KNITTING CHALLENGE 2018, cont.

I will not keep you in further suspense. This is the final installment of the Ujo challenge. Most of the challenges  involved was my own making. I should have listened to my gut and paid closer attention to measurements. However, it was my lack of attention that led to some creative thinking and new challenges that ended up boosting confidence in my knitting skills.

When I first imaged this top, I wanted to try and have the colors more blended so that it would be hard to tell where one yarn color ends and another begins.

I think this time around I am a bit closer to achieving that goal.

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I also decided to vary my striping pattern so that it would be a bit more random.

The only problem with that idea is that I did not remember the exact measurement of the previous top, so I added a few more stripes just to be on the safe side. (Can you see a possible problem?)

FINALLY, after what felt like months but was only a long two weeks Iam ready to join the top to the bottom. I am not looking forward to this challenge. I discuss this with my knitting group. One of the ladies mentions that she found a video on You Tube about knitting a Kitchener graft instead of sewing it. That does sound intriguing to me.

Actually, I would almost pay someone to do this for me. But then I start thinking. I am not a quitter. How many times have I ripped something out until I finally got it right. How many different crafts have I done over the years because of the challenge of learning something new.

The video on You Tube was very easy to find. It is called, ‘How to Knit (not sew!) the Kitchener, aka Grafting, by ‘wipinsanity’.

My BKB (best knitting buddy) suggests that I knit up some extra yarn and practice the Kitchener before starting the real thing. I have never learned my lessons nor taken the easy way and history is about to repeat itself.  I watch the video a couple of times am ready to jump in. Why waste time on practice, I say to myself.  My BKB has started calling me the ‘fearless knitter’  because of that attitude along with ripping (or cutting)  a FO apart in the middle, not knowing whether it will have a good outcome.

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Wow! Not looking to bad for a beginner. I am actually impressed how easy it is coming together. I even became faster and was able to complete the join in one afternoon.

OMG! Such a relief. I DID IT! The join looks fabulous, even if I say so myself. I absolutely love how all the colors blend together. I think I should try it on before I block it.

AND,  . . . remember I said I added a few extra stripes  to the top? Well, I also added length to the overall garment. I like my tops long so that I can wear leggings, be comfortable and not look like a ridiculous old lady who should not be wearing that outfit.

I look in the mirror, . . . not bad, I like, except that it extends to the middle of my knee. I know that after blocking I will probably have me a ‘middy dress’.

Okay, I am not ready to give up yet, and this can be an easy fix. Four inches. I ripped out four inches from the bottom. Again, an easy fix. Picked up stitches, bind off, shorten the pockets and sew down again.

That’s it! I am not doing anything else to this project. If it does not block out well and fit, . . . I’ll just burn it!

Are to ready to see how my faded/blended striped Ujo top turned out?

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Sorry, lol, I couldn’t resist a bit more teasing.

Here it is.

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What do you think?

I like it, a lot.  And the ladies of my knit group did the appropriate amounts of ‘oohs’ and ‘aahhhs’. I think I got a pretty good blending of colors. Can you guess how many different colors I used?

You can find the answer on Ravelry with my notes from Frazzldknitter. (I really need to learn how to insert the link, so all you have to do is click it. Maybe that should be my next challenge!)

Hope you enjoyed the suspense.

THANKS FOR FOLLOWING MY BLOG.

P.S.  the answer is 6. 

Animal contributions from a visit to the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo.

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At last, time for belly rubs, says Toby, our little Furby!

KNITTING CHALLANGE 2018, cont., . . .

Today is a perfect day to curl up in my favorite knitting chair and spend the day doing my favorite activity, knitting and a bit of blogging.

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Not sure how much snow we will get, but the temperature has dropped from 17 degrees two hours ago to 11. Hot cocoa, anyone?

I think today I will be working on two WIPs,

The first is  ‘Drijfhout’ by Isabell Kraemer. My BKB (best knitting budding) made this and I was very envious, just had to have my own. The yarn is Berroco Cosma, alpaca/wool/silk blend. It is so soft and yummy to knit with and will be perfect to wear on a day like today. Knitted top down sleeves are knitted using a contiguous set-in-sleeve method developed by Susie Myers. So far it is fitting perfectly.

The second WIP is a sleeveless pullover top knitted sideways and is appropriately called ‘Side to Side Pullover for Women’ by Knitting Pure & Simple. Pattern was purchased from Patternfish. Yarn is Good Earth Adorn, a cotton/linen blend from Fibra Natura. Hopefully, I will have this finished in a couple of weeks as the Greyt Spouse and I will be visiting in Phoenix. Pattern notes for both can be found on Ravelry and I am Frazzldknitter.

I left you in a bit of suspense last time and promised to not make you wait too long to find out what happens with the ‘Ujo’ top.

I listened to what my friends were saying about the fuchsia color and continued knitting. Most of the time my knitting friends are helpful. I knew in my gut that to continue knitting was probably a mistake, but when do I ever listen to my gut instinct!

I finished the top and tried it on. I am a person who does not shy away from bright or bold colors. However, one look in the mirror I told myself, ‘shoulda listened to your gut!’

I did not take a pic of me wearing the top. I was just too frustrated. I had spent about two weeks of hardly knitting anything else and now I have something that I doubted I would wear much.

Thinking about my options:

  1. Keep it and maybe wear it once  a year.

  2. Give it away.

  3. Frog the WHOLE thing.

  4. Or take on a challenge! I am gaining a new confidence about my knitting.

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Warning, you are about to get yourself into a very prickly situation!

