Racing sweaters

When I got a few inches into my SSKAL Carpino I really got the urge to cast on something that might be wearable sooner. I’ve been meaning to make a 3/4 sleeve Gemini like Jane Richmond’s example. I had some Knit Picks CotLin, so I just cast it on and ordered a little extra. Luckily the dye lots matched well. I’ve taken a little break from this one, but it got a lot of action during some work meetings a couple of weeks ago. gemini-2Carpino and this one are neck and neck progress-wise. This one could be finished much more quickly if I put focus on it, since it’s primarily stockinette and at a larger gauge. I get bored with this one more easily and want to go back to Carpino. No matter which one I finish first, I’ll still have two fall-appropriate sweaters soon.

This is my fourth Gemini. I made two for Z and this is the second one for me. It just feels like a classy piece of clothing that I can’t get enough of!

Waning summer

I love the long long days of summer. Lovely evening light seems endless. It’s starting to feel more like fall, mostly because all of the schools around me (public and college) are back in session. The time for this Summer Sweater KAL is waning, but I’ve been making decent progress. I took time out for baby socks and big people socks and cast on a whole different sweater, but I’m still working on this lovely Carpino.carpino-3 I’ve long ago memorized the lace repeat. I’ve been working the waist decreases. carpino-2This pattern made me want to make few changes, aside from eliminating a couple of the bust and back increases in the raglan section. It seems like it will be a nice lightweight fall sweater. The September 9th deadline might come and go before this is finished, but I’m glad I’ll have at least an almost-finished sweater come early fall.

The gentle raglan shaping seems like it will be a fine fit and more naturally curved to the shoulder. carpino-4I’ll give you a peek of the Gemini progress soon!

Sweater for my brother

My brother lives in Minnesota. From what I hear, it’s hella cold up there in the winter. I refuse to visit during that time (and actually have yet to visit period). To assuage that guilt a bit, and because he asked me last winter, I decided to knit him a sweater. He loves Matt’s Hugo sweater and said he wanted one just like that. He said he wanted a rust orange kind of color. I found this Cascade 220 Japanese Maple on sale last January and got some. I was still hemming and hawing over when I would actually work on this sweater, but since my big destashing last week I began to think of this as one more way to reduce my stash. Knit it and get it out! hugo

Charlie (remember this ham?) has a 41″ chest, so I went between the 41.75″ and 45.5″ sizes by adding some extra stitches in the moss stitch area, just like I did with Matt’s sweater. I’m aiming for about 2-2.5″ of ease for comfort without looking baggy. At first I thought I wouldn’t love knitting this again, but the chart is only 12 rows and it gets addictive. hugo-2

It happens to be his birthday today as well. This sweater isn’t in time for your birthday, Charlie, but it will definitely get to you before the cold comes. Happy birthday, baby brother.

If you are all interested in some bulky wool, silk, tweed, or a paper linen/silk purse kit, please please check out my destashing post. I reduced some of the prices because I WANT THESE GONE. I’m doing the KonMari method throughout the house and these need to go.

From the fella’s knitting queue

A couple of weeks ago when I said I didn’t know what to knit Matt immediately had some suggestions for me. Socks, sweater, or the navy arm warmers he’s been wanting. Of course he would have a list. The man has an insatiable appetite for hand knits. arm warmersThe yarn is something unpronounceable to me that I won in a holiday swap a few years back. While not really navy, it’s the closest I had in my stash. I don’t know if I’ve stated this publicly, but I might try to knit the whole summer from my stash. This would be a pretty big feat for me. I might have to allow an exception for a birthday yarn purchase mid-July, but this is my goal. I won’t go into the politics of maternity leave in the United States, but for most people it’s completely unpaid (I’m in this category) and it is requiring some definite budget discipline for us. Luckily I’ve spent years stashing like yarn was going out of style and I have a nice under-the-bed stashed yarn cave to choose from. arm warmers-4I am thinking of writing up this pattern when I get the time. I just did some hand charts on graph paper and went with it. I had to rip it a couple of times because I didn’t like the size first, then the way the chevron looked, but I’m satisfied with the finished result and it barely about 190 yards of fingering weight yarn. arm warmers-2Now to think of a name…It’s so hard to name things.

TTTKAL progress coming soon!

Phew!

