22 June 2007

Various and Sundry welcome to Summer

Now that the day job deadline is history there may be a bit more blogging. Writing for a living really does get in the way of writing.

Today several of the women in my work group/team did a lunch thing with our visiting software engineer from India. She, yes, she, is away from home for the 1st time and India to the US is a pretty big step. Luckily or not for her, not only do we have a fairly good number of women in our work group/team but many of us are active in organisations designed to promote women in industry.

Since I've been driving the van while waiting to have the truck's weird noises diagnosed, I cleared out the van's clutter so I could play chauffeur for the group. That worked really well and let everyone relax and chat during the whole outing.

My take with knitting included a heptagon swatch and the 2x twine bag. That bag is very popular and I may need to track down some more of that safety orange hemp twine just in case I need to make a second one for me if my giveaway gene kicks in.

I had to promise to bring the 07-07-07 ring bearer pillow back into work on Monday to show it round to those who hadn't seen it completed.

So this post will be another light on pictures but heavy on knitting with liners, decreases and perhaps even embellishments.

If you're going to knit a liner life's easier if you use a yarn of roughly the same gauge to make your heptagon come seven sided star. For the liner you aren't making the bump outs so the knitting goes faster. Use a knit into front & back for your increase rather than a YO.

Details/line by line instructions are as follows:

Cast on 7 stitches onto a dp.

Row 1: (k f&b, k1) onto a dp.
(k f&b, k1)3x.onto a 2nd dp, (k f&b, k1)3x. onto a 3rd dp. 14 stitches on three needles.

Remember, you are knitting a spiral heptagon and the 1st dp has one of the seven sides, the other two dps three sides of the heptagon on each. If it helps you, place markers to delimit the virtual sides of the heptagon on the 2nd and 3rd dp.

Row 2 (1st round) Join do not twist 3rd needle stitches to 1st needle stitches -- (k1, k1b) 7x

Begin increase rounds:

(kf&b, k1)7x (21 stitches -- 3 per side of the heptagon)
(kf&b k2)7x (28 stitches -- 4 per side of the heptagon)
(kf&b, k3)7x (35 stitches -- 5 per side of the heptagon)
(kf&b k4)7x (42 stitches -- 6 per side of the heptagon)
(kf&b, k5)7x (49 stitches -- 7 per side of the heptagon)

Continue as established until you have 147 stitches (21 per side of the heptagon) on the needles.

Work the following steps seven times (once per side) to form a seven pointed star:

k21, turn (do not bother to wrap), p20
k19, turn, p18
k17 turn, p16
k15, turn, p14
k13, turn, p12
k11 turn, p10
k9, turn, p8
k7, turn, p6
k5, turn, p4
k3, turn, p2
k1 turn, p2
k3, turn, p4
k5 turn, p6
k7, turn, p8
k9, turn, p10
k11, turn, p12
k13 turn, p14
k15, turn, p16
k17 turn, p18

k19, turn, p20

Next purl one round to form a turning ridge. Following rounds knit plain, no increase, to desired depth/thickness. This should match your topper. Next purl one round to form 2nd tuning ridge.

For both your knitted liner and your topper, there's another round of short rows to form your star points before the decrease rounds. So repeat the short row instructions above.

Onto decreases. I always say that it is knitter's choice which decrease by one method you use. For the instructions I've used ssk. You decrease every round.

(ssk, k19)7x
(ssk, k18)7x
(ssk, k17)7x
(ssk, k16)7x

Continue as established. Ultimately you're going to end up with 7 stitches on the needles that you will secure by cutting the working yarn and running it through those stitches before securing the whole bit with a looped knot.

Before you get there you will need to deal with your liner.

If you are knitting your liner, you can work down to a relatively small number of stitches on the needles for both topper and liner before putting liner inside the topper and filling the pillow with fibre fill.

When you're happy with the pillow's fill, finish the decrease rounds of the liner before finishing the decrease rounds of the topper.

If you are using some other type of liner, you may well need to stuff the topper sooner and mimic my stupid knitter trick of knitting around a form. Like a total idiot, I finished and filled the knitted liner before inserting it into the topper and doing the topper's decrease rounds.

Truth? My thrift shop Knit-Cro-Sheen liner was almost too pretty to cover. I also decided to make the "right side" of my liner the reverse stocking stitch (aka bumpy) side rather than the smooth for a subtle texture interest.


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