Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Mermaid Spreadsheet Update

Many thanks to Jessica who is knitting on ahead and found a few issues with the spreadsheet. I've corrected those and completed listing out the rest of the pattern as well. If you would like a copy, see my previous post for instructions on getting it.

Please let me know if you find other issues with the spreadsheet while you're knitting.

Also, now that I've completed the pattern and know exactly how many rows it has, I have generated a few sizing observations.

For the medium, there are 337 ridges along the hem. At proper gauge, this works out to 53 inches around the hem. There are 217 ridges at the narrowest point around the middle, or waistline, which works out to 34.2 inches. At the top of the armholes, or the bustline, there are 253 ridges, which works out to 39.8 inches. Further, the average number of stitches from the shoulder to the hem is 152, which works out to about 24 inches.

Take these into advisement when deciding on size.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Mermaid Spreadsheet Available

I've worked out row-by-row instructions for Mermaid, size medium, up to and including the Center Back Gusset. I'm willing to distribute it now, with the understanding that I HAVE NOT KNIT IT YET. I plan to distribute updates as I notice problems as I'm working it.

It's an Excel file, but I can distribute it as a PDF to those who don't have Excel.

It includes columns indicating the number of rows knitted, the color for a given row, whether you are working RS/WS, the number of "ridges" you can count across the hem, the number of "ridges" you can count across the waist, the number of "ridges" you can count across the "neck", the name of the section you are working, the number of stitches that should be on your needle, and the knitting instructions for that row.

Rows are also shaded to indicate what color (A, B, C) you are working with.

If you would like a copy of the spreadsheet, send me an e-mail: needlesnhooks@gmail.com. Because the spreadsheet is the entire pattern, I will reply with a challenge based on the pattern to prove you have a copy of it. When you answer the question, I will e-mail you the file.

Mermaid: Center Gusset on Back

I'm working through the lines on this one for my spreadsheet and I'm not exactly sure what to do with the collar edge stitches. The pattern says "edge sts as for plain gussets", but the plain gussets have edge stitches at the hem, which is a different stitch pattern. Is there to be no fancy edge stitches at the back of the neck? Any ideas? Maybe this will be more clear when I start knitting?

visit to the frog pond

Well, my lovely progress picture is no more. I ripped it completely out last night. I had just finished the first gusset and decided to do a measurement and found that my length was waaaay to long, in fact it was even bigger than the L, and my row gauge was off far enough that I just decided since i wasn't sure i had gotten all the decreases in that I'd just start over. I had swatched out several months ago, but i somehow suspect that with the pressure of xmas knitting gone that my tensoin has loosened, so we RE swatched this morning and I'm casting back on the i-cord edge right now.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

1/2 Ballerina

My Ballerina is halfway done! I am knitting the large size, but with shorter sleeves. There is a point in the instructions where it is clearly stated where you can reduce the armlength, so I thought the changed numbers would affect the sleeve alone, but it does affect the number of stitches you get when you go from the sleeve to the back too. But the discrepancy is only 4 or 5 stitches so I have decided not to worry about it.

I also made a stupid mistake when I started the sleeve, and continued the increases for too long, so I had to frog the sleeve and start again.

Thursday, January 26, 2006


I am about to frog my whole sweater and restart it. I have made it to the underarm gusset (the first time the pattern gives you a stitch count) and I am way off. I started to do a row by row instruction and am stuck on page 2 of the pattern, right hand column where it states:"continue in Stripe pat and work edge sts along the shoulder similar to the edge along the lower edge of the jacket "(OK I get that part) THEN it says "AT THE SAME TIME slant the shoulder line by dec 1 st inside edge-sts every 6 ridges 3(3)4 times. After a total of 16(16)18 ridges in STRIPE PAT [last ridge is A] work the first gusset". By my count if you did all 4 decreases for the size large every 6 ridges you would run out of ridges before you hit the gusset. By my count I'd need 24 ridges to get all my decreases in. Has anyone else run into this problem? If so how did you solve it?

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Mermaid Dimension Sketch

A quick sketch I did of the (largest size) Mermaid body & sleeve I've knit so far, with dimensions. These are rough measurements, pre-blocking, and I've done my best to measure accurately along the curved edges etc.

(Click the image to access the very large version)

Sizing - measurements?

