteristics. Down subjects adore having several dishes displayed on the table and have a propensity for food which is rich in monosodium glutamate (a salt of glutamate), such as parmigiano, beef broth, tinned food, etc. The Chinese food abounds in monosodium glutamate that seems to be responsible for the fifth taste or ‘‘umami taste’’

Parmigiano? You mean, the Parmesan cheese from Italy and that is found in abundance in dishes like spaghetti?

The tendencies of Down subjects to carry out recreative–reabilitative activities, such as embroidery, wicker-working ceramics, book-binding, etc., that is renowned, remind the Chinese hand-crafts, which need a notable ability, such as Chinese vases or the use of chop-sticks employed for eating by Asiatic populations.

I’d like to take my knitting needles now and shove them up someone’s no man’s land where it really hurts.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

I'm dyeing yarn!

Inspired by Elemmaciltur's successful dyeing experience I decided that now was the time to finally give kettly dyeing a try. Why kettle dyeing? Because I've had an eye on the gorgeous yarn at for a while (I'm probably going to place an order there soon...). I've seen people knit really nice things with it, like here or here. It's multicolored yarn, but I like it. :)

I did basically the same as Elemmaciltur, except that I soaked the yarn for maybe an hour and not a day (I also used way way way less vinegar ;)). As I felt self-confident enough to have remembered everything necessary about the dyeing process I didn't bother to take one last look at the website before starting (great idea), so I didn't cook it for an hour, instead I just waited till I had added the last colors and the water was clear, then took the pot off the stove to let it cool. I also found a thermometer to measure the temperature of the water and to adjust the temperature of my colors to ensure that adding the colors would not cause a significant change of temperature in the water thereby causing the yarn to felt.

I made different mixtures with the red food coloring in various concentration. To get a darker red I added a bit of blue. The colors were a nice dark red/dark pink/light pink in the pot, but washing turned them all into various shades of lobster red. There are also many white spots where the dye didn't penetrate the masses of yarn.

It's a very very bright green... The funny thing is I just wasn't able mix a light green. I added three drops of blue food coloring to a cup with water and vinegar and one drop of yellow. Then I added many many more drops of yellow and it was still the same color (a very nice woodruff color, by the way). Anyway, as you can see, in the end the yarn turned a very bright yellowish green.

Yarn: 4-ply sock yarn by Wolle Rödel, 420 m/100 g
Color: white
Amount: 100 g

Yarn: Rheumawolle by Wolle Rödel, 280 m/50 g
Color: white
Amount: 50 g

I used sugarfree food coloring (I got told that it's important that the food colorings be sugarfree otherwise it won't work. I had once tried to dye yarn with something similar to Kool Aid, but it contained sugar and it didn't work out well. Probably also because I hadn't been aware then that I might have to set the color with vinegar.).

I would have prefered different colors, but these look ok, too. Next time I might try to get my hands on some dye for Easter eggs. I wonder if they still sell them at this time of the year.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

MS3 clue 1

I pinned it on the back of a pillow. Looks ok as far as now, no mistake noticed.

I found two little tin boxes to store some of the beads. Much better than tubes that tip over if you're not careful and more convenient than the little zip lock bags in which these beads arrived.

And when you open them, they look like little treasure chests. :D

Friday, August 10, 2007

Last details about Hanami Stole

Pattern: Hanami Stole by Melanie Gibbons (Pink Lemon Twist)
Yarn: Colourmart 100% cashmere, 3/28 heavy laceweight (by the way, if you have ever wondered what all these funny numbers like 2/28, 3/28, 1/18, etc. mean, they tell you how many plies your yarn has, first number, and how thick it is, second number. For more information go here)
Color: Rumour
Price: $34 per 150 g cone
Amount: probably 120 g, because I have 30 g left and this was a 150 g cone
Needles: 3 mm, but 3,5 mm would also work out
Gauge: it seems my swatch had 28 stitches x 40 rows/10 cm
Dimensions: 45 cm wide and 168 cm long
Modifications: I cast on more stitches, 113, because my gauge was different. As I didn't want my stole to become so holey, I left out the last two charts. I somehow had to make up for the missing length and I wanted to have a slower transition between the basket weave lace pattern and the blossom pattern anyway, so I inserted a somewhat longer stockinette section (two charts long) between the two pattern sections. And I thought less holes would make the stole a bit warmer, too. My stole was still too short though, so I took the first blossom chart and doubled the number of rows between the holes till this part was two charts long. After that I just followed the pattern. The last thing I did was made the ruffle at the end a bit more, uhm, how do you say, "ruffly"? Instead of one row of kfb I did two. And I added beads every four stitches when binding off the ruffle. I felt like having something a bit more girly and sassy, therefore more ruffles. :)

