homemade · knitting · strikking

Another scary, soft Christmas gift: Lime green washcloth

knitting lettersAfter knitting the pink personalized washcloth, I thought I would try again for another Christmas present (the soft kind, striking fear into young relatives who really, really want the My Little Pony Princess Celestia and other sparkly pink tat…..) Going down a needle size might help, and I tried a different stitch combination this time. I counted out a frame, letters, and hoped for the best.

Project 7 (2014): Lime green knitted dishcloth
Pattern: Self-composed
Yarn: Sandnes Mandarin naturell (100% cotton), 50 grammes = 130 metres
Yarn purchased at: Tromsø, Norway, March 2014
Colour: 8514, a bright lime green
Difficulty for me: medium, I thought…. I made mistakes.
Needles: circular needles size 3 mm; the yarn has 2.5-3.5 recommended.
Knitted where: on bus and at home in Rome, November 2014
Final size: About 27-28 wide (it varied….) and 32 cm long, before blocking.
Final weight: 42 grammes

image Making a pattern is harder than I thought! This was 58 stitches wide.

I counted out a central block of 30 stitches: 18 for the letters, 6 for the plain knitting either side. The borders on the sides are 14 wide either side: 6 stitches garter (rillestrikk), 4 knitted stitches, 4 stitches garter. I had seen a similar border in the book “Kluter” and that was a great starting point.

knitting a TThis is after the first letter (T). This letter was 18 stitches tall, 8 wide. I felt better about the contrast and visibility so far, and continued, sketching out letters on paper as I went along. I added a hempe (buttonhole? the gap for hanging this up) and was happy about this.

Tuva washclothNot yet blocked, but this was fun. With a frame I like, I can play with different patterns and see how it goes. With every dishcloth and washcloth knitted I am definitely learning more, and there are so many interesting techniques to try! Knitted dishcloths are excellent for experimenting.


homemade · knitting · strikking

Blue knitted “Ronille” dishcloth, with border

imageI’ve been trying a more advanced pattern, and failing dismally. So I opted for a simpler pattern,  a Ronilleklut. I had seen a recommendation elsewhere to add  a border, and I rather like the framing effect. This was such a simple one for knitting on the bus in the mornings. Definitely one to try again.

Project 6 (2014): Dark blue knitted “Ronille” dishcloth, with border
Pattern: Ronilleklut
Yarn: Sandnes Mandarin Medi (100% cotton), 50 grammes = 135 metres
Yarn purchased at: yarn shop near harbour in Tromsø, Norway  (on our honeymoon)
Colour: 6073, a dark blue
Difficulty for me: easy, and quick to knit
Needles: circular needles 3.5 mm
Stitches: 50
Knitted where: at home and on the bus on Rome, November 2014.
Final size: About 22 cm wide (it varied….) and 25 cm long, before blocking.
Final weight: 35 grammes (so I know roughly much yarn I would need next time)

Right side, a little uneven but improving.blue dishcloth WIP…and the other side, vrangsida. Also quite nice. Lovely soft yarn to knit with (Mandarin Medi).

imageSee Ronille: Oppskrift på kjøkkenklut for original instructions and yarn recommendations. It’s really simple:

Legg opp 48 masker på pinne nr 4.
1. omg. strikk 1 rett, 1 vrang ut pinnen, snu
2. omg. strikk alle maskane rett, snu
Gjenta desse 2 omgangane til nøstet er slutt, evt så langt du vil.”

imageVoila! This was meant to be on 4 mm needles, but as I am a loose knitter I used 3.5 mm instead. I knitted six rows first (rillestrikk, garter stitch) before starting on the pattern. In addition, I knitted three stitches (rettstrikk) at the beginning and end each row. I increased the stitches in each row to 50.

So, inside the borders: Odd rows: Knit one, purl one. Even rows: knit across.

I have not given up on the more advanced pattern, and will try again after Christmas without the pressure of needing something finished.

homemade · knitting · strikking

A scary, soft Christmas gift: pink washcloth


Did you dread soft Christmas presents? I did. It was usually something useful and worthy, like woolen underwear or knitted socks. Now I am thrilled to get soft packages, especially something knitted from my Norwegian mother. Even the soft gifts from “Santa” (my English mother-in-law) are happily received: often good cotton M&S knickers, or nice socks. This year I started knitting again, discovered dishcloth knitting, and thought “Oh, that is Christmas sorted!” Given my knitting speed, that was overly optimistic. Still, I persevere. And my last project is this free-form, personalized coral pink washcloth.

I counted out 46 stitches, border and body, counted out letter heights, and hoped for the best. See the picture with  the knives? That is me seeing if the H is discernable, weighed down with knives (I was making dinner.) it was visible enough for me to continue, counting out an approximate pattern on Post-its.

