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! :)


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