Tag Archives: intarsia

So How Hard Is It…

… to create your own intarsia chart?  From scratch?  Using only a book as a reference and a demo copy of designer’s software?

It’s HARD.

A capital letter “H” with a circle around it.  I wondered often, “How hard can this be?”  It was hard for a few reasons:

  •  Having never charted anything before, it was hard to figure out how big to make said design.  This is for a sweater for my 3-year old – the design shouldn’t overwhelm an already small sweater, but it had to be large enough to be seen clearly.
  • Placement of said design on the sweater was a challenge.  I want it centered towards the top, but not so that part of the design is hidden beneath the rollneck.  This part will probably be my undoing – if nothing else, the design must be centered.  Must… be… CENTERED!!!
  • There is no way – NO WAY – that anyone can freehand a perfect circle.  You need a compass.  Or a drinking glass/soup can/can of bug spray.  I opted for the free demo of Cochenille Stitch Painter software.  

So once I created the circle on my demo software, I was able to freehand a respectable block-letter “H” inside it.  But once this was done, I couldn’t save the thing (demo software – no Save button), I couldn’t print the thing (demo software – no Print option), I couldn’t copy and paste the thing (demo software… you get the picture).  So I copied every single block onto some knitter’s graph paper, and voilafinis.

Granted, this whole process took about 3 hours.  But I think it just… might… work.  I promise, I’ll post pictures of it when I get to the intarsia part of the project.  Right now all I have are dark blue pieces of knitted fabric, which simply don’t photograph well.  And I should be there soon – Husband and I are taking off on Thursday for a mini-getaway to one of our favorite places.  We hear it’s supposed to rain and sleet all weekend.  Ahhhhhh… knitting bliss.

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Sweater News.

I’ve been meaning to post for… yeah, about 2 weeks now.  And every time I meant to post, I said the same thing to myself:  “Keep knitting.  You can post later.”  The good news is that I’m getting a LOT done with my knitting.  The bad news is that you might have thought I was done with you, dear reader, after the excitement of the Fleece To Shawl/Sheep To Shawl Contest coverage.  Not so.

So let’s see… you already know about the pink SWTC socks (not so much fun to knit, but I do love wearing them).  And I think I mentioned that I knit yet another pair of Maine Morning Mitts for our dear friend and babysitter… in the exact same colorway as mine… sigh.  Then I knit a pair of socks for my daughter.  I’ve been using the same pattern and yarn for her socks with great success (sorry, no picture for these… yet).  

So now I’m finally working on my daughter’s sweater.  It’s a simple raglan rollneck (scroll down to Pattern #21), but if you remember, the hard part (for me) will be designing my own picture on the front.  Since I haven’t tried any intarsia yet, this is a little daunting.  I bought some graph paper, but I can’t figure out how to… use it.  Usually these things are pretty intuitive for me, but not this time.  What makes it worse is that the picture I have in mind is really pretty simple:  a block letter H with a circle around it.  How hard can this be???

Well, I found out this week, it’s not hard at all if you have the right resources.  I made a new knitting friend – the wife of one of my coworkers who’s also an avid knitter with a great deal of intarsia experience – offered her help (thank you, Kristin!!!).  And, I found this great book, which explains intarsia methods very clearly, has great diagrams, and really great patterns.  So, I’ve already knitted the back of this sweater, and I’m almost done with the 2nd sleeve, and then, I promise, I’ll take pictures of my intarsia progress.  In the meantime, you can content yourselves with a picture of my girl.100_0100

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Countdown To Change.

No no no, not that change.  That’s too obvious, and many, many people have been writing about it these past few days.  I could write about it, believe me, but that wasn’t my intent, and I’m sure you’ve read enough about it by now.

Change is coming:  I’m about 30 minutes away from finishing my 3rd pair of these:

Maine Morning Mitts... again.

Maine Morning Mitts... again. For Daughter's babysitter, who deserves a pair.

… which means I can finally start my daughter’s pullover that I’ve been planning for… 3 months.  I absolutely have to knit that thing, but I’ve been a little scared of it because I have to design my own intarsia for it, which I’ve never done.  I mean, how hard can it be?  All I need is to find some knitter’s graph paper, which has eluded me all this time.  But soon I won’t have any mitts to hide behind – I will find some graph paper and I will knit that sweater.  I just hope I can knock it out before spring…

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What’s In Store.

I am SO… blah.  Unmotivated.  Uninspired.  And unable to get past it.  It’s the darn socks, I tell you.  This knitting socks on 2 circular needles thing is really not for me, I guess.  But I must continue, I must persevere, because here’s what’s waiting for me:

  • More socks.  For Daughter and for me (Husband will get more, too.  I just don’t have the yarn for him yet.).  Can you guess which method I’ll be going back to?
  • A rollneck sweater for Daughter, with a twist.  The pattern is very straightforward, but I want to try some intarsia by knitting her school logo – an “H” with a circle around it – on the front.  It’s not the idea of intarsia that’s tripping me up here, it’s the placement of said “H”.  I think the way to go about this is to buy some knitter’s graph paper and plot it out.  But if anyone can think of a better way of doing this, PLEASE let me know!
  • Husband really likes the Meandering Rib Scarf by Lion Brand Yarn.  Husband also really likes my fingerless mitts, but not quite so colorful, so he’s going to get a pair of those made from black Alpaca yarn… yummy.
  • A lace shawl.  It’s been waiting for me for almost a year.  It has “January knitting” written all over it.

Yikes, my queue’s out-of-control!  If only I could knit like this woman, I’d… well, I’d have a lot more to wear this year than I do right now.

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