Monday, February 23, 2009

Elfish sweater and other knits

EDIT: Love and peas is having a blog contest, be sure to check it!
Last weekend I finished my new favourite sweater, Arwen.

Pattern: Kate Gilbert's Cardigan for Arwen

Yarn: Berrocco Ultra Alpaca

Needles: 4 mm Knit Picks
I modified the pattern a lot. I don't really like seaming, so the original construction seemed to be unnecesarily complicated. So I knit the body in one piece until the armpits, finished the rest separately, knitted the sleeves in round and the hood in one piece. My Arwen is also a lot longer than the original one. Practically I only took the idea and the reversible cables from the pattern. I love the cables, by the way. They look much more complicated that they really are - the chart was really easy to memorize (after I found out how to read the chart - it's not done in the usual way).

When I got this ready, it was a hot day, and I thought I wouldn't be able to use the cardigan soon, as it's very warm. Well, no fear! I have already used it these days. It seems that febrero loco really is crazy, at least what comes to the weather. We had some very warm and sunny days last week, and the suddenly thunderstorms, strong winds and cold days again. I'd prefer the warm spring weather, but at the same time I'm also secretly happy that I have a good reason to use Arwen.

Oh, and I have to tell you that this sweater saved me even before it was ready! When I was coming back from Finland, the zipper of my hand luggage got broken in the plane. And I mean totally broken, there was no way to close the baggage again. I could never have got it out of the plane nicely if I hadn't decided to knit the cuffs of this sweater in the plane. That's why I could use my scarf and my lovely alpaca yarn to tie my hand baggage and could somehow carry it. (Yes, I did get some strange looks, but who cares!)

I also finally have some pics of the Christmas presents I made. Boyfriend's mom got a shawl.

Pattern: Nuolitanssi by Elina Urmas

Yarn: Bernat Satin

Needles 4 mm

The pattern was nice and clear. I definitively could use it again. The yarn was quite thick for a lace shawl, but the receiver chose it herself. Well, she didn't really know that I was going to make something for her with it, but once we were together in a shop and she really liked the colour and the yarn.

And last but not least, boyfriend's present. It's called Kivi, which is Finnish for stone.

Kivi Hoodie

Pattern: my own

Yarn: Nalle Colori and Novita Nalle

Needles: 3,5 mm

This is my own design. I'm happy with it, although I still have to do something to the hood - it's too large and seems strange if boyfriend puts it on. (When boyfriend saw my Arwen on Sunday, he said: "How come my hood is so strange and yours is perfect? You always make your own sweaters better than mine!" That's not true... I just learn new tricks always after finishing his sweaters... ;-)

This was a boring knit, as it has so much stockinette stitch. The garter stitch was even worse choice for the upper part, though, it was even more boring and if you make a mistake, correcting it is more difficult. Note to self: don't knit anything for boyfriend with thin yarn and 3,5 mm needles! Or at least no sweaters. This one took several months to make.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Random things

Some time ago, Jaana from Metsän takana challenged me to tell six random things about myself. Here you go!

1. I'm very curious. I'm not generally intersted in cars, for example, but start to fix a car in front of me, and you'll soon see me looking over your shoulder and asking questions.

2. I have studied several foreign languages. The strangest one is probably Northern Sami, spoken by the Sami, the indigenous people of Finland and other Nordic countries. No, I don't have any connection - more than mere interest - to the Sami, and I have only used the language on my University classes and reading some Sami poetry. I still think it hasn't been a waste of time at all. Some day I just might need it, who knows? Besides, the more languages you learn, the easier it gets... And it's wonderful to learn about new ways of thinking and seeing things, and a foreign language is a good way to open perspectives. And well, I said it already - I'm very curious.

3. Walking clears my head. If I'm stressed out, angry, sad or worried, I take a walk. Sometimes when I'm writing my research and feel that some idea is coming, but can't quite get it yet, I walk in my room.

4. Some day I want to travel to Siberia. By train, of course, and for several weeks, without mayor plans, so I could got off the train whenever I wanted and just stay in some village for a while. But before that I would have to study Russian again (I have forgotten almost everything) and learn to sleep in the train.

5. I love mangos. The mango season is about to begin, hurray!

6. I like to keep my curtains open to get as much sunlight as possible. And to see the sky.

I'm not going to challenge anyone else, but if you want to continue the meme, please tell me, so I can visit you!

And now some random stuff: pics of the yarns that I bought from Finland. I "only" brought 2,7 kg... I normally don't buy so much yarn at once, as I prefer to finish one project before starting a new one, but it's easiest for me to bring yarn from Finland. And I have a plan for almost everything.

The red ones are going to be Sylvi, the white Merinosilk is for my friend's wedding shawl, the blue bambu yarn will become Wilhelmiina (as soon as I finish my current project) and Pirkkalanka on the left side will be some kind of multicoloured sweater that I haven't designed yet.

Mom gave me the lovely Sivilla yarns. I'll make two shawls with them, I think.