Wednesday, January 7, 2009

2008 finished objects

It's both fun and not fun to review the past year's knitting achievements. This time it's fun because I produced 21 finished objects (counting 22 afghan squares as one object) as opposed to last year's 15. And the group of objects looks more coherent or something than last year's. It's not fun because everything I made isn't perfect and beautiful. But I'm learning. Among the 21 items are four sweaters, three pairs of socks, two pairs of mittens, one scarf, one shawl, and eight baby items. In the run-down below, I'll link to blog posts, if any, about the item in case you are interested in more details. Most are on Ravelry under my username, beverlyanne.

I first made this as part of my 2006 Christmas scarf project. I re-knit it to have photos to go with the pattern I posted in January.February: Klara Bird

My first learning experience of the year. Under the guidance of a Raveler(Flyingneedle), I heavily modified a printed pattern (Klaralund from Noro Book #2 by Cornelia Tuttle Hamilton). The resulting sweater is made from fingering weight yarn rather than the worsted weight specified, and besides learning from the mods., I learned that I love fingering weight for sweaters.

March: Darcy

Probably through Ravelry, I learned of The Dark House collection of patterns by Kim Hargreaves. I fell for this jaunty jacket, but wasn't in love with the result. Partly, I didn't like the Knit Picks Merino DK I used. Partly, the fit isn't perfect. But the jacket is warm and I like it as Spring outerwear. I have since noticed that Kim Hargreaves' web site gives you such detail and close up photos of each design, that I think I could make some of them without the patterns now that I'm more experienced. Shhh. Don't tell anyone. March: Ann Budd Basic Socks

This was a happy project because I won a contest on the Ruthless Knitting blog and got two socks' worth of Lorna Laces Shepherd sock yarn in the colorway Amish. These were my first socks in thirty years, so I used a basic pattern from the Ann Budd Getting Started Knitting Socks book. The turned out well (in fact I am wearing them right this very minute), but I don't like the shape of the Ann Budd patten. And I think I knit them at too loose a gauge. Cat Boo is evaluating my work.
April: A Thousand Acres

In 2006 I made scarves for all my friends at work. In 2007, I gave them candy and nuts. In 2008, my plan was to make each of them mittens. Emboldened by having successfully made socks, I made these mittens, my first ever. They're ok. I used a Knit Simple Magazine pattern that isn't great, and I messed up a little on the thumb. Since the gift exchange was changed to Secret Santa this year, I ended up sending these to afghans for Afghans in October.

April: Grace

See above. Same thing. One thing I liked about making mittens was that they are GREAT for using up leftover yarn, so I should make some more and better ones in 2009. This pattern was a better one, from Ann Budd's Pattern Book, but the yarn, Patons variegated, was worse. There's a color pool in these that looks like an oil spill.

In February I learned that my daughter, Anne, was expecting a baby in the Fall. I wasn't allowed to start knitting however until the pregnancy was in a secure state, past the first trimester. My first project was this blanket from Louisa Harding's Natural Knits for Babies and Moms. I love her understated crunchy, organic style. The name of this blanket is probably unfortunate, being from the disturbing Neil Gaiman novel that I listened to as I knit.

It took about five months of on and off knitting to finish this. It is the design from Folk Shawls by Cheryl Oberle that I most admire. It is really beautiful. In one of the posts that featured this shawl I vowed to never make another shawl and then I immediately took back the vow. You know what? I re-vow it. I have never worn this. June: Six Baby Washcloths

I so loved Louisa Harding's baby blanket squares that I made them into baby washcloths. I took the squares I liked best, the heart and star, and added the two that I invented, the cat and flower. I used part of a Knit Picks summer yarn sampler along with the original blanket yarn to make them.
June: Interworld Kimono

Now I'm really getting into baby knitting. I thought this free pattern was one of the cutest Kimonos available. I didn't yet know that the baby was a girl, so I thought this would do for either sex. I love the color. I'm also into Neil Gaiman, naming this and the matching pants below for one of his children's stories.

June: Interworld Baby Bell Bottoms (see blog post above)

Another free pattern, this one from Alison Hansel of Charmed Knits fame. Again, I thought this was the cutest pants pattern available.

July: Anouk

Talk about cute. I have always wanted to make this pattern. It is perfect.

As I have discussed at length in my blog, I had made one pair of socks with a flap heel and didn't like the fit. So I tried a short row heel here and like it much better. But despite my undying love for Charlene Schurch, I had trouble following her directions. I found clearer ones on line, detailed in the blog post.

This looks a lot better in the pattern, which was a free one from Berroco. Partly it might be the yarn, Lion Brand Cotton Ease, which I try to like, but it always disappoints. I think it might look cute on baby though. Of course, what wouldn't?
July: Temptation

I named this after a Val McDermid thriller. I also named it Temptation because I was tempted to try an Elizabeth Zimmerman pattern. This so-called baby but really toddler sweater became the occasion for a critique of EZ and all of her works.

September: Ravelympics Child's Sweater (also see previous post if interested in brioche stitch)
I like how this came out. I am tempted to try the contrast saddle shoulder and brioche stitch for an adult cardigan. This made a warm sweater to send to afghans for Afghans.

November: Refined Cardigan

This is my own design based on an idea that I've had for a long time. This is version one, because there are some problems with it, although I like it in a way. It approaches my idea. I have some more yarn, in a different color, to produce version two.
November: Big Boy Baby Kimono
For a friend's baby. I embellished the Mason Dixon Knitting design by adding little white squares. It's Cotton Ease again, but it looks better in garter stitch than in stockinette. The baby was born a few days ago. November: 22 Learn to Knit Afghan Squares (and many other posts showing individual squares)
I started this toward the end of June. I placed it in November, because I think I made my last square of 2008 in this month. This project has been a blessing, affording me the satisfaction of completing a project, albeit a little one, and teaching me a lot about a number of stitch patterns.
I have 41 squares to go.

December: The Weaver (and 3 other headbands) Thanks to the Learn to Knit Afghan book, I was able to design this headband based on one of the slip stitch patterns Barbara Walker gives. I made this and three others from a Knit Picks alpaca yarn sampler. This was the best one. The Weaver pattern is given in its blog post.

December: Piney

Last FO! I finished these in time for Christmas even though I had to rip and re-knit them because I made the wrong size. If you have read this post, thank you for bearing with me. I won't burden you further with elaborate 2009 knitting resolutions. I have decided a few things though: 1) I will knit more mittens because they are quick and use up left over yarn; 2) more socks because hand knit socks are wonderful to wear; 3) sweaters only of my own design (or others ripped off) because that challenge is the only reason to knit a sweater since I don't need any more; 4) no more shawls and few or no scarves; 5) always afghans.

1 comment:

Wool Enough said...

How fun to do a year-end review of your knitting! I was going to pick my favorite of the lot, but I had to pick two -- Darcy and Anouk. Darcy, because it is extremely elegant and I might want to make that design for myself one day, and Anouk just because it is unbearably cute.

I was interested in your comment on the shawl. Although I love my rectangular "Arctic Diamonds" shawl, I have never worn it. I always turn to the triangles -- Swallowtail and Colorblock. Even took Swallowtail on my latest vogage; it's wonderfully snug for chilly hotel rooms. Of course the two triangles are made of glorious alpaca, and Arctic Diamonds is knit of mere wool.