Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Deck the halls with Malabrigo!
Fa la la la la, La la la la!

I'm revelling in Ravelry, frolicking in the fibre and celebrating my stash. In the last few days many (MANY) blissful hours have been frittered away cataloguing my valiant attempt to accumulate a respectable SABLE (I've got about half of it entered, but almost no photos yet), as well as exploring my options in the pattern galleries and setting goals for future projects well into the new year and beyond. Okay, so I actually have enough in the queue to get through the century. If these clever people would please press pause on all the new and nifty patterns for a while, maybe I could catch up. (Heh, heh. Heaven forfend!).

O.M.G. this place is wonderful! It feels so good to sort and organize my copious collection of string stuff and finally get an honest accounting of what's actually in there. And I am very excited by the ease with which I can cross-reference between the stash, my library, and my immense wishlist of (*cough!*) imminent and future projects.

There's not much to show for knitting around here. Lately I've been swatching and scheming and scribbling notes, and doing a lot of origami to help me visualize some design ideas that are rattling around in my head.

Still I do have one little FO from earlier in the fall. These are some super simple hand/arm-warmers I whipped up for Stella recently. MezzoDiva's simple fingerless mitts with a twist:

These are very simple 2x2 Ribbed arm/handwarmers with a cable twist at the thumbhole to reinforce the opening. Twilleys of Stamford Freedom Spirit, Blue/Gold multi on 3.5mm needles (I find magic loop best, but if you like juggling DPNs go for it!) Here's the recipe:

Using needles a little smaller than typically called for by the yarn-band (to create a nice dense and warm fabric), cast on a multiple of 4 stitches (about 1.5 times the number you would use for a simple stockinette mitt; e.g: in a DK weight I'd cast on 36-40sts, 36 x1.5= 54, so these were made on 56 stitches which is the next number that's a multiple of 4) and join to work in the round. Work a 2X2 ribbed tube (in the round) until you reach the desired length before the thumbhole, ending with the two stitches of a purl column.

Do a cable twist (to reinforce the opening at the thumbhole) as follows: Slip the next FOUR stitches to a cable or spare double-pointed needle and hold them in back. Knit the next TWO stitches, then purl the next TWO (formerly knitted) stitches and knit the last TWO stitches (formerly purled) from the holder.

Work another round, but the next time you get to this cabled bit, knit the first two stitches (which were crossed over on the previous round and then work only the next purl stitch. Now TURN YOUR WORK and continue working flat (back and forth, instead of in the round) for about 1.5 inches, working the stitches as they appear to continue the 2X2 ribbing.

The purl stitches between the crossed-over twist will become selvedge stitches, finishing the edges of the thumbhole nicely.

When the thumbhole is long enough that if you pinch the edges together they form a slightly snug fit around the thumb, rejoin the edges to work in the round and do another cable twist (as above) to reinforce it at the top. Then continue in the round for as long as you need and cast off.



Suna said...

Can't wait to finish reading blogs so I can see what you uploaded to Ravelry. I am sorta embarrassed by my stash, but at least it isn't the biggest one. The fingerless mitts are really good--I might try those, myself!

Carol said...

Nifty thumb-hole method. I'll have to try it when I can knit again!