Small projects

Here are my 2015 goals on the knitting front. It’s not a lot but I want it to be realistic, right?

1. Produce more small projects like socks, hats, slippers – check!!!
2. Practice my spinning and take an advanced workshop;
3. Try more dyeing;
4. Do more gift knitting and prepare for some Christmas knitting;
5. Keep my stash under control and only add what I take out. Right, I never said I would diminish my stash 🙂
6. Think more about the wearability of my projects. In order to reach that I would like to make less shawls (I tend not to wear them) and I will try to stay true to my preferred color palette of blue, grey, golds and a tiny bit of red.

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Wow, it seems like I’ve already fulfilled my first goal with this great pair of slippers. I think the Christmas knitting could be a bit of a struggle, but goals need to be challenging so I’ll leave it in.

It’s so rewarding to make projects you can finish in a day or two.
Very often it are also the ideal projects for using up some of your leftovers. My slippers were made with Lopi leftovers from my nordic sweater.

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These slippers were so much fun to make. It’s a free download and you can find it here.

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Modular Magic

This is the 4th time I’m making a project from Westknits design and again, it totally triggered my imagination. What is it you’re doing to me, Mr. West? What’s the secret?

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It’s construction is very unusual. Well, perhaps not so unusual for a Westknits design.

Forget about bottom-up knitting, forget about top-down knitting and start in the middle for a change.

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The fun thing is, and I think it’s rather genius, that you can pick up stitches on each of the 4 sides of the rectangular. There’s a provisional cast-on at the bottom of the rectangular and there are life stitches put on scrap yarn on top. Each row of the rectangular ends with a w&t stitch (wrap and turn) which allows you to pick up the stitches very easily afterwards.

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I mainly used Alafoss Lopi yarn, it’s really thick and warm, yet light. I love this yarn, no matter if it’s a bit itchy, and it comes in the most gorgeous colors.

The original design has no sleeves, but I could not imagine wearing anything that chunky indoors, even without the sleeves. I decided to make it an outdoor version and added sleeves.

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As I went along, I noticed that the fronts would open up a lot and so I added a button band with some short rows to avoid that.

Can you tell, I’m in love with this one? Or did I already make this clear?

I’m a very seasonal person and as I was making this one I had exactly this setting in mind. It probably explains my color choice.

You can find more pictures and notes on this jacket on my Ravelry project page here.

Ndl size 7mm
Alafoss Lopi

Lopapeysa

I finally finished my Lopapeysa or Icelandic sweater.

I love Icelandic sweaters or in fact any knitwear with Scandinavian patterns.

I don’t mind the scratchiness of the yarn, I think that once you have it on you get used to it and it’s really nice and warm.

I already casted this one on in January and knit both the body and the sleeves until the underarm in no time.

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But then I had to start the yoke, the fun part, the part that magically turns this sweater into an icelandic sweater.

I realized that I only ordered 5 different colors, whereas I needed 7 colors. Don’t ask me why.

I also realized that I would need more contrasting colors to bring forward the dark brown in the yoke.

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Fortunately I had exactly what I needed: white and grey.

See, you always NEED to have an important stash in order to be prepared for unforeseen circumstances:) like this one.

I had to do some thinking to determine the order of the different colors, taking into account all the contrast.

It’s not as simple as it looks, especially when no exact examples are available.

So I tried some color combo’s on paper.

I knew I had no choice on the lower and upper band of the yoke since those had to be worked like the borders of the body and the sleeves.

I decided on the two center colors (white and red) and then used the same color order below and above the center lines.

The project is RAVELLED here with additional information.

The pattern is a free download!

Léttlopi
Nld 4,5 mm (US 7)

Létt-Lopi Vest

If you have been following this blog a bit, you know I really like icelandic wool Léttlopi.

The characteristics of that yarn are that it’s water-repellent, light weighted and breathable. Once you’ve finished a project you should carefully rinse it in luke water and it will bring softness.

And another very important characteristic is that it exists in the most wonderful colors.

This pattern is a free design made by Védis Jonsdottir and can be downloaded here.

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Létt-Lopi
Nld 4,5 mm

Mittens for Autumn

Autumn is clearly in the air.  It makes me want to knit mittens, socks, hats, scarfs or anything really to cuddle up.  It makes me want to make long walks in the forest and see how the summer greens are changing in the most beautiful reds, oranges and yellows.
Lett-lopi
Nld 3,5mm

Special requirements on “Jón”

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If you want to knit something for your teenaged kid, you know in advance there is a risk it won’t be according to the book and you will have to deal with special requirements. I can live with that and prefer knowing them before getting started.

We all love scandinavian sweaters in our family and so I promised my son to make him one.  We picked out an islandic pattern called “Jón“.  That was the easiest part.

Then came the adaptations.

1) The pattern was designed for adults so I reduced the size “S” by only casting on 150 stitches instead of 162 stitches to make it a size “XS”.

2) My sweet boy thought the sweater would look much nicer only having the colorwork at the bottom and at the sleeves, but not in the yoke.  I kind of agree.  Sometimes those patterns can be a bit over the top.

All finished, all loose ends weaved in and put together.  Check.

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As you know, traditional scandinavian sweaters are knit in the round.  I worked the yoke in the round – that is without(!) the colorwork – but that also means there’s no difference between front and back.

3) Could I still fix it, please please please mum?  Of course I can, but it’s not something I like doing especially not when the sweater is all finished. Didn’t like that part.

I made this sweater in spring and I was happy using summer as an excuse to let the fixing wait.  Last sunday I decided to take it up again, and added three short rows in the back. I was surprised to see it didn’t take that much time, at least not as much as I thought it would.

He’s all happy now (so am I) and calls it his favorite sweater.  I actually think it looks great on him.

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Léttlopi
Nld 4,5 mm

My watermelon sweater

This pattern is called Gná and was created by an Islandic designer with a difficult name : Ásta Guðrún Jóhannsdóttir.

Once again I used Icelandic Lòpi wool. Although this yarn might look and feel a bit itchy at first, it becomes quite soft once it has been soaked in luke water.

This red color wasn’t easy to catch on photograph but in combination with the green it comes very close to watermelon colors. There’s the perfect name for my own version of Gná.

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Léttlopi 1405
Léttlopi 1408
Nld 4,5 mm

Project by February Twelve @ Ravelry