Wednesday, March 30, 2011


In lieu of paying for this pattern, please consider donating to your local domestic abuse advocacy center.

I love Madelinetosh perhaps -- and probably -- too much.  But merino is a fickle fiber, as soon as it hits moisture it cinches back up and loses much of its blocking.  That in mind, Divisadero is designed to look beautiful blocked and unblocked.

Materials needed:
Size 9 circular needles, 16"
One skein of tosh merino light or other fingering weight yarn of your choice. Use as little or as much yarn as you'd like, I think mine used about 200 yards.
Stitch marker
Yarn needle

Skills needed:
Knit (K)
Purl (P)
Double yarn over (YO, YO)

Blocking (optional)

This is a great website with videos on these and other stitches.


Cast on 100 stitches, join in the round -- careful not to twist stitches

Set up:
Rounds 1-3, Knit
Round 4 - Purl all stitches
Round 5 - *YO, YO, K1*  ending with K1
Round 6 - Purl all, dropping all yarn overs.
Note: This round can be kind of tricky, but Divisadero is a forgiving pattern.  If you end up dropping a stitch instead of a YO, don't worry about.  Leave extra yarn so when you're done with your project, you can go with your yarn needle and pick up the dropped stitch and sew it in place.

Repeat these six rounds once more before proceeding to pattern


Round 1-10: Knit all
Round 11: Purl all
Round 12: *YO, YO, K1* ending with K1
Round 13: Purl all, dropping all yarn-overs

Repeat from pattern round 1

Repeat these thirteen rows for as long as you like.  Mine had three repeats.


Quick and dirty fringe:

Cut off (or rip) pieces of yarn, fold in half, and make a slip knit through the holes from the yarn-overs of the set-up rounds.  My fringe is uneven and curly, but you could cut even pieces and straighten them out for a neater fringe.



blocked (with fringe!)

Monday, March 28, 2011

Back from San Francisco and slightly chilly

Spring break was lovely, I flew out early on the 16th and returned late last night (the 27th).  It was a much longer trip than I normally get to have, but as Saturday and finally Sunday rolled around, I was once again take aback by how quickly the week and a half went by.

The trip yielded zero finished objects but two projects on the needles and some glorious Tosh.

I am almost half-way done with a sweatervest for Eddie -- I started the project the day I flew out, casting on while riding the train and knitting through the ride.  I worked on it early in the trip, while Eddie was in class and during the one-day overlap when Eddie was not in San Francisco, but I stopped knitting for the most part when Eddie and I had more time with each other...I'm okay with that :)

I also started Divisadero -- an eyelet cowl I'm designing that may or may not have fringe.  Of course I'm using Tosh, in what I think is byzantine.

Airplane lighting is weird

sneak peeks courtesy of my cell phone

I knit the Kindle Cozy by Amanda Pacheco just before I left.  I wasn't feeling in the round knitting, so this flat and seamed cozy fit the bill perfectly.  The eyelets keep the project interesting to look at and work on.  I used wool, which was not the best choice because of the fuzzies.  I might remake this in cotton later, but I really love the vibrant orange.

I bound off too tightly so the cozy kind of cinches on the end.  It doesn't bother me all that much, but it's a bummer because otherwise it's so cute.  I sewed the buttons on so they'd face backwards; if I sewed the buttons on correctly, the front on the cozy would showcase my errors in the pattern and I'm not feeling that at all.

I started and finished this project in one day -- good thing kindles are so tiny.

Monday, March 14, 2011

To-knit list

Finals destroy my knitting productivity; this is a sad reality.  Although I should mention that I don't have any final exams actually, just papers.  Yesterday I camped out in the library from 2 to midnight and got all my papers finished, so now I'm in the revision stages, anxious to print out the finished work.  So I do have time to knit, but I'm not.  I should probably start something tonight though.

So here's what's on my to-knit list!

Textured Vest by Erika Knight

Eddie loves sweatervests and after knitting a baby-vest, I'm excited to start one for Eddie.  I got some glorious Wool of the Andes in spruce, but I'm worried I may not have purchased enough.  We'll see, I can always order more.

