Friday, September 26, 2014

DIY desk with saw horse brackets

my desk/knitting table is complete ... and it was DIY designed

The desk is made out of three pieces - with these dimensions
Using plywood for the most parts (cheaper than other materials) 
at the carpenter's shop WIP

the legs are Sawhorse heavy duty Brackets - worked out extra well,
since most of my furniture have orange accents! (only two sets needed)

the three pieces are hold in place with biscuits on the sides and
window locks

for cable management - drilled holes and covered with three
 plastic cord grommets / hole covers - 2" diameter

It's not perfect, but mostly hidden
an extension cord outlet lays onto the bracket and it's hold in place with zipties
this is the corner support - still needs patching - the grommet on the desk top is right in the corner
the support is hollow and the cables can pass through
the edges are smooth and was used a "ribbon" veneer of Europly,
giving a nice finished edge
xox, d.

keep in touch! 

Saturday, September 20, 2014

DIY - machine knitting: fancy lace scarves in two hours

A scarf like this. In two hours: you got that right!

For my mother in law's birthday, I decided to make her a pretty lace scarf that would be ideal for the first cold, nippy fall days.

in front of the window, from my instagram

Then, I liked it so much, I decided to make another one for me in a pretty linen-cotton blend.

I bought a pretty merino/alpaca yarn on Ebay (this one) and thought it would be perfect for this project.

love these speckles!!
Now I'm thinking to make another one, for myself... and I'm thinking cashmere this time! 

I saw this scarf called "racked magic" on Knit-it-Now, it's a double bed scarf, reversible, and once you get the hang of it, it goes really fast.
I tried the tutorial on knit it now step by step, but I ended up making few changes. 

Cast on a multiple of 8 + 4 stitches.
I didn't use the e-wrap cast on method, because I don't like the look of it, so I casted on using the chain stitch cast on.

After that, knit on the first bed 8 rows. I suggest to use a much lower tension than you'd use for the rest of the scarf.
I did NOT do this on the woolen scarf, so the rolled edge looks much wider than the rest of the scarf.
On the linen scarf, I knit the 8 rows for the rolled edge at the beginning and the end at tension 2, while the rest of the work is done at tension 4.2. It turned out much prettier this way.
(look at the edges on both scarves in the first two pictures!)

Then pull up the ribber (rack on 5) and get the needles set: 4 needles on the main bed, 4 on the ribber, ending with 4 needles on the main bed.

Now set your ribber on H.

From now on, you'll knit 2 rows and move the rack to 4, then knit 2 rows, move the rack to 3, knit 2 rows, move to 2, and so on until you'll get to 0.
Once you get to rack 0, knit two rows, then move the rack back to 1 and knit 2 rows and so on until 10.
Here's where I made mine different than the one on the video on knit it now: I didn't repeat the two rows once I got to 0 and then back to 10.
So my sheet to keep track of the rows and racking looks a bit different.
The result is that where the two beds cross you'll see more of a diamond shape rather than an oval shape. No big of a difference, but I like it better.

image from knit it now

click on the link rake lace scarf row count sheet  if you want to download and print the sheet to keep track of the racking !
Always start and end the scarf at the rack 5 position, so you'll have a balanced repetition.
Once you're done with the motif, pass all the needles on the main bed, and knit 8 rows.
Bind off loosely.
I used the bind off around the pegs, I found it less tight and much faster.

Note: pull up the needles on each side while racking: my machine wasn't working the stitches right at the beginning, but worked perfectly once I started to put the needles at each edge on the main bed onto the E position!

Another note: if for some reason you have to stop the work, do it with the carriage on the LEFT. this will save you for trying to remember wether or not you've already shifted the rack.

woolen scarf:
84 stitches
yarn: Baruffa 70%merino 30% alpaca 2/14
tension 4.2
8 rows stockinette + 522 rows motif + 8 rows stockinette
dimensions: 30cm x 147 cm (11-7/8" x 57-7/8")

cotton linen scarf:
100 stitches
yarn: Lanar 50%cotton - 50% linen 2/20
tension: stockinette 2 // motif 4.2
8 rows stockinette + 562 rows motif + 8 rows stockinette
dimensions: 35.5 cm x 180 cm (14" x 70-7/8")

give it a try, it's such a rewarding knit!


keep in touch! 

Saturday, September 6, 2014

DIY: Nektar De Stagni smiley face and pearl bracelet

put smileys on your wrist. and pearls, too.

left: Nektar De Stagni - collage by moi
This bracelets is extremely easy to make, and will put a smile on your face, too!
I'm not a fan of stretch bracelets, so I made my version using a clasp.
If you prefer the stretch kind, making this will be even faster!

DIY smiley face and pearl bracelet // supplies: 

Yellow Smiley Face Glass Beads 6mm

Swarovski Elements Crystal Round Pearl Beads, 5mm, White (this is what I had, although the 6mm pearl beads would have worked better)

Bead Crimper Crimp Tool Pliers

Crimp Tube Beads 2x2mm

Toggle Clasp, 9mm, Silver

Nylon Fishing Line (make sure that once used doubled, will still pass through the beads)

In case you want to do the stretch bracelet, all you need is some Elastic Floss 0.8mm

DIY smiley face and pearl bracelet // tutorial: 

string the smiley face and pearls, in equal amount,
enough to go tightly on your wrist 
string a tube crimp bead and one part of the clasp onto one end

make a loop around the eye of the clasp, and pass the
nylon line through the tube crimp bead and few beads too (to hide the tail)

use the pliers to crimp the tube bead, and cut the excess nylon line

repeat on the other side!


xox, d.

keep in touch! 

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

DIY - MK : the MC Escher sweater

This "sky and water" sweater was the birthday present for an 
art student / MC Escher's lover, AKA, my s-daughter

In a precedent post, (HERE) I shared the process of the transformation a single bed fair isle motif into a double jacquard motif to avoid the floats on the wrong side of the work. 
The punchcard into consideration, inspired by MC Escher "Sky and Water" was used to knit a couple of cowl necks, just to get my hand on it right. 
The whole idea was to make a sweater transitioning from light to dark with the motif right above the waist. 

detail of the MC Escher inspired "Sky and Water" sweater
Yarn used:
Indigo: merino wool 2/28 - 2 ply
Light grey: merino/alpaca/cashmere/silk/viscose/acrylic 1/14 blend - 1 ply (bought here)

Full ribbed, machine knitted, casting on on max tension and 3 rows of tubular at tension 2.1, then 3.2 for the entire length of the work.

Sleeves came out rather long, but she said "she likes long sleeves" so... it's ok!
how my sketches looks like while I'm working...
how my sketches SHOULD really look like!!
The number of stitches is considered of the number shown on the main bed. Because the sweater is worked full ribbed on a double bed, the number of needles is actually double.

Try to work with a number of stitches multiple of 24 (+2 for seams allowance), 
so the seams on the sides won't show a broken pattern.
(in my case: 146 = 144 +2)

Front is slightly shorter than the back, and left the side splits.

sleeves / shoulders detail.
I lost my notes on the sleeves details :(
will edit this post if I'll miraculously find them again!
Calculate the max width of the sleeves needed at the slanted angle
of the armhole, subtract the wrist's width, divide by 2 to obtain the number of increases.
Divide the number of rows by the number of increases to figure out the correct ratio.
turtle neck / neckline detail
The neck is a rectangular piece, with a seam on the back.
(the seam has been done halfway inside out and halfway right side in)
Full ribbed, end with waste yarn,
and sew onto the neckline with a backstitch on the live stitches.

xox, d.

keep in touch! 

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