Knitting injuries: The Ordinary Knitter – episode 38

Knitting injuriesWelcome to episode 38 of The Ordinary Knitter, the knitting podcast that’s (mostly) about the projects. My name is Heather and I’m @theordknitter on Twitter, @theordinaryknitter on Instagram and @ordinaryknitting on Ravelry. This week: knitting injuries, the end is in sight for Ivy, new projects mean new yarn, knitting superstitions and other odds and ends.

Ft knitting patterns:

Ft knitting videos:

Ft yarn:

Stylecraft Special Aran: Midnight and Aster

Ft programmes:

Knitting Injuries

I don’t mean stabbing yourself with a knitting needle, though it’s easily done if you’re holding needles and reaching for things. I’m talking about the aches and pains we bring on ourselves through posture, knitting action and prolonged knitting sessions. The first time I knitted socks I used double pointed needles and lost the feeling in a couple of fingers for a few days. I found that very alarming but didn’t let it put me off! See where that’s led with sock knitting and maybe I should have learnt then.

Recently I found my left hand starting to ache in the index finger and thumb. I was doing lots of straight stocking stitch with my cack-handed purling technique that uses my left hand. I’d assumed that my strange technique of knitting with my ight hand and purling with my left would spread the strain evenly across both hands and be a good thing, but there must be something so egregious in my purling technique that my left hand couldn’t take it after a few hours (!).

As I tried to ignore the ache, I was listening to Staci Perry’s Very Pink podcast titled Knitting Aches and Pains – give it a listen for some good info from a specialist.

 

 

 

Shaping: The Ordinary Knitter – episode 37

shapingWelcome to episode 37 of The Ordinary Knitter, the knitting podcast that’s (mostly) about the projects. My name is Heather and I’m @theordknitter on Twitter, @theordinaryknitter on Instagram and @ordinaryknitting on Ravelry. This week: the Ivy wrap top – from despair to delight, casting on for another big project, and my new KnitPro Nova needles. This year is going to feature much more knitting for myself, so shaping is going to rear its head over and over again. I think it’s going to be a long and painful experience but very rewarding. I already want a dressmaker’s dummy.

Ft knitting patterns:

Ft knitting needles

Shaping

It’s vital for many garments, especially something designed to fit closely or be particularly flattering, ie where the fit matters. The front pieces of the Ivy wrap top have shaping on the waist and the neckline edge and like many tops several different elements of shaping have to be worked at the same time. Stupidly, all my confusion with Ivy sprang fron the fact that the waist increases happened at one end of the RS and the neckline decreases happened at the other end of the RS, while the arm decreases happened when you reached a certain length of work. Despite an expensive education and lots of help from other Ravellers, I couldn’t grasp that because without realising it I’d formed a mental picture that couldn’t be shaken and didn’t fit with the help I was being given. Another day, another frame of mind and it all made sense, although I do need to plot out row-by-row which increase happens on which line. Thank you to #knittinghour on Twitter for prompting me to look at the thread again, when the penny clanged into place.

Music credit:

“Carpe Diem” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

My year in knitting: The Ordinary Knitter – episode 36

my year in knitting
Yarn from my son 🙂

Welcome to episode 35 of The Ordinary Knitter, the knitting podcast that’s (mostly) about the projects. My name is Heather and I’m @theordknitter on Twitter, @theordinaryknitter on Instagram and @ordinaryknitting on Ravelry. This week: my year in knitting, Christmas knitting goodies and a plea for help. I hope I’ve solved the variable volume issue. I wouldn’t say Audacity is second nature, but I’m getting better with it.

As I’ve already discussed in previous episodes most of the projects I mention today in my run down I won’t link to them all. You can find me on Ravelry if you want to look up anything in more detail or get in touch if you have any questions. I love hearing from you and am always happy to offer any help I can ( ha ha).

Ft knitting patterns:

Ft Ravelry threads:

My year in knitting

2016 has definitely been the Year of the Sock, or that’s how it feels. I find them quick and straightforward to knit (afterthought/forethought heel apart). I now rarely follow a sock pattern the way it’s written as I’m too set in my ways of Judy’s magic cast on and the Fleegle heel, but if I’m doing a new weight of sock I find the stitch count of a proper pattern very useful, except when a size for a child turns out to be big enough to fit my size 7s. I’m sure I’ll do more socks this year, but for now I’m turning my attention to tops for me.

