Posts Tagged 'Sweater'

FO: Breakwater

Something that I worked on over the winter is this lovely lightweight sweater, Breakwater by Cecily Glowick MacDonald.

Okay, so I finished this in July or early August – the pictures were taken in August when the magnolia at our old house was just coming into bloom (I must say I’m delighted that we have not one but two magnolias at our new house.  Sadly we missed their blooming this year, so that’s something to anticpate next winter and spring). I recall working on this for around a month, maybe I’m remembering wrong. But, it was a very simple knit, as it’s knit in the round, and mostly stocking stitch.

I have to admit to getting very brave – this is the first time I’ve knit with Wollmeise yarn, but I had two skeins of Ruby Thursday of 80/20 twin sock yarn and it seemed a shame not to knit myself something with it.  And, since it was such wonderful yarn, I thought it deserved something plain to let it shine all on its own. I think that I achieved that, if the comments I’ve been getting each time I wear it are anything to go by.

I managed to squeeze a size 42.5 inch out of my two skeins, just shortening the sleeves a little to allow this.  This is, of course, easier typed than done, and did involve quite a bit of frogging to achieve, as I apparently can’t use scales very well. Nevertheless, it was worth doing. The sleeve length works well over a winter top, or with a singlet top underneath for the Spring. Of course, I do wish I’d made one size smaller (the 38.5) since I’ve been performing an ‘incredible shrinking woman’ trick this year.  It has meant most of my knitwear no longer fits me… this is still quite acceptable, but I do have other things I can’t really wear out in public without looking a little silly. I could have had those longer sleeves after all!

This is such a simple knit that there is really not a lot more to be said of it. I guess things like gauge could be helpful… it was knit to gauge, 22 stitches and 30 rows, and I used my lovely Addi Click needles for it.


FO: Hotshot

We have been enjoying a small holiday break, with a break from school and preschool.  It gave us a chance to get away for a beach holiday (yes, in autumn), to spend time enjoying each other’s company, and to spend time with my sister and nephew.  And it gave me a chance to snap some shots of my daughter’s cute new hoody too.

The perfect inducement to knit a hoody for Miss 2 was a KAL being run on one of the Ravelry forums I’m on, with the designer offering a great prize for their favourite garment.  I’d been meaning to knit a Hotshot for Miss 2 since I made one for her sister last winter. Luckily for me she’s not the jealous type (yet). 

Again, I found this an easy knit – back and forth from the neck and then joined in the round for the body. It really sails through the body section too.  I chose to work stripes as I realised I was running out of yarn part-way through the body and started to alternate with my plain colour.  The two yarns I have used are 8ply Organic Merino from Inner Stitch and some random DK weight yarn from Bendigo Woollen Mills.  All up I used a tad under 200g of yarn. I bought both together from a destash last year and I’m glad I did – they have made the snuggliest hoody you can imagine. I Organic Merino is particularly delicious, and Miss 2 really loves it.  Of course the fact that there is a hood helps too – she loves wearing it with the hood up.

Yes, I do still knit

Contrary to what you might have been thinking, I have neither disappeared off the edge of the universe, nor have I forgotten how to knit. I’ve been knitting steadily through a few projects over January, so I will eek them out so as to keep coming back and posting.

The biggest knitting accomplishment so far this year has been my Cecilia cardigan.

I cast on for this sucker on Boxing Day. Without swatching. Silly me.  I then ripped it back when I realised it was waaay bigger than it should be the next day.  So, cast on officially on December 27th, and I didn’t finish it until January 17th. And I knitted a lot over the holidays. A lot!  There is a heap of knitting in this top!  Seriously – I spent an  entire weekend doing just the body ribbing!  I made it from Vintage Purls sock yarn, in the colourway Taimi, which was  a sock club colourway a few seasons ago.  I adored the yarn, and when I scored a second skein in a swap, I thought I might as well knit something significant with it.  I chose this pattern because I liked it, and I had enough yarn. But I wasn’t sure if it would suit my figure. I like it on now that its done though.

Of course, all of that would be too easy – in fact I did not have enough yarn, something that became apparent to me when I was knitting the ribbing. I stopped the body ribbing ten rows early to conserve yarn (nooothing to do with my ribbing aversion, not at all!) and even then it was clear that I would need more. I was able to get enough to finish from a very kind Raveller, and whilst the dyelot was clearly different, I just used it on the arm ribbing, so I don’t feel the difference is noticable to the casual observer.

I ended up knitting the body quite a bit longer than the pattern recommended – I really wanted it to fit over the boobage!  So, I did fittings as I went, and slowed the rate of increase down on the fronts so they didn’t get too wide. I’m glad I did as I prefer this look to seeing the ribbing up higher, which looks like a mistake to me – I guess it’s the benefits of making something for yourself – a much better fit.

The arms are a bit tight – I’d suggest if you have arms that are less than petite  you might want to cast on extra under the arm and add an extra pattern repeat to the arms. I don’t think you’ll regret it!

Proof #1 I’ve not given up knitting yet. But stay tuned to see what my mum was knitting beside me when I was knitting this.  Check back tomorrow!

Day 10: Finally A FO!