Hey gals -

I'm still agonizing about the sizing issue (especially since so many of you also-curvy gals are saying how big the large is). Question: can someone who's finished the body pretty please post measurements of the waist and hips of the large, as well as the medium (since the pattern only has bust measurements)? Heck, while I'm asking, I might as well ask for sleeve lengths as well. I'm guessing I'll do large with medium sleeves, but still may do medium - I really want it to fit when I'm finally done!


Mermaiding along


I'm working on Mermaid #1, I've gotten as far as halfway through the first stripe pattern and am about to tackle the gussett, but I have to agree with everyone, the decreasing at the same time as keeping track of the stripes and lack of total stitch counts for each section takes a lot of effort. If I can get the hang of this, I'd love to order another mermaid and possibly a ballerina. Looking forward to seeing more picture progress. I just tried to upload photos through blogger, and its not working...so I may try again later.

Mermaid Spreadsheet

I'm about 1/3 of the way through putting together a line-by-line spreadsheet for Mermaid (size medium). I know there's a lot of interest in this so I wanted to know whether people wanted to get their hands on it sooner, without my having checked it against my actual knitting, or later, after I've had a chance to knit and make sure it's right? Of course, whenever I distribute it, I'll keep names around to send updates to should I make corrections.

Right now, the spreadsheet includes columns for row count, RS/WS, hem ridge count, top ridge count, color used, stitches on needle, "section" (i.e., stripe, gusset, etc) and knit instructions. I'll be shading the rows according to which color (A,B,C) is used on that row. Anything else you'd find useful?

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Soon to be Mermaid knitter

Hello. I am Susan from Suffolk, VA. I just joined this group. I have my Mermaid kit ordered. Hopefully it doesn't take long to get here. I can't wait to get stated. I am glad to have this group to encourage me along the way. I ordered color #3 which is the Turq/Sage/Sea Blue. Of course, I have about a dozen knitting projects started, it's not like I really need another one. Anyone out there really ONLY working on their HF project? ;-)


Monday, January 23, 2006

Pagode arrives!

Hello, my name is Trish and I'm excited to start knitting on my first Hanne Falkenberg kit. I'm doing Pagode in Color 1, and the kit I ordered from ebay (Juliepoolie's) arrived today! Here's the yarn-->

I've admired Hanne's designs for several years, but it was this knit-along that got me finally moving on it. I think it was either Pygmalion or Pagode that I saw in person and was impressed with the wearability and lightweight.

I like knitting garter stitch (good thing for this project, right?) because I can do it continental instead of my usual throwing, which is harder on my hands. However, continental purling continues to be a struggle--I can do it but it slows my knitting down a lot.

The gauge swatch is cast on and I'm gartering away...

By the way, I was the person who made the Pagode version of the knitalong button--I'd be glad to make any other variations of buttons for those who aren't knitting Mermaid or would rather it be in a different color. Just let me know what you'd like (I do like to make buttons!). You can email me at trish 'at' randomthreads 'dot' com .


Mermaid Progress and Tips

I have made it past the second gusset in the Mermaid pattern and have a few tips. I gave up on picking up stitches from the i-cord. I was going blind trying to pick up the stitches (dark gray). I cheated a bit and made a swatch with the number of stitches I needed for the cast on and knitted a few rows. Then I did an i-cord bind off (you can find the instructions in a EZ book or Anne Modesette). Then I unraveled the swatch to the i-cord. It took less time than I had wasted trying to pick up stitches from the i-cord and looks great.

I agree it is very confusing to work the stripes, make the ends work and decrease at the same time. I have done quite a bit of frogging of this project. I am using highlighter tape on the plastic protected pattern to focus my attention on everything that is supposed to be happening at once. I also enlarged the pattern for easier viewing. I used safety pins to mark my decreases to keep count. You will get the hang of working the edge stitches and things will go easier once you have mastered that part. It is different when doing stripes and the solid color gussets.

The short row technique is one I have never used before. You cast a stitch on when you turn and knit the extra stitch with the one next to it to bridge the gap. It works just as well as the methods I have used before.

