Thursday, July 21, 2016

Knitting a hat of Eriko Aoki's pattern

Hi knitters,

A few months ago, I've been knitting a hat, on and off, from a pattern of Eriko Aoki.  (Yeah, on and off, as I was quite busy changing my life. ) Eriko Aoki is a famous Japanese designer who has been contributing her patterns to many Japanese publications.   The pattern is from a book called House Knit, Outside Knit. 

 And I used knitting needles US #6 instead of the suggested on.  The the hat is smaller and suits children of 6 to 9 year-old.

Knitting this hat is a good exercise of cable knitting and learning Japanese knitting symbols.  I found that the advanced you want to go, the more you need to learn. And my reference book wasn't informative enough. 

Therefore, I sought help from YouTube again.

Here is one I recommend.  It is a YouTube channel called Keiko no Puppy, and it is official of the Japanese Yarn Brand Puppy.   You can find some instructions on how to knit and crochet.  The good thing about this series of YouTube tutorials is that you don't need to know Japanese at all.  The demonstration is in clear and done in slow pace.  You'll see Japanese subtitles at the bottom of the screen.  But you don't quite need that.    

And you can just look at the right top corner of the video and see the symbols.  

Here is a demonstration of k2tog.

Although this is a great help.  There are still so many symbols that I couldn't find.  I guess I need to find another reference book that contains information for rare symbols if I want to keep advancing.  I DO NEED THAT!  Please let me know if you have any recommendation.  Thank you!

So at the mean time, I finished another hat from a pattern of Japanese designers.  Will tell you more about it next time. 

Happy knitting!

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

My heart will go on with knitting: Review on Tulip's stitch markers in HEART SHAPE

Hi Knitters,

Recently I had a few trips to Asia.  It was great to explore the world and found out what knitters from the other side of the earth are up to.

When I went back to my home city Hong Kong, I went to a local yarn store in called Cheer Wool Co. Ltd in Wan Chai and got this:

Yes! Jumbo stitch markers in heart shape!!!!!!!!

Are they just lovely?  There are totally 6 of these stitch markers in the package.  They are made by Tulip, a celebrated Japanese brand that is famous for it's crochet hooks and other knitting accessories.  Elastic.  Made of polyethylene as indicated on the package.

I used two of the markers to finished a hood that was originally designed by me as a snood.  That's Op. 24.  Opus twenty-four.  

The snood was knitted with US #10 needles.  The usage of the markers were actually optional.  It was just easier to distinguish the borders on both sides and the subtle heart shape pattern in the center of the rows with the help of the markers. It was not especially easily or difficult to use the markers.  Nothing special about it except the appearance.  Yeah, you don't have to own them.  But I bet when you see them you'll just go crazy like me.  

These markers are pretty big.  You shouldn't have problem using them on needles even in US size 15 (10.0mm).  (I tested it)  Anyhow, details and pattern of Op. 24 will be blogged.  Stay tuned.  

Happy knitting!

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Souvenirs from Japan

Hi knitters,

A few months ago I went to Tokyo, Japan and had a pleasant vacation there.  It was summer and of course nobody was wearing knits of wool.  Anyhow, I went to Kichijoji and shop in a mega craft store called Yazawaya.  And here is the official website of the store:

You can find not only knitting and crochet stuff, but fabrics, buttons and even books.  However, the proportion for animono is rather small.  I could not even find needles of one brand in all sizes.

Still, I found something very interesting like this one.

This is actually a Tunisian crochet hook with a clip and string that are used as attachment.  I have not tried the set.  

Below is a crochet hook of the brand Misasa.  Made in Japan and made of wood from India.  I tested it by crocheting some simple double stitch and it worked quite well.  The weight is much lighter than I had expected.  It's a Japanese size 7 hook.  And as you can see, it's a beautiful design.  Hopefully I can spend some time crocheting.

Well, as I was short of travelling expense, I did not buy any yarn.  Still, I managed to spend almost two hours there browsing around.  There're some used books for sale as well.  Anyhow, next time when I go to Japan, I would like to check out another yarn store.  If you have any tips for me or recommendation, please feel free to comment.

Happy knitting and crocheting