Posts tagged ‘Yarn’

May 8, 2012

Fledgling Designer, pt. 1: Gauge (oh man, not again!)

For the love of everything knitting…

I love knitting…but I don’t like checking my gauge. Nope.

I know that it is the responsible way to start any garment: I know I don’t want to get to the very end and find that the darn thing doesn’t fit, etc.

Or worse, I run out of yarn part way through…

But it’s such a kill joy. I send hours on Ravelry choosing the perfect pattern, check to make sure that I have the correct size of needles and the right amount of yardage listed, and then I go cast on happily. It’s like the second row when I remember, oh, wait… gosh darn it!

Even when you write your own pattern, you still need to check your gauge. I realized this early on, thankfully.

You can’t stop at just making a gauge square; oh no, you have to block it as well! I took the easy route and steamed mine.

For this project, I will be making a semi-circle shawl out of the Lion Brand yarn “Cotton Ease” in the color “Charcoal”. The swatch is shown here with a little green in it; I am not sure how I will use it, but I wanted to practice a little intarsia. Turns out I am not the best at it, and those stitches came out way to tight. I might incorporate color some where else…  More details will be available on the Ravelry project page (oops, haven’t made that yet!)  As a fledgling designer, I wanted to start out with something I know how to make, and add upon that. This pattern will be free as my first one ever!

I am using the pattern instructions from  the Laylock.org blog, where free instructions for the bare bones of 5 shawls can be downloaded for free. Check it out!

For extended reading on this topic, I looked at the following links:

knitty.com: “Gauge can be synonymous with frustration, agony, and throwing needles across a room.”

knitpicks tutorial: “Gauge is your friend, but you’ve got to negotiate until you, your yarn, your needles and your pattern have reached an agreement. Then you’re ready to get down to business!”

The topic is well-discussed in several books, including them Stitch and B* that I purchased a long time ago. It’s worth the read.

But I figure the best way to learn this is through video. I happen to be a very big fan of  Liat Gat KNITfreedom how-to videos, so when I found one on the topic, I made sure to save it! I’m currently making a playlist of the best-quality knitting videos, so this one will be included. It’s called

KNITFreedom – How To Measure or Check Your Gauge in Knitting

 
Leave me a comment: Do you have any pattern ideas for me? Colors?
 
Thursday: Fledgling Designer, pt. 2: Baby steps
 
Thanks for reading :)
October 16, 2011

It has been a while!

Hi everyone! 

It has really been a while since I have been able to actually write a blog post on my favorite hobbie! I have been busy working at getting good grades at the university I am at, and it’s hard to focus on more than one thing at a time. But I have made progress! I took some time during fall break to crochet (a craft that I have been doing since I was in fifth grade, which makes that, what, 9 years now?) I taught one of my best friends how to crochet and we started out by making amigurumi owls as a first project. I wish I had pictures of the fabulous crochet party we had the other day, but instead I thought I’d share some pics of my finished owl. Hopefully this will insipire you to break out those needles and make one of your own!

My owl instructions comes from a wonderful beginner crochet book, Amigurumi World: Seriously Cute Crochet by Ana Paula Rimoli. She makes patterns easy to understand, with a helpful how-to section in the front. Although I improvised where I wanted to make some changes or use my own style (for example, the mouth of my owl was made separately, not embroidered on the stuffed animal), the pattern gives you an simple starting place for almost any amigurumi that you would like to make. They have a pretty epic cuteness factor that goes along with them, I must say.

The pictures are in order of how I put together the final product, but I’d be happy to help if you need some pointers on getting started.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Check out the finished product on Ravelry, too.

Resources: 

If you are interested in starting to crochet, here are some pretty cool websites to check out:

A general playlist for beginning crochet(30 high quality videos):
Alternate Starting for arms and legs: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vnJYrtC14sw&feature=related
Books/Magazines:
Ami Ami Dogs:
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