Cabled Kindle sleeve by Emily Nimz

I am a book snob.  This is just who I am.  I am willing to go for the jugular in the Dostoyevsky/Nabokov and Joyce/Woolf debates (for the record, team Nabokov & Woolf).  So why own a Kindle?  Kindles take away much of the joys of reading -- actually holding the book in your hands, crinkling the pages.  Also, some one could come up and steal your Kindle; no one's going to come up and steal a book I'm reading.  Plus there's no competitive market for Kindle files like there are for books; I can't go to a used Kindle file store like I can go to a used bookstore.  So I must be knitting the Kindle sleeve for someone else, right?  No.  My school had this incentive to get students to study harder -- if you showed Residence Life an A you got on a paper or test, they would enter you in a raffle for, among other things, a gift card to buy a Kindle.  I won (yay!), so now I must knit a cozy for it.  Eddie laughed that I looked up knitting patterns before looking up which books I could download.


Summer Affair by Carol Feller

Eddie & I got engaged a few months ago, and while I am beyond excited for the wedding, I have to make sure not to get ahead of myself.  We are both still in school, so we wouldn't be getting married until next summer at the absolute earliest.  Still, it is fun to plan and look at knitting patterns.  Eddie wants to get married in a Catholic Church, and from what I hear, it's best to practice some modesty.  Several ravelers have used this pattern to make wedding shawls and they are GORGEOUS, just gorgeous.  


Something Blue by Elizabeth Bagwell

Maybe I'm just lazy, but I loathe the idea of knitting a garter on 00s.  I could handle 3s or even 2s, but 00s?  That's a joke.  No way.  I really like that the model photo for this project has optional embellishments, it's so pretty.  Although I am not a fan of the groom removing the garter during the reception...that's a little trashy.  

Friday, March 11, 2011


I don’t know what it is about the Embarcadero, but I really love to say it. 
I'm looking forward to taking this hat with me on my upcoming spring break trip to visit my Love in San Francisco!

I've been wanting to make Ferry Hat for so long....well, really since Ashley made since the summer.  I finally got a hold of the pattern so I'm PUMPED.

I modified it, of course, because fitted hats look a little dumb on my curly hair (which is really sad, because so many beautiful hats are fitted).  

So I made the base a standard slouchy hat -- size 4 needles for the brim, size 9 for the body.  I used double-stranded fingering weight cotton in burnt orange (a Christmas gift from Eddie).  The yarn was kind of annoying to work with, because it was already really easy to separate 3-ply, and double-stranding it meant one or two strands would not make it to the right hand needle.  Sad day.  

This hat and I have already been through a lot together, I held it close while watching Inglourious Basterds (and fast-forwarding through some of the more gruesome scenes).  

I used some leftover tosh merino light for the octopus; just touching the yarn and looking at it reminds me of how much I want need more madelinetosh.  Also I misread the pattern so I knit the octopus double-stranded on I have a GIANT octopus!

I crocheted double-stranded too, which made the tentacles really interesting in their color combination.

I put off finishing this hat because I was convinced the tentacles would take too long, but once I buckled down it was actually pretty quick.

Oh, and I look naked in these photos; trust that I am not.  My shirt is pink.

Ravelry project page

The coolest thing happened!  I was in ImagiKnit and one of the employees told me he was looking at my hat on Ravelry a few days before.  I am famous!  What are the odds of that, really, with me living in Chicago and visiting San Francisco so infrequently.  It was amazing.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Lush cowl revisited

I really want to finish something, but as finals lurk just around the corner, I really have to get crackin'.  My solution: just modify something I've already made.  Results:



I've never actually made anything with fringe before, and rather than looking up a pattern I decided to wing it. I ripped (oh yes, madelinetosh is easily broken) pieces of yarn, folded them in half, and made a slip knit through the yarn-overs.  HOPEFULLY this will keep the cowl from curling up at the bottom.  But alas, as soon as this merino bad-boy hits moisture, it cinches right back up and needs to be blocked.  So we'll see, cowl, we'll see...

