Sunday, November 3, 2013

November Promotion BOGO on Ravelry

Our wedding anniversary is this month and I'm having a promotion for my two deerstalker hat patterns. DH (pictured above in the Original Elementary) had encouraged me to start designing for years. I finally got started and now have 71 designs on Ravelry.

Elementary was one of my first designs. DH wears it whenever it finally gets cold here in the Heart of Texas. It's knit all in one piece and made in chunky yarn, so it makes a great last minute gift.

In response to several folks asking for a sewn version, I designed Elementary Putting Together the Pieces
Sadly, I could not get DH to model this one. The yarn is incredibly itchy, but looks great. Very tweedy and I love the way diagonal garter stitch looks like woven fabric. Hedda Woodin (designed and crafted by DH, check out his blog Toolmaking Art) is my model and she does not mind the itch. I have some Brooklyn Tweed "Loft" that I will use to make a wearable version for DH.

For the month of November, buy one of the Elementary patterns and I will gift you the other through your Ravelry account.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Gonna be a Big Star - Blanket

I was born and raised in Texas. As we are the "Lone Star State", one encounters stars on everything. I put together this collage of stars from some of the places and spaces near me.

One of my new designs, Gonna be a Big Star, makes a great motif for making pillows and blankets. I'm working on a bedspread size. Here is the first block:

It's 20" square. This photo shows it in an unblocked state, draped over a pillow. There a lots of ends to work in, so I will likely back it with fabric after completion. The fabric backing will also support the motifs and minimize stretching.  Here is the link for the pattern.

Gonna be a Big Star

I'll keep y'all posted on my progress.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Unnecessarily Huge knitting needles and crochet hook

Inspired by some meanderings around the internets, I requested that DH make knitting implements in size 50  25mm . Not one for just following directions - I had just requested a simple set of straights, he made a set of straight, 2 DPN, a crochet hook with an eye to make it an afghan hook and a sewing needle. Fans of the Japanese anime "Ranma 1/2" might recall the inspiration for the name of the needles and hooks.

I had originally started a huge version of one of my designs "Gonna be a big star", shown below in worsted weight (pattern available at Gonna be a big star )

I had finished one star section, weighted the yarn and found I would not have enough to finish the star section. I only have 6 pounds of this oatmeal cotton! The finished size would have been about 100". So, ripped back and started a seat cushion:

MIL had expressed a desire for a thin cushion to carry with her on walks to use when she rested. Her retirement community has wrought iron chairs and she wanted something a little more comfortable. This is a close up of the crochet test cushion. I have had DH give it the "princess and the pea" test and I fear that he will keep this one and I will be making another for MIL.

I used my Elastic Plastic Fantastic stitch markers while knitting the first sample, seen here in close up:

These stitch markers work very well on Unnecessarily Huge knitting needles.

Working with these is certainly different. I am used to throwing yarn with my index finger. With size 50 needles, I have to grasp both needles where they cross with my left hand and throw yarn held in my right hand. Somewhat awkward when you are used to flying speeds, but the huge needles and yarn make a fast project.

I made my Unnecessarily Huge yarn as I worked the project:

The yarn on the cone is about a worsted weight. I knit I cord on size 11 needles to make it Unnecessarily Huge yarn. I had only one cone of this particular yarn, so I could not strand it. My process is to knit a few yards of I cord, then secure the size 11 needle with the stitch markers (they cinch up nicely with the barrel cord lock). I pick up where I left off on the project, working until I run out of I cord yarn.

I have many cones of other yarn that will now be put in service to make Unnecessarily Huge yarn. I think I can get rid of some of the "what was I thinking" and "but it's such a good price" purchases. That 100" star will appear someday and then I'll have an excuse to replenish my stash.

I found this site to be inspirational with some nice giant knitting pictures, if somewhat beyond my Italian language skills:

Crowd knitting

DH's blog Toolmaking Art.

Find more of my work at, garilynn on Ravelry or garilynn on Patternfish

Friday, January 18, 2013

What the heck is "TFL"?

Working “TFL” as described on Raven Shawl

One of my latest patterns has an instruction "K 2 tog TFL", meaning that you will knit 2 stitches together through front loops. I am a combination knitter, so I have to do a bit of convolution to make the stitches in YO, K 2 tog right leaning mesh have a smooth appearance with the second stitch on top of the final worked stitch.

If you are not a combination knitter, you might be helped by the video that I listed in the Raven Shawl pattern.

Here you are looking at the next 2 stitches to be worked :

The stitch that will be on top of the finished stitch is the second stitch. The two stitches must be turned or worked in such a way for the second stitch to be on top. 

Here the needle tip of the right needle has been inserted from the front of both stitches, going in through the far side of the second stitch and then through the first stitch. 

Another way to work this stitch is to turn the two stitches around, see the loop of the second stitch is in position to be on the top of the stitch to be made:

Here are the two stitches turned around and on right needle and ready to be slipped back to left needle.

The completed stitch

Both methods will result in the correct placement of the stitches to complete YO, K 2 tog TFL.