Friday, April 30, 2010

Geneva and something big on the needles

I spent the sunny part of the week in Geneva. It did not strike me as a must-see city, but it surely is very beautiful. Quite a bunch of international organisations are based there, eg. the European headquarters of the UN.

I had a walk around the city which is quite lively and has many nice cafes. Also, it is quite common to sit/lie down in the numerous city parks (which I also did). A note to myself: in the French part of Switzerland, if you order a coffee you get an espresso, just like in Paris. :) There is definitely a French feel to everything. Swiss consider German to be rude, but, oh my, there's nothing like the French to me.

I tried to check out two knit shops, unfortunately both were closed during the opening hours with no sign as to why or when. I then went to Manor department store and quite liked their button section. Need to check it out in Zurich as well.
On the knitting news: I finished Kai Mei socks (love them!) and am working on a bigger (gasp!) project right now. It's been a while since I finished something big, so here's some hoping the curse is over and this one does not get jinxed.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

FO: Warmth

Needles: 3.5 and 4.00mm (US4 and 6) circulars
Yarn: Aade Long Artistic 8/2 and Drops Alpaca.
Pattern: Malagash Square Shawl by Mimi Fautley.

This took me ages to knit. The garter stitch bit was ok and went quite fast, although the rows got longer and loooonger towards the end. And on top of it, there came a lace boarder - I felt like on a knitter's suicide mission. This was supposed to keep me warm on winter evenings. And this winter was COLD. Well, in a way this shawl did do that - it was sort of a blanket as I was working on it.
I got to say, I love it. Although Aade Long Artistic 8/2 is on the heavy side. If I ever go onto a north pole expedition, I will for sure put this one on. Otherwise, I guess I'll have to knit a lighter version to actually fit under a coat. This beauty will most likely be a blanket (it is big enough!). I'll let you know what became of it next winter.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Oma's Stiches #1

My hubby's grandma was a very passionate knitter. She used to use each free minute to knit or to mend the knits (usually socks). She was also the one who re-inspired me to knit again almost 10 years back. Around 3 years ago Oma stopped knitting due to arthritis and then dementia. I've been thinking for a while to write some blog entries on her knits that still keep her family and the memories of Oma warm.

First up is this Irish cardigan/ jacket. It was knit sometime in 1967/1968!!! My MIL went on a trip to Ireland then and fell in love with cabled cardis. She bought some wool + buttons in Ireland, brought them home and Oma knit her a cardi based on a sample.

Amazing, this cardi survived all these years!!! I easily see this passing on to the next generation.

OK, it is a bit too big and maybe not that flattering on me, but I love it. I had it on just the other evening when it got too cold outside. It is sooo warm and cuddly.

And all the cabling?! Awesome. I really want to copy this and make one as well.

Never done pockets before, but such a cardi needs them.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

FO: Sunshine socks

Yet another pair of socks. :) I started these on a car ride to Paris and knitted now and then either before falling asleep or just after getting up. The yarn was a dream to knit with. Let's see know how long pure merino socks endure.

Needles: 2mm (US 0) circulars
Yarn: Superwash Sock Yarn by Zen Garden
Pattern: Sunshine by Cookie A.

The pattern is somewhere between easy and medium. It took me a couple of repeats before I understood where it was taking me. From there on, it was a fast knit.

Monday, April 12, 2010

FO: Wanida socks

Pattern: Wanida by Cookie A.
Needles: 2mm Knit Pros.
Yarn: some kind of Wolle Roedel Sock yarn. I can't find the label anymore, but will figure it out one day as I have one more skein of it left in Lithuania. Anyways, was not too impressed with it. It's knitting up ok, but I prefer Regia sock yarn which is about in the same price range as Wolle Roedel one, and comes in nicer colours.

These were my first 'backward' socks. OK, I think I remember knitting some socks in the 5th grade or so and I think we were using this method, but that does not count.
Up to now, I've avoided queueing up sock patterns that were not toe-up simply to avoid learning how to do it top-down. I guess now I'm good to go. But still, I'm a total toe-up knitter. And you?

Saturday, April 10, 2010

FO: Malabrigo hat

It's time to finally blog about things that have been knit up in the past three months but never got photographed, blogged nor ravelled. The first one up is the Slouchy Copy Cat Hat by Terra Jamieson. The pattern is very well written and the hat was knit up in no time. I used just a little less than one full skein of Malabrigo Merino Worsted. Knit on 4.5mm (US 7) circulars.

I think the eyelet mock ribbing is really suitable for a spring/ summer version of the hat and I might knit one in cotton/ linen mix. Have you seen Starr or Cheer from the new Kim Hargreave's book? I've never knit a hat for summer, but now I suddenly need one.

P.S. Sese, matai, kokios kasos? ;-)

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

socks in progress

I got Cookie A book Sock Innovation as a present and I got to tell you - the designs are amazing.
These are my current WIPs all out of the said book: Wanida (greenish Wolle Roedel yarn), Sunshine (yellow Zen Yarn garden sock yarn - a dream to knit with!) and the purplish skein (Sweet Georgia Tough Love) is about to become a Kai-Mei pair.
This is the first time that I knit socks top down and it is not as bad as I thought. I also get to finally try my set of Knit Pros. OK, I can totally see why some people prefer this over toe-up-method, but the kitchener stitch is really killing me. I've lost my tapestry needle in one of the country moves, which makes the whole 'excercise' harder than it should be. Oh well...

Monday, April 5, 2010

Paris, a better experience

It took me a second visit to Paris to like this city. Admittedly, I was not impressed the first time at all. This time round, the weather was crappy - it was cloudy and mostly rainy. But nevertheless it was great. We were not looking for the 'Parisian' experience, but enjoyed the internationality of this city. And I'll surely go back there again.