Saturday, 13 October 2007

There's Always So Much Knitting To Be Done By Everyone

As you can see, as soon as I weave in the ends my organic coloured cotton top is finished. It was looking too long as I was knitting, so I shortened it a little, and now I'm concerned it is going to be too short because the label says it will shrink. I knitted it with bigger needles/looser gauge than recommended and I didn't do a proper swatch. I have never blocked. The lace edges definitely need blocking, but this is cotton, and it is going to shrink. Help! Any knitting people care to offer me some advice?

On the plus side I like the way the colours look, one row each colour, the gentle gradation reminds me of lizard skin.

Here is the beginning of a little vest I am knitting for my newest nephew. I am knitting on circular needles so I won't have any seams to sew up when I'm finished. It is also knitted from the organic cotton, only it is with the recommended needle size this time. Still didn't swatch though. Babies grow and this will fit at some time or other so I figured I could get away with it. The pattern is a free one from the lion brand website, I haven't linked it because you have to sign up to access the free patterns.

Next on my list is a white cotton baby hat, something classic, and unisex.
Or perhaps I will use this, I bought one ball to use as an accent on something and I was sent the wrong colour. I was kindly sent the correct colour and allowed to keep this. Do you think one 50g/100m ball would be enough for a baby hat? And which do you think would be more to H&B's taste?

Then I am planning to do some knitting for my monkeys, this ankylosaurus from Patons Dinosaurs,
and these little vegetables from Jean Greenhowe's Little Dumpling Dolls, Part Two - The Village Men.

Then, I have plans to knit the short sleeve version of this for myself, with this silk/viscose blend:

And that is only the half of it.

Where do I find the time you ask?

I have a secret, you should see my house.

PS. The title should be sung to the tune of a children's song, that can be frequently heard on Play School, can you guess the word substitution?

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Blogger Louise said...

Wow, that is a lot of knitting. I have caught the knitting bug again and just finished a skirt for my 7yr old and have a top for me underway. Where did you get the pattern for the first top it's gorgeous and I love the colour. Thanks for the link to the other top too. My house is currently being ignored as well although I did find time to do a bit of washing today - can't have them getting about with no clothes!!

13 October 2007 at 23:44  
Blogger Melinda said...

All right, listen. You need to.....

OH... you said, knitting people. I'm only a knitting person in the sense I can appreciate a knit well done. Otherwise.....

Lovely designs, I guess it goes without saying that I'm jealous!

13 October 2007 at 23:46  
Blogger Tanya Brown said...

Oooooh. I love your knitting. It seems like it's such a creative area these days - dinosaurs, veggies.

As for concerns over the beeyootiful cotton top, you're better off without my comments. I used to have an ancient maiden great-aunt who was half-blind. She wound up with many of my knitted and crocheted articles. I suppose this could be considered elder abuse in a way, but ... enough said.

14 October 2007 at 00:16  
Anonymous tracey petersen said...

Did you know that all of your links work for me since you upgraded your blog? thanks!

I think that if that first knitted masterpiece shrinks you could just wear it over another shirt - it has a vest kind of look to it.

Does that help?

14 October 2007 at 08:25  
Blogger meggie said...

I love that vest- hope it doesnt shrink, but Tracey's idea sounds good.
All this talent & art drawing too??

14 October 2007 at 08:34  
Blogger Fairlie said...

All so very nice. You're just too clever!

And there is nothing quite like an infestation of knits.

14 October 2007 at 10:47  
Blogger Stomper Girl said...

Hahaha Fairlie. Aren't those veggies wonderful?

14 October 2007 at 13:55  
Blogger Aunty Evil said...

You are a busy bee! Who is looking after your children while all this knitting happens? Stomper? Or are they just turning feral?

Hmmmm... :)

As for the shrinking when washed, perfect solution...

Fill up your tub with soapy water, cold or warm, doesn't matter.

Swirl the water until it starts to spin in a whirlpool motion...

Then, take your brand new, lovely knitted top and hold it up to the light. See if there are any stains. No? Smell the armpits. Do they stink? No? Then hang it back in your wardrobe, or fold it and put it in your drawer.

It will never shrink if you use the above procedure.

14 October 2007 at 13:59  
Blogger Suse said...

The top is gorgeous. To block it I would just lay a teatowel over it, dampen with a spray bottle and gently press it. That way it'll get enough heat and moisture and steam to press it and make it sit properly, without shrinking.


ps. I have that book of knitted veggies!

14 October 2007 at 14:47  
Blogger crafty said...

Thankyou everyone.

Aunty, actually I usually only knit at night.

In the day time, they get a bit feral sometimes if I'm at the computer too much. I can see the back yard from the computer, but not the kitchen or the rest of the house. The Stomper/Crafty children swap mostly occurs after school, and I have to waste that knitting opportunity on getting their tea cooked.

Suse, I had a feeling you might have. Thanks for the blocking advice.

14 October 2007 at 20:09  
Blogger crafty said...

Ha ha Fairlie, knit infestation. Would you believe I only just got that?

14 October 2007 at 20:58  
Blogger Stacey said...

Lovely top! Its always so scary the first time you wash / press something that has taken so long to make. My advice would be similar to Suse.
I usually dampen the tea towel - wet it and wring it out - and also use the "steamiest" steam setting.
Then as I am pressing it, I sort of (gently) stretch it into shape if I think it is going to shrink.
Also, when I wash things that might shrink, I lay them flat to dry and keep stretching them periodically and then press as above.
Good luck with it!

14 October 2007 at 22:54  
Blogger Hey Teach! said...

I knit a sweater in this gorgeous mint green silk/cotton yarn (very expensive I might add) and didn't even think about how to take care of it. So I threw it in the washer and when it was done it had all these horrific holes. I still want to cry when I think of it.

I have never blocked before though I know all the patterns say you should.

I am almost obsessive about my swatches though. Since I am relatively new to knitting I am always concerned about getting the guage just right. One of these days I am going to make a quilt of all my swatches.

15 October 2007 at 01:57  
Blogger crafty said...

Oh, Louise, the pattern is from a Rowan booklet called The Kasbah Collection.

15 October 2007 at 11:51  
Blogger h&b said...

OoOoh - h&b likey both natural and white, so surprise me !!

Not that I need any 'reward' fo having fun fluffing about with your blog header.

Am having BIG problems with helping Pea Soup out now. I think we fluked it with ours ...bwah ha ha ....

15 October 2007 at 17:17  
Blogger knit, crochet, stitch, stick said...

Oh thank goodness someone told you how to block..... i was wondering that myself. I am in the middle of jacket and I really wouldnt like it to shrink. (was also the first time I swatched to check the gague)

The top looks gorgeous. I adore the wool and I see what you mean about lizardskin. You should definately be proud of that.

15 October 2007 at 22:51  

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