Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Disaster, Darling

Remember the green Kimono Jacket? I took it off the other evening and there it was:


But I have the solution - a little pamphlet by Rena Crockett (who I imagine in the Wild West, planting seeds, raising chickens, making and mending). It's called Flawless Knit Repair and it walks you through the process.

First, remove the stray bits of yarn:

Then pin to a backing fabric:

Unpick carefully, so you have some yarn to weave in at the end.

The yarn will be all kinky (as you see, above), so you can steam it carefully to straighten it.

Stabilize the hole with contrasting sewing thread:

Weave the new yarn (which you have carefully preserved from the time when you knit it in the first place) under and over the sewing thread:

Use a crochet hook to recreat columns of stitches:

Kitchener each stitch to the corresponding loop at the top of the column.

Here we are partway through:

The tension is looking a bit wonky (tt) but it can all be evened out at the end.

This is it at the end:

The only thing left is to close up the slits at each side and weave in the ends.

Weaving in of ends (not one of my favourite pastimes) took ages - there are two strands at each end of every row; there were five rows: twenty ends to weave in.

However, I don't think it looks too shabby:

Yes, I know, some of the stitches in the light yarn should have been purled . While it is possible to do this, and Rena Crockett explains all, I just didn't have the strength to work it out.

I pretty pleased with the way it turned out.

If you ever have a disaster, darling, there's a very good Knitty article you might want to refer to.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Soay Aran

I've finally managed to get started on the man's Soay Aran. It took me quite a while to decide on which cables to use and the exact placement of said cables. I'm basing the jumper on Janet Szabo's "Son of Aran" project. It is made entirely without seams, so right up my street.

Here are the honeycomb cables, which form the centre panel on both back and front:


shows the 14 stitch braided cable, taken from Alice Starmore's "Aran Knitting", flanked by two 8 stitch plaits, from the same book. These cables are on either side of the honeycomb panel and also form the shoulder saddles and will continue down the sleeves.

I feel as if I've knitted the whole thing twice over because I have made several mistakes while crossing cables and have had to drop down about three repeats and knit them up again. The moral of this story is to look at your knitting and not go into a trance.

I've also started Ysolda Teague's Vine Yoke Cardigan, which is going to be on display in the shop. We thought the shop might be open next week but, due to one thing and another, it probably won't open until the New Year. This is a good thing, in a way, because it gives me a bit more time to get it finished.

Progress to date:

That's the right front and sleeve.

It's knitted all in one piece (no sewing!) and uses short rows to good effect. Reading various discussions on the pattern, some people say it comes out quite large - mine looks tiny, so let's hope it does grow in length (as the pattern says it will).

Here's the bottom edge:

and this is the yoke:

which looks a little plouffy (technical term). I am hoping that all will become smooth in the blocking. I think the cardie is designed to be worn with negative ease, so it will be blocked on the body, if you follow.

Work on the KnitCamp continues - the class schedule is now available to download and we are slowly getting the tutor pages up. I think it's going to be such fun - and Lixie, it might seem a long way but there may be a coach going from London. Imagine the fun - knitting for hours with lots of other knitters; eating cake; drinking one's chosen beverage. Sounds like bliss to me.