Music credit:

“Carpe Diem” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Christmas knitting: The Ordinary Knitter – episode 35

christmas knittingWelcome to episode 35 of The Ordinary Knitter, the knitting podcast that’s (mostly) about the projects. My name is Heather and I’m @theordknitter on Twitter, @theordinaryknitter on Instagram and @ordinaryknitting on Ravelry. This week: Christmas knitting. That really is the be all and end all at the moment, not helped by me continuously deciding to add new projects as ‘quick’ presents. As I write Ihave one pair of socks left to weave in ends (not sure I’ll bother blocking), another pair on the needles, one hat recovering from its steam blocking on my polystyrene head, and one pair of wristwarmers still to cast on for. Nuts. Apologies for being a bit topsy turvy this week but I didn’t have access to my notes until part way through. Apologies that New to Me is so quiet – I need to tinker around over the holidays and iron out those final gremlins.

Ft knitting patterns

Christmas Knitting

Is it humanly possible to start early enough? Or decide you’ve really finished and aren’t going to ‘quickly’ start any more projects? I’ve thrown in at least two projects that I hadn’t expected to do and I know I’ve rushed the ones I have done, but they’ve all been knitted with love, which I think is the point.

Music credit:

“Carpe Diem” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Knitting mistakes: The Ordinary Knitter – episode 34

knitting mistakesWelcome to episode 34 of The Ordinary Knitter, the knitting podcast that’s (mostly) about the projects. My name is Heather and I’m @theordknitter on Twitter, @theordinaryknitter on Instagram and @ordinaryknitting on Ravelry. This week: knitting mistakes, undoing three needle bind off, Rico Sock Stop, new yarn and Christmas knitting progress. Sorry about the buzz again, but on the upside I’ve discovered how to do something in Audacity which should prevent the sound fluctuation. Oh and by the way I do know the difference between Star Trek and Star Wars – no much choice in this house – I just said the wrong thing, and not for the first time.

Ft knitting patterns

Ft knitting accessories

Knitting mistakes

Knitting mistakes are a fact of knitting life, but they vary hugely in scale and significance. Looking back at projects from a few years ago I’m shocked at the errors I either didn’t notice or felt weren’t important enough to change (horrors!). These days I like to think I don’t make so many mistakes and am much more strict about correcting them, but inevitably they creep in. If you’re in a hurry, not concentrating or otherwise not completely engaged with what you’re doing, knitting mistakes creep in. I’ve made a blooper on the Mistake Braid Socks, but I’ve got away with it as it’s the same mistake in the same place on each side, so it looks like a design fol-de-rol. Any other time I might go back and fix it, but the Christmas clock is ticking. Now the question is, do I fess up and point it out when I hand over the goods, or keep schtum and hope my friend (a knitter) doesn’t notice?

Knitting mistakes aren’t always in the execution – sometimes we make the wrong call approaching part of a project. In this podcast I talk about choosing the wrong spot to increase for the heel and making a jumper hood far too big and having to undo three needle bind off.

Music credit:

“Carpe Diem” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Fair Isle: The Ordinary Knitter – episode 33

Fair IsleWelcome to episode 33 of The Ordinary Knitter, the knitting podcast that’s (mostly) about the projects. My name is Heather and I’m @theordknitter on Twitter, @theordinaryknitter on Instagram and @ordinaryknitting on Ravelry. This week: The Beeb’s new Fair Isle programme, failing to keep presents secret, Mistake Braid socks, what to make with 4 ply and introducing New to Me, a new section that mentions new knitting discoveries I make. Apologies for getting so over-excited about the One Cable Mitt reveal – I think you had to be there.

Ft podcasts:

Ft knitting patterns:

Ft knitting books:

Ft yarns:

New to Me

ChiaoGoo needles, as featured on Twitter’s #knittinghour.

