I don’t repeat a lot of knitting patterns, other than for the purpose of testing my own pattern making skills. Usually I quickly become enamored with something else and move on. Most of the time I find it hard to be monogamous to one pattern at a time, but don’t tell that to my drawer of UFOs… I often say that I will only have one man, so I might as well have as many knitting projects as I want. Liesl by Julie Weisenberger seemed worthy of making twice.
Here is my first version where I ham it up in some photos at 7am at my favorite local park. My new Liesl is also made from Euroflax Sportweight, this time in the color Aqua. I am constantly and predictably drawn to most things aqua, aquamarine, seafoam, and various shades of turquoise. I wanted to make things out of this color of Euroflax last year, but it was on back order.
Again, excuse the mannequin pics. I’m not sure why coordinating pictures for the blog has seemed so difficult lately, but I believe this will abate as my school duties wane for a couple of months. If you miss my dorky face, please click the link above.
This pattern is simple enough for a beginner, mindless enough for those of us that like to read and knit, and the finished product looks stunning on many different body types. This is a garment I have been wearing weekly in the warm months. Linen is also such a durable fiber that I can’t imagine it wearing out. It just seems to get softer and better with each turn in the washer and dryer.
Speaking of reading and knitting…I need a new stockinette or garter project. I’ve been devouring A Feast for Crows, but I find myself reading less as I am getting to the sleeve/shoulder decreases on my Honeybee Cardigan. I’m not enough of a badass to read and do lace at the same time. The lace on this cardigan is fun and intuitive after one or two repeats. I highly recommend it. I think a good, semi-mindless project could be this Four Corners Baby Blanket from Purl Bee. For some reason I’ve never done intarsia, but this seems like a good place to start. I love the clean and modern design. I think it would make an excellent adult blanket (upsized of course) too.
This Liesl will probably live a long time because she’s made out of Euroflax Sportweight. This stuff lasts forever, and you can wash and even dry to your heart’s content. Liesl patterns have been selling like wildfire at Hand Held (my LYS). I made this one out of the Willow color of Euroflax, and it took about 2.5 balls for the 34 inch size. I took Karen’s suggestion and made the straps and back about 2 inches shorter than the pattern called for, and that was for the best since this baby likes to stretch out after a couple of wearings. She snaps right back after a trip through the washer and dryer, but I usually try to get a few wears out of layered things like this. These pictures are taken right after the piece had been washed and dried so the tunic is at its shortest here. It stretches about 1.5 inches at the bottom if you wear it a couple of times before washing. I think the pockets weigh things down.
These were also taken in the early morning and I look like I should still be asleep. This was a really fun and mindless knit. I had to go down to a 5 to get the gauge called for in the pattern, rather than the suggested 8. I am a pretty loose knitter, but that is a big difference. If you make it, swatch first if you care deeply about the fit. The decreases are fun and make a nice mitered edge, like the decreases that make Jaywalker socks so cool. I also went down 3 needle sizes rather than 2 on the pocket, and I whipstitched the outer edge of the pocket. I think that helped it have a lower profile.
The project went fairly quickly for a larger knitted object, but the linen was harder to knit with for me than super bouncy wool. I’m really glad I got this done while it’s still in the 80′s and 90′s temperature-wise in Arkansas. I’ll be able to wear it for a couple more months. Look how happy I was to finish!
Photos by Matthew Petty
This summer has been refreshing. Class is over for another month and the upcoming semester will be less intense than others have been in my PhD program. Though it is sweltering outside, my knitting hasn’t slowed. I’ve been working on a dress for about a month. I’m making it out Amy Butler Belle Organic DK in an indigo color. I have these socks going because I can’t knit monogamously and I usually have some sort of thoughtless stockinette project going in the background. It’s some Opal self-striping yarn I’ve had in my stash for quite awhile.
- Simple stockinette socks.
I’m scheming for my next projects as well. Liesl is soon to come, as well as Howlcat as the weather cools. I have a hat to publish soon. It’s called The Unexpected Hat and I started a class on it yesterday at Hand Held Knitting. The class focuses on learning continental style knitting, so I wanted to have them make a project with an equal amount of knits and purls to get lots of practice. Here is a little sneak peek:
There are nine people in the class. They’re a good group. It’s intense teaching that many at once, but everyone seems patient with the process, which is helpful. I checked the pattern twice myself, making a sample for Hand Held and one for myself. I’ll publish it on Ravelry and link to it from my blog at the end of this class. I want to make sure all of the instructions are clear to other people. I think when providing instructions, I tend to be more wordy than necessary in an attempt to make sure I provide exacting information that is easy to follow, but I might be providing too much information.
Lately, I keep waking up in the middle of the night and I have trouble going back to sleep. Then I think about things I want to knit or design and my heart really starts pumping. Then it’s really hard to go back to sleep. I guess it’s pretty lovely to have this kind of passion for fibers. I have been stashing some Habu A-21 silk and stainless steel yarn, and some A-33 merino since I went to NYC two summers ago. I’ve been dreaming up a project for that lace weight fiber, and I just bought some A-60 linen paper. I’m not sure what I will make with the paper yet, but I’m excited to work with it. I don’t mind having an abundance of future knitted projects waiting to be born.
I just turned 30, and I think it’s going to be a great year.