It has been just over two weeks in the making, but I am delighted that I have finally finished my Turmeric t-shirt.

I cast on just before the school holidays began. In fact they began a little early for me, if you count taking a sick day to look after your chicken-poxy child a ‘holiday’.  Strangely enough my holidays are ending with more of the same – not casting on another Turmeric, but another child all chicken-poxy.  DH is staying home tomorrow to look after  her, but the chances are I’ll be taking some time off work this week as well. Anyway, you will have to excuse the terrible FO pics for now – hopefully we will get a chance to take some better ones when the small poxy dictator allows us out of her sight long enough to take some outdoor shots. For now these are taken in the bathroom since it had lights bright enough for night-time photography.

Anyway, back to the knitting… I chose a 48 inch size, as it was recommended to go for positive ease rather than neutral or negative ease. This has resulted in a very relaxed fit in the final garment. It is possibly a bit looser around the middle than I’d normally choose.  The shaping at before the bottom band brings the top back in to shape again. The neckline also sits nicely, with the arms being a good fit too, all in all this allows the top to fit flatteringly, rather than just being baggy.

The knitting of something knit almost entirely in stocking stitch is never going to be difficult. Let’s be honest.  This was more of an endurance test than an ability one.  You need to know how to knit, knit garter stitch in the round, and increase. That’s about it.  So this is totally suitable for a beginner knitter.  There is, however, a lot of knitting in a 4ply adult garment.  The finished garment used 283g of Vintage Purls sock yarn, in the colour Tatiana.  This is knit to a lofty fabric on 4mm needles, and it is lovely light piece that I hope to get lots of wear out of in the next few months. I felt very virutous knitting this from stash. I bought a third skein to finish it, but used two of the non-superwash skeins of VP that I had in my stash for this.  Unfortunately they are not all perfectly matched and I didn’t alternate skeins. You can see the difference in this shot, but it’s not glaringly obvious when you see it, which I am grateful for.

Others in the Vintage Purls knitalong are still knitting away, and if you’re on Ravelry you can check out their progress here.  Some are being a lot more adventurous than I was – lots are working in lace weight yarn. Some are even doing a garment in a lace pattern in lace weight.  More power to them, can’t wait to see their FOs too 🙂

A new WIP

The lovely group over at the Vintage Purls group on Ravelry are having a knit -a-long  (KAL).  The rules are fairly easy: it’s for an adult garment, and it has to be made from Vintage Purls yarn.  Many of the knitters are using lace weight yarn – which makes for a very economical garment. I chose to use sock yarn for this knit – because I had two skeins of the colourway Tatiana in my stash already and the lovely Morag was able to source me a third.  Just enough for a lightweight Turmeric top. 

I’ve been making good progress so far – it’s nice to have a simple knit after my last lace adventure.  Plus I had a little extra knitting time thanks to Miss 2’s chickenpox giving me some enforced time at home.  I’m heading towards 2/3 complete, so I’ll just keep knitting some endles miles of stocking stitch until I get there.

FO: Alpaca Lace Tunic

It’s been a stormy week – windy and cold, interspersed with periods of fine, sunny weather. Supposedly Spring here, I have been pleased for the bad weather – if it were warmer I wouldn’t have been able to wear my lovely new tunic. 

I had intended to knit this much earlier in the year, but I kept getting side tracked with test knitting and new patterns. I was determined, however, at the start of the month to sit at it until it was done.  Well, two pairs of socks and three test knits later…. I did manage it 🙂  This pattern is the Alpaka Tunic from Interweave Knits Fall 2009 edition. I loved it on sight, and determined to knit it right away – I got as far as ordering the yarn from WEBS, but it was really too late in the year to knit it by then. And so I stashed it away until now. 

Speaking of yarn, I knit this from Berrocco Ultra Alpaca, which was a very reasonably priced option for alpaca. It was my first go with this fibre – and it was a real pleasure to knit with. This yarn is 50% wool 50% alpaca, and is a three ply worsted weight yarn. It is slightly hairy, and also has a nice variation to it –  heathered I guess. It was nice to work with, and I didn’t find it at all splity. It also felted well for the joins.  I didn’t use as much as I thought either  –  Just under 6 skeins, so I have a bit extra to play with now too.

The pattern was clear and easy in terms of the lace. I did, however, make major modifications to it – some things just didn’t make sense. Why on earth would I want to knit it in pieces and seam?? It made no sense to me. So, I knit it in the round from the bottom up. The pattern calls you to cast on and knit front and back, and then pick up the stitches at the bottom afterwards for the moss stitch hem – I saw no sense in that either, so this was done first when I cast on.

I knit in the round until I hit the final decrease for the body, and then switched to knitting back and forth. This was really just a guess as I wasn’t sure what my total length from here to the shoulders would be and I ended up with 8.5 inches, and just, erm, fudged it a little. I like how the armholes fit anyway!

Next modification was to *not* cast off the stitches and then pick them back up again for the top section – seemed pointless to me. I did do the shoulder shaping as per the pattern though, and then seamed them up.  The sleeves I knit first up (as a gauge swatch) and then seamed them in as per the pattern.

So, all up my verdict is a good one. I love this – it’s big and cosy and warm and