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Thursday, January 24, 2008

Book and Berroco Day

Yesterday was New Book Day. Mom, Carol, Ann and I LOVE New Book Day. David hates New Book Day.
Here's a peek at my "desk"
Pictured here: Designer One Skein Wonders, Itty Bitty Nursery, Knitter's Book of Finishing Techniques, Walker Treasuries, How to Knit, How to Crochet, Pursenalities

We love it because we get a lot of new inspirational ideas, new reference materials and new cute photographs of babies in handknits.

David doesn't really hate it but he doesn't like it either - it because they sell really slowly, take up a lot of space and tie up money that we could be spending on other stuff. Now, don't get mad at him, he has a point. There are SO MANY other places to buy the books we have at DEEPLY discounted prices. But we continue to stock them, I continue to buy them for my personal library, and recommend them to others, and this is why:
  • Purchasing patterns that designers design keeps them designing
  • The photography in these new books has really become a beautiful aspect of the projects
  • The diagrams in reference books are handy in a pinch
  • Designers are coming up with new techniques and new tips for old techniques
  • Sometimes you rediscover something from crochet or knitting history that revolutionizes your work (Elizabeth Zimmerman!)
  • Stitch dictionaries let you be a designer
I could probably go on and on.... books, books, books...

On the Finished Project Front - it's been all Berroco, all the time for me the past week and a half. In a good way!

Dizzy, a FREE hat pattern from berroco online
Pure Merino col. 8560 - kind of a burgundy color
Yarn Cost - $7.99/ball
My favorite part about this pattern, besides the cool spiral, is that the pattern itself spirals - you don't have to keep track of rows or anything, you just do the same thing over and over until it's the right length.
Super-spiraly goodness!
ONE IMPORTANT TIP
Every time I've used Pure Merino the garment has grown after washing. To predict what is going to happen in your garment, definitely knit or crochet a swatch and wash it as you would wash the finished garment. You may have to go down in needle or hook size. The pattern calls for 2 balls but I got away with using only one. Because I knew it would grow when I washed it, I stretched the hat slightly while measuring as I was knitting. If I were you, I'd buy the 2 balls, knit it within the 30 day return deadline, and return the second ball if you don't end up using it!

My second Berroco of the week is this lovely cabled knit bag designed by Norah Gaughan:
The Brea Bag, another FREE pattern from Berroco online
2 skeins of Ultra Alpaca in col. 6283
Yarn Cost - $15.98

I think the cabled design in this bag is just so pretty and compliments it's half-moon shape. The center looks like a butterfly, no?

This was my first project with Ultra Alpaca and I have to say I'm thoroughly impressed! It's soft and sturdy and because it's 50% wool holds it's shape perfectly. My favorite colors are the ones that are heathered.... If you've knit cables before, you can knit this bag. I wouldn't recommend it for a first cabling pattern for most people but if you're feeling adventurous, go for it! email me if you have questions!

I keep logging in to post quick posts and then get all long-winded on you... hope you're still with me!

Have fun with the string,
Jen

3 comments:

rachilizi said...

Just a random passerby =) the bag and hat looks great!

I'm trying to knit the Dizzy hat too, but something is going wrong with the *yo K1 yo* part... instead of one hole in the lacy part, there's a knit row dividing it into TWO smaller holes... any idea? did you follow the pattern exactly? Any suggestion/help would be great!! Thanks!

J.Reilly said...

Hi Rachilizi!
The *yo, k1, yo* does create two holes in the pattern. As the spiral swings around the hat the first yo gets knit into the ssk/k2tog grouping (on what would be the next "round") and disappears. So if you follow the pattern around for a few spirals you'll see the yo's come out like my picture (hopefully). Feel free to email me if I'm way off and maybe we can find some other solution! info@sageyarnandgifts.com
Jen

rachilizi said...

Can't wait til I get off of work and rush home to try it!!! THANK YOU SO MUCH for the explanation, Jen!!! =D you have no idea how you just dissolved my agony...