FO Friday: Shiny Purple Maluka

2692 Maluka

Maluka is the August KAL in the Beginner Lace Knitters group on Ravelry. It was one of my nominations, so I was extra excited to cast on! I rummaged through my stash and found the perfect hank of too-pretty-for-feet sock yarn: a gorgeous purple wool-bamboo blend with a lot of shine and personality.

This shawlette is almost a scarf — very petite! But, quick to work up.  You work the garter border first. The cool 3-over-3 bundle that makes a chain of circles that is very pretty. After the border is complete, you pick up stitches all along the edge, and work the body in a series of short rows to create a graceful crescent shape.

2689 Maluka tip

Project: Shiny Purple Maluka

Pattern: Maluka

Designer: Bea Schmidt

Available: FREE! on Ravelry

Yarn: Three Irish Girls McClellan Fingering

2690 Maluka

I’ve been wearing my Maluka constantly — even with grubby shorts and a T-shirt :). (I never said personal style was my forte!) I love how it drapes.  The designer is German, so it’s not too surprising that the edging chart follows the convention of showing what you actually knit, rather than the right side of the work.  I know there are knitters out there who prefer this style of chart, but I much, much prefer a chart that shows what the right side of the work looks like.  I have no problem understanding “knit on RS, purl on WS” etc.  For my own sanity, I did make up a “right side” version of the Maluka edging chart, which I have made available at Google docs for knitters who think like me.  (You will still need the original pattern to make a Maluka, as this is only the edging chart.)

I modified the pattern just a smidge, nothing major.  I used wrap&turn short rows, rather than the decrease/slip short rows called for.  I found that the decrease was making a big lump in my fabric.  I also wanted to use a little more yarn and have a slightly bigger finished object.  For the neck edge, I decided to use an i-cord bind off, which I extended over the cast-on and bind-off ends of the edging.  I am a bit of an i-cord fanatic! 🙂

In sum: great pattern, love my FO, another great KAL!

2688 Maluka

 

FO Friday: Coats for Gizmo and Golly

1153 Golly and Gizmo coats

One of my agility friends asked me to knit custom coats for her charming mini poodles, Gizmo (left) and Golly (right).  She wanted durable, washable yarn that was also soft and cozy, and came in her dogs’ signature colors. In terms of structure, the coats needed to have turtlenecks, front leg sleeves, and a high belly cut to allow pottying without soiling the coats.  We looked at a couple different patterns before settling on the attractive and versatile “Biscuits & Bones” pattern, sized from XS to XL. The modified “X’s and O’s” cable pattern resembles circular biscuits and long bones–very clever!

(This week’s FO is a re-wind — I’ve been working like mad all week on a design sample that I can’t share just yet.)

1122 Golly's Purple Coat

Project: Gizmo’s Red Coat and Golly’s Purple Coat

Pattern: Biscuits & Bones Dog Coat

Designer: Patons

Available: FREE! at patonsyarns.com

Yarn: Knit Picks Swish Worsted in Eggplant and Red (3 balls per coat)

1157 Golly's coat

Don’t you just love Golly’s grin??

I made Golly’s coat first (purple!) and made very few modifications.  The neck to tail is worked flat to the leg holes, where the work is split into three parts and worked separately for a few rows.  Then flat work across the entire piece resumes, continuing through the butt decreases.  Ribbing is picked up and knit in the round for the leg holes and around the belly/back (after the chest is seamed). My only serious modification was to keep edge stitches in stockinette, to make the picking up and seaming easier.

1159 Gizmo's coat

Gizmo is such a handsome fellow!

With Gizmo’s coat, I wanted to try knitting the chest in the round, to avoid seaming later on.  At the leg holes I worked just two sections (back and belly) flat, then rejoined for more work in the round, then worked flat for the back after casting off for the belly. This ended up being trickier than I anticipated … if I ever make another coat from this pattern, I will probably just make it flat and deal with the seam.

1152 Golly and Gizmo coats

Overall, the pattern is clear and well-written.  The cable patterns were written, so of course I charted them to avoid going insane.  (I work much better from a visual representation of a pattern.) I really appreciate that it came in so many sizes, and also that it accounted for the real chest shape of a dog (many dog sweater patterns seem to think dogs are shaped like humans, oops).  Swish Worsted was, as expected, perfect for the job at hand. The boys look great and are cozy too!