knitting · strikking

Magenta Garbaklut washcloths

magenta GarbaklutFinally! Cooler weather! We just had a rainstorm, a welcome change. People are back from holidays, schools are starting, and cooking and knitting are both more enjoyable. I have various projects in my knitting basket, but sometimes I just feel like knitting something easy, like these Garbaklut washcloths. Good for holiday knitting where you need to be sociable (and drink wine) and chat without much stitch counting.

image

Our neighbourhood Garbatella this afternoon, with rainstorm approaching.

Project 19 (2015): Magenta Garbaklut washcloths
Pattern: See below, Garbaklut.
Yarn: Drops Paris (100% cotton), 50gr = 75 metres.
Yarn purchased: online in Italy
Colour: magenta, 117
Difficulty for me: easy
Needles: circular needles size 4 mm.
Knitted where: On holidays in Norway, August 2015
Final size: 23×20 cm
Final weight: 40-41 grammes each

I had already knitted several similar washcloths in Drops Paris, last one in grey, and I like the structure. This time I tried seed stitch for the border, and kept 44 stitches for the stitch count: three stitches for border, then the main pattern, then three stitches border again.

44 stitches overall:
ROW 1: Border knit 1, purl 1, knit 1. Then *knit 2 purl 2* repeated. Last three: knit 1, purl 1, knit 1.
ROW 2 Border knit 1, purl 1, knit 1 Then *purl 2 knit 2* repeated, ending on border knit 1, purl 1, knit 1.
ROW 3 and 4: Border: knit 1, purl 1, knit 1. Then knit across. Last three: knit 1, purl 1, knit 1.
magenta washclothsNot yet blocked, but I am happy with these. While I am not sure who these will be for, there is always a dinner invitation. Knitted washcloths are a nice change from a bottle of wine or the sourdough loaves I usually bring. I am not planning Christmas gifts yet; it looks like we are moving from Rome by November, which will be a massive upheaval, and we are still not sure where we will be by then. Lots to think about and sort out, though the move should be temporary. Many lists are being written, and I am sure this will be a good new adventure. Still, some easier knitting does help my ongoing worrying – and one thing that will be in the suitcases will be yarn and needles to get me through the first months!

knitting · strikking

Ripple striped summer washcloth

knitting on GiglioHoliday knitting! How wonderful! This is made to match the Summer Textured Washcloth, in the same yarn, and was knitted on Isola del Giglio, off the coast of Tuscany. Turquoise sea, lovely seafood, and lazy holidays with time to knit. We go every year and it is blissful. Even the heat was less oppressive, with a breeze and the sound of water and boats and happy kids. Back here in Rome it’s still 30C today, people are coming back after the summer but as it is Sunday, it’s quiet out there today.

Project 18 (2015): Ripple striped washcloth
Pattern: Based on Ripple Hand Towel by Knitting Ninja (also on Ravelry)
Yarn: Sirdar Summer Stripes (60% cotton, 40% acrylic), 50gr = 158 metres.
Yarn purchased: online in UK
Colour: 0309, sand-beige-green-blue
Difficulty for me: easy
Needles: circular needles size 4 mm.
Stitches: 54
Knitted where: On Isola del Giglio on holidays July 2015
Final size: 26×27 cm
Final weight: 32 grammes

imageThis is based on Ripple Hand Towel by Knitting Ninja – I used 4 garter stitches on each side, as a border, then knit in the pattern, which is taken from Barbara Walker’s A Treasury of Knitting Patterns (Diagonal Rib). Good summer knitting, interesting but not too complicated.
imageI still have 35 grammes or so left of this yarn, so I’ll find another pattern to make a third washcloth for a set. Something simple enough for knitting on the bus!

knitting · strikking

Summer Textured Washcloth

imageLike many places, it’s been hot in Rome for weeks, and my knitting has been slow. Watermelon for dinner? Sure! Too hot to cook. Today is Ferragosta, the Assumption of the Virgin Mary, and it is deserted out there. Most of our neighbours not already on holidays must have gone to the beach, the piazza is empty and there is just a dogwalker passing now and then. I did finish this summer washcloth, in a yarn new to me (Sirdar Summer Stripes). It reminded me of the beach every sweaty morning knitting this on the bus.

