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Thursday, February 24, 2011

Episode 2: Destash and Design to Fit

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Another week has passed and we've managed to stay on schedule with our second episode of the podcast. Next week will most likely be off track as I will be out of the office through Wednesday.

Episode 2 of the Knit One, Crochet Too podcast includes the following:
1) Weekend Wrap-Up where Joyce tells us about her major stash re-organization, and Helene discusses her week-in-knitting projects. Joyce also gets tips on salvaging a project that came out too small.
2) Do a little homework to learn how to transcribe information from garments you already own and love, onto a basic knitted t-shirt pattern.

While Joyce discussed her systematic way of purging her stash, she mentioned the McClellan's Frankenmuth Woolen Mill where she had great luck in having fleeces washed and carded. She got back beautiful balls of roving, ready to be spun.

We would both be interested to hear some of your de-stashing tips or anecdotes. Please feel free to share via comments below!

Ok, so back to the now called "Linus Capelet and Hat" set. I, not so originally, called it Linus because of the yarn it's made of (sometimes you put all your inspiration in the design and there ain't much left for the naming process, know what I mean?). Yes, I took it apart, down to the large cable band, and it really wanted to stay a capelet (minus the buttonband idea), or mini poncho, whatever you want to call it. Capelet sounds a bit like some medieval garment, and not exactly something fashionable...but it's probably just me.It fits about elbow length and is very warm. The hat is cute, too. This will be part of our next fall/winter season and the pattern will be available in late April. Linus is already in our line and is available now. Below is the video for the stretchy bind off shown in ribbing. You can use the same method if binding off knitwise or purlwise.

The next project I managed to complete over the weekend is the Snow Flower Set worked in Petite Boucle. The yarn has too much texture to show any fancy pattern stitch and has lots of personality so it doesn't need much else. As I was unsure of its fiber content (shame on me!), I looked it up and here it is: 58% nylon/21% kid mohair/21% merino wool. The project is one size fits all adults. This will also be ready in April, and will only be available as a kit in all 12 colors of Petite Boucle . I knew I already had just the right buttons for this, and turns out I even had exactly 2 - sometimes the stars align just right.
You can wear the cowl buttoned or not, depending on how much warmth you need. The button on the beret is decorative only.

Joyce asked for suggestions on altering a vest she made a few years ago. She's worn it a few times, even though it is a bit too small. I suggested adding a double breasted band in the center, and going around the bottom if she also wanted more length. She thought working it in corrugated ribbing (alternating k2 in blue and p2 in multi) could be another option.
The Daisy Vest, worked in Ambrosia was designed that way because the fronts were original too small (bad me didn't bother with a gauge swatch), and I added the wider bands at the center to add to the size. The double row of buttons turned out to be a nice unplanned design element.
The "Made-to-Fit Tee Worksheet" is part of a "Basic Lesson Series" I decided to start. This first lesson has you try your hand at designing a basic t-shirt shaped top. I've uploaded a pdf worksheet you can download.
Work a gauge swatch first using your stitch of choice (no, no, don't do as I do, do as I say!), then follow the directions carefully and fill in all your dimensions and stitch count first, before transfering that information on the pattern. Keep in mind that if you use a real t-shirt (made of thin knit fabric) as the garment to measure, and plan on using the pattern you create to knit yourself a tee shirt, you need to allow a bit more ease as your handknit fabric will be thicker than that of the t-shirt. Click on image below to begin downloading the worksheet file.
The Fiber Gypsy site has a great chart for Garment Ease Allowances that is worth bookmarking. I also highly recommend the book Designing Knitwear, by Deborah Newton. Although written in 1998, the information included on designing and fit, is still relevant—a must-have reference book.
By the way, we are now listed on iTunes. Doing a search for Knit One Crochet Too should bring us up. If not, drop down the "Advanced" menu in the iTunes software, and select the "Subscribe to Podcast" option. In the input box, copy and paste: "". That worked for me. Please leave comments on iTunes as this will help in moving the podcast out of obscurity :-)

This wraps up the notes portion of Episode 2. If you get stuck figuring out the t-shirt worksheet, post your questions here. Next podcast may be a continuation of this workshop. Have a great week in knitting!


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