Friday, October 22, 2010

Preparing for blizzards

It's been getting colder and colder, and last week when it got close to zero degrees and Niila started shivering we decided that she really needs a sweater. Since Niila's still very small, I doubted that any pattern would fit so I decided to just knit and watch some directions from patterns if I run into problems

Project info
Name: Niila's first sweater
Craft: Knitting
Made for Niila

Needles: 3.5mm double pointed needles
Yarns: Novita 7 Veljestä in light grey & DROPS Alpaca in grey-green mix (7323)

I have been using Alpaca-yarns quite a lot lately, and I've really liked those. And since those are even warmer than wool I of course wanted to use those for Niilas sweater too. I had some leftover skeins from Pullover of eternity so I chose the grey-green mix and used it double stranded with 7 Veljestä.

I compared Niila to one of my socks to get some idea of the amount of stitches I need. I also wanted the neck to be high so I knitted the rib for quite a bit, but as you can see from the pic, it didn't turn out to be that high after all. Anyways, I just knitted, tried it on Niila, and if it didn't fit as I wanted, I unraveled and tried again. In the end the whole project was quite painless; I only had few small problems with the legs.

Isn't she pretty sporting around in her new sweater?
It turned out to be slightly too long for Niila. As you can see in the picture, it curls at the end because it goes a bit too close to her legs. Niila's still a growing puppy, but I'm not quite sure whether she's going to grow that much in length. So I might have to make the edge again if it curls too much. But we'll see.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Prancing around the hoods with a new cool sweater

I finally knitted my first dog sweater, and I have to say that it was about the time! When we got Papu I planned to knit her many sweaters, but somehow I got busy knitting everything else and never knitter her any... But what kind of knitter would I be if I wouldn't even manage to knit sweaters for my precious pups? A very lousy one, indeed.

But now this has been fixed. Papu can now sport around in her petrol blue doggie sweater. Elina , my number one knitting buddy, chose the pattern. We were supposed to knit the sweaters at the same time, but I was lazy and started my sweater when Elina had already knitted the body part. Surprising? Not really.

Project info
Name: Prancing around the hoods
Pattern: Hoodie Dog Coat by Bernat Design Studio
Craft: Knitting
Made for Papu
Size: M

Needles: 4.0 mm circular and 3.5 mm DPNs
Yarn: Novita 7 Veljestä
Colorway: 191 blue

The pattern originally included a hood, but I decided to omit it. I liked the idea, but the hood part of the pattern was confusing me. I couldn't picture it in my head so I thought it might be better to play safe than to knit something that only slightly resembles a hoodie.

I found the rest of the pattern quite confusing too, but I guess it was just written in a way that I wasn't familiar with. The sweater itself wasn't difficult to knit because the construction is quite simple. It's just one flat piece with two holes in it and some shaping decreases in the end. I wonder how the pattern was able to make it sound way more complicated? Anyway.

Papu is actually shivering from cold in this picture...
I'm very pleased with this project as it was my first attempt to knit a dog sweater. I had no idea would the sweater actually fit Papu's body type... but it did quite closely. Even the leg openings are quite perfectly positioned. And what is most important: Papu seems to feel comfortable when she wears it. She doesn't mind it at all. Though one time I found her laying on the kitchen floor one leg stuck inside the sweater. She just laid there looking sad until I saved her. Fortunately she wasn't trapped for a long time, just couple of minutes I guess.

She looks happy and pleased, doesn't she?
I'm currently knitting a second dog sweater with the same pattern, but I'm making some modifications to it. The collar is going to be ribbed and much higher so it would be very warm, and I'm also increasing the length of the middle part. I want to cover as much of her tummy as possible. I hope it turns out better than the first one!

Finnish summary: Tuli vihdoinkin neulottua ensimmäinen koiran villapaita. Silloin kun Papu tuli, niin suunnittelin kutovani sille vaikka mitä, mutta sitten kudoinkin pelkästään muita juttuja. Ja millainen neuloja olisin jos en omalle koiralleni saisi yhtä paitaa neulottua? Aika surkea! 

Nyt Pavulla kuitenkin on paita. Suunnittelin neulovani kyseisen paidan Elinan kanssa samaan aikaan, mutta Elina ehtikin kutoa sitten oman paitansa paljon aikaisemmin. Ei kyllä varsinaisesti yllätänyt. Ohjeessa oli alunperin huppukin, mutta en ymmärtänyt miten se olisi pitänyt neuloa. Ohje oli muutenkin tosi epäselvä ottaen huomioon kuinka yksinkertainen koko paita sitten loppujen lopuksi oli. Lopputulokseenkin olen ihan tyytyväinen. Osui tosi lähelle sopivaa heti ensimmäisellä kerralla. Papukin tuntuu tykkäävän siitä.

Monday, October 4, 2010

For your dwarf head, my friend!

If you're a knitter, I think it's kinda obligatory to knit small items for the people you like when they have their birthday. So when my friend had her birthday last week, I knitted her a beret. Last year I knitted her a pair of lovely cupcake mittlets, so this year it was time for something else than hand wear. I'm not sure if she's a hat person, because I don't remember if I've ever seen a hat on her head... but it's the though that counts. Right?

The thought counts even when you knit the beret with quite horrible plastic mohair yarn. It counts even when you've just blasted the yarn to her the previous week. The thought counts pretty far, you see. But I just had two skeins of that shitty yarn and I wanted to use it quickly for something pretty. I tried to use it for a scarf design of my own, but it just didn't work out.

The beret pattern called for 8mm needles, but 8mm sounds huge to me. They sound like something you're supposed to slay vampires with. Besides, our thickest needles are 5.5mm and they're circular. I've heard about magic looping, but I wasn't really into mood for learning something new when I knitted this hat so I used 4mm DPNs instead. I also used two different colors stranded together and I really like the way they blended together:

Project info
Name: For your dwarf head, my friend!
Pattern: Star Crossed Slouchy Beret
by Natalie Larson
Craft: Knitting
Made for a friend
Size: small

Needle 3.5mm DNP
Yarn: Novita Rose Mohair
Colorway: 795 red purple & 798 purple

Because of the thinner needles, I had to alter the pattern slightly. I started with 81 stitches instead of 72, and I thought that I added enough extra stitches, but alas the beret turned out pretty small. I didn't worry much about that though. I knew my friend would have smaller head than I do (that's why the project is called "For your dwarf head, my friend!"). I also added one cable chart repeat to make the beret slouchier, but I think I should have added two; It turned out more like a hat and less like a beret.

At least my friend looked pretty happy when she got her gift... Or maybe it had something to do with the nice package and chocolate treats?

Finnish summary: Neulojalle on aika pakollista aina silloin tällöin neuloa pienia lahjoja myös ystäville. Kaverillani oli synttärit ja neuloin hänelle lahjaksi pipon. En ole koskaan nähnyt kyseisellä kaverillani pipoa, mutta ajatushan se on aina tärkein. Neuloin jo viime vuonna hänelle tumput. Jouduin hiukan säätämään ohjetta, koska minulla ei ollut tarpeeksi paksuja puikkoja, ja lankakin taisi olla vähän eri paksuista kuin ohje olisi vaatinut. Säätämisestä huolimatta piposta tuli aika lailla tiukempi kuin oli tarkoitus, mutta onneksi kaverilla on ainakin pienempi pää kuin minulla. Ehkä se sopii.