Friday, October 12, 2007

Fiery Bolero

Fiery Bolero

Yarn: Debbie Bliss Cathay (50% cotton, 35% viscose microfibre, 15% silk), color #12011 - 6 balls (110yd [100m] / 50g)
Pattern: Interweave Knits 2005 Summer Issue
Needles: Addi Turbo US size 4 (3.5mm) / 24" (60cm) circular (for stockinette), US size 3 (3.25mm) / 24" (60cm) circular (for ribbing)
Size: Chest circumference 34" (pattern sized for 32 3/4")
Duration: 2007/09/19 - 2007/10/11

線材: Debbie Bliss Cathay (50% 棉, 35% 人造絲, 15% 真絲), 色號#12011 - 6 球 (110yd [100m] / 50g)
圖樣: Interweave Knits 雜誌 2005 夏季刊
針號: 3.5mm/60cm 輪針 (平針) 和 3.25mm/60cm 輪針 (緣邊)
尺寸: 胸圍86cm (原圖樣尺寸為83cm)
製作日期: 2007/09/19 - 2007/10/11

I had wanted to make this top since I first got the magazine. I bought the yarn during a clearance sale in a LYS last August, and didn't get around to it until this summer. Just have so many projects and so little time. Such is the dilemma for us knitters, isn't it? This is actually a very quick and easy knit. Obviously I didn't work on it full time during the three weeks it took for me to finish it. I picked this project to start in the midst of all those lace projects, to sort of give myself a break. Something straight forward and not fussy, something that I don't have to keep counting stitches and rows and looking at charts. I actually knitted the majority of this top on the road while we were driving around in Toronto, just a few rows at a time. Plain old stockinette is the best for in-the-car knitting.

當初一拿到雜誌時就想織這件, 去年八月碰到附近一家毛線店出清存貨折價時把線也買好了, 卻一直等到現在才織好. 實在是想織的東西太多, 時間太少. 我想愛編織的人都有同樣的難題吧? 這件織起來其實又簡單又快, 從頭到尾雖然拖了三個星期, 不過我也沒有全副精神地去做(之間還在玩別的projects). 這一陣子玩蕾絲玩的有點累, 持續地算針數和段數以及看圖表, 腦細胞死了不少, 覺得需要些較簡單淺顯的東西來放鬆一下. 這件小外套有一大部分是在多倫多時織的, 老公開車時, 我就織毛線. 在車上織毛線還是織平針比較輕鬆, 不像蕾絲要一直盯著免得出錯.

Fiery Bolero Closeup

Originally I had wanted to make this top in the same shade of orange-y red as shown in the magazine, but when I saw the actual yarn color in a store, I changed my mind. Somehow it just doesn't seem to be the right color for me. I like purple, but I hardly knit with purple. This shade of purple is not appealing to everyone, I know. At first I hesitated on picking them up from the clearance bin. After another half hour of pacing in the store, I just couldn't leave without them. And the color kind of grew on me, I am liking it more and more. It would look striking on ivory, grey, brown, and black, which are the basics in my wardrobe.

本來是想要用雜誌上麻豆穿的那個帶橘的鮮紅色, 去到店裡一看便改變了主意. 顏色是還不錯, 只是覺得不太適合我. 紫色一直是我喜愛的顏色之一, 也不知為什麼很少織紫色的衣服. 這次挑的這個紫並不是很討喜, 可能很多人不會考慮. 可是當初在店裡看到時, 卻捨不得不買, 考慮了許久, 還是把它帶回家了. 不過這顏色我越看越順眼, 用來搭配中性色系如乳白, 灰, 褐, 或黑應該都不錯.

Fiery Bolero FrontFiery Bolero Back

Now some knitting observations:

The pattern is easy and clear, I had no problems following it at all. But do check the corrections posted on Interweave Knits' website. The pattern as published was correct, but they posted a different way of describing how to do the short rows along the back neck ribbing which, I agree, is much easier to follow than the magazine.

這件的pattern很簡單也很詳細, 一路織來沒有遇到什麼問題. 不過想要織這件的朋友們, 記得看一下Interweave Knits雜誌社網站上登的圖樣修正. 雜誌上原圖樣並沒有錯誤, 只是在解說後領引返編織的部分有點不太容易懂. 網站上登的解說就清楚多了, 也不用算那麼多針目.

I deliberately used a larger gauge - 21 sts/4" instead of the suggested 22 sts/4". I wanted a 33 1/2" - 34" chest circumference, the closest size in the pattern is 32 3/4" and the next size up is 35". I decided to knit according to the 32 3/4" pattern, and hoped the larger gauge and blocking would give me a slightly larger garment. I think it turned out pretty well.

這件的密度我故意用的鬆一點, 圖樣是22針目/10公分, 我的密度是21. 圖樣上的尺寸要不就是太小(胸圍83公分), 要不就是太大(胸圍89公分). 想說密度弄鬆一點, 定型時再拉開, 應該會比較剛好. 結果還挺滿意的喔!

