Felted Mittens

April 14, 2007 @ 9:08 pm
posted by kris

Elijah posing as a lobster with the pre-felted mittens
The finished product – Mitten Love!

I completed 2 pairs of felted mitttens. One made out of Cascade 220 and the other out of lanolinwolle. These are always so fun because I can knit a pair in a day and then felt it the next. Instant gratification! Michael was really pleased with the cascades and can’t wait to use it. I have to figure out a way to create loops on them so that he can clip them to his harness or whatever. I did crochet some hooks on the lanolin one, but the connection is kinda flimsy. Maybe I’ll just put a gromit in them and then tie a piece of thin rope or sumthin’. I thought the cascade was a bit too thick, and Michael can feel the difference with/without the lanolin (or so he says). The lanolin one ended up being a little short and the cuff part flares too much. I think I can fix that with another round of felting.

The mittens took on their own personality to I made some “mitten couple” shots. This marks the end of my “Gothic Spire” break and I already started on the cuff.

I also wanted to mention that after being gawked at (well, it wasn’t in a bad way) at the German SNB where all the ladies are super speed knitters, I finally learned how to knit continental style. If any of you have seen me knit, I do a hybrid of continental and English – I still throw, but with the left hand. Weird, but it doesn’t hurt my hands as much. What I had to do was always think “relax” and it worked better for me. I’ve got the knitting down pretty good, purling is still a little uncomfortable and other non-ordinary things fuggetabouit! It just will take practice and patience.

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Felting results

March 20, 2007 @ 1:32 am
posted by kris
Filed under: bags,felting

Booga bag #1 pre-felt
Booga bag #2 pre-felt

Well, I scoured the internets to find information about felting in a front loader. It was a little surprising at how hard it was to find detailed information. Or maybe I’m just an idiot. Everyone made it seem like it was not possible or extremely hard to do.

For my first bag, I threw it in the wash in a zippered pillowcase along with one of those color catcher deals. Then I also put in 2 pairs of jeans. Since everyone was saying that they had to put it through several wash cycles, I set the wash to the maximum temp (90 deg. c) and max time and let it rip. I also had our water cooker and added a couple of liters of boiling water while it was going. I put the water in by opening the detergent drawer and just pouring it in there. I also put in about a 1/2 cap of Woolite.

Once it was just about to start spinning, I turned the knob to drain the water and checked the progress. It felted TOO MUCH! I don’t think I’ve read about this happening, everyone always said you need to put it through 4 or 5 times. Maybe it was the yarn I used? Or maybe European washers are different than the US ones. The bag even fused together and I had to pull it apart. There are a few lines/creases that was created because it felted too much and I’m kind of peeved about that. It rolled itself up into a ball and stayed that way. But it’s still a cute bag. IMHO. I am blocking it using Harry Potter 4 & 5 hardcovers.

Hand felting in the sink

The second bag (same bag, different yarn), I decided to hand felt to see how hard it is and the differences between the two. Also, Noro is more expensive than the Wollmeise yarn, so I wanted to have more control over the process. I got my water cooker, some gloves, woolite and did it in the sink. I followed the instructions from here. I think it turned out really well, I may put a cardboard covered in fabric on the bottom so that it keeps it’s bag shape when in use. Noro felts really easily, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t have sore arms! I think I will embellish it a little with embroidery along the edge and maybe a leaf on the front? Never embroidered before, but it seems like it will make it more complete. It is now being blocked using “Programming Windows” and “Abstract Data Types”.

Over felted
Almost finished, just need to attach the handles
Finished Booga bag #2

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Borderline crazy

March 19, 2007 @ 1:59 pm
posted by kris

Yarn for felting projects

OK, this yarn acquisition is bordering on crazy. I am obsessed with felting now and want to make lots of cute bags. So of course I had to get some Lamb’s Pride to try my hand as well as some patterns. I always wanted to make the Fiber Trends’ clogs and I love these little cute gelato bags. We’ll see how it goes in the front loader.

A couple of days ago, I decided to make my SP10 a booga bag using Wollmeise’s worsted weight yarn in Amazonas colorway. It knitted up really nicely, let’s hope it still looks good felted. I only did 60 rows for the height, instead of the 64. Pre-felting, the bag measured 8x4x11in. I didn’t

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want to bother doing a felting swatch since it’s for a bag, the final dimensions don’t have to be super exact. I don’t want to post any pictures of my SP’s gifts, just in case she might accidentally look at my blog! Kind of a bummer though because I want to show you what the before/after pictures are!

Kureyon for a booga bag

I also bought some Noro Kureyon to make a 2nd booga bag. I love the graduated colors! So it’ll be a good comparison between that and the Wollmeise’s worsted weight yarn. I completed knitting both of them (1 per day) and today I’m working on felting them. Keep your fingers crossed.

I broke my rule of one project at a time, but I really didn’t feel like knitting icord at Sunday’s stitch ‘n bitch. So I just started another bag using the Noro. I also made the Noro bag shorter, this time I think maybe 52 rows? I used up 2 skeins for the bag body and will use a wee bit more for the handles. So exciting. I am getting prepared to be severely disappointed, since it seems like that’s what happens to most people on their first felting try.

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What does bockstark mean (pronounced bok-shtark)? My crazy German friend, Matthias, made that word up to mean "really cool" and says that it is catching on in Garmisch. So I am helping him popularize the word! I thought if I ever opened a yarn store, I would call it "Bockstark Yarns". This blog is all about my projects, yarns and crazy ideas related to knitting and other crafts. Contact me at bockstark.knits(at)gmail(dot)com.