April 19, 2005


The official modelled shot:


Of course this occurred on the warmest day of the year so far — it’s 27C out there! The house is substantially cooler than the outside world. Mark wasn’t thrilled about putting on a wool sweater and standing in the sun, but he understands his responsibility to the blog. And, just for Jacqueline, here’s a close-up of the tag I put in the sweater:


It’s just a generic tag I bought from the local Lewiscraft. It finishes the sweater off nicely, and makes it easier to tell which is the back and which the front — though with this particular sweater, that’s hardly a problem!

Because the day was so beautiful, I spent some of my afternoon marking exams on the back porch, and even took a brief break to clean up some of the back garden (though there’s tonnes of work still to do).

I also took a picture of the progress on the silk striped raglan, though the sunlight seems to wash out the colours a bit:


I did rip out the first attempt at a sleeve and redo it a bit longer, and now I’m about halfway done the second sleeve. This is going to be quite a close-fitting top — just as well, since I don’t think I’d have had enough yarn for a roomier one, without making it short-sleeved.

And I’ll close with the requisite “I want in the picture too!” shot of Tigger:


Posted by Aven at 05:27 PM | Comments (12)

April 13, 2005

Voila Tintin!

Here it is:


I haven’t got a modelled shot yet, though I promise I will. Here’s a picture of it with the sleeves extended, though, to tide you over until then.

Specs for the sweater are in the sidebar. Notes to myself for the next sweater I design for Mark — make the body longer (hip length) and the sleeves a little shorter. They’re ok, but not perfect. Otherwise I’m really happy with how this turned out. I love the blue, and the picture came out even better than I’d hoped. Now all we have to do is find occasions for Mark to wear it! Probably not until the fall, though….

While I was waiting for the back to block and seaming up the sweater, I cast on for my next project, out of the Turino silk I mentioned a few entries ago. I decided on a top-down raglan, following the formula given here. This is my first top-down project and I’m liking it so far — it certainly gives me alot of flexibility. I don’t have enough of any one colour to do a whole top, so on the advice of some of the ladies at the SnB I’m combining the blue and grey, with some stripes on the yoke, the cuffs, and the hem. Here’s what I have so far:


I still may not have enough yarn for a full sweater, so this may end up being a t-shirt. I’ll see — I’ll finish the body, and then see how long I can make the sleeves. I’m not quite sure what to do about the collar, though — it curls a little, especially at the v-neck, so I thought about putting a row or two of garter stitch around the edge — but how would that look down the edge of the stripes? Would it break up the pattern too much? Any ideas?

I’m off to Stephanie’s book launch tonight — I’m starting to think it’s going to be quite crowded, so I think I’ll try to be there pretty early. After all, I can just knit while I wait! If you’re going, I’ll see you there! I’ll be working on my silk raglan.

Posted by Aven at 01:55 PM | Comments (15)

April 04, 2005

Good and bad

Good: I finished the last pink and blue variegated home-dyed sock, making four in all, none of which match:


I’m ok with that, though. And if I decide I’m not ok, I’ll overdye them to even out the colours a bit. But I probably won’t.

Bad: I broke another Lantern Moon needle, rendering the set useless. I’d just started a sock from the home-dyed green yarn, and I guess I was gripping the needle too hard while picking up a couple of dropped stitches:


This means I can’t work on that sock until I get some more 2.25mm needles — this time either in metal or in much cheaper wood.

Back to the good: I’ve finished the sleeves for the Tintin sweater:


They’d be blocking right now, but Tigger got in there before I’d even finished pinning the second sleeve. I’ll have to wait until he’s gone before putting on the damp towel. (Tigger’s been following me around as I take pictures for the blog — this slowed down proceedings for a while.)

And, finally, more good: I think I’ll have enough yarn for the back of the sweater, and won’t have to put another picture there. I’ve weighed the back and the remaining yarn, and they seem about equal… we’ll see!

Posted by Aven at 04:09 PM | Comments (8)

March 31, 2005

Little to report

I haven’t finished any more pieces of the Tintin sweater, and I have no pictures of the sleeves in progress, because Mark has the camera. But I’m getting near the cap shaping on them, and since I’m doing both sleeves at once, that means I’m actually pretty close to being ready to cast on for the back. The big question will be whether I have enough yarn for the back, or whether I need to put another picture on it. I’d rather not, even though I had fun with the intarsia on the front — I’d have to chart another picture, and it would slow me down.

Of course, I don’t really know what I’m going to do next; I think I want to use up some more of the silk I bought last year, but I don’t know what to make out of it — there’s not really enough of any one colour for anything big, so do I make some sort of tank or short-sleeved top from one colour, or do something multicoloured? And if the second, what? I’ve got 721 yards of the blue, 618 yards of the grey, and 850 yards of the purple. It knits up to an aran weight, somewhere around 4-4.5 sts/”. Any ideas? I’d like another useful, fairly classic garment to add to my wardrobe.

And thanks, everyone, for the very gratifying compliments on the Tintin picture. I’m very pleased with it — and I can’t wait to see my husband wearing it! It’ll be priceless.

Posted by Aven at 01:48 PM | Comments (3)

March 29, 2005

Tintin has a face!

The front is done, and all the features have been filled in:


I’d never noticed before, but my, Tintin has some oddly placed eyebrows!

