Wednesday, 27 February 2008

knit and purl samples

These are some samples using my inspiration source, The Giant's Causeway, Ireland. These are very basic, just looking at the varying 'marks' different types and combination of stitches make.

This is a page from my sketchbook roughly looking at the lines made by the rock stacks.

For these 3 samples I have used a basis of K2 P3/P2K3. In the first I have used 2 stitches in knit and 3 stitches in fishermans rib, staggered every 5th row. second sample uses 2 purl and 3 twisted rib, third sample uses 2 knit and 3 twisted rib stitches, both staggered every 5th row. It's amazing the difference in the feel, look and size of the samples... they were all knitted on 30st using 2ply shetland doubled, 2.75m needles.

this sample is made using twisted rib, k & p checks, rev st st and plain knit, again using the rock stacks as inspiration. The stacks themselves are, at first look regular, vertical and orderly but when I looked more deeply I saw that they lean to one side, are made up of different lengths and widths and depths. I picked out a couple of textures in the rock stacks and used them veritcally and made a more formal arrangement of the stitch patterns, done in 4ply cotton yarn on 2.75m needles.

chicken sheds

Spent the last few days away in the caravan in (I would love to say sunny, but drizzle was the order of the day followed by minus temperatures at night) Buckinghamshire. We went to Milton Keynes(never again!!) as I knew there was a Border's bookshop there and hoped it would have loads of interesting books and magazines, sadly not. I bought Knit Knit which is a great read.. such wonderful, wacky people and projects, but nothing else. It's unusual for me to come away from a bookshop so light-handed.

Back at the field( yes we were staying in a field!) I was overcome with the old chicken shed. It had such lovely lines and grids and the cowlings made me think of Norse warriors(phew.. too old for thoughts like that). I love the way the light is reflecting on the windows, making a focal point of that end. There's lots of potential for design here... what would you call a sweater designed using a chicken shed??

Wednesday, 20 February 2008

cast off/pick up

Had a quick 'play' with casting off and pick up again along the reverse side of the fabric. This really excites me ( am I sad or what?) as, in effect, you are turning the stitch horizontally. Tried casting off on the knit side and picking up knitwise/purwise/k1p1, also casting off on purside and picking up knitwise, k1p1. Had a go at just casting off and picking up a few stitches... this needs a bit more work to eliminate the gap and large stitch at end of cast off. I'm sure I must have seen or read about this technique somewhere before but I can't remember where or when...possibly something to do with Scandinavian knitting... I have a beautiful old book of Norweigen knitting I pore through.

using textured ribs

Spent another freezing day(boiler packed-up 2 days arriving Fri!!) looking like a Mitchelin man, tucked up under a throw knitting. To try out the different combinations of ribs/knit and purl stitches To start I knit a long strip just randomly putting in different stitches at a whim. I find this often throws up unexpected combinations.

This is a sample using fishermans rib/garter st/and stocking st combo the strip threw up. I have formalised it to produce a more regular stitch pattern. It has created a lovely crunchy fabric with lots of give.

I had terrible trouble trying to photograph it so scanned it instead. This is the 'reverse' of the sample which I think is lovely. Click on the pics to enlarge... I resized them so as not to use too much of my blogger allowance.

This is the 'front'. As I was knitting lots of 'what if's' came up... what if I knit it on a tighter tension(sample done in 100% aran on 4.5mm), what if I only use smaller needles on some of the rows, what if I reverse the fabric halfway through(I think the garter panels will remain the smae and provide continuity), what if I add colour, what if I stagger the rev st st blocks a bit like a chequerboard, what if I make the strips more irregular( ie longer panels of fisherman's with shorter panels of st st or , of course longer panels of st st/shorter fisherman's). Isn't it exciting the multitude of possibilites from just one sample... at this rate I shall be completing Mod 1 around 2020!! As I was casting off I had another 'bright' moment... I knit a bit of st st at the top of the samples to give the 'foldover' something to grip... I cast off on theknit side and then picked up the purl bump (on rev side) from the stitch just cast off, knit 3/4 rows st st and cast off made a lovely ridge along the fabric. Not sure if this shows up well in the piccy but again threw up lots of 'what if's'

Sunday, 17 February 2008

random ribbing

I thought I would play about a bit with ribs, trying to see if I could give the suggestion of an ariel view of landscape. I cast on about 60 sts and just did the ribs freestyle. I suppose I could chart them out for a more organised look.The first one I did( in cream aran wool) sort of gives the basic idea.

The blue( merino and angora 2ply) are, I think, much better. the first image is the front and the second the rear. I was trying for random blocks of texture that would relate to field formations, hedgelines and roads etc. I am going to try again using more textured rib patterns( eg mistake rib, garter rib, fisherman's etc) I think they should give a better looking textured surface. I could see these as an inserted panel, or ornate pockets. could also be done on a shaped piece of knitting.... a collar or lapel.

Wheelgate House

t these are views of the B&B, taken from the Market Square across the road.

and these are views taken by standing at the front door of Wheelgate.

Saturday, 16 February 2008

a short interlude, back soon