Saturday, March 5, 2011


In lieu of paying for this pattern, please consider donating to your local domestic abuse advocacy center.

Materials needed:
Size 6 needles
Size 9 circular needles, 16"
Size 9 double-pointed needles (optional)
Yarn needle
Two buttons you love
Around 200 yards of worsted weight yarn (I used Cascade 220 and had plenty left over)

Skills needed:
Knit (K)
Purl (P)
Knit front & back (Kfb)
Knit 2 together (K2tog)
Purl 2 together (P2tog)
Slip slip knit (ssk)
Yarn over (YO)
Picking up stitches
Sewing on buttons
Blocking (optional)

This is a great website with videos on these and other stitches.


Using size 6 needle
Cast on 30 stitches

R1 K all
R2 P all (WS)
R3 K all
R4 P all (WS)
R5 K all
R6 *P4, P2tog* until last six, P3, P3tog
R7 *K3, P1* repeat until end of row
R8 *K1, P3* repeat until end of row

Repeat rows 7 & 8 until brim is long enough to wrap around your head, ending with row 8.

Buttonhole row: *K2, P1* twice, YO, K2tog, P1, *K2, P1* twice, YO, P2tog, *K2, P1* twice
Repeat rows 7 & 8 once
Increase row: *K4, Kfb* repeat until end of row
R1 P all (WS)
R2 K all
R3 P all (WS)
R4 K all
R5 P all (WS)
Bind off loosely

If you wish, block band lightly.  Sew buttons onto the WRONG SIDE of the back ruffle so they match up with the buttonholes.  Button the band together to make the base of your hat.

Using your size 9 circular needles, pick up 50 stitches, place marker, and join in the round
R1: K all
R2: Kfb all stitches (If you don't like this increase, you can do a lifted-loop method of increasing) (100 stitches)
R3 and beyond: knit in stockinette (knit all stitches) until hat measures 6 1/2" from bottom of brim.  If you knit for longer, the hat will be slouchier (I knit until about 8").

Continue to knit on your circular needles, switching to double points when it becomes too difficult to work on circulars.
R1: *K8, ssk* until last 9 stitches, K9
R2: *K7, ssk* repeat until end of round
R3: *K6, ssk* repeat until end of round
R4: *K5, ssk* repeat until end of round
R5: *K4, ssk* repeat until end of round
R6: *K3, ssk* repeat until end of round
R7: *K2, ssk* repeat until end of round
R8: *K1, ssk* repeat until end of round
R9: *ssk* repeat until end of round

Using your yarn needle, cinch up remaining stitches and tie a secure knot.


Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Goose egg

So some background:
When professors let me knit in class, I knit a thank-you gift for them.  Think about it, you're up there, trying to impress on students the ever-importance of whatever it is you're trying to teach, and some girl sits there, looks at you blankly, hands all-busy knitting.  It can be pretty intimidating.

I'm taking a class with a professor I had last year.  He lets me knits, so I am happy.  Although when I was in his office, I noticed that the things I knit for him (including a scarf he requested) were piled on and around a toy goose in his window.  So that's how it goes; I knit for him, he gifts it to his goose.  So why pretend otherwise?  I am knitting for his goose, I might as well knit something the goose will appreciate.

So here it is: the goose egg.  Mods: I knit this on big needles (sz 10), increased to 13 sts per needle instead of 9 as written in pattern, knit until it was sufficiently long, then started the decreases as written in pattern.

I'm not super happy with it, the decreases are a bit too aesthetic and I needed to cinch them up, making the top (bottom?) a bit too bulky.  Also, I used a fiber-fill that's too squishy and doesn't hold shape too well.  At least it's for a toy.

His reaction:
This professor knows damn well that I do not appreciate my knit-gifts becoming playthings for his goose, so when I told him "I brought your end-of-the-term present" he said, "for my goose?".  Oh yes, Professor, I am a step ahead of you.  He laughed and put the egg under the goose ("His new accessory!") and noted how much he liked the eggshell white color of the egg (as opposed to sterile white).  Success!