That's how the stole looks worn (I wonder when I will have the opportunity to wear a stole?! And I'm already working on my next one. :D). The yarn becomes incredibly soft and fluffy after washing. It does not smell good when you buy it, because it still has spinning oil on it, but I think it's worth it (and it added some polish to my wood needles :D).

Finally - casting on for MS3 stole!

I thought I would never start this stole. First I didn't know what yarn to chose, given that Melanie said the best choice would be black or white. Personally I found it difficult to find laceweight yarn in these colours. Eventually I chose Zephyr wool-silk in "Pewter" which is the nicest light grey that you can probably find. I really like this color. :) Then I had trouble finding the right beads. I wanted the same glass beads that I had used for the Hanami Stole, but I didn't have enough for this stole. I finally found some on the internet (the shops here only carried acrylic beads or they were too big, too small, not the right color, not the right shape), but it took another couple of weeks till they arrived. As I have already said I initially wanted the same transparent glass beads as I had used previously, but in the end I settled on matt black beads that I purchased with the other ones. I'm knitting the stole with my new ebony needles (I've totally spoiled myself recently :D I got a couple of Holz & Stein knitting needles, 350 g of really nice glass beads, Alpaca Drops yarn in a beautiful raspberry color for knitting the Wine and Roses Mitts and a small blanket for me and a new bike (I didn't have a bike for maybe more than 8 years)) and I found that the matt black of the needles and the silver of the yarn were a good combination. The black beads make the stole look a tad more interesting. I'll show pictures later.

And last but not least, a website I found recently: Knitting Delight. There are some awesome shawl patterns there. I really like Sternblume, Moonflower, Spiderlady and Numero 13. Unfortunately the pictures are all in black and white, while some might consider this chic and classic, it appears a bit dull to me (also the quality of the pictures could be a bit better), nevertheless, it's still obvious that these shawls are very pretty.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Cast-on for Hydrangea Lace Scarf

Pattern by Eugen Beugler. Available at Fibertrends. I'm using Colourmart 3/28 100% cashmere in "Shagreen".

By the way, I just saw that this beautiful wrap cardigan with kimono sleeves by Sweaterbabe is sold at half the price throughout August. And yes, it's all mine already. :D

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Finished: Hanami Stole

It's finally done! :) Or sort of. I admit, due to the stole's length it's difficult to find a suitable way to block it and I'm too lazy now to torture my poor brain for an adequate solution. I just laid it down on my training mat and pulled it apart with my fingers. I can do a proper blocking another day, but first I want to see how it looks! More about the details and modifications later.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Tussah Silk

Here's an interesting article about Tussah silk. The silk is collected after the moths have emerged, so it's not necessary to kill them. More reason to buy even more Zephyr Wool-Silk! Yay! :D

Saturday, June 30, 2007

I'm on Ravelry, too!

Cool, I'm also on Ravelry now! You're asking what it is? Here's a summary from their website:

Ravelry is a place for knitters, crocheters, designers, spinners, and dyers to keep track of their yarn, tools and pattern information, and look to others for ideas and inspiration.


So what can you personally do on Ravelry? You can talk about your own projects, integrate that information into your personal website and contribute to someone else's project a world away.

Sounds cool, doesn't it? :) Everything in one place. No more googling around and searching blogs because you're looking for information about a certain pattern, yarn, knitting book, etc. It's all here! And let's not forget the inspiration you get by discovering so many new projects with only a few clicks.

Their website is still in the beta phase, so you might also have to spend some time on their waiting list, but it seems to be worth it. By the way, you can find me here.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Hanami Stole in progress

I've finished about half of the Hanami Stole (read the background of the stole, it's quite interesting). The design is beautiful, but I'm still doing some modifications. I don't really like the end part with the many holes, so I'm going to leave out some of the cherry blossom sections and instead insert a stockinette part in the middle, also in order to separate the blossom part from the basket weave part.