I used a little over 5 balls of yarn. For the size I made, the magazine called for 5 balls of yarn. It probably would have been enough if I watched carefully while I knitted and maybe ripped out my test swatches when I ran short, but I didn't. I bought 6 balls anyway, so I figured, why skimp on the few inches that I usually leave when changing to a new ball or the lengthy tail that I saved for seaming?

這件我用了五球多一點點的線. 根據雜誌上說的, 五球應該就夠了, 不過就要省著點用. 這組線我當初買了六球, 絕對不怕不夠, 所以用線時也沒有刻意去省, 線頭都留長長的. 五球用完時其實只剩下一隻袖子的緣邊還沒織, 如果把試密度的織片拆掉來用可能也夠了, 可是我就是懶得拆. 反正線夠嘛, 幹麼那麼麻煩?

Cathay knits up beautifully. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. But it also splits like crazy if you have to unravel. The yarn also splits during seaming, all those threading back and forth. My guess is - don't work it too much, and it will be fine. But I wonder if I will ever be able to rip this out and reuse the yarn for something else?

這組線Cathay織出來的針目清楚漂亮, 算是出乎我意料之外. 但是如果有需要拆掉重織, 或穿針用來縫合時, 這個線就分岔的很厲害. 想要它不分岔呢, 就不能太過操作. 不過這麼一來, 好像也不可能哪天把它拆了換織別的東西哦?

See those terribly splitty yarn ends?

Fiery Bolero Splitty Yarn

Monday, October 08, 2007


真的是太久沒發文了, 整整兩個月!! 這段時間內仍然忙著編織, 9月出了一趟遠門, 有三個多星期的時間不在家. 本想在8月底趕著完成一件作品後再走, 但旅行前一切繁瑣事務卻硬是讓我無法完成已寫了一半的文章. 現在只好重寫啦!

It's been too long since my last post, two months!! I was still busy knitting and crocheting during this time. I took a trip in September, was out of town for more than three weeks. Originally I was planning to finish a project by end of August and post it, but all the little things I had to do before the trip just kept me from even finishing the half-written posting. And now I am starting all over again.

9月回了一趟芝加哥看爸媽, 姊姊, 和新生姪兒. 小寶寶真的很可愛唷!! 這次因為自己還要照顧兒子, 也沒幫上忙, 每天去姊姊家報到, 就是陪著兩歲兒子和四歲姪子玩, 小baby反而沒抱到幾次呢! 這次回家的時間比較久, 也有機會和以前大學好友們聚會, 去年還和A聚了一次, 像J和B, 我們已經至少有三年多沒見了吧?! 老友重聚, 聊的都是孩子的事, 和以前的日子真的是不一樣了...

Early September I went back to Chicago to visit my parents, sister, and the newborn nephew. He is such a cutie! I didn't help out much this time around. Since it was an unfamiliar environment for Connor, he was very needy and got anxious everytime I left his sight. Thus even though we went over to my sister's house everyday, I didn't get too many chances to even hold the baby. Connor got more comfortable by the second week though, he started loosen up a bit and had lots of fun playing with his older cousin. This time I also got to spend time with my college buddies. Last year I had a chance to see A, but J and B, I haven't seen them for at least three years. It was a great time. All we talked about was our kids, exchanged experiences and advices. It was certainly different from our old college days.

待了兩個多星期後, 先生飛到芝加哥與我們會合, 便出發到多倫多去玩. 除了一些有名景點如CN塔, 尼加拉瓜瀑布, 多倫多動物園, 和半島上的酒廠, Markham的華人區也是讓我大開眼界. 自覺北加州的華人市場和餐廳已經不少, Markham, Scarborough等一帶的商店餐館卻讓我有像到了LA的Monterey Park的感覺, 超市, 書店, 服飾店, 麵包店, 奶茶店, ... 應有盡有. 不過這個發現的有點晚, 我們的旅館是在downtown市區(除了中國城以外, 不知那裡還有好吃的中國餐廳), 卻每天都想吃道地中國菜, 只好在Don Valley Expwy高速公路上跟大家塞車, 開到北邊去找餐廳.

After more than two weeks in Chicago, my husband flew in to meet with us, and then the three of us headed over to Toronto. We visited the usual touristy spots such as CN Tower, Niagara Falls, Toronto Zoo (this one was for Connor), and the wineries on the peninsula. I was really amazed by the Chinese communities in Markham and Scarborough. I thought we get pretty good access to Chinese goods and food in northern Cal, but the stores and restaurants I saw in Markham reminded me of Monterey Park in LA. There were so many Chinese markets, book stores, clothing stores, bakeries, and tea shops... And restaurants, oh, there were so many that looked authentic. We didn't know about these areas before the trip. Our hotel was in downtown (other than Chinatown, not sure where we could go for good Chinese food). Craving for good authentic Chinese food, we ended up driving north for dinner the last three days, stuck in traffic on Don Valley Expwy.

其實也怪自己事先準備不週, 對多倫多一帶地理毫無概念的我, 一直到最後三天才發現, 咦, 密西沙加Mississauga就在多倫多市區外圍耶! 如果沒記錯的話, 瑪姊好像就住在那附近哦?! 可惜剩下時間不多, 也不知道怎麼聯絡較好, 不然真想請瑪姊指點一下那裡有好餐廳, 最重要的是, 值得一逛的毛線店!!

