Friday, August 21, 2009


Name: Laurel
Pattern: Laurel by Jared Flood (from Made in Brooklyn by Jared Flood)
Craft: Knitting
Made for me :)
Size: 10.5 inch diameter
Start date: August 17, 2009
Completed date: August 19, 2009
Needle size: US3/3.25mm and US7/4.5mm
Yarn: Cascade Yarns 220 Wool
How much? 1 skein = 220.0 yards (201.2m)
Colour: 9484 Stratosphere
See it on Ravelry!

I am such a huge fan of Jared Flood! I love his work and the patterns he designs. I find them to be very intricate, yet the design and patterns are simple. When I found out that he was releasing a booklet with Classic Elite Yarn, I knew I had to get my hands on it asap! Before the released date, I was calling all the yarn stores near me to see which stores will be caring it. I was heartbroken when I was told by store after store that they will not be carrying his book. I was also shocked, it's not like I live in a little town so I don't have access to lots of stores...I live in Toronto and non of the stores I called were carrying it. So then I decided to search the internet for it. Again, more hurdles. Shipping to Canada was $15 for some of the sites. Why would I pay $15 for shipping for a tiny book (smaller than a magazine) that cost $18? Thankfully, I found it on Webs for $20 (including the shipping cost to Canada)!

I was so ecstatic when the book arrived. It was like an early Christmas for me! I knew that I had to cast on this hat instantly. I was obsessively knitting this hat for two days because I couldn't wait to see the finished product and I couldn't wait to cast on other projects in the book.

I have knitted lots of his designs, so I had very high standards for Jared. I was a bit disappointed when I was knitting this hat. Was there not an editor or a test knitter? Was I the first to knit this pattern? There were lots of little gaps and minor things that were overlooked in the pattern. I kept notes as I found them, and here they are:
  1. Row 1: pattern states m1-l, but there’s no description about how to do this in the abbreviations, so I just did m1 (which is instructed in the abbreviations).
  2. The cable on row 8, row 12, etc. There’s no description on how to do this in the glossary, but you can look at the picture and guess what to do (send me a msg if u can’t guess)
  3. Marker placement will change at the end of:
  • row 15 (not row 16)
  • row 17 (not row 18)
  • row 32 (not 33) should be worked as instructed for row 18 (not what is written in the pattern)
  • row 34 (not row 35) should be worked as instructed for row 16 (not what is written in the pattern)
  • row 46 (not row 47)
  • row 53 is the last row (even though the pattern states there’s a row 54, it is the instruction for row 53)
Nonetheless, I was very happy in the end. This hat was a beautiful design. Probably one of my favourite Jared Flood designs. I used a 10.5 inch dinner plate to block this hat. I can't wait to wear this in the winter time!

As soon as this was done, I had to cast on the Grove mittens. I'm done knitting the left mitten now, so stay tuned! But here is a little sneak peak...

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Vine and Leaf Beret

Name: Vine and Leaf Beret
Pattern: #11 Vine and Leaf Beret by Angela Hahn (from Vogue Knitting Fall 2009)
Craft: Knitting
Made for Susan
Size: Small
Start date: August 11, 2009
Completed date: August 16, 2009
Needle size: US3/3.25mm
Yarn: Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino
How much? 2 skeins-274.0 yards (250.5m)
Colour: 340100
See it on Ravelry!

When I saw the cover for Vogue Knitting Fall 2009, I knew I had to make the hat. I was out buying the yarn, and Susan was there. Susan is big fan of beret and she instantly fell in love with yarn. Seeing how much she loved it, I couldn't help but offer to knit her the hat. We bought a winter white colour for her, and a red for me.

The yarn was beautiful to work with. It is butter soft. It didn't split or pile. Just an absolute dream! The design was also very easy to follow and understand. After knitting, I soaked the hat in warm/cool water. Squeezed out the water by rolling the hat in a towel. Then, I used a 10.5 inch dinner plate to block the hot. Be careful not to stretch the brim when you are placing the hat over the plate. I love blocking with a dinner plate because it resulted in the perfect size and shape for the hat! Can't wait til the fall so we can start wearing our hats!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Baby Girasole

Name: Baby Girasole
Pattern: Girasole by Jared Flood
Craft: Knitting
Made for Alba
Size made: Baby blanket (42 inch diameter)
Start date: July 22, 2009
Completed date: August 11, 2009
Needle size: US6/4.0mm and US8/5.0mm
Yarn: Bernat Baby Sport
How much?
1 skeins = 350 grams= 1113.0 yards (1017.7m)
Colour: 21742 Caribbean Sea
Modifications: Used a bigger needle (US8/5.0mm) to cast off
See it on Ravelry!

People were not kidding when they said this is a fun knit. It was such a pleasure knitting up this baby blanket. The pattern was very easy to follow, easy to memorize, and lead to an amazing finished product (if I do say so myself)! I used the magic loop method, so I wouldn't have a couple of needles trying to poke me in the eyes. If you have never tried the magic loop method, I highly recommend it! I used to be afraid of knitting in rounds before this, but never again. Try searching Youtube for magic loop videos, that was how I learned the magic loop method.

The first couple of charts in this pattern were quick to knit, but as you get further out into the blanket, the knitting slowed down quite a bit. With the increase in stitches, at times it felt forever to finish a row or two. The border took forever; I think it was the part of the blanket that took the longest for me. I think there was a small mistake in the pattern. For the lace edging, I think row 6 should be: bind off 3 sts, K2 (instead of K3 like the pattern suggests), K2togE.I used 4.0mm needles knit my blanket. When I got to the border, I switched to a 5.0mm needles to cast off. I'm a tight knitter, and this prevented the cast off being too tight which would cause the blanket to bunch. The blanket is supposed to be light and airy, so the last thing I wanted was a stiff and tight border!

When knitting was complete, the next hurdle was to block the blanket. Luckily, I had made a circular blanket just a while back so I knew exactly how to block this. I laid out a few towels to soak up the water as the blanket was drying. What I didn't like about the blanket when I was done knitting was that the outer part of the blanket was "ruffle-y". I wanted a nice flat circular blanket, no ruffles please! Luckily blocking was able to correct that. What I did was find a area in my room large enough to block this on the floor. Place the blanket in the center of the towels and used a measuring tape to stretch the radius of the blanket so that it would be 21 inches all around. By stretching it out, I was able to get rid of the ruffles so that the blanket was a nice and flat. With blocking, I was able to create a perfect circle from my blanket and when it was completely dry it took on that shape!

I also loved working with Bernat Baby Sport. It's not the most luxurious yarn to knit with (no duh, it's acrylic), but it gets the job done! I also think it is very durable for a baby blanket- it doesn't fuzz whatsoever. The best part was, it was around $7 for a skein of this and one skein was able to make a whole blanket! And how amazing is the colour! Overall, this was an extremely fun knit and I highly recommend it (as I do for all of Jared Flood's patterns- that boy is a knitting genius)! I recently purchased Jared Flood's new book (Made in Brooklyn), so stay tuned...I will be knitting lots of patterns from this new book in the near future!