Fair Isle

You know that’s actually a place and not just a technique, right? I long to do some Fair Isle knitting (or my own poor stab at it) but haven’t yet had the right opportunity to prioritise a Fair Isle pattern over everything else. The BBC has recently started broadcasting a series about life on Fair Isle and it’s fantastic – I insist you watch it. I’ve really been surprised at how central knitting is to life on the Island. Time to knit is worked into the day and selling the finished articles is vital to the island economy. I was particularly struck by the value that’s placed on the knitting. Proper prices are charged for items that have taken hours of skill to create. It was heart-warming to see and long may it continue.

Music credit:

“Carpe Diem” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Knitting storage: The Ordinary Knitter – episode 32

purple_img_20161124_211127Welcome to episode 32 of The Ordinary Knitter, the knitting podcast that’s (mostly) about the projects. My name is Heather and I’m @theordknitter on Twitter, @theordinaryknitter on Instagram and @ordinaryknitting on Ravelry. This week: knitting storage, wristwarmers, using the right cast on and bind off, and a few words about festive traditions. Talking of words, I SAY A BAD WORD. I’m sorry, and if you’re sensitive to that sort of thing I suggest skipping the last five minutes.

I’ve hunted and hunted for a link to the Scnadi-style snowflake pattern I modified for the (failed) Little Houndales Wristwarmers, but I can’t find the original. The image is copyright Andrea Pietsch and though I can find references to her online and other patterns she’s created, I can’t find the link to that chart. Soz.

Ft knitting patterns

Knitting storage

knitting storage
The needle holder my daughter made me last Christmas – I love it!

Knitting storage is a polite term for the heap of junk I work from. My day-to-day knitting supplies live on a table next to the sofa I usually sit on. On any given day it will be a jumble of projects, yarn, needles, notions bag, pattern holder etc etc.  I do tidy it up from time to time but then inevitably need something I’ve just squirrelled away in my office. It feels like a continual uphill task. However I was motivated to sort it out when I saw a photograph in Instagram of user @raglineknits knitting in her car with everything very neat. What really struck me was that her circulars were so neatly stored. It was a great contrast to mine which were bursting out of my Knitpro bag (she had the same KnitPro bag by the look of it). So I stored away all my fixed circulars (see left!) and took apart all the interchangeables I wasn’t using. The needles went back in the card they originally came on, the cables were rolled and put back in their packets. I could do up the zip for the first time in ages.

Then I sorted out the two little tins I use for stitch markers, tapestry needles etc, putting in one the interchangeable keys and cable stoppers. That now fits in the interchangeables bag too, and the other one fits into my notions bag much more easily now. I’m naturally a tidy person, but I can be a frog in boiling water with it sometimes. I was really glad of the inspiration to get sorted out; the challenge now is to keep it that way.

Music credit:

“Carpe Diem” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Cabling without a needle: The Ordinary Knitter – episode 31

cabling without a needleWelcome to episode 31 of The Ordinary Knitter, the knitting podcast that’s (mostly) about the projects. My name is Heather and I’m @theordknitter on Twitter, @theordinaryknitter on Instagram and @ordinaryknitting on Ravelry. This week: cabling without a needle, Little Houndales Wristwarmers, projects for 4 ply, more Capitan hats, and KnitPro cubics. I’ll be making a big effort to get this this pod online rather quicker than I did the last! Guess what? The buzz is back. I think my headphones with built-in microphone might be starting to show their age.

Ft knitting patterns:

Cabling without a needle

I’ve done a fair bit of cabling recently, between the To the Sea jumper, several Capitan Hats and the Ivy wrap top. I like cables and have no objection to knitting them, but if the cable section recurs frequently it can become quite fiddly swapping between regular needles and the cable needle all the time. Ivy’s twisted rib cuff is a great example of this, so I tried cabling without a needle (a cable needle, that is – obviously I used knitting needles) and it went really really well. It helps that the ‘pulled across’ stitch on Ivy is a big loop that’s been slipped for the last few rounds so it won’t be pulled out by the merest movement of your piece.

