There, I’ve said it.
Why do I hate felting? I guess it’s because the process is so half assed unpredictable and, imho, most felted objects are kind of ugly. When I saw the French Press Knits Felted Slipper pattern I thought they’d be cute enough to try for quick gifts. Cheap yarn and quick to knit.
Well they are quick to knit and really too fiddly to sew up for any sort of enjoyment, even with wine. And remember folks, I like sewing. But sew them up I did and then had to felt. They did felt up pretty quickly, but the slippers don’t felt at the same rate, and by that I mean the right one and left one felt to different sizes. So one goes back in, then the other and then I need to open more wine. Eventually I got both pairs the same-ish size and now they fit me. Unfortunately, these aren’t for me and I wear a 6 and my friends wear 8s. So I yanked them and stretched them and now they’re too big for me, so maybe they’ll fit my friends’ feet. Maybe.
Never again. Yes, they’re cute but it’s too much work for a maybe. But then I’m a felting hater, so take that with a grain of salt and throw it into the washer at your own risk.
The hat parade keeps rolling along. Where this hat affinity has sprung from is anyone’s guess.
This cute hat is a free pattern called Bloom by Veruschka (rav link). The yarn called for is a bulky weight, which I didn’t have. My hat making is partly driven by using up odd stash yarn and I have tons of cream skeins of Woolease purchased with an eye toward blanket squares. The blanket squares stalled and now I’ve got several skeins to use up. I thought I’d try doubling the Woolease to get a bulky-ish gauge and then kind of wing it.
The pattern has you make the bottom band first then pick up the hat stitches from the band. I knit up the band using the middle size of the pattern to fit my head. Then picked up as many stitches as was possible by the length of band I’d knitted and then increased on the first round to get the necessary stitches for the middle size hat.
Because doubled Woolease fabric is stiffer than the yarn called for I wanted to get just a little drape in the back, but not make a watch cap. I thought the increases made a nice rounded effect above the band and gave it the look the designer had in the original.
Since my row gauge was off from the pattern my dimensions for a human sized hat gave me a 2″ bottom band, 3″ knitting straight before starting the petal motif; the petal motif is about 5″ long so my total hat length (flat) is 9.5″ (ish) from band to crown. The reason I knew how long my petal motif would be is because I’d knit and ripped a few times. I kept making the hat too long, which would have been perfect should I be sporting waist length dreads, or a B52s beehive do. Sorry no pics of those particular horrors.
Bloom hat specs: 2 skeins Woolease worsted in cream (held double), size 8 needles (circs and dps). I rather like the hat I ended up with and say what you will about Woolease, it’s soft and washable – two very good things in my world.
The next few days are my only Christmas prep time, so tomorrow is Caramel making day! I make Rosemary’s Caramels every year to give away (well not give all of them away). Can I tell you how delicious they are…
If you’ve ever met me you may or may not have noticed my hands. I have small, square little hands with no nails. That doesn’t bug me, I think my hands are fine. My sister and mom both have long, lovely slender hands and long fingernails that seem to grow effortlessly.
Because I work with my hands and wash them constantly (hello swine flu/hepatitis/yellow fever/monkey pox) my little nails don’t stand a chance. They split and break below the quick. I worked with some women last week who talked me into trying gel nails to armor plate them. So today I went for it. I had tips and gel done, I must be the only one who makes the manicurist put on nails this short.
I’m hoping they look ok to others, because the look totally odd to me. Bang, there they are. I now have to try to figure out how to use my hands all over again. I’ve tested out typing and eating cookies. Both are good to go. I have to work tomorrow, so I’ll see if it’s possible for me to work with these armor talons. If not, they’re history next week. I also learned that while most things in California are more expensive than most other places, manicures are super cheap compared with some places I’ve been. Hurrah for competition!
I just hope they don’t look too stripper-y…
My new camera was waiting for me when I got home from my last trip! Yay! I starting playing with it at 1 a.m. after a transcon flight, not such a great idea btw. I bought a Panasonic LumixDMC- ZS1 after a bit of research on dpreview.com. I liked the super zoom ability, which is nice for all those extreme knitwear shots I’ll be taking. There is a ZS3 model that costs more that takes HD movies, but I’ve never taken any movie in my life and certainly don’t have a HDtv, so I got a bargain with the regular movie ability ZS1 model. Heaven help you all if I start filming shit for YouTube.
I have made yet another hat, and yes, this one is also a gift. I feel like a hat machine!
This is a super easy close fitting cap made from some nice Berrocco Ultra Alpaca (color 6277-peat mix). The Ultra Alpaca is put up in 215 yard hanks and I used about a half a skein. The pattern is a good one, it’s Ribbed Beanie by Wooly Wormhead. Easy and adaptable to any yarn or head size, which works for me.
Also, these should be the last of the awful camera phone pics, I should be home tonight and, fingers-crossed, a replacement camera has arrived.
Hope you’re having a good Saturday!