Thursday, January 08, 2009

Taiyo Answers and a Sweet Surprise

Hi Knitters,
What a response to the Taiyo Reversible Scarf! There is a lot more interest than I had planned on. The pattern orders are still pouring in. Thank you! I want to give you a few more shots to look at. These photos show off the ruffly movement effect of the dropped stitches. This scarf is incredibly easy to make and the texture of the knitted fabric is wonderful, beautiful and rustic.
I have been wearing my Taiyo folded in half with the ends pulled through the fold. This seems to be the best way to show off the texture.
I want to explain how to work the scarf a little here. I didn't know this but there are a lot of knitters who haven't ever dropped a stitch on a knitted piece before. So here are some answers to a few questions I have been getting:

1. What do I do first? Knit the entire scarf. That's right, just work to the very end. Don't worry about dropping the stitches until you are basically done with the scarf. Don't think too hard about the end effect, just follow the pattern. Dive right in.

2. When do I drop the stitches? On the last row! That's what makes it so simple. You work straight to the end, then you drop the stitches. Your next row will be the bind off row.

3. What does it mean to drop the stitches? You actually take the specified stitch on the left needle off the needle and let it drop down. Pull the dropped stitch down several rows before you continue on with the row. You will have to pull the dropped stitch out of the stitches as you work it down the entire length of the scarf. Even after pulling the stitch down a few rows you will start to see the ladder effect appearing. The cast on row will stay in place at the bottom of the scarf. No worries, just do it!

4. How do I carry on with the row after I drop the stitch off my needle? Easy. All you do is look at the space between the stitches still on your needles. You will see the ladder or the line of bars going down the scarf. Place the top bar on the left needle by placing your needle under the bar from the front to the back. Next, knit the bar on your left needle through the back (or through the back loop), this will twist the bar and make it into a regular stitch on your needle. The next row is the bind off row so you will work the "bar" stitches as regular stitches on this row.

5. I am an email subscriber and when I push the "buy now" button it doesn't take me to Paypal, what do I do? Easy, click on Susan B. Anderson at the top of the email. It will take you directly to the post on my blog where you can click and order. For email subscribers, you should pop on over to the actual blog from time to time to read comments and to see any updates or corrections that I may add later to posts. You always get the first version of every post with no comments or corrections or additions. Just a suggestion: ) I don't know why the button didn't work for some people on the email subscription.

6. Help! I still don't get it! This weekend I will try my best to get a video tutorial together on how to drop a stitch, just like you need to do for the Taiyo Reversible Scarf. I will check with my camera man (my 17 year old son) to see if his schedule will allow a filming session. I think we can pull it off. Please check back for that if you are interested. When you see me drop the stitch on the video, you are going to laugh about how simple it is. It reads much more difficult than it is.

In conclusion, just start your scarf! Don't worry about the dropping of the stitches until you are done with the scarf, remember it's the last row where you drop.
Now for my sweet surprise. 
Okay, I am really excited about this project. I have designed and written the pattern for the cutest ever cotton chenille Sweetheart Washcloths. Squishy, squishy, soft, soft. These are next up on my pattern list. You can whip these up for Valentine's Day presents for all of your sweethearts. I am so in love with these and I hope you want to make some, too. This is one of the cutest projects I have ever made. My daughters are going crazy to get their hands on these heart washcloths. Think of all of the people who would love a Valentine pick-me-up, teachers, moms, grandmas, friends, daughters, babies, kids..... 

I am going to tell you where to get those fantastic soaps, too, the shop has a complete mail order service. Those soaps were picked out by The Collector.

I will have the pattern available in a day or two. This is a super fast, simple knit. Seriously. I made two Sweetheart Washcloths yesterday with a lot of off and on knitting.

Level of difficulty: Easy, Easy, Easy! (garter stitch, knitting every row and stitch is the main ingredient)

Here's what you need to get ready:
Crystal Palace Cotton Chenille (2 skeins make 2 washcloths) Check out this link to see all of the fabulous colors available. I think green or blue or red or dark purple, etc., etc..... would all look fantastic. Be creative. I love this yarn and for some reason I have a ton of it I've collected.
U.S. size 6 needles
U.S. size H crochet hook (Now for you knitters who won't crochet, the crochet edging is optional, the washcloths are still super cute on their own or you could just pick up around the edge with your needles and bind off on the next row for an edging or you could do a knitted picot edging, see my sidebar for tutorials.)

To give you some size reference, each washcloth is 10-inches wide, and 9-inches tall.

Any cotton yarn will do with a gauge of about 4 stitches per inch in stockinette give or take.

Okay, you would not believe the avoidance that is going on with me. I have an enormous manuscript staring me down from my desk right now. I have to get to editing. Bleh.

Love you, Knitters. You keep me going more than you'll ever know. I really needed a kick this week and the Taiyo scarf definitely gave it to me, thanks to all of you.
best, susie