Now a question for all of you. Does the eBay seller of the hanne kits offer the Pagode jacket? A SNB friend is doing that one in red, fushia and mustard and it is absolutely beautiful!
Holly in CT

My Introduction

Hi all, another Mermaid knitter here! I started back in November, but then got sidetracked by some holiday knitting and a sexy pair of Jaywalkers. I have managed to finish the body and one sleeve, in Colourway #5, a black-grey-blue combo. I am really enjoying this project, it is by far the most complicated and difficult pattern I have ever attempted, but it is seriously addictive! I can definitely see a few more Hanne Falkenberg patterns in my future. Now if only they didn't take me 3+ months to knit. Next I hope I will be able to bring myself to knit some of the really beautiful blazing colourways like the rest of you ;)

The Body

Sleeve 1

(Click either pic for a gallery of my Mermaid pics)

Intro, sizing, pattern instructions, panic!

Hey gals -

My Mermaid 4 kit (those beautiful greens and turquoises) just arrived and I have to admit, I'm terrified! I'm a competent intermediate knitter, but this is definitely the most complicated pattern I've attempted - I'm hoping I actually have the skill to read and interpret it. (I'm definitely up for the spreadsheet idea!)

I was thinking I'd do the large - I'm a size 16/38DD - but I've been working out with a trainer and changing shape rapidly as of late, and you're all saying they run large. I'd be gutted if I finished and it didn't fit, either too big or too small. But I'm guessing that this style would be better too loose than too tight. Opinions?

Also, I've never done short rows before - was considering doing something like this for practice (http://www.magknits.com/warm05/patterns/rib.htm) - what do you think, gals?

I have a snuggly chocolate brown shrug that it'll probably take me a few days to finish, but then I'll get started - eek! Will stop by LYS tonight and try to pick up the European needles.

- Billie in sunny San Francisco, CA

The right time for this...

Hi Everyone! Talk about great timing on this KAL.

(standing up to introduce myself and tell my story, my addiction...)

I am Morgan from FiberAddict. I am addicted. I am now able to admit it. Seeing this KAL has made me take a mini mental inventory of all the Hanne kits that I own.

(hanging my head in shame for a moment ... then lifting it, realizing, that i am FREAKIN lucky that I have so many)

I am not ashamed to admit that I probably have about 7-10 kits. I am a huge fan of Cucumber Patch in the UK. I get most of mine from her since she has such great prices. Who can say no to a great price for a Hanne kit???!!!

I am trying to figure out which kit I am going to do for this KAL. I have the Promenade shawl out in a bag by my couch in hopes that I would be able to get it done. In person it is beautiful finished. So, I am thinking that I might do that one? I'll pull some pictures together and maybe y'all can help me decide!

Sunday, January 22, 2006

So many overlapping directions!

I started reading through the directions for Mermaid and realized that they are quite dense, what with the color changes and the decreases overlapping, and no sanity checks of how many stitches one is supposed to have on the needles. I'm going to be writing out line-by-line directions to keep track of it all before I even start gauge swatching. I'm not even to row 60 and I already realized I missed a whole batch of decreases. Good thing I wasn't knitting!

Saturday, January 21, 2006


Hi, everyone! I wanted to give you a quick introduction. I'm Annie from The Knitty Gritty. I'll be knitting the Mermaid kit in the oranges and corals.

I've actually had the kit for several months (more like six!), but haven't been motivated to start. I just finished knitting Celtic Dreams (an aran pullover- pictures on my blog), and thought this would be the perfect time to start. Thank you, Becky for organizing this knitalong.

Just so you know, I'm also knitting along with the "Follow the Leader" Aran Knitalong, but I think the two designs will be fun to work simultaneously. At least, I hope so!

I've gotten gauge with my faithful Addi Turbo, size 3 (US). I started my i-cord last night and hope to spend the weekend making some progress.

I'm looking forward to seeing everyone's beautiful Hanne Falkenberg designs.

Introducing myself

I am knitting the Ballerina in colourway 15 as a late Christmas gift for my mother. I became a Hanne fan after knitting Mermaid in September.

Mermaid is the one of my handknits that I wear a lot. The shape and fit is fantastic, the design is original, the colours are great and the yarn is light and warm. I'm pretty sure I'll be knitting more of them (Falkenberg designs, not all nine Mermaids!!) for myself too, but right now it seemed the best gift I could think of for my mother.

When I knit Mermaid I had a problem with sloppy looking stitches and rows that seemed to far apart when I knit on 3 mm needles, so I had to us 2.5 mm to get decent stitch appearance.I am a loose knitter, so I figured the gauge would be ok. I never actually checked the gauge (too scary), but the finished garment was fine and the pieces fit well together, so this time around I picked up the 2.5 mm from the start.