The principle of cabling is that you rearrange the stitches on the needle and then knit them as normal. It does mean that there are live stitches off the needles briefly while you line everything up but as long as you’re gentle with the piece you should avoid disaster. It does depend on the project and the yarn though. It hasn’t gone so well on the Capitan that I’m working on just now so I’ve given in an used an old DPN. I’ll be interested to see how it goes with the next cable project and different yarns.


Music credit:

“Carpe Diem” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Weaving in ends: The Ordinary Knitter – episode 30

img_20150206_083106Welcome to The Ordinary Knitter, a knitting podcast discussing projects, yarns and patterns. My name is Heather and I’m @theordknitter on Twitter, @theordinaryknitter on Instagram and @ordinaryknitting on Ravelry. This week: #sksitandknit and #knittinghour on Twitter, duplicate October, finishing the Clog Socks, progress on Ivy, weaving in ends on stocking stitch rolled edges and Scandimash mittens. Btw I recorded this on Tuesday but took forever to get it up online. I doubt anyone was holding their breath but here it is, better late than never I hope.

Ft knitting patterns:

Ft knitting videos:

Weaving in ends

weaving in endsI asked #sksitandknit for help with weaving in ends on rolled stocking stitch edges as I’d come up against it when I made the Ladybird hat and knew I would again on the rolled edges of the Clog Socks. It turned into a messy old nightmare with the hat and I wanted to avoid all that again. User @sarahfigg82 made a genius suggestion – duplicate stitch. If you’re following an existing stitch pattern with the same colour yarn then the weaving in will be much less obvious. Sarah went on to say tht unfortunately this method doesn’t work as well with thicker yarn, which I could see, but it had given me an idea. I combined the two bind offs I use: my ‘old’ style and the bind off I use on rib or anything other than acres of flat stocking stitch is to catch the yarn through the back of the stitches, so all I did for this was catch the yarn through the back of the stitches until the end of the yarn was well out of sight, then wove in the ends properly. It seems to have worked pretty well. I took the socks to the Woolpack on Friday and was asked very gently if I would block them – fair enough, it does make a difference. I’ve since finished the wristwarmers I was making too, so I’ll block those as well while I’m at it. I’ve made one of the thumb holes a little too small so I’ll see if I can stretch it a little while it’s wet. I need to block my Capitan hat too as it has a tendency to rise up a little on the crown of my head. Fortunately that’s on fleek at the moment but I feel a bit of a twit like that so I want to block it flatter. My mother has a polystyrene head I can borrow (explains a lot!) so that should be pretty straightforward.

Music credit:

“Carpe Diem” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Snapped needles: The Ordinary Knitter – episode 29

snapped needlesWelcome to The Ordinary Knitter, a knitting podcast discussing projects, yarns and patterns. My name is Heather and I’m @theordknitter on Twitter, @theordinaryknitter on Instagram and @ordinaryknitting on Ravelry. This week: snapped needles *again*, new yarn, Ivy, The Woolpack charity knitting group, and a new Twitter hour, #sksitandknit run by Simply Knitting magazine. I’m not feeling very well today so the podcast is a little more low-key than usual, all a bit disappointing as I’m going out with friends tonight, a rare occurrence and one I’m determined to enjoy!

Ft knitting patterns:

Snapped Needles

snapped needlesSnapped needles are the most disappointing thing, and it’s been too flipping frequent lately. I say in the podcast that I was putting the needle onto the cable but I think I was actually tightening it up, and SNAP! Gone. So annoying. Since I snapped a needle in the summer – the same 3.5mm KnitPro Symfonie size – I was so careful to support the whole shaft of the needle when I attached it to the cable and not overtighten. I think instead I undertightened it and had to keep screwing it back up properly, and it was on one of those times that it went pop. I was so relieved that in the end KnitPro had sent me a pair of needles as a replacement after the first one broke and not just the one.

I’m going to ask for metal needles from now on for anything 4mm and thinner. I’ve broken bamboo 2mm+ DPNs before so clearly I just can’t be trusted with slim needles in anything breakable! I’m interested in the Nova set, but for now will just ask for a couple of small sizes, well, maybe four: 3mm, 3.25, 3.5 and 3.75. Just for starters…