Catherine's Wheel

Wednesday, October 18, 2006


The things you find on your clothesline at night...

Quite cute, really. Here's some more info on the little critters. Hope you're enjoying your Wednesday evening.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Secret Knitting Revealed!

Finally, I can reveal one of the secret knits.

OK, so it hasn't really been a secret for about 6 weeks, but I figured you wouldn't really be interested without photos, and it's taken a while to upload these pics.

The pattern is called "Rambling Rows" and I first saw this pattern four or five years ago, when John was just a baby. How do I know this? Because I made a cot-sized blanket for him, which he now uses as his kinder rest blankie.

It comes from a company in the US called Cottage Creations. No website, sorry, but if you Google for it, you'll probably find a retailer somewhere. Oh look, there's one! Scroll down to see the afghan, as this designer - Carol Anderson - has quite a few patterns out there.

I've also bought the Paddy & Bridget dolls pattern to try (one day), the Rambling Rows Jacket, and the community knitting booklet as well. They're good additions to my reference library. Please don't email asking for copies, as a refusal may offend :D

The colours in this shot are the most accurate. You need five colours for this pattern, and it can be made in any size you like. I used Cleckheaton Machine Washable 8 ply. My inspiration for the colours came from the Handknitters Expo at Coburg Town Hall in June. Busy Bee had packs of ten balls for a substantial discount, and the burgundy, asparagus-green and denim blue were in one pack together. All I had to do was add the natural white and charcoal-grey and off we went!

First of all, the reason I love this blanket is that it's a join-as-you-go pattern, so when the body of it is finished, all you need to do is weave in the ends. This isn't too bad if you stop now and then and weave in a few at a time as you go. I do have a secret unvented method for weaving ends into garter stitch, which I may post about another time.

I finagled the edging myself. Usually I pick up stitches all around the edge of the blanket, work garter stitch in the round, increasing twice at each corner every second row and then cast off. Since this blanket is designed to be really handy for the carseat or stroller, I wanted a firmer edge for it. No reason I can articulate, I just did. (As one of Goose's T-shirts says: "Because I'm a Princess. That's why."

This time, I made the edge as usual, but when I got to the edge, I knitted a picot row (yo, K2tog all the way around) then worked garter stitch in the reverse colour order, decreasing two stitches at each corner every second row, then performed a three-needle cast-off around, having picked up the base of the original picked-up row to cast off with the live stitches. I cast off with a larger needle (5mm instead of the 4mm I used for the blanket) to make sure the edge wasn't too tight and puckery. The last photo shows the "wrong" side of the edge; you can see how neat this treatment is.

OK, I started this post this morning, sitting up in bed while I had my first coffee, and I've finished it while waiting to put the kids to bed. Hopefully tomorrow I will have permission from Cupcake's mum to post her photo, so you can see who all this work was for :D