The original yarn is Knit Picks' "Alpaca Cloud" in "Peppermint Heather". I love alpaca, but as they don't ship internationally I had to look for something else. I decided to go for heavyweight 3/28 cashmere from Colourmart. The color is called "Rumour" (orchid). It came as a cone, smelling funny (because of the spinning oil, I suppose. My mom says it smells like jute fiber. I think it smells dusty.). It's recommended to wash the yarn after knitting so I only wound the yarn into a nice big ball (manually! I really want a ball winding machine!) and hope that nobody in the train where I mostly knit will notice the smell.

The pattern looks quite intricate, but if you stop clinging to the charts and just follow the flow of the pattern you will have no problems. You will know what you have to knit next by watching the development of the pattern.

The little beads represent water drops. Cool, isn't it? :)

That's my swatch. The yarn really blooms after washing, so it's definitely recommended to check your gauge and see if you like the look of your swatch. The washing will definitely even out irregular stitches. If this picture was better you could see the difference between the stitches in the pictures above and this one (I don't think I will get better close up pictures though...).

"Minimaiden" by Handmaiden, bought at Knitty Noddy. The color is called "Rose Garden".

Another handwound ball. I think it looks totally perfect, but I still want a ball winding machine...

Saturday, June 16, 2007

header margariten

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Mystery Stole 3 has started!

Mystery Stole 3 has started and I'm sososo excited! :D After seeing Melanie's fabulous designs I just had to buy some of her patterns (at the moment I'm knitting the Hanami stole using laceweight cashmere in a color called "rumour" ("orchid" seems to be a more common name for this color)) and now I'm going to participate in this knitalong! I just signed up for the knitting group, don't forget to sign up , too, because the group closes on July 6. This is going to be such fun! :D

Sunday, May 27, 2007

World Heritage Site Bamberg

Mother's Day, which was a couple of days ago, was an opportunity for me and my Mom to visit Bamberg. Bamberg is a World Heritage Site due to its well-preserved Altstadt (Old Town). Other cities in Germany during WWII got bombed and their Old Town destroyed, for strategic and symbolic reasons, but Bamberg was lucky, it just happened to be of no interest for the allies. I'll be honest, I didn't think the prospect to visit old parts of a city to be that thrilling, but it turned out that this city has a lot of charm and the old houses were just lovely. We also had a very entertaining tourguide who turned out to be a former schoolmate of mine. Years ago she moved there to study medieval history of art and falling for the charm of the city decided to settle there.

I'm afraid my pictures won't do the beauty of this city justice. I'm always surprised to see how boring some pictures can appear, while in in reality the view was so nice. Anyway, maybe you will nevertheless be able to get a hint of how it really is.

But our tour didn't start on top of a hill of course, it started with a short cruise on the Regnitz, the river which passes Bamberg. This part is called "Little Venice" due to the river and the picturesque half-timbered houses on its bank. We got told that these half-timbered houses that nowadays so many people find adorable and cute were considered ugly, oldfashioned and bad taste and their owners were usually really poor people, like fishermen. The building on the right side was a slaughterhouse, a sign that this indeed was not the most expensive residential area.

That's the Bamberg Cathedral. It was built with the purpose to imitate the St Peter's Basilica in Rome (Bamberg is also located on more or less seven hills like Rome and the monarchs of those past ages were eager to find as many resemblances as possible). The cathedral, like the one in Rome, is one of the few churches that are orientated to the West instead of the East.

On the other side of the place is the Neue Residenz, the home of one of the bishops of Bamberg.

The bishop who built the Neue Residenz hated half-timbered buildings. That's part of the former bishop's residence. He would have also like to get rid of this building, but if I remember it right he didn't have the means to pay for it.

View from top of the hill to another hill with another church.

The Old Town Hall built on the bridge as a compromise to resolve the conflicts between the different rising classes among the population. If I remember it correctly, the craftsmen lived on one side of the bridge and the merchants on the other side. Both were mistrustful of each other.


Italian knitting group on Ravelry

French knitting group on Ravelry

Mystery Stole 3 KAL

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