I am not one to back down from a challenge, or should I say certain challenges. So, . . I picked up my left-handed scissors and checked to see how sharp they are.  ‘Gingher’s and still sharp after being used for 40 plus years.

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As I am contemplating what I am about to do, I take a very close look at my scissors and realize that although they were made for a left-handed person, they were obviously made by a right-handed person!

I cannot read the engraved brand name unless I hold the scissors in my right hand!

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LOL, I can’t believe I never notice this before. Silly right-handed people just do not understand the world of a lefty.

Okay, back to the Ujo. I make my first cut. My heart is racing, I start to perspire, and no it is not a hot flash this time! There is no going back now, so I continue to cut. A very surreal experience. I don’t believe that I am really doing this, it must be a dream. (I did not take pics of the destruction, just too emotional.)

I rip out the top section with the offending color. I want to reuse the beautiful sprinkled gray Western Sky Yarn. I make sure I have about one-half inch extra on the bottom half.

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I pick up the stitches on the bottom half where I want to rejoin. I found it easier to do this on the wrong side where the purl bumps were. This I set aside after carefully removing the extra rows.

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That done, I now start reknitting the top.

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I am liking this much better and feel as though I may wear it this time. I think all my colors will blend perfectly now.

I am happily knitting along and start thinking about how to join the top to the bottom. I could do a three-needle join and would prefer this technique, although it will be a bit bulky. But talking to my fellow knitting friends, they suggest the Kitchener join would be more appropriate. My stomach twists into knots. I have only attempted this technique once before. To the untrained knitting eye it looked okay, but to my higher standards, not happy at all. And I did listen to these friends once before, right?

Oh well, I still have plenty of time to think!

TO BE CONTINUED! . . . . . . . . .

‘What! What is she doing? She is not going to tell us the end again!’

’How can she just walk away!’

’She just made my day! I’ll be in a grizzly all day now. Let me at her!’

’You! Look at me! I am so angry my eyes are turning red. You know how hard it is to get red-eye out!’

A Senior Moment and KNITTING CHALLENGE 2018!

I am sitting here reviewing last blog and getting ready to type a new one.  Actually, I did that a several weeks ago! Now, I am revising and rewriting.

Not sure what I did. I thought I had finished the last blog.  Must have been a senior moment. Hoping that I do not have too many of them this coming year. I think it is best to just leave it unfinished and move on to more current stuff.

Almost two years ago, I started knitting with a group of ladies on Wednesdays at my favorite yarn shop. I am very glad I did this. I made new friends and have increased my knitting skills tremendously.  I have learned a greyt deal about different yarns and how to use them. I have  become better at mixing colors and trying new techniques and projects that without this group of ladies I would never imagined that I would be able to do. I credit this group, along with my BKB (best knitting buddy) for the success of most of my projects. (Notice, I said ‘most’)

My last blog and shared a scarf and  a knitted top that I completed after just a couple of weeks into the new year.

883072d2-7f3d-4a2d-8da1-31fd89a647a4.jpegThe green Twisted Tunic was a combination of a couple different patterns, along with my own creativity.  It turned out so well and boosted my confidence to knit more tops.  I now have three tops on my needles, yarn for another along with a brioche shawl, and other assorted WIPs.

Earlier this year I jumped on the ‘Find Your Fade’ bandwagon. Hours were spent finding the right colors and yarns, and conversing with my BKB and other knitting buddies.

This was as far as I got. It then was put into hibernation, along with all WIPs, as I became lost in the forest with my bunny obsession.

While knitting the Twisted Tunic, I started rethinking the Fade and  came to the conclusion that I was not real lying into finding my fade in the context of a shawl. I thought it might be fun to make a top using the fade colors.

So, my search on Ravelry began.  I decided on an Anke Strick pattern called, Ujo. It met my requirements for tunic length, simple lines, easy to knit and using fingering yarns.  I think it would be fun to play with different colors and striping to create a fade or blending of colors.

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I frogged the ‘Fade’ shawl and started thinking how I wanted to put my colors together. Some colors were removed and others added.

I had an idea of what I wanted, but also decided to make it up as I went along. After all,  I had  gained a new confidence with my knitting skills. I think, ‘I’m good, I can do this.’

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Okay, not looking bad so far. The color in this photo is a bit off, the the pink really brings out the pink in the grey Western Sky Yarn.

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Okaaay, I have knitted a lot now. I even finished the sleeves, something that is usually not done until the garment is almost finished. (And if I was smart, I would have waited and not finished the sleeves so early!)

I’m not sure that I am liking the bright pink and share my doubts with my friends on Wednesday Knit Group. (Remember how I praised these ladies earlier?) No one shared my doubts, they ALL thought it was looking greyt and the colors blended well.

So, I continued knittting, . . .

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The following week I go back to the Wednesday Knit Group, and again express doubts about a bright fuchsia color across my chest. I event try it on. I am still the only one with doubts. So, I think, ‘okay, it is just me and I continue to complete the top, including the inner pockets. I do like the color contrast to the inside of the pockets, and I how the other colors blended.

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It is finally complete, I try it on and, . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . TO BE CONTINUED!

Find out what happens next! I promise to not keep you in suspense too long.

“Oh for Emu’s sake! Can you believe she just left us in suspense?I want to know what happened next!”
OH, FOR EMU’S SAKE! Can you believe she left us in suspense, just like that!”