Timber Frame – Fini

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Lookee here! It’s finally done. I finished the second arm hole, neck and weaving in the ends last night. It fits perfectly! I didn’t have to modify the neck like I thought. It wasn’t too small for my fat head after all.

What I would do differently next time …

  • Make the overall length a big longer, probably just by another 2 inches. I measured for a favorited cropped sweatshirt, which is fine if I’m making a that cropped sweater I wanted (next project), but a vest should be a wee bit longer to cover the small of my back while sitting down (okay, good posture would also solve that one).
  • Make the width a wee bit bigger too. It’s a little too fitted for a normal vest (and losing some weight would help here too).
  • Instead of 1.5″ of ribbing for the neck and arm holes, I would go with 1″ — scale everything down. It’s currently the same length as the ribbing around the bottom, and I think the scale is off. But that’s what they recommended in the pattern book.
  • Be a little more careful about stitching a straight line/even curves so that the arm holes match. I was so careful about pinning the cutouts so that I have an even number of “bars” on either side of the neck line, but then when I stitched, I shifted one stitch. Now the pattern is off.In any case, the “fitted” part is perfect to go under my armoured jacket (for my scooter). Since that is a fitted jacket, I can’t wear anything too bulky underneath it. So, the vest, despite the above, is perfect for its intended purpose. It has the added advantage of being double layered (fairisle) so that if I don’t decide to zip the jacket all the way to the neck, I won’t get as chilled.

    All in all, I’m quite happy with the results and glad for the practice before the Kilim jacket.

  • Mom’s Socks!

    Mom's Red SocksI finally finished Mom’s red socks that I started way back in January. And, yes! they really are that bright and shiny! I took a couple of detours while working on these socks (Fuzzy Feet, 2 socks on 2 circulars, and the start of the Timber Frame). These were primarily my bus project, but I haven’t been riding the bus during the past couple of weeks, so I decided to just sit down and finish them. Yeah! I promised myself that I wouldn’t start the Lorna’s Laces socks for myself until these were finished. What an incentive!

    Speaking of Fuzzy Feet, I tossed them in the laundry with some towels earlier this week. They felted quite a bit, but the circumference is still too big. I’ll need to toss them in another load of hot. As you can see, I don’t do a load just to felt, and I’m not very exacting with it either. I also do stuff that people say you shouldn’t do / can’t do (that has just the opposite effect on me). You see, I use a front loading washer. Believe me, stuff felts in a front loading washer. It just takes longer. And if you are actually doing laundry, well, you’re not wasting time nor water.

    Our friend Hugh came out from Boston to go to a memorial service for another friend of ours, Richard. We all drove down to Portland for the service this weekend. Since I did the driving, I didn’t get much knitting done this past weekend. We had a great visit with Hugh though, under these very strange circumstances. Hugh will be coming back in the late spring to go on a sailing cruise so the family can scatter Richard’s ashes in the Puget Sound. Martin will go along as Hugh’s second mate.

    Not much else happening here. Work has been absolutely crazy. To give you an idea, I have had some of our European users emailing me and asking why I’m still up during their work day. I’ve been spinning a little bit on the Lorna’s Laces rovings while trying to wind down from a long day/night at work. The trick is to not get so involved and forgetting about the time and not getting enough/any sleep as a result!

    Sock Pictures

    Finished Kool-Aid SocksThe sock (left) in the background is the one from further inside of the skein, and is a paler version of the sock in the foreground. I don’t think very many people will notice except for me.

    Mom sock in progress(right) Get a load of this color! Isn’t this just an amazing RED? I am just absolutely in LOVE with the color and the yarn. There just might be a possibility that Mom will never get these socks. How selfish is that? I’m just starting to turn the heel.

    More Navajo Ply

    Navajo Plied SkeinsHere’s the finished result — 3.25 oz of navajo plied merino. I haven’t counted the yardage. It’s approximately fingering weight.

    After looking at it in day light, it didn’t look as bad as I thought it was. I think I might be able to make a pair of socks with this (I’ll use something else for the heels and toe that is a little more durable). I love it!

    Thank you wendy e for your encouraging words. I took things a little slower with the second skein and really paid attention to what was happening. You are right, there is plenty of time to stop and untwist, if necessary. I didn’t have an opportunity to test out your suggestions for restarting the loops after a break, since the second skein didn’t break (and I wasn’t brave enough to purposely break the yarn just to test it out!).

    Here are a few things that I’ve noticed while plying the second skein:

    I need to be more consistent while spinning the single. With navajo plying, any thick spot is 3x as thick just because they become juxtaposed when plied. When plying from 2 or 3 singles, these thick and thin spots even each other out, since it is highly unlikely that you will get 2 thick areas on the singles at the same time.

    Also, when moving from a thick area to a thin area, the transition is very noticeable at the end of the crochet loop.

    But there is something really mesmerizing watching the flow of colors. Once you get into the rhythm of making the loops, you don’t have to think about that and you can start focusing on other things. Like the amount of twist that I’m putting in.

    EliSpot with skeinI wasn’t the only one that really liked the feel of the merino yarn. EliSpot helped herself to the finished skein and started to play with it (on the dog blanket). Of course, when Martin grabbed the camera to take this shot, she gave us the feline version of the finger.

    I’ve been re-reading (aka “looking at all the pretty pictures”) Twisted Sisters. Yesterday, I took some white rovings that I had a did a little Kool-Aide dyeing. I tried the spot method (page 24) and nuked them in the microwave (3 minutes on high, sit for 1-2 minutes, 3 more minutes on high). They didn’t turn out as dark as I would’ve like it. And it was more stripes than drops. Oh well. They should make nice socks nonetheless.

    It’s Preppy Yarn!

    pink/grey 2ply yarnI’ve just finished plying the last of the pink rovings. The pink was much harder to spin than the grey was because someone had cut the roving with (gasp!) scissors. I finally learned that it’s better to just pull the cut ends off and throw it away instead of trying to spin it. It makes an awful, lumpy mess. It wasn’t too horrible once is was plied because it balanced out a little, but still not something that I would want to repeat.

    End result? About 500 yards each of pink and grey 2-ply that is between sport and worsted weight. Just enough to make a cropped sweater for me! Of course, I can’t start on it until after all the Christmas knitting is done.

    On the vest … I’m almost finished with the back. EliSpot decided that it was a nice spot to take her afternoon nap on. At least it’s nice and warm now. I’m a little tired from spinning and plying so I think I’ll leave it for tomorrow.

    I went to Lamb’s Ear Yarn and Fiber and picked up some Lorna’s Laces rovings. I couldn’t decide between 2 colorways, so I bought both. Purple Iris and Tahoe. About 10 ounces each.

    Of course, I couldn’t resist picking up 2 skeins of Lorna’s Laces Sport Weight yarn. Two more last minute Christmas knitting projects. Mum on the project because it’s a surprise. I have 10 more days. Plenty of time, right?