December 26, 2013

28 Anatolia from Rowan 54 - And More New Orleans Tips!


Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits


Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits


Throwing all modesty out the window: I've knit a lot of beautiful things over the years, but I'm not sure I've ever knit something as breathtaking as this! 



Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits


As I am just a poor knitter, a slave to the written word (!), we must give all the credit for this beautiful design to Marie Wallin, for her razor sharp eye for colorwork and unrivalled talent for romanticism in knitwear.

This is Anatolia from Rowan Magazine 54 (see my Ravelry project here), using seven colors of Rowan Felted Tweed DK (50% Merino, 25% Rayon, 25% Alpaca).  In my opinion, there is no yarn that looks quite like it.







Warning!  The photograph colors shown in the magazine were off.  The pattern calls for Damask, but in the photo, it looks like Peony is used.  If you buy the same colors, you will be in for a surprise!






Right is my Photoshopped version to be more accurate

Many many people have written to me, "I love the colors you chose, they are so much better!"  But can you believe that I only changed one?  Yes!  I simply replaced the Damask purple color with Rage red.  

The difference is palpable, it sings festivity!  Suddenly, the flowers are poinsettias, who would have known?  I had created the perfect Christmas sweater.



Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits


The pullover is stranded, that is, colors are held at the back the entire time. While some of the bands look like traditional fair-isle, they smash apart the rule that you must only have 2 colors per band.  The designs use up to 4 colors stranded at once.



Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits


Some of you may have your mouth agape -- yes, I agree, it is rather impossible to demand stranding 4 colors at once.  

With two colors, I use both hands to knit.  With three, I try to have the dominant color in the right, and the two others in the left.  Honestly, in the end, I don't know how I managed it!



Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits


So how on earth to do four?!  One of the ways chosen by knitters is to do "duplicate stitch" over an empty 2-color background.  After knitting, you come back and embroider knit stitches on top.  I decided to do "intarsia" for the small motifs, basically cutting pieces of yarn and only knitting with them when I came to them.

Here is what the intarsia pieces looked like in the back:



Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits


The pattern is written to be made flat and sewn in pieces.  This presented a problem, as it meant that the wrong side had to be stranded in purl.  I don't mind doing this for two colors, but for 3 and 4, no way.  So, I converted the pattern to do it in the round.

Note: the yoke is already written in the round, so you don't have to change that.



Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits


One of the problems with knitting motifs in the round is the "jog".  Knitting in the round is a big ole' spiral, so when you get to the new row, the color bands shift up by one.  There are many ways to try and avoid this, none are really perfect.

For the body, I kept two solid stitches at the seam, thus disguising where the colorwork meets.



Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits


For the yoke, I tried something a little different.  A long time ago, I learned that if you knit into the stitch below after one row of a new color, you can disguise the jog.  However, this doesn't really work for colors that have just one row, because you make a bit of a mess trying to put in the new color so soon.  So, I made something up for the one row color that separates every motif, and I was pretty pleased with the seam (it's in the center back of the yoke).



Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits


Knit one row with the new color.



Attach the next color(s) and knit the next row.



Do not knit the last stitch...



Instead, insert needle into the stitch below the next stitch (which is actually the first stitch of the round) and knit it together with the last stitch of the round.



The ends are all pulled in here, to make it neat.

Not bad!  You can occasionally see that the stitch stretches over two stitches, but the jog is fixed, at least.



Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits


Now, the pullover wouldn't be a ME pullover if it didn't have some visual modifications.  You can tell that I removed most of the ribbing from the sleeves and body, and replaced it with repeated motifs.



Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits


Because I didn't want to be wrong about how much length I needed, I cast-on everything provisionally, finished the entire pullover, and then knit downwards.


Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits


You can see that the whole thing was super short after following the pattern!  My row gauge was clearly off.  I had to add almost a whole sweater's worth of motifs to the sleeve, whoops.



Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits




Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits



The other small mod was to reduce the length of the ribbed boat neck collar.  Felted Tweed can be scratchy on the neck, so I needed to get it lower down.  Anyway, I really love the low collar, very elegant!



Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits


I scrambled like a total nut to get the sweater done for my trip to New Orleans on December 17.  My husband was down there for a conference, and we had such a good time earlier in the year that I flew down to join him.  

Luckily, he left before me, so with 48 weekend hours and many instant dinners, I managed to get it all done!  This is just a representation of the ends from the elbows down... I wish I had saved them all.



Leftover ends from Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits


Even I didn't realize how perfect New Orleans was to photograph this beauty.

Some photos were taken in Lafayette Cemetery #1.  Yes, it's a bit odd prancing through a cemetery in a joyous sweater!  Truth be told, I tried to spare you the photos where I was giggling, out of respect for the patrons who had been lying there for hundreds of years! 



Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits

Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits

Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits




B. tried to get me to be penitent.



Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits



The following one makes me laugh, because it is ridiculous.  I was trying to be serious, this vault is for a 16 month old girl who died in 1863.   So, why do I look like I'm in a Personal Injury "Attorney" ad?  When B. saw this photo he said, "You never ever make that face in real life."  A compliment?



Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits





The rest of the shots are taken in the Garden District, amongst the ironwork.  Go ahead, hop on the St. Charles trolley, get off around Washington and turn north, you won't be sorry.


Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits


Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits


Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits
I call this one "Garden District Spooky".

Some of you may remember my trip to New Orleans earlier in the year. Well, there were a number of tourist tips in that blog post, but of course we discovered some more.

This time we spent quite a bit of time in the Warehouse District.  A fabulous lunch at Cochon (book in advance and order the blue crab salad on the johnny cake, please do):



Cochon matchbook, New Orleans; Dayana Knits blog



A jaw-dropping not-to-be-missed exhibit of Edward Burtynsky's newest arial photos, "Water", at the Contemporary Arts Center (the show goes until mid-January, but will appear elsewhere I am sure):



Water by Edward Burtynsky, Contemporary Arts Center, New Orleans; Dayana Knits blog


The dark boudoir of Bellocq for their specialty drinks, vintage "cobblers":



Belloc matchbook New Orleans; Dayana Knits blog


And a stop at Kiefe and Co. for some Herbsaint, Bourbon and Maraschino for "import".



Loot from Kiefe and Co, New Orleans; Dayana Knits blog


I love Po' Boys, like, insanely.  I've confirmed that Coop's has the very best lightly breaded shrimp ones, there really is no comparison.  But it's oyster season in New Orleans in the winter, and the fried oyster Po' Boy at Mahoney's on Magazine Street was killer!

Not hard to believe that the first thing we bought when we got back on Christmas Eve was a box of Prince Edward Island oysters to play with.  :)


Anatolia by Marie Wallin from Rowan Magazine 54, knit by Dayana Knits
Mmm, good eats in the New Orleans Warehouse District!

Anatolia has been an adventure!  I cast-on the moment I received the winter Rowan magazine... but guess what just came in the mail?  The Spring/Summer 2014 one!  What delights will I find inside?



Rowan Magazine 54, Dayana Knits blog


Or rather, what delights will you find?  









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December 12, 2013

3 Weave Over Your Knitting to Great Effect - Princess Dayana Collar









My morning ritual is to wake up around 8am and check e-mail, etc. in bed for half an hour.  Well, last Thursday was different, because a pattern in the new winter Knitty issue rocket-launched me out of bed, through the sleepy bedroom atmosphere to land like a meteorite into a pile of stash yarn.

This is Princess Franklin by Franklin Habit.  That amazing effect you see is from weaving yarn on top of simple garter stitch knitting.




I finally had a reason to call a project Princess Dayana.  Most of you probably don't know that I pronounce my name "Diana", so this is a real coup!

I'm not sure if Princess Diana ever wore cowls, but she definitely wore plaid.





I love stashbusting.  And I love how Madelinetosh Merino Light colors go together in a million ways.  This project is a life saver for stash busting! 

I have used bits and pieces of two of the colors (Nutmeg and Sequoia) in FIVE PROJECTS.  This is a record, I am so proud!


