the biggest swatch I've ever made

thanks for your input on my dilemma which design to choose. Seems like nearly everybody agrees on the middle one. I like that one too, so I will knit it =^__^=

Also I made a swatch, the third one actually, but this time I included colorwork. I knitted both bigger snail versions and right now I tend to the smaller shell (the one on the left). This snail looks a lot more elegant.

The swatch is still unwashed and even though I improved my color-knitting extremely while making it you still can see the different tensions between some stitches, I hope this evens out when the swatch is dryed.

If you look at the back of the swatch you see I used a method that weaves in the yarn while you knit it this way there's nothing to tangle. I really like the outcome and used a method that is described here. At first I had problems knitting the wrong side but I needed to find out how to purl it since I won't knit the cardigan in the round - but once I found out how to do it it was quite easy and came pretty naturally.


which one should I choose?

Help please. I'm totally confused and get more and more confused the longer I try to think about this one. I said I was thinking about snails last time because of some gorgeous mittens. Well these snails circled my thoughts the whole day and this makes me think I will knit a snaily cardigan!

But now I have a problem, a serious one, one that's so typical for me, which version of my ideas shall I use? First the snails themselves. I created a smaller snail just like in the mittens (it's not the original pattern since I don't have the book they are in but I think I made a pretty good job in recharting them, even though I made some "error" in the neck area, but that doesn't bother me much) and then I charted a bigger version of the snail to go with the smaller one - and there is my problem, I don't know which bigger snail to use. They are only slightly different, I only made a little change to the shell but it's visible clearly. Which one do you like better? the left or the right one?

And then there is the arrangement on the back. I started with the idea on the left: all snail facing the outside of the cardigan. But then I thought why not make them face the center? and it makes a completely different effect, especially on graph paper. The outside facing verion looks alot wider whereas the center facing version seemed to create a thinner looking garment. And to make my confusion complete I made the snails face each other, looks good too! What I was surprised of was that the huge effect that there was on graph paper melted alot when I put the snails into a cardigan sketch to give me a clearer idea of what I was going to do. You see - confusion everywhere. Which would you make?

jus a side note: is it fair isle if it's working with 2 colors only and doesn't use the typical geometric repetitive style


creating something new

is difficult.

I mentioned that I plan a new cardigan for myself. I got inspired when I saw an old episode of gilmore girls and Lorelai wearing a simple blue cardi that was tied up in the front instead of using a button. It had 3/4 sleeves - and that was what caught my attention - 3/4 sleeves are perfect for summer and it still doesn't seem like turning winter very soon so I figured I could need a new summer cardigan.

On first instinct I only knew 3/4 sleeves, simple button, low cleavage, not that low though (I have one storebought cardigan that my boobs always fall out off, and it's pretty annoying to always check the fit of your wardrobe)

Planing began - what would I like more than just 3/4 sleeves? something simple, a quick knit, maybe a bit lacy but still looking like stockinette at first glance and adding some embroidery after I finished, maybe some flowers or something similar. I started swatching but didn't like the base stitch I choose and thought why not stockinette? just because it's boring? no!, I'm a better kniter meanwhile, I will not stop a project just because the stitch doesn't keep my attention alive (like I used to when I was 15 years old) - mmmh, what else? maybe an interesting stitch inbetween? some cables? some lace columns? and I started thinking about adding a second color, a yellow, because blue and yellow go well together, so I thought striping, but making colored sketches made me see, that this is not what I want. I jumped into ravelry looking for ideas and came across fair isle - why not fair isle?

And there I am at the moment planing a fair isle cardigan, I still don't want the whole project to be fair isle, cause I know I'm still not that good of a knitter (something this big - especially with 3 mm needles - will stop me at some point). Right now I plan a fair isle waistband and maybe some snails that border it above. I always loved the snails you can find at the Norwegian Snail Mittens by Adrian Bizilia (both ravelry links) but knew I wouldn't actually make or wear them, but in a cardigan? I definitely would.