imageProject 17 (2015): Summer Textured Washcloth
Pattern: Textured Washcloth, PDF from Creative Knitting magazine
Yarn: Sirdar Summer Stripes (60% cotton, 40% acrylic), 50gr = 158 metres.
Yarn purchased: online in UK
Colour: 0309, sand-beige-green-blue
Difficulty for me: easy
Needles: circular needles size 4 mm.
Stitches: 54
Knitted where: mostly on morning bus commute, Rome
Final size: 26×26 cm
Final weight: 32 grammes

…and I finished this on holidays! Isola del Giglio, wonderful island trip off Tuscan coast. I am not sure who this washcloth will be for, but I am knitting a twin for it in another pattern, we’ll see.

Isola del Giglio

 

Happy holidays to all still enjoying those!

 

knitting · strikking

Lacy Baktus #1 in turquoise, black and purple

lacy baktus in drops delightI had heard about Baktus scarves, but never actually tried knitting one. They are great — flexible for the amount of yarn you have, for various yarn types, and they are so simple to knit! That does not mean I did not miscount a few times, which meant some wonky edges, but that is much improved after a wash. Definitely will be knitting more of these!

Project 16 (2015): Lacy Baktus #1 in turquoise in and purple
Pattern: Lacy Baktus by Terhi, which is adapted from Baktus by Strikkelise
Yarn: Drops Delight (75% wool, 25% polyamid), 50gr = 175 metres.
Yarn purchased: online in Italy
Colours: 09, turquoise, purple and black
Difficulty for me: easy, but slow going
Needles: circular needles size 4 mm
Stitches: 4 ++
Knitted where: On morning commute, Rome, April-June 2015 and in London, May 2015
Final size: 118 long, 37 cm at widest
Final weight: 103 grammes

needle sizes for baktusI was debating which needle size to use, so knitted a sample with 3.5mm, 4.5mm and finally 4 mm. I wanted it fairly light, so made it a Lacy Baktus by Terhi, which is adapted from Baktus by Strikkelise. Only eight rows to keep track of, so good for knitting on the bus.

knitting Lacy BaktusDrops Delight is nice to knit with, and I love these colours. I had planned to give this to the friend for whom I made wristwarmers in Drops Delight, but shes does wear more reds – this might go to someone else, then I’ll knit on in reds and oranges for her.
knitting on the TubeHere I am knitting in London, on the Tube (the Piccadilly Line, to be precise) in May.

imageAnd here the well-traveled scarf is finally done, has just been gently washed, and is drying on the balcony with a view of old Garbatella. So nice to have finished something!

knitting · strikking

Purple and lilac washcloths: All Washed Up

All Washed Up washclothWashcloths are great for knitting on the bus: compact, not too complicated, and I can make a little progress each day, noting the absence of other knitters on my bus circuit, while chatting to neighbours. Topics: The lateness of the bus, what did they bring for lunch, the bar that is being remodeled, the ongoing heatwave. Many newer buses have air conditioning, which brings its own problems: colpo d’aria, the infamous “blow of wind” which makes you susceptible to illness, chills, pains. Drafts are especially dangerous, and I (happily knitting under a tepid blast of air) get warned regularly about how dangerous it it. All those chic signoras with a little scarf tied around their neck? Not just fashion; they are carried in handbags to ward off unexpected drafts. Maybe I should be knitting (and wearing) a light summer scarf, instead of washcloths?

Project 14 (2015): Purple and lilac washcloths: All Washed Up
Pattern: All Washed Up by Jill Arnusch (free on ravelry)
Yarn: Drops Paris (100% cotton), 50gr = 75 metres.
Yarn purchased: online in Italy
Colours: 08 purple and 31 lilac
Difficulty for me: easy
Needles: circular needles size 4 mm
Stitches: 40
Knitted where: On morning commute, Rome, June 2015
Final size: 21×20 cm
Final weight: 42 grammes each

All Washed Up washclothsThis is a reversible pattern, nice to knit and simple enough to keep track of. Knitted in Drops Paris, good for slightly thick washcloths.