I finally decided on a NaKniSweMo (National Knit a Sweater in a Month) sweater pattern. I chose Paloma, by Thea Colman, a cozy and winter-perfect sweater. I had some Cascade Ecological Wool in my stash that I’ve been earmarking for a sweater like this. The color is Natural Grey. I quickly swatched on size 9 needles, since I’m usually a loose knitter and that’s a size smaller than the pattern called for. Then I tried size 10 and that hit the required gauge. I didn’t make a large swatch, nor did I wet block it, but I confidently cast on.

I knit and knit, rather quickly. I did almost all of this piece in one day. I started the ribbing Monday night and I was home sick with a nasty cold yesterday so I was able to complete all but the shoulder shaping. Somehow the moss stitch seems to go even faster than stockinette. The only thing was, it was looking rather skinny. I kept checking my gauge, but the piece was only about 16 inches wide unstretched, a good 3 inches narrower than it should be. This was worrying me a bit, but I kept going because the thing was so dang fast to knit. I’m glad I stuck with it. To assuage my worries I decided to wet block the back before moving on to the next section. I soaked it for 30 minutes and put it up on the blocking board and phew, it was plenty wide when on the board. Almost too wide. I had to squish it back into place a little.

paloma back-2This is by no means a fabulous blocking job, but I can feel safe knowing that the piece will be the correct size and I can move on to the next piece. Since this seems like it will be so quick, I am also going to try to get a couple of quick sweaters finished for Z. The Abate I made her last year is one of her favorites, so I will be making one in a bright pink that she seemed to like at our LYS. More NaKniSweMo progress soon!

I looked in the Ravelry group for this year and altered one of the fun Ravatars: nakniswemo

Anyone else doing NaKniSweMo? What are you making?

Happy Sunday!

It’s been an excellent Sunday so far. We had a lovely brunch with some great friends, and I have some decent progress to share on a Gathering Stripes pullover for Zooey.  I’m making the 2T size on a size 3 needle. It’s one size smaller than the pattern calls for and my gauge is slightly looser than the specified gauge still, so this will be a little oversize. I have no problem with that. gatheringThis is a simple and elegant pattern.  I can see myself making many more of these, because the stripes are a good way to use up partial balls of sock yarn. I only had 100 yards of the bright yellow (see Ravelry page for exact yarn details), which is 40 yards less than the pattern requires.  I decided to weigh how much yarn each row took, and after doing a little quick math I think I will be fine. I used this combination on a BlueSands cardigan last year, so if I run out of the yellow I’ll put a couple of turquoise stripes into the arm instead. According to the pattern my 514 remaining yards of the blue would be cutting it close as well, but I still have quite a large ball left and I’m not concerned about it at all. If the yardage on the main color works out to be closer to 400 or 425 I will definitely be knitting her another one of these out of my stash very soon. This sweater would look great in larger color blocks as well to make up for smaller amounts of varying colors. It goes sooooo quickly since it’s just a bunch of stockinette in the round.

I think this is one she’s actually excited about as I knit it. I showed her a picture of sweater on the pattern and showed her the one I was working on. She said, “my sweater,” so I’m taking that as a good sign. The yarn is also exquisitely soft, so she can wear this with or without an under layer. I’d also love to make myself an adult version of this…

If you’re looking for a sweater pattern for NaKniSweMo (or just because), don’t forget my sweater patterns are 20% off till the 22nd.

Introducing Articulation

I’m very happy to be releasing a new pattern today! It’s called Articulation (thank you, Andrea for your suggestion on this post).  articulationI started the knitting at the end of July and finished at the beginning of September.  The knitting is the most fun process for me, of course.  The writing, correcting, editing, and re-editing part is less fun.  I had the help of a wonderful tech editor, Eleanor Dixon, and with her assistance I finally got myself to the finish line.articulation-4Matt chose the color for this sweater. It’s far more neutral than I would have chosen on my own, but it really grew on me as the project developed.  The yarn is Cascade Ecological Wool in the color Antique.  I wanted to use an Aran weight yarn to help make the sweater knitting speedy.

articulation-3I’m such a lover of shawl collars. I felt like this sweater had to have one, so I built that into the design.  articulation-2If you want to learn more about the pattern, see the pattern page on Ravelry or you can .