Crafty Rantings

I'm Crafty. I Rant. These are Crafty Rantings!

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

I Lied

I will post a picture later. But the truth of the matter is I lied when I postedon Monday that I was done knitting for the day. I can't help it. I inherited this thing from my mother where I just *can't* let something go until I'm satisfied. So, of course, Monday after I posted the striped bowl, I sat down with the same yarn and needles and made a new striped bowl. I did one row of each color up and down the bowl even to the cast off. Yes, I then felted it. The bowl is cute for my kitchen but I have decided if I do something like that again it will be 2 rows of each so that hopefully they won't really blend together when felted. I started to try that last night while waiting for my company to arrive and found I had twisted the little thing so I ripped it all out and, for the first time ever, said, "That's for the best."

With the weather over 100 every day and humidity almost as high, a swamp cooler that doesn't work in humidity over about 19% and a weekend where the forecast is 116, I think perhaps if I want to survive the weekend and live to knit again I am going to have to either go to a motel room for Saturday/Saturday night if I can find a cheap enough one or turn into a puddle.

Can water knit? :)

Monday, July 17, 2006

Felted Bowl Addict

In an email to my Knitting Circle and Heather who is our occasional teacher, I admitted that I am now officially a felted bowl addict. Having succeeded with the fingering weight yarn in felted bowl making (see two earlier posts today), I thought, why not try something else. I have the day off!

I took the two I used for the other bowl, the grey and light blue, and cast on. I then did another 4 rows then switched to 2 strands of a beautiful lilac. I did 3 rows in lilac then back to the grey/blue for 7 rows. I did another 2 rows of lilac then finished the bowl in blue. Looking at it I could have gotten away with 3 rows at the beginning and 5 inbetween the stripes but I can't tell you how cute this bowl is, especially in person! I LOVE IT! Since I have plenty of yarn, I am going to try making one with the 4/3/5/2/3 pattern but not today. I am hanging the felting jeans up to dry (for the second time) and calling it a knit-free day. I am working on one project I have ripped out twice and one more time and I quit.

I will be experimenting with other stripped patterns. I've succeeded in a rim then the rest of the bowl in one color and some striping. Now I will try smaller stripes. Then someday maybe I will make the stripes have spikes. Who knows. The possibilities are endless. And just so you can see the inside of the bowl (smaller stripes means carrying the yarn and fewer ends to tuck and/or cut!), I took a picture of that, too. Enjoy! I know I already AM enjoying these bowls. So much fun to make and so cute! Oh yes, one last comment... they are softer than the bowls made with other 100% wool yarn that is thicker. I love those, too, but these for gifts will be a big hit, I'm sure. So take a look inside. If you're lucky, you might end up the recipient of one of my experiments!

I can't get blogger to upload the picture of the inside of the bowl but if you look at the picture on top, you can see what it kinda looks like inside.

Comparisons for Felting

OK let's see if I can get all the pictures and explanations in here. The bowl on the left of both pictures is the size of the knitted bowl prior to felting. The bowl on the right is the size the small bowl ended up fitting for a form once it had felted. The picture on the left is the size my original small felted bowl was when done with my Secret Pal's yarn which was 100% Rhythm yarn. The picture on the right is the size the small felted bowl turned out when made with two strands of fingering weight Palette yarn.

OK, to see the real comparison, directly above is the comparison. The orange bowl on the left is the size the small felted bowl, after felting, turned out with fingering weight yarn. The white bowl is the size my small felted bowl, after felting, turned out to be when done with regular 100% wool. The picture on the right shows the real difference. The bowl on the left was the bowl made with 100% wool and the blue bowl on the right was done with fingering weight yarn.

Personally, I like both of them but the smaller ones like the blue are probably cuter and nicer to give as gifts. You can fill them with hard candy or decorations or something when you give them. I will probably do that when I give them as gifts. It is obvious you can't put a lot in them and you wouldn't want to put anything edible (unless it was an apple which you can wash) but they're great for decorating.

But my experiment yields that you CAN use fingering weight yarn to make a bowl and felt it in the washer but it IS going to be small. BTW, I actually knitted about 6.25 inches of straight rows for the sides of the bowl instead of the 5 something it calls for. Glad I did. Otherwise I might not have had any bowl left after felting!

Experimenting is fun but also dangerous. I will take what I learned and use is wisely. That is why I wanted to share the comparisons. Just so YOU know before you try something like this, too!

A Felted Experiment

Well not being a typical person (I am a mutant after all!) I decided to do an experiment. I wasn't paying attention when I ordered a bunch of yarn from Knit Picks and ended up with fingering weight hand wash instead of regular machine wash 100% merino wool (solved that with the latest order!). Rather than having to make a ton of scarves for people who only have a few days a year to wear them (i.e. Knitting Circle and other friends who live here), I wanted to see if I could really make it felt in the machine anyway.

So I whipped out my short 15" circular needle and cast on the 45 stitches for a small felted bowl. I figured since I was experimenting, I'd try making a rim, intentionally. I used a small amount of what was left from my Secret Pal and cast on, did two rows of knit (all with one strand since it was thicker) and then started with two strands of the fingering weight, using Mist and Pool (Palette from Knit Picks). Basically this is grey and baby blue (in that order). Since my daughter has grey eyes by the combination of one blue gene and one green gene, I though these would be beautiful colors to combine for her. Now that it's done, I see that I was right. And wish I had enough of the green I used for the rim to make one to keep for me. Alas, I do not. But I still have enough of the reddish from my Secret Pal to rim a different bowl.

Now that I have experimented with rims, I will not only keep doing that but maybe see if I can add a pattern of my own in there. Even if it's just a stripe in the middle. Oh this experimenting is fun! Well, when it turns out alright.

As you can see from the top pictures, the bowl is really cute. It isn't as small as Linda's small bowl but it is smaller than my original. To illustrate the point, I am going to put all the comparison pictures in a separate post and explain it.