All Washed Up washclothI think these will be a gift for friends we are visiting next month, they have not been blocked yet so they are not quite straight. Always handy to have a couple spare!

 

 

knitting · strikking

Smart Bitches Last Minute Neck Warmer (or: melting in July….)

Smart Bitches Last Minute Neck Warmers
Rome is hot this week, even for Rome. Warm in the morning, stifling mid-afternoon, and even the locals are complaining. The flat stays at 29-31C, which is fine if you are immobile with a fan blowing on you, but with no cool evening breeze to lighten the air, life is slow. Dinners are assembled: cold rice salad, proscuitto e melone, Greek salad, watermelon, a lemon beer. Activities are minimal. So naturally this was a perfect time to finish these two cowls in wool…… Well, I’ve been knitting a summer skirt, which is not going well. Before I go back to that, I needed something soothing. This is a quick and simple project, from the ever-wonderful Elyse at Smart Bitches, Trashy Books. If you enjoy romance novels, and especially snarky reviews, it is a fabulous site.

Project 14 (2015): Smart Bitches Last Minute Neck Warmers
Pattern: Smart Bitches Last Minute Neck Warmer (pattern is worth reading even if you never knit this)
Yarn: Rowan Thick ‘n’ Thin, 100% Wool, 50g=50m
Yarn purchased: online in UK
Colour: 966 Soapstone, 965 Greenstone
Difficulty for me: easy
Needles: circular needles size 8 mm.
Stitches: 65
Knitted where: At home in Rome, June-July 2015 while watching final  season of “Hart of Dixie” (it is too hot to be intellectually challenged……)
Final size: purple 20×13 cm assembled, green 22×13 cm assembled (width varied)
Final weight: 50 grammes each (with buttons)

neckwarmer in SoapstoneAre they not pretty? Knit, sew on buttons, done. Really easy – these will probably be gifts in due course. First time for me to knit with such chunky wool, I prefer smaller needles but this was fun to try.

Neckwarmer in GreenstoneThe width varies a bit, but they are plenty wide to pull on to wear.

imageVoila! Modeling the green neckwarmer in 32C today, so please excuse my slightly sweaty summer look. Imagine this under a winter coat. I think these neckwarmers would be very cozy when the weather is more appropriate. Now, time to get some more iced tea and cool down again……. Happy July to you all.

 

knitting · strikking

Grey Garbaklut washcloth

Garbaklut

Rome is warm, and after knitting for ages on a Lacy Baktus scarf (fun, but slow going for me), I took a break and knitted up a quick washcloth as a housewarming gift for a friend. I knew she has a blue kitchen, so a grey and blue set it was. The scarf is done, but is a bit wonky and will need blocking – maybe next weekend?

Project 13 (2015): Grey knitted washcloth for Alice
Pattern: See below, Garbaklut.
Yarn: Drops Paris (100% cotton), 50gr = 75 metres.
Yarn purchased: online in Italy
Colour: light grey, 32
Difficulty for me: easy
Needles: circular needles size 4 mm.
Knitted where: At home in Rome, June 2015 while watching “The Royals”, trashy but fun….
Final size: 22×16 cm
Final weight: 35 grammes

I had already knitted several similar washcloths in Drops Paris, last one in blue, and I like the structure. I kept the smaller border of garter stitch (rillestrikk) each side, I might try seed stitch next time. Anyway, this was 44 stitches: three stitches for border, then the main pattern, then three stitches border again.

Still 44 stitches overall:
ROW 1 border knit 3, then *knit 2 purl 2* repeated, ending on knit 2 then border knit 3.
ROW 2 border knit 3, then *purl 2 knit 2* repeated, ending on purl 2 then border.
ROW 3 and 4: only knit.
Garbaklut washcloth ParisRepeat until you like the size or run out of yarn, ending on 2 rows of knit 2 purl 2. About 11-12 repeats for me, then cast off. This makes a rectangular cloth, I might try 40 stitches next time to make it more square. I partnered this with the blue Garbaklut, and delivered these today over lunch.

Garbaklut