Project 5 (2014): Pink personalized washcloth
Pattern: self-composed
Yarn: Sandnes Mandarin Medi (100% cotton), 50 grammes = 135 metres
Yarn purchased at: yarn shop near harbour in Tromsø, Norway
Colour: 4317, a coral pink
Difficulty for me: easy knitting but I made mistakes counting.
Needles: circular needles size 3.5 mm; the yarn has 2.5-3.5 recommended.
Knitted where: at home in Rome, November 2014
Final size: About 20-21 cm wide (it varied….) and 31-32 cm long, before blocking.
Final weight: 38 grammes


Rough plan: 46 stitches. Ten rows perlestrikk (moss stitch/ seed stitch). Then main body, with most in perlestrikk. 4 stitches knit, then 11 stitches perlestrikk, 24 main body for letters, then 11 stitches perlestrikk, end with 4 stitches knit. The letters are 24 knit stitches high, 12 sitches wide. I discovered that the edge chosen curls over itself; that a smaller needle might have been better; that these were not the best stitches for contrast; and that in the right light, you can squint and almost see “H E D D A” here.

Pink washcloth
Far from perfect, but this was fun to try! And I knitted my first hempe, the gap at the top so you can hang the washcloth up. What IS the English word for that? Cast off 9 stitches midway in the row, then cast on 9 stitches. I am taking this as a learning experience, and am knitting on. This washcloth will be a Christmas gift.

homemade · knitting · strikking

Terracotta Grand Finale dishcloth

I am in awe of all the skilled knitters, who knit beautifully and swiftly. I am a slow and sporadic knitter, with much to learn, and I really appreciate the inspiration I am finding on knitting blogs and Ravelry. Thanks for sharing! This is my second dishcloth, again knitted while on holidays.

Project 2 (2014): Knitted dishcloth
Pattern: The Grand Finale by Bitta Mikkelborg
Yarn: Anna og Claras Bomuldsgarn from Søstrene Grene (100% cotton)
Yarn purchased at: Søstrene Grene, Trondheim, Norway
Colour: 18-1345, a nice terracotta
Difficulty for me: medium, I did make a couple mistakes but enjoyed it
Needles: I started with circular needles size 3.5 but that was too large, the yarn has 2.5-3 recommended. Thus, I went down to 3, still a little too loose but better. Next time I will try 2.5
Knitted where: on holidays on the farm of my parents in Norway, August 2014.
Final size: About 23 cm wide (it varied….) and 25 cm long, before blocking.
Final weight: 31 grammes (so I know roughly much yarn I would need next time)

Knitting too loosely

First attempt: This is with 3.5 circular needles, as I had used those with the previous dishcloth with the same yarn.  Different pattern, with blocks, but it was less fun to knit and not quite right, is it…..? My mother is an expert knitter, and kindly advised. Too large needles, and I knit loosely, so I unraveleled this one and started again with size 3 needles. This time, I tried The Grand Finale, by Bitta Mikkelborg. Her book “Kluter – strikking hele året“. (in Norwegian) was just published, and it looks amazing! First, I thought, I will try one of her patterns shared on Ravelry.

image Not perfect, but much better! The pattern is much more apparent. I finished this dishcloth while in Norway, and have not blocked it yet, but I am encouraged enough to keep going. So many colours and patterns to explore! I was hoping to finish a few dishcloths for Christmas gifts, but then I need to find time to knit beyond holidays. We shall see!

homemade · knitting · strikking

Terracotta dishcloth: first one knitted!

Klut 1I am a lapsed knitter. Not that I was ever very good at knitting, as various lumpy jumpers and projects unfinished through….. (I am counting) seven housemoves and three countries can testify. My mother knits beautifully, as do many Norwegian friends, and I had rather given up. Then I saw some knitted dishcloths, and thought: hey… Maybe there is redemption in sight? So much beautiful knitting and talented knitters online, it inspired me. So this is just to chronicle my slow progress to start knitting again. It may not be pretty, but I am really enjoying it!

Project 1 (2014): Knitted dishcloth
Yarn: Anna og Claras Bomuldsgarn from Søstrene Grene (100% cotton)
Yarn purchased at: Søstrene Grene, Trondheim, Norway (on our delayed honeymoon this year!)
Colour: 18-1345, a nice terracotta
Pattern: Paristua from Monai, simple version
Difficulty for me: easy to knit, despite my knitting rustiness
Needles: Circular needles 3.5
Knitted where: on Hurtigruten Kirkenes-Bergen
Final size: About 18-19 cm wide (it varied….) and 29 cm long
Final weight: 28 grammes (so I know roughly much yarn I would need next time)

In Norwegian: Norsk: Legg opp 49 masker, kluten blir ca 20 cm bred, strikk den 20 cm lang. Alle pinner: 3 rett, 1 vrang, den siste masken blir rett.

What to do: Cast on 49 stitches, the cloth will be about 20 cm wide, so knit it 20 cm long.
All rows: knit stitch three (K3), purl one (P1), the last stitch should be knit stitch

What I actually knitted: I wanted a rectangular cloth to fold, so I knitted a rectangle 20cm wide and 27-28 cm long. Monai recommended needle nr 4, but as a loose knitter I went down to 3.5.

We were on Hurtigruten for our delayed honeymoon in February this year, and that is when I finally found the time to start knitting. Endless snowcapped mountains and steel grey water: I looked at the view, and knitted. Badly and slowly, but it got easier. I was so pleased to have actually completed something! Maybe that is part of the appeal of dishcloths?

Of course, I did not knit again until August holidays, but I did read kntting blogs and delved into Ravelry (how wonderful is that?). And I knitted another one in August, so there is some progress.

Klut nr 1 finished
I stil need to block it, that is new to me. But I actually completed something! I am so pleased!