Elinor Brown Knits

Knitting Designs by Elinor Brown

Month: May, 2007

FO: Craftaholic Orchid Socks

Pattern: Craftaholic’s Orchid Sock pattern
Yarn: Woolarina Superwash Sock
Needles: US 2 for the first 4 inches, then US 1
Modifications: This is a toe-up pattern but I knit it top down, without reversing the row order. Also, I only used the lace pattern on the front, with extended ribbing followed by stockinette stitch in the back.
Here is a view of the back. The extra ribbing and stockinette in back was inspired by Nancy Bush’s Canal du Midi pattern that I knit up in April.

One thing that I love about these socks is the striping on the bottoms of the feet.

I really can’t say enough about this yarn. It felt like soft Koigu with similar twist. I love the striping too, although it only striped when I knit on US 1s, pooling a bit on US 2s. Since these are for me, I’ll be able to give you a review of how the yarn wears later this year – a bonus!

I’m horribly behind on Bloglines, please forgive me! I’ve been reading everything but haven’t had much time for comments. I’ll get back next week when school starts up again and I’m not on full-time baby care. Speaking of which, how do you stay-at-home moms do it? I’m exhausted and crazy from two weeks of sitter-free baby duty!


Things I Do to Jacques in the Name of My Kid

Bike trailer test driving!

Jacques asks what he did to deserve this…

Knitting content later this week!

FO: Flore Hat in Knit Picks Shine Sport

A baby hat in four days, can you believe it? That’s like taking a week to knit a bootie! This is one serious hat! Unfortunately, while I was quite sure that B’s head was 17″, she has apparently grown a bit since that measurement so that hat is too small. No matter, it will go to a baby due in late summer. Nevertheless, Beatrix will be your model because she’s all I have on hand. 🙂

Pattern: Flore by Knitwhits
Yarn: Knit Picks Shine Sport, remnants from other projects (colors: Violet, Orchid, Blush, Apricot and Grass, I believe)
Needles: US 4
Modifications: Since the suggested yarn was Tahki Cotton Classic which is a bit heavier than Shine Sport, I swatched, made some calculations and cast on 90 instead of 114 sts.

First of all, let me just say how much I love the finished product – it’s unbearably cute, cleverly designed and interesting to knit. Baby Kaya has a great one too in Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino too. The construction is well thought out and the petals are joined by a k2tog row, which cuts way down on the seaming. With those qualification, I must say that only a really, really, really special baby will receive one of these hats from me because both the knitting and finishing were, as Theresa suggested yesterday, “fiddly”. That’s nothing against the pattern authors at Knitwhits, it’s just the nature of the beast. I can’t think of any pattern modifications that would make this less painful to knit, but be forewarned that this is certainly a slogalong project.

To begin with, the pattern calls for two 16″ circular needles and a set of DPNs. That’s fine if you happen to own all of those needles in the appropriate size but I didn’t and there’s no way that I would ever buy so many duplicate needles for a baby hat (maybe for a sweater but certainly not for a baby hat). Thus, I was forced to fudge it a bit. I knit each new petal on DPNs and put the lower parts of the hat on a 32″ US 0 circular. Why? Because that’s all I had – it essentially functioned as a stitch holder, although I admit I spent a lot of time transferring pieces from one needle to another, something that might not have happened if I had not been too cheap to buy more needles. If you decide to make this hat, I guarantee that it will be easier if you follow instructions and use all of the suggested needles.

The finishing seemed to take forever, although my patience for end weaving and the like is minimal. Each layer had six tips to tack down so that the petal would lie flat. Six tack downs multiplied by five… that’s a real drag, if you ask me.

So there you have it: an absolutely adorable hat can be yours with a little crankiness and a lot of finishing! Take it for what it’s worth!

A Quick Break from Socks: Flore

When I saw Sophia’s Flore hat, I remembered how had intended to make one for Beatrix so I quickly download the pattern, collected some Shine Sport remnants, did some math and cast on. I needed a bit of a reprieve from sock knitting and baby hats are fast knits, right? Well, it turns out that this particular hat is not such a quick knit, although it does beat socks. It’s like knitting four baby hats in one. (duh)
I’ll have a couple comments about the actual pattern when I blog about the FO later this week.

Until then, I’ll be enjoying the nice weather (guilt-free) with Aaron and Beatrix. There must be something about the end of the semester and bike rides

Celebratory Knitting

This week I took two finals and handed in a 5-page paper and an 80-page paper. I’m officially done for the semester and done with my masters degree. Commencement is tomorrow but it will be a bit anticlimactic, since I still have to take more science classes to meet the medical school entrance requirements.

Needless to say, I celebrated with a few rows of sock. I present one finished Orchid Sock. The second is already on the needles.

This picture shows the lace pattern a bit better.

Even though this yarn was probably not the best choice to show off the lace pattern, I love the striping shown here.

Instead of knitting the lace pattern on the front and back, I knit the back the same way the Canal du Midi Socks were made, mostly to give the sock some stability.

I enjoyed knitting these socks so very much! As I’ve told some of you, I will be sad to finish the second sock!

My secret pal, whose last two packages been waiting for me after each of my last two organic chemistry, struck again. This time? Four hours after my organic chemistry final. If it weren’t for the Australian postmarks, I would swear that my pal is in the class with me because her timing is freakish.

This time, she sent a Jo Sharp pattern book, three wonderfully soft balls of Alpaca Silk Georgette and some chocolate wrapped in the prettiest paper!

Although I had heard great things about Jo Sharp patterns, I’d never leafed through one of her pattern books. I must say, this pattern book is definitely my style. You all know how often I knit adult sweaters (have I even made one since I started blogging?) but I’m itching to cast on for several from this issue! Unfortunately, I can’t find any pictures of the mitts and stockings that my pal suggested for the yarn. Maybe I’ll have to knit them. Thank you so much, secret pal!!! You are totally amazing!

Finally, both Emily and Jen tagged me for that 7 Random Things About You meme that’s flying around blogland. I’m conflicted about memes because I don’t like when they replace real knit blog fodder (personally, I’d rather see what you knit than learn about your freakish talents or strange pet peeves, even if that means you only post once a month). Read on if you so choose. I’m not going to tag anyone else (much to the annoyance of Minty) but feel free to post your own you like.
1. I grew up on Cape Cod.
2. I begged to go to boarding school and loved every minute of it. Cape Cod was that awful (pretty, yes, but an intellectual wasteland nonetheless).
3. When I went to college at the University of Kansas, my grandmother referred to it as a study abroad period.
4. I live happily without both meat and television (until Beatrix, I lived without dairy and eggs too). I firmly believe television is the root of all evil. I won’t judge you if you like it but if you can’t carry a conversation without talking about TV shows, my eyes will glaze over and I’ll politely excuse myself from the conversation.
5. I’m a New York Times Crossword junkie. Like Bill Clinton, only not nearly as good. Have you seen the Bush crossword? It’s good. 😉
6. I don’t run on the Kansas River levy (the best running surface in town) because one time, a lone female runner who was really far out got stalked by a mountain lion at 5 a.m. Even though I would never run at 5 a.m., alone on the levy or that many miles out, I still fear mountain lions.
7. Whenever I ride out of town, I think about how nice it would be to live in the country. Then, I think about snakes and mountain lions. That’s the end of that fantasy. I’m such a New Englander.