Friday, January 20, 2006

New Button

Trish has kindly made us a second button to choose from featuring the Pagode design which she is making. Thanks Trish!

I finished my gauge swatch yesterday - I'll be using Addi Turbo Size 3 (3.25mm). I cast-on my I-cord and am finishing that up tonight. I wasn't sure how I would like the tiny needles and thin yarn, but so far so good. I love the colors and design so much that I don't think it will be too much of a problem.

I'm still look for help and feedback on the layout issue. I'm hearing that the page is showing up normally for some of you. Is anyone else seeing the sidebar all the way below the messages? Any ideas on how to fix this? I've tried changing the template and deleting the sidebar and neither of these have helped, so I think the problem is in the messages. I've send a note to Blogger, but no response so far. Please let me know if you have any suggestions.

And please send in your updates and introductions!




I'm working on Ballerina and would like to know if anyone has experience shortening the sleeves. I don't have an engineering type mind so have to follow this pattern on blind faith. Thanks for any help here.


Thursday, January 19, 2006

Hi :o)

I'm so glad someone started a knitalong! I started Mermaid awhile ago, and I spent forever scouring Google for pics of Mermaids-in-progress. Would've been nice to have a pageful to go right to. Anyway, I'm actually on the home stretch for my Mermaid - I'm done with the body and about halfway through a sleeve. I may have to make another one at some point - I like the pattern that much.

Happy knitting!

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Blogger help please

I feel like a bad hostess - does anyone know how to fix our sidebar so it lines up with the messages instead of going below them? I'm pretty new to Blogger and would appreciate any advice.

As for my Mermaid, I started a gauge swatch but now I'm traveling and didn't want anything to get messed up, so it's on hold til I get home. I'd be curious to hear what needle sizes you're using - is the 3mm getting gauge for you?

I'm also interested in more discussion on sizing - especially from those of you who have been lucky enough to try on samples or already completed a HF project. It sounds like the sizing runs quite large. Thoughts? It's really helpful if you have a good feel for sizing if you let us know what size you normally wear and what size HF project you're going to make.

We've had lots of new members sign up in the last 24 hours due to Wendy mentioning the group so all you newbies, please jump in and introduce yourself.


Hello :)

I cast-on Corona last night, and found this KAL via wendyknits this morning - thanks Becky, for setting this up!

I don't know how the instructions are for the other kits, but in the ones for Corona, it reads as if the tension aimed for is what you get before washing, which is unusual. What does everyone else think?

I have cast on with the suggested size needle, and will wash it when I have done a few inches or so, see how it reacts. Single stranded, on a 3.5mm needlem the stitches are very 'lacey' - perhaps the wool really blooms?

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

My kit arrived!

Super-speedy shipping from the UK. Looks great. Now I need the needles! 3mm, so very small. But a question. The double-pointed needles are described as 3mm 1/2. 3.5 mm? Should needles be a little larger for i-cord?

Also, what sizes are people making? I'm about halfway between medium and large and I'm not sure which to make. I'm about a size 10.
I just started Mermaid (grays and pink) but am having problems with the directions. Has anyone started this yet? The instructions have decreases along the collar and the neck but the number of ridges in the pattern are too few to accomodate the decreases for the size large.

For those making the DeCapo the jacket runs large so be careful about measuring yourself before you cast on. I finished mine several years ago and haven't worn it because it is too large (I did have thoughts about a slight shrinking/felting but chickened out).

Holly in CT

Sunday, January 15, 2006


I ordered the Mermaid kit in the purple shades (shown in the knitalong button) last week. Got a great deal on the kit from an eBay seller in the UK (she's got a bunch of other Falkenberg kits at fab prices: check her out).

My kit shipped on Wednesday, so I'm eagerly checking my mailbox. I'm also rushing to finish up other projects that have been languishing so that I can get started on it right away. In the meantime, I've been looking at the photo of it about a dozen times a day.

Saturday, January 14, 2006


Welcome to HanneAlong - a knitalong for Hanne Falkenberg kits. For most of us, choosing a HF project is a major investment in time, and I hope that this group will help everyone to stay motivated. Please keep us updated on your progress and feel free to ask questions and offer advice.

To join, please email me. Please be sure to send me your email address as well as a link to your blog and take a button to add to yours. Also, let me know which project you're working on. And if you're feeling creative, please feel free to make a button for us.

I look forward to hearing from you all!