Basile's Hair Cell sweater, blogged here

Fuzzy Wuzzy

Little Red Mittens

Passo Doble, blogged here

The pattern uses 5 colors, but the 5th one is barely used, and only while weaving.  That means it has to pop and sparkle, right?  Rowan Lurex Shimmer in pewter did the trick... love it!




TIP 1: GETTING STARTED.  Now, if you are stash-busting, this one is important.  Cast-on between 50 and 60 stitches, not 74!  The cowl is going to be firm with the weaving, and 74 sts (which ends up being the height) is much longer than you want.

The original length folds up and hides all the plaid beauty and honestly, when you wear it, it's a bit like you just got treated for whiplash.  :p

I didn't even bother to weave past 2/3 of the length and just folded it under instead.




This was a pretty cool modification because I didn't have to weave in the 40 or so ends from striping.  I just used some of them to tack down the fold and tucked the rest inside.  heh heh.

You can see how long it still is!




The folded edge is interesting, because it adds warmth, but also changes the look of the cowl if worn upside down.




Alternatively, you get a highly amusing hat.




TIP 2: INCREASE SYMMETRY.  The knitted part of the collar is made by repeating a stripe sequence in garter stitch.  The way the pattern is written, you will get a larger stripe of the main color (C1) at the very end.  To even this out, knit *15 rows* at the end, not *19 rows*.

However, this collar is very snug, and you may need the extra width, especially after weaving.  So, to have a wider cowl and still be symmetrical, simply add 2 or 4 C1 rows at the end of each main repeat, and then finish with 17 or 19 rows, respectively.




TIP 3: GRAFT CONFIDENTLY.  Grafting garter stitch is really just a small tweak of regular old stockinette grafting.  Start by making sure you end up with two of the same type of stitch facing you.  Knit or purl, doesn't matter.  I had purl stitches facing me on each needle, as seen here:




(I should say here that I didn't follow the instructions to knit 3 rows in scrap yarn after the provisional cast-on.  Instead, I did a crochet provisional cast-on and started knitting with C1 right away.  Following my above mod of *15 rows* at the end, I had purl stitches facing me on each needle.)

For garter grafting you will do the SAME thing on each needle.  Your first pass will be the type of stitch you see.  For me it was purl, so my first pass was as if to purl.  The second pass is the opposite... as if to knit.  Do this on the front and back needle.

I always do two stitches at once when I graft... so much faster.  To do this, do the second pass, pull the stitch off the needle, but before pulling at the thread, do the first pass in the next stitch.  Then pull.




Also, you should always graft loosely.  It's way easier to tighten a graft then to loosen it.  Ask me how I know.  I once tightly grafted a ~200 stitch seam in a knit and purl pattern and suffered very greatly for it.





TIP 4: WEAVING WARNING.  !!  Be very careful when you weave, as your fabric will tighten significantly !! You will be able to slip on the cowl before weaving, but you might not be able to after.




Find a nice balance between a weave that is totally slack, and a weave that is strangle-tight.  Slip the cowl over your head after every weave.  Build up that hair static to a respectable 20,000 Volts!  

Seriously.  You'll see that it looks fabulous when it's tight, but it just won't work unless you really make a significantly wider cowl.  Many of these early weaves had to be cut and re-done:




By the way, you don't have to cut a new piece for every weave.  Cut longer pieces and just make a small loop or knot at the end of the row (once you pick the right tension, of course!) before moving to the next weave.

Also, if you are having trouble finding the first row to weave, mark every 10 rows with a locking stitch marker to identify where it should be.  It's not too clear where to insert the needle on the edge row, so just pick some part of the stitch and be consistent the whole way through.  It will look fine!




I had great fun making this cowl.  The pattern is a huge hit on Ravelry, and I'm expecting to see a whole bunch of weaving-inspired knitting patterns to appear in the aftermath.

But please, Dayana, next time stay in bed.  Your hands hurt from the one-week marathon!


See my Princess Dayana on Ravelry




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