Well, I guess I could have done more research before the trip. I did not realize until three days before heading home, that Mississauga was near Toronto. If I remember it right, Margaret lives near the area. Too bad that there wasn't enough time, and I didn't have means to get in touch with her, otherwise I could really use some tips on good restaurants, and most importantly, good yarn shops!!

出門這麼久, 回家後還是有點累, 懷孕五個多月的體力還是有差 (是的, 小卡比明年一月要當哥哥了! 到時可能有好一陣子沒時間碰毛線了>.<) 回來一個禮拜了, 還沒時間到各家拜訪, 我的Bloglines裡現有1459篇文章未讀, 夠嚇人吧?!

Being away for so long, coming home to try to get everything back to normal routine is still exhausting. I guess being 5-month pregnant didn't help (yes, Connor will be a big brother in January! I probably won't have time to play with yarn for a while... >.<) I have been back for a week now, still haven't caught up with my blog reading. I have now 1459 articles to read in my Bloglines, very intimidating...

言歸正傳. 這兩個月裡都織了些什麼呢? Vogue Knitting那件蕾絲洋裝在芝加哥時已經織好定型完畢, 只剩下縫合. 不過縫合也是大工程喔! 而且我決定下襬要再加一段蕾絲, 這段蕾絲才織了不到1/4 (然後我又分心開始另一個project, ;p) 我想還要再一個星期來完成吧?!

Anyway. So what have I worked on in these two months? I finished knitting the VK lacy dress in Chicago and blocked all the pieces. I just need to sew it up. But sewing will take some time too, cause there were so many pieces. I also decided to add another acorn lace edging along the bottom hem, and I have only managed to knit about 1/4 of it (before I got distracted and started something else ;P) I think another week should do it.

VK Lacy Dress WIP

8月時花了不少時間鉤了一件小外套. 本來希望在8月底可以完成的, 按照圖樣鉤好後, 自己不太滿意, 覺得實在是太短了, 就自己翻書找合適的花邊想要加長下襬, 結果花邊還沒鉤完, 線沒了. 那時心想, 沒關係, 線當初是在芝加哥買的, 我很快又要回去, 再買一球應該就夠了. 回到芝加哥後, 想了很久, 試穿了好幾次, 還是決定忍痛拆掉. 因為實在是有點小, 是能穿啦, 只是總覺得有點勉強. 而且下襬加了花邊後, 雖然不錯看, 可是整件衣服的味道感覺都和原作不同了, 跟我想要的樣子還是差了一點. 拆掉換大一號針重織應該會好一點, 等蕾絲洋裝完成後就來動工.

In between working on the lacy dress, just so I wouldn't fall asleep at the needles, I made this crochet shruken cardi in August. I was really hoping to finish it before the trip and post it. But after I finished it according to the pattern, I realized that it was too short. I decided to add some lace edging to the bottom hem and the sleeves. And then I ran out of yarn. Thinking that I would be back to Chicago soon (where I got the yarn), I brought it back to Chicago with me, planning to buy one more ball, and then finish it. After I got to Chicago, I thought about it long and hard, tried it on several times, and asked my sister and my mom for opinions, I finally decided to rip it all out. It is really too small for me, I can wear it, but it is really tight. And also the lace edging I added to the hem and sleeves changed the whole look of the garment, it was really different from the original design. I decided ripping it out and starting over with a larger hook should do the job and really make something that I wanted in the first place. I will probably start after the lacy dress is done.

White Beach Shruken Cardi WIP

下面照片裡的是人馬星座披肩, 從7月底就沒再動過 - 歹勢唷!! 實在是織起來很累人, 眼睛離不開圖樣, 怕織錯. 也是這次挑的線是我用過的線裡最細的, 跟縫衣線已經差不多了, 織來眼睛很容易累, 手也酸. 自從看到這篇文章後, 更是信心動搖, 我用的雖然不是同一組線, 但也是Yarn Place出的細線, 很怕它禁不起定型時的拉扯, 如果像照片裡的作品一樣定型時跑出破洞來, 那我會哭死... 現在不知道是應該換線呢, 還是織一小塊織片來試試定型看.

Below is the Sagittaria Shawl, which I haven't touched since end of July. I really felt bad, but knitting this project was really tiring. I had to look at the chart constantly, afraid of making a mistake. The yarn is also the finest I have ever worked with, it almost felt like sewing threads. Knitting with such fine yarn tires my eyes and hands. After reading this posting, I am really worried. Although the yarn I am using is not Graceful, it is from Yarn Place. Will I have the same problems, since I tend to block my shawls rather severely? I am not sure if I should switch yarn, or maybe I should test block a swatch and find out for sure.

Sagittaria Shawl WIP

好啦, 寫了落落長囉哩叭唆的一大篇, 下篇應該會有成品與大家分享, 再等幾天哦!

Wow, this is a really long posting. I shall have a FO to share with you in my next posting, should be ready in a few days. See you then!