Monday, July 27, 2009

The writer is taking a blog break

Try not to miss me so much :-) it'll just be for five to seven days, I think.

I've just finished my third article for Educator magazine, but still have to write my second piece for Cocoon magazine, plus my AnamCara piece about studying "A Course in Miracles" using the multiple intelligences theory. Oh, and I just gave a new list of articles I can write for Educator magazine's future issues.

For the meantime, I'd rather be knitting plus giving readings... and attending to personal stuff :-) have a great week, everyone.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Knitting updates: Two colorful hand towels

I'm designing my own patterns for hand towels, for use by guests, using my stash of mercerized cotton crochet thread in myriad colors.

My main design goals were to produce well-done small and pretty hand towels in lively colors.


I decided to go for slip-stitch patterns which produce a dense fabric. Slip-stitch knitting requires using slightly larger needles than usual, for example, for the variegated Linen Stitch hand towel, I'm using a US Size 7 (4.0mm) and for the two-color combo of yellow and green, I'm using US Size 4 or 3.5 mm. Usually for knitting with one strand of crochet thread, a US Size 2 or 3 (2.75 mm or 3mm) is enough.

I'm loving my slip-stitch knitting, even if they do not produce reversible cloths. I like the density and the texture.

For this yellow and green venture, I found the slip-stitch pattern online, simply called "slip-stitch pattern" and uses two colors. Yup, I have some errors, but otherwise, I love how it's turning out. The pattern can be memorized easily.


Linen stitch, another slip-stitch pattern, had been a bane for me, when I tried it before with my tencel yarn. For some reason I would dislike the growing output and would end the project.

But with this variegated crochet thread, despite the challenge of knitting cotton even with metal circulars, I loved how the colors were turning out, as shown in this 'right side".


But I also like how the "wrong side" is turning out, below.


Linen stitch is like knitting "seed/moss stitch" but stitches are slipped every other stitch, instead of knitting/purling accordingly.

I also had another hand-towel project in yellow and violet, using Barbara Walker's Tanbark pattern. However it wasn't turning out nicely so it's now frogged. I'll probably need to use maybe bigger needles or something next time I try Tanbark.

I'm halfway through these two hand-towels, and that's another thing I love about my current knitting focus. Hand towels in slip-stitch knit fast, and maybe if all I did was knit all day, I'd probably finish one a day.