Tigger shows what he thinks of a sweater with a DOG on it:


It’s a beautiful, beautiful day outside (hence the outdoor photography, even if it does put half the front in shadow — Mark suggested I take a picture outside, as my only taste of the lovely weather). It’s currently 10C! Amazing. Makes you almost believe that real warmth is possible…

Posted by Aven at 12:11 PM | Comments (16)

March 25, 2005


This is my 200th entry!

Just felt like that needed to be marked. Thank you.

I’ve finished the knitting for the front of the Tintin sweater and have begun the duplicate stitching of the outline. Here it is, in a moody sunlit shot:


I’ve woven in all the ends, which actually didn’t take as long as I thought it would. I’ve also begun the sleeves, since I don’t like duplicate stitching enough to do it for very long at a time. I’m doing both sleeves at the same time; normally I find it too clumsy to work with two balls of yarn at once, but after working with 6 or 7 balls at once for the intarsia, 2 balls doesn’t seem too bad. I’m a tiny bit worried that I don’t have quite enough of the blue, so I thought I’d do the back last; if I don’t think I have enough blue wool to finish it, I could always put a picture on the back as well.

Happy Easter to those celebrating it, or even eating chocolate in its honour. I’m going to be marking papers most of the weekend, but we’ll take a quick break for lambchops and mint jelly on Sunday. Also, I think I might take down the Christmas lights… that’s a spring ritual, right?

Posted by Aven at 11:44 AM | Comments (7)

March 21, 2005

Pink blob

Just because I’m enamoured by the slow (or not so slow — there’s something about this sweater that’s making it just fly along!) emergence of the picture:


The facelessness is a bit creepy, especially the big blob of pink, but otherwise I think this is looking pretty good! I won’t show you the horror that is the back, though… I think weaving in ends will take as long as knitting the front!

Posted by Aven at 05:30 PM | Comments (6)

March 20, 2005

Tintin et Milou

J’ai commencé le chandail de Tintin!


It doesn’t look like much yet, but it should eventually resemble this:


Except with white where there’s yellow on the chart. This is the first time I’ve done a large amount of intarsia, and I don’t think I’m handling the colour changes very well, but we’ll see. I’m going to add the black outline in afterward using duplicate stitch, so that should make it a bit easier.

It’s fun to watch the picture start to take shape, even if most of it is an undifferentiated blob of white at the moment. And I certainly can’t complain that Mark isn’t letting me play with bright colours this time!

Posted by Aven at 12:03 PM | Comments (2)

March 12, 2004

Merci aux amis de Tintin!

Thank you for the advice about Tintin charts! The links that Krista Jo gave me were great — good, clear charts of Tintin and Milou. However, they weren’t charted on knitting graph paper, but on square graph paper, so I was worried that the images wouldn’t look as good when they were knitted up, since knitting stitches aren’t square; they’re wider than they are tall. I printed out the chart I wanted to use, as well as a couple of sheets of knitter’s graph paper (which is graphed into rectangles that more closely approximate a normal knitted stitch) from this handy site, and copied
part of the chart over to it exactly (counting squares). This resulted in the Tintin at the top of this image; as I had feared, he looked a little squashed. So I re-drew him, adding length but keeping the width the same, to get approximately correct proportions (the bottom head in the previous image shows the beginnings of this attempt). Finally I recopied that onto a clean sheet of knitter’s graph paper and added Milou in, adjusting the length of the image so that key points still lined up with Tintin. The image was a little wider than my graph paper so I taped the other sheet to the paper and finished Milou. I think it looks pretty good, in the end:


I added the shaded portion for his hair — the original was a line drawing, but I want to do this in colour. I’m currently working on finding a shade of yarn that approximates Tintin’s rather unique hair colour. My plan is to add this chart to a basic sweater pattern, doing the colour blocks in intarsia and duplicate-stitching the black outlines on afterward. Mark says he’ll even consider wearing a brighter shade than usual, since this is a Tintin sweater (and hence hardly likely to be particularly professional no matter how subdued the background colour!), so I think I’ll do the background in a fairly bright blue, to suggest the usual colour of Tintin’s own sweater.

I’ve spent far too long on this today, even though I’m not sure when I’ll even be starting the knitting — I’ve got several projects lined up already, not to mention the ones I’m working on right now! But it’s amusing me, and it should be fun to make. I just hope it’s recognisable as Tintin when I’m done!

And as for Tyla and George’s pleas for Cpt. Haddock, I think that will have to wait. Unless you want to chart it out for me yourselves…

Posted by Aven at 05:36 PM | Comments (1)

March 10, 2004

Ou sont les amis de Tintin?

Tonight I have a question to pose to the world at large: do you know where I could find a knitting chart of Tintin? Preferably with his dog Milou (Snowy, in the English version)? Or, failing that, a picture of approximately the right size so that I could chart it myself onto knitting graph paper?

My husband would very much like a sweater with Tintin and Milou on it. (Who says you need to be a kid to enjoy Tintin?). I would be perfectly happy to pay for a pattern or a chart, or for a graphic which I could use to design one myself, but I can’t seem to find any. All I have is the books themselves, in which the pictures are far too small even to be properly blown up. If I were a better illustrator I might be able to fudge a large copy myself, but I have no talent in that area. So I thought I would appeal to the knitting community, or at least that small portion of it that reads this! If you can point me towards any resources, I’d be very grateful.

Thanks! Good night!

Posted by Aven at 10:15 PM | Comments (6)