Saturday, May 30, 2009

Taking Some Lace - and My Mind - 'Round a Möbius Twist

Being more than a little bit of a nerd, I've been fascinated by the Möbius topology since I was a kid. One surface and one edge on a three dimensional object is simply totally cool.


So cool in fact, that the first thing I knit 16 months ago (it was my learning project) was a wide, flat scarf for SuziTheFloozy that I twisted and sewed into a Möbius scarf.

Then I discovered that a Möbius cast-on existed.

After trying unsuccessfully to get a Cat Bordhi book at the public library, I found the instructions on YouTube. Yay! Hurray!

My friend GuiGirl is a bigger nerd than I, so I decided to do the next Möbius for her.

It was not one of my more successful projects.

It was intended to be large enough to wear as a shoulder shawl, and GuiGirl is pretty busty, so I did the math and cast on leventybillion stitches hoping to get a forty-five inch functional circumference. That part worked. The sticking point was that I used Lion Brand Suede yarn and put those leventybillion stitches of it on a 40 inch circular needle.

Never again.


I'm a fairly tight knitter, and trying to move over-packed stitches of that totally nonelastic yarn around the confusing twist of a Möbius needle formation was maddening. Even though it was straight knitting, not a single perl stitch involved until I did a few rows of seed stitch so the edge wouldn't curl, it took me two and a half months. And the end product was not aesthetically pleasing.

But I'm a stubborn critter (either that or it takes me longer than the average bear to learn something.) I am venturing onto the Möbius strip again, knitting a lace cowl as a thank you for a friend who was kind to my Daddy.

I had been given some antique alpaca blend yarn in the perfect color, so I knit up several lace patterns in it to see what would work best. Some I frogged to reuse the yarn -- not an easy task as the yarn is very fuzzy -- a couple I kept.

This one looked nothing at all like the illustration in the stitch dictionary after I knit a short sample. Was it my funky knitting or the big needles and fuzzy yarn?

This one, supposedly a traditional Orenburg lace pattern, looked the same on both sides, so I decided it was the one. I did the math (always), cast on and started knitting.

What's coming off my Möbius needle looks nothing like my swatch.


Because regular knitting goes back and forth. Knitting on circular needles goes round and round and round. The pattern repeats on this lace are not perfectly symmetrical, thus not the same coming and going. Realizing that was a classic "well, duh!" moment.

Add in a Möbius twist and...

Ah well, I think I like it anyway. And I'm learning a lot. Yep, getting smarter every row.

I hope.

Friday, May 29, 2009

At Long Last...

I knit Kate of High Altitude Gardening a hat and a neck warmer last winter. I've been bugging her ever since to let me have a photo of them being worn. Gotta have a complete rogues gallery.

Finally ended up hauling my camera up the canyon and backing her into a corner.

Tah-dah! (The good lookin' grey and white dude is Buddy.)

As promised, Kate, you have on the top secret sunglasses, thus retaining your Woman of Mystery aura.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

BEM Hat on CLB

or, to be a bit more verbose: Bug Eyed Monster Hat on Cute Little Boy.

I do like it when I get photos back of my knitting in use.
Thanks CLB's Mom.

Community Knitting

Spent a couple of evenings community knitting all by myself.

Hmm... That doesn't make sense.

Went in to Blazing Needles looking for some special yarn. While I was there, I saw a kindof a yarn and knit squares Christmas tree sorta thing. Of course, I asked what it was.

They had made little yarn muffins out of Shibui sock yarn, placed the muffins in plastic bags along with an instruction sheet, and were giving them out to any customers who were willing to knit a square and return it for a charity quilt.

So I took a bitty bag of Wasabi colorway sock yarn and knitted my community project square all by myself. Now does it make sense?

Sure takes a lot of stitches on size 2 needles in sock yarn to make a 7.5" square.

The big plan is to stitch all of the squares together on World Wide Knit in Public Day. If I can, I will show up with my camera and document the sew-in.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Terminally Cute

Some months ago I hibernated the bunny slippers I was working on for Twin'sWife. I'm not sure why the inspiration faded, it just did. But I finished number one last week and took it along on the annual Houston trip so she could try it on before I made number two. Good thing I did. I need to make it narrower and shorter.

This is the bun before surgery. Cross fingers and hope he survives.

Since I'm making this up as I go along, I am taking careful notes and will post the pattern after I finish slipper number two..


P.S. Even Cats like bunny slippers.

P.P.S. This is why I keep all ongoing projects in plastic bags - extra very good cat help.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Civil War Shawl Reenacting

My sister received the Civil War Shawl before the reenactment and took it along with her. As per my request, she took some pictures of it. She did not model it herself, however, as it "went with (friend)'s outfit better."

In keeping with the shawl's tradition of all possible boo-boos being made, the friend modeled it wrong side out.

Ah well, ain't that the way it always goes...