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. The 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. I 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. Now to think of a name…It’s so hard to name things.
TTTKAL progress coming soon!
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.
This 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:
Anyone else doing NaKniSweMo? What are you making?
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. This 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.
I’m very happy to be releasing a new pattern today! It’s called Articulation (thank you, Andrea for your suggestion on this post). I 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.Matt 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.
I’m such a lover of shawl collars. I felt like this sweater had to have one, so I built that into the design. If you want to learn more about the pattern, see the pattern page on Ravelry or you can .
I’ve made some continued progress on the knitting of Vitamin D. I finished the sleeves, which the pattern instructs to finish before doing the body. It’s nice to have them done, and I now know if I have a little extra yarn I can tack on an extra inch like I’d like, rather than risking shorter sleeves. This has been sweet relief from any knits that require thinking. I’m in the middle of two designs. Well, really it’s an adult design and a mini version, but that’s where the thinking part comes in. I have the pattern written for the adult version, and most of it mapped out for the mini version. With some input from my helpful tech editor I’m whipping it into shape, but it requires so much thinking that it feels like serious homework at this point, so I’ve been burying myself in simpler things, like soothing Vitamin D.
When I was having a rough day last week I cast on a Vitamin D. There’s nothing like casting on a new project as a pick-me-up. I’m making about a 35″ chest size. Since the yarn I wanted to use came out nicely at a 22 sts and 28 rows over 4 inches, I decided to just cast on the XS size because using those numbers at my altered gauge got me the closest to the size I want with the bonus of doing no additional math. That’s my favorite way to alter a sweater pattern size.
The yarn is Louisa Harding Aimee in the color Cupid. It was deeply discounted recently at my LYS and I bought the rest of it. It is 90% cotton and 10% cashmere, so it has a very nice hand, but it’s also going to work well for several seasons.
I’ve been eyeing the Vitamin D pattern for a long time, so it was time to just cast one on. I had originally planned to make a 3/4 sleeve Gemini pullover with this yarn, but I changed my mind as I lusted after swingy open cardigan patterns all over Ravelry. This isn’t a color I wear a lot of, but it makes me happy and I think it will work with several tanks and dresses I have.
Z’s Like Sleeves tunic is finished and needs blocking. It’s huge, but she could wear it this year. It remains to be seen whether or not I’ll be able to get it on her to try on. She’s been a little knit-opposed lately. I’ll probably have to start slapping intarsia bunnies all over sweaters to get her excited about them again.
My SSKAL 2014 Coda is on the blocking board and almost ready for some final finished pics, but in the meantime, I decided to cast on something for Z. I happened to have a few skeins of Cascade 220 superwash in the same color as my Coda so I decided I should make her a little fall garment. It’s called Like Sleeves for kids and I think it will be a lovely garment for transitioning as a fall, winter, and maybe even spring layer. I’m making the size 3-4, which might be a little big, but I have enough yarn for that size and it can work as an oversized tunic/dress for awhile. That’s my favorite part about knitted tunics and dresses.
I love this color, Summer Sky, and am thrilled to launch into another project with it. I hope to get Coda pics up in the next few days and shortly after that reveal the finished secret sweater design I’ve been working on for Matt. I feel a round of finished objects coming on.