Saturday, June 04, 2005

Gray Pearl

First of all, thanks for all the lovely comments on my Coral Cables. Modest a part, I am really happy with the good result, specially unexpected ones! :)

On my last post, Erin caught me! Now I need to confess that I don't do swatches.......
And indeed, it's not a very good habit. To explain myself, a little introduction to my knitting history will help. I learnt to knit the basics with my mother and I would knit with all the calculations done for me. With her expertise, she could always tell me how many sts I needed and how to do the decreases or increases. She warned me of the need for swatches and she still does nowadays when I tell her of my unfit FO's. Unfortunately, I have not lived nearby mom ( not reachable without a flight) since my early 20's and had to self learn knitting from Japanese books. I learnt well the stitches thru pictures but not the calculations as I can't read the explanations.

Since I have knitted a good amount of items using the Jap. books, I have an idea of the # of sts that would fit me. Most of the Jap. patterns adopt Jap.needle size 5 for summer tops and I normally need 110 sts for my work or 120- 130 for more detailed stitches or thinner needles. I also check the gauge given by the yarn manufacture with the one in the recipe ( Jap. pattern comes with a gauge for a 10cm swatch) . At least, I get the numbers in the middle of the unknown characters!
I kind cheat and measure the gauge at about 10 cm of my work. It's actually more choosing the right yarn and changing needles as there is a range of the recommended size. See, it's not really a method but just a way I can get around my deficiencies.
Not sure whether I answered Erin's question but you can get back to me if you have more doubts.

Now let me show what I am working on. I am into shrugs, wraps, and boleros. Most western magazines are carrying nice designs. But I have not knitted any item using recipes in English. It's the laziness to learn the abbreviations and meanings of the knitting glossary words.

I found this old design ( Is this a bolero??) and decided to give it a try.



Not sure if I can wear a bolero, though. Sure would look nice for a slim waisted lady. Sighs, I used to have one! Didn't the fashion came a little bit laaaate!
However, I still want to try one. Here is the progress of my Gray Pearl.



I am working on the right front it's coming fast. The yarn is Cotton Cable in a very light gray and is thicker than the usual cotton ones I have. It's been knitted with Japanese needle size 6 (4mm).
Sorry, need to go and take my job as a driver for my boys. We are going to the swim school and that means I get to knit! Have a great weekend!

4 comments:

Peggy said...

That's a very pretty bolero, perfect to cover up a summer dress or even with jeans! I want to knit one too, but haven't found the right yarn/pattern combination. Can't wait to see your F.O.!

opportunityknits said...

Thanks so much Mimi for explaining your method of using needle size. It is a unique way and as long as it works, then it's the correct way. I'll use it for Jap patterns by referring to the stitches in other patterns I've knitted before. Thanks for this useful tip! There are so many Jap patterns that I want to knit but it is difficult to see what yarn to get because they give the gauge for the knitted pattern, which I can't try out until I've got the yarn to try, right? So your method will be a good gauge for me too!

Siow Chin said...

That'll be a very elegant bolero, the colour you chose is perfect for it.

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