Tuesday, January 27, 2009

designed and directed by his Red Right Hand

My new typing mitts for my cold jobjob: Red Right Hand

Hands cold? Want your own pair? Here are some simple directions (Recession Series Pattern #2!)

Materials: About 100 yards of Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock in Pinstripe

About 100 yards of Cherry Tree Hill Supersock in Red

4 US 1 double-pointed needles

2 stitch markers

Gauge: 8 stitches/inch in stockinette

Handwarmer measures 6 inches around wrist and palm. Add stitches if you would like to size up.

Stripe as suits your fancy.

Cast on 48 stitches, distribute onto 3 needles, and join to work in the round. Work in stockinette stitch until piece measures 3 inches. On next round, place a marker before and after the second stitch on the first needle to indicate the place for the thumb increases.

Increase one stitch after the first marker and one stitch before the second marker every other round until you have 23 stitches between the two markers. Work 5 rounds with no increases.

On the next round, put the 23 thumb stitches on a stitch holder or length of waste yarn. Cast on 3 stitches in their place (for a total of 50 stitches) and continue to work in the round until piece measures 8 inches. Cast off loosely.

Return thumb stitches to 3 double-pointed needles and pick up 5 additional stitches where the thumb joins the body of the handwarmer (28 stitches total). Work in stockinette for 6 rounds. Cast off loosely.

Wear with some attitude, people.

One more thing... if you're reading this and have a flickr account, consider yourself tagged: Post a photo of yourself along with 16 things people may not know about you. Leave the link or your Flickr name in the comments so I can get to know more about you, you readers out there. Here's mine:

Friday, January 23, 2009

Good lord, people, you make it difficult.

Okay, okay, as tempting as it is to send a skein of black Malabrigo lace to Ryan Hurst (aka Opie), who, it appears, has visited my blog (this is astonishing to me), I have decided to send the yarn to someone I know is a knitter. But Ryan, if you're reading this, did you get to keep your Opie hat? Would you like me to make you one?

The choice was difficult, very difficult, and it was particularly awesome to read your descriptions of items you remember and didn't have a link to or visual for, because this is how I get so many of my ideas. I'll tuck something away, a certain jacket on a poster, a sweater in a movie, and then, after rolling it around in my mind for a while, I'll start knitting. To those of you who did not win, fear not, for each free Recession Series pattern there will be a giveaway! I'm aiming for one a month.

It was a tough choice, people, but I made it. The Malabrigo lace goes to Emily, for the Warren Johnson Jacket, edging out the competition by the fact that her dad is shown modeling the jacket on his motorcycle. You really can't do something more fitting. So Emily, email me (weaverbergh13@verizon.net) your address and I'll get your yarn in the mail!

In other news, my second book recommendation is Studs Terkel's Hard Times, his interviews with all manner of people about the Great Depression. Here it is shown with my next project, Handwarmers for Very Small Typing Hands, which will be done in Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock in Pinstripe and some red Cherry Tree Hill sock yarn. Next Recession Series pattern?

Do we need another handwarmers pattern? Do we? Note: Pictured below are the handwarmers I've been wearing for years. They used to belong to Chris and were probably made on a machine in China somewhere. Oh, and the colored pens? Pens in very unusual colors just... appear... in our supplies area. I used to have a light grey Sharpie.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

The Recession Series: Free Pattern #1

The Opie Hat!

Named after Opie in Sons of Anarchy. All season I admired the fact that he rocked his "man slouch" hat, so I made one!

Download it here for free:

I want one!

I used 1 skein of Malabrigo Lace in black, held doubled. SO, I'm going to send one reader the second skein of this yarn that I purchased when I thought the hat would take 2 skeins, so someone can make their own Opie Hat (or something else, of course).

The contest? Give me an example of a garment you've seen that you would like to, or have, used as an inspiration for a handknit... it can be from TV, a photo, anything. Just give me a link to a visual that you find inspirational. The inspirational look or garment does not itself have to be knit. One caveat: Nothing from Harry Potter. It's been done. And I'm not a fan (there, I said it, okay?).

I'm always looking for new ideas from unusual sources, so I'll pick my favorite and send you a skein of black Malabrigo Lace, as well as a some other stuff from my extensive fiber stash.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


Surprise, Surprise!

The top jacket is the one pictured at the Detroit Metro Airport, now complete with horn buttons for the hunting baby.

The other two were requests from my mom for a set of twins. I put quite a bit of thought into how to make them sex-specific but not cliche, and similar but not identical. Most of the yarn is from my stash, as are the buttons. I struggled to mail these; I liked having them around and admiring them.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Knitting and Reading for Today's Ecomonic Climate: Installation 1

Watching the decreased revenue and layoffs at my jobjob, and meeting people who have recently been laid off every time I go out, I've decided it's time to take action in the only way I can: Book recommendations and knitting patterns! I've decided to work up a few free ones I've had in mind over the next few weeks.

First recommendation: The Clash. Maybe, like me, you liked The Clash's music when you were younger, because of the sound, and the attitude. Maybe you too rediscovered it when you entered the world of jobjobs and suddenly appreciated it on a far deeper level, the level of someone who actually lives the drag of existence that The Clash describes. Anyway, the band's official book is my first recommendation.

On top of the book is the hank of Malabrigo lace (from Little Knits; they have a LOT of colors) that I'll be using to create the first in my series of simple, free, cheap-to-make patterns. More soon!

Other than hatching this plan, I've been working on a sweater for Mom Bergh, the Lady of the Lake Jacket (I got the kit from Colorsong Yarns). While the construction and stitches required are simple, the directions are very spare, so I wouldn't recommend it to a beginner unless you have someone to flesh out the instructions for you.

It's made from a combination of a soft wool/little bit of mohair yarn and a mohair boucle yarn. As one would expect from Handmaiden, both are very soft and the resulting texture feels like a blanket but looks far more elegant.

Next time: Free pattern in progress. Until then, don't be complacent!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Reflections of Happy Holidays

As the vacation time winds up, here are a few shots that represent the relaxation of the holiday time here at Haus Weaver-Bergh:

Me, wearing a Honeycowl that was gifted to my Secret Santa recipient at work before any decent photos were obtained, and Chinaski, looking deceptively tolerant and peaceful.

Max and Chris. Max really is this peaceful. They were like this for hours.

Just a few of the calculations for a pattern I finished while on vacation. I need to design some hats and shawls and stuff... why do I gravitate toward women's sweaters???

Another Honeycowl, this one in some of my handspun Merino/Tencel singles. This was gifted to my sister, who will hopefully send a modeled photo. These fast projects have a way of disappearing before documentation... I actually make a lot of things that I never talk about here.

Thanks for all the lovely compliments on the Minimalist Cardigan, and my mom, and the Baby Surprise Jacket. Northwest Airlines was kinder to us on our Grand Rapids MI to Boston trip... only a 1.5 hour delay! Hooray?