I feel as if this post has been written over and over again in my head until I have nothing left to say out loud. The bust dart portion of Tamzin is finally finished, it worked perfectly the first time which created great happiness and joy. Taking a picture of a sweater with bust darts unfilled, shall we say, is ludicrous. Deflated is the nicest thing that comes to mind when I look at this picture but I think it's really funny at the same time. I can't be bothered to put everything back onto waste yarn for a modeled shot, if I'd been smart I'd have taken one when I tried it on post darting for size but I didn't think of it. It fits so far and as long as blocking doesn't mess with things too badly there will be another sweater in my wardrobe. Adding the bust darts meant that I continued the stockinette far past the original point in the pattern but I like the way the stitch pattern in going to start under my ribcage as opposed to right on top of my bust. Since the yarn just came today for my big Christmas project I need to get cracking and finish this sweater by mid September at least. The next big thing on my needles is going to have a whole lot more detail and I'll need as much time as possible to finish it. Better get knitting.
I hereby declare this blog unfit for people who don't want to see their Christmas knits before the big day!
Now that I've my made my important announcement you can probably guess what's about to be cast on. Sometime in the spring my mother asked for stranded mitts with red as one of the colours. I wish she could have just said "I'd like red and yada-yada mittens" but she didn't so I've been trying to figure out what to pair with the cherry red Louet Gems for a while. After much thought I think the brown caribou is a winner. Her request did give me the excuse I needed to order this book which I'd been coveting for quite some time - asked for it for last Christmas but was denied. The stark contrast of the black and white of the mittens is wonderful but might not be the most practical. I thought about knitting a pair in red and white but my fear that they would become dirty quickly kept me from casting on. In other Christmas knitting news I've finally ordered the yarn for my one 'big' project. For weeks now I've been hemming an hawing about what yarn to order. After a little bit of re-con I settled on the most traditional option I could find. Knitting for another knitter is harder that I thought it would be especially as I haven't even cast on yet.
I know this is an incredibly unoriginal baby sweater, according to Ravelry 536 of these have been made so far, but hey no other baby around here will be wearing a Tulips cardigan (ravel it). A colleague and his wife are expecting a little girl at the end of September so I needed to whip something up quickly. He's complained a few times about the six bags of pink baby clothes all lined up for the new baby. Tulips should fit in with the pink but introduces some new colours to the over all theme. The kit was originally purchased so the I could try out Dream in Color
Classy. Usually when I go looking for sweater yarn I need to order it
on faith but this let me try it out before investing. Eventually I'll be ordering enough for a sweater even though I found the yarn to be splity it is very soft - I'm thinking of a Wicked Cardigan. After weaving in all the ends I may have fallen a bit out of love with the strips but seeing them stacked makes me happy again. The kit had one ball of every colour and two of the blue lagoon which was a little odd. There was lots of extra of every shade but not enough of the blue lagoon, so I didn't do any i-cord except as the neck edging and ties. Hopefully the new mommy and daddy will like this as much as so many knitters do.
This was just finished yesterday morning and blocked within an inch of it's life last night. I couldn't be more happy with the finished lace. The shawl took just one skein of sock yarn, adding things to the "not socks" repertoire is really nice. I'm sure I've never knit a pair of lace socks in eight days but this went so quickly it almost flew off my needles. I really wanted to use as much of the yarn as possible which led to a compromise. I knit eleven repeats of the body chart but only the first seven rows of the edge chart. This left much less pointed tips but almost every bit of the yarn was used. At some point I'd like to knit another Shetland Triangle with the whole edge chart however I'm really pleased with the simple scallops. The whole time I was knitting I had no idea who would eventually wear it but just as I cast off I decided it would be going to my mother. Her original birthday present was shipped to me instead of her so I'm going to add it to her gift. Last year I knit her a shawl from a Fleece Artist kit that she'd chosen and she says it gets lots of use at school. Hopefully this will be a nice addition to her wardrobe.
Sometimes my knitting seems to take forever but then I have to remind myself that each one of these rows has over 350 stitches on it. Speed will hopefully come once I separate the sleeves and have fewer stitches to play with. Right now my sense of satisfaction at knitting something new from a misused lump of wool is wonderful. After a few more rows it's bound to be gone, but you might as well take advantage of that feeling while you can. The little gathers along the neck line were a big pain to create. If you don't concentrate it's very easy to mess up and end up with the wrong number of stitches. After knitting the collar you need to cast off and then pick up all the stitches, then knit increase rows twice. All those stitches felt unwieldy without a large piece of fabric attached but now it's gotten to an easily manageable length.
While my love of this sweater is limited since I don't like the way it fits I need to let people know that the designer is awesome. I thought long and hard about what to post in the comments section of my entry on Ravelry, in the end I decided to be honest about the ways it didn't work for me. Melissa messaged me with some suggestions for blocking and proposed a number of ideas for making it fit better. She graciously tried to help me when she could have just ignored me and my ill fitting sweater. The pattern calls for ties at the waist but they really didn't flatter my waist and only exacerbated the way it fits at my chest. It's harder to see from the front but the way that the sleeves attach leaves a bunching of extra fabric right where I'm already well endowed. No matter how much I fiddle with the placement of the stick pin the puckering continues. I love the colour, the yarn is squishy and soft and the idea of this sweater still interests me so I'm going to try all of Melissa's suggestions. I have a feeling some ripping will have to take place so if the simpler fixes don't do the trick I may take another break until I can face the salvage attempt. Oddly I'm not very disappointed and am just looking at this as a learning experience. Figuring out what looks good on me and then executing it can be difficult but someday I'll have it down pat.
Just in case...
Pattern - Tatami (ravel it) Yarn - Sundara Sport Merino in Tuscan Rose over Lemon Mods - none but some may arrive at a later date
I'm going to try and work on water for this segment of Project Spectrum and not just abandon it like air. The Shetland Triangle should work for that as well as my new sweater. I'm going to try to knit Tamzin over the next two months. As cheesy as it might be I'm going to try and make sure that all of the water projects come out of my stash as a little act of cleansing. This sweater is going to be the biggest part of that since it was once my almost finished humongous Glee.
Last night I ripped all the yarn and soaked it in some wool wash and warm water. After it looked like all the kinks were relaxed I hung it all to dry and this morning I re-skeined it. I kept the yarn as relaxed as possible after all the abuse I gave it, stuffing it in a bag and then under all of my stash.
As soon as I could I cast on, but I just have the neckband done. The pattern is a little fiddly but I'm hoping that I'll be able to achieve the same gathered effect as the designer's. If I have enough yarn I'd like to lengthen the sleeves and I'll be adding buttons all the way down, so that I'll be able to wear it as a more traditional cardigan. Now if I could only figure out how to knit faster.
Yesterday I had this big spectacular plan to have something to show you, but that didn't really happen. If I just put another hour in I would have something to show for myself instead I started knitting a shetland triangle. On another day I might be dissapointed but I've had a fever for the last few days so I'm all whiny and if starting something new fixes that for an hour I'm just going to do it.
This is my first triangle shawl (well there was the Fleece Artist fiasco but I'd like to forget that) so it's been interesting to watch it form. I'm very much a pattern follower until I understand what's going on with the shape. I don't know that I would ever design my own lace shawl but if I can figure out how to wear this one more will be in order.