So far my plan until today, lets see what my mind works like when I receive the new sets of needle I ordered two days ago . . .


like snow - a FO

in the last post I mentioned I finished the snow-white seahorse, well I did and here it is.

it came out great - greater than I expected when I started. It's a custom order and the wish was for white, I wanted to try a pale cream but of course the customers wish is my command =^__^=
All the way while crocheting it I was frightened I might dirty it, white is such a delicate color! (although I never dirtied any of my dolls, this one scared me in some way). Another thing I spent alot of time thinking about and trying out stuff were the eyes. I normally use a snowy white for the background of the pupil to create a nice eye but with a white seahorse? how would I make the eyes sort of pop out? In the end I choose a brown instead of a black for the pupil, which made the eyes softer and a cream to blend into the white of the seahorse itself. All in all I really like the outcome. Hope the customer does too!


only to show you I'm still here post

do you remember this?

Ana asked me about the pattern for it, so here you go:


1 - make a double ring with 5 sc
2 - m2, sc4
3 - sc1, m2, sc4
4 - sc1, m2 x2, sc2, sc2tog
5 - sc2, m2, sc5
6 - sc3, m2 x2, sc3, sc2tog (from now on the decreases will always cross the first stitch of the new/next round, don't worry, just start the new round after the decrease like nothing happend)
7 - sc3, m2, sc6
8 - sc4, m2 x2, sc4, sc2tog
9 - sc4, m2, sc7
10 - sc5, m2 x2, sc5, sc2tog
11 - sc5, m2, sc8
12 - sc6, m2 x2, sc6, sc2tog
13 - sc6, m2, sc9
14 - sc7, m2 x2, sc7, sc2tog
15 - sc7, m2, sc10
16 - sc8, m2 x2, sc8, sc2tog
17 - sc8, m2, sc11
(with a 3,5 mm hook my horn was about 6,5 cm long, there is a rhythm after row 8 that you can easily recognize and that allows you to elongate and enlarge the horn as wide as you like)

you might remember this beginning of a seahorse as well. I finally finished it, yay! pictures will follow in the next days.

I also started thinking about a new cardigan. I choose the blue silk/wool blend pictured here. I was first thinking about the golden yellow but prefer the blue now. It's a single ply and winding it into a ball I immediately saw it's not a good yarn to frog which means I cannot allow myself alot of trial and error with this cardigan. The issue is I only know that I want 3/4 sleeves and buttons. I want a back motif similar to Sylvie, but of course not Sylvie. And I have no idea about the cleavage - do I want one? a turtle neck? a low neckline? noooo idea!


before I forget, it would be cool to see what you make of the horn pattern, as I mentioned before I can imagine it in alot of different purposes like alien feet, bird beeks, tails?


fighting heat with lemons

The last days have been incredibly hot and what did I do? standing in the heat of the kitchen baking a cake: a lemon cake
this is a very typical yet easy german cake aka kuchen

original recipe

and in english for all my internatinal friends

350 g butter
350 g sugar
1 tbsp. vanilla sugar
6 medium sized eggs
350 g all pupose flour
3 tsp baking powder
zest of two lemons

for the frosting:
250 g icing sugar
as much lemon juice as you need to make it smooth, texture shoud be like honey

how to:
mix soft butter and sugar until well blended, add eggs one by one and also zest of lemons.
in another bowl mix flour and baking powder and then mix with butter/sugar to make a soft dough.
spread onto baking sheet and bake at 180°C for 20 to 30 mins
in the meantime: mix icing sugar and lemon juice, spread onto finished cake.
set aside to let cool, enjoy!

I also read like mad in the last 10 days. couldn't put away Trudi Canavans BLACK MAGICIAN TRILOGY. The story itself was not very surprising, I actually got a bit angry in the middle of the second book because of one magician totally changing its personality. But it's all very well written, I wanted to know what happened and read more than 1.500 pages in a few days (I don't remember anytime I have read that much). I'm still a bit sad at how the story ended and that it ended although I finished reading on friday afternoon so I think all in all it's been a very good read (and it came in very handy that I had all book of the trilogy at hand - what's worse than a story you need to wait for more than a year to know how it continues? I don't want to be reminded of my Harry Potter time here =^__^=)

Hope you enjoyed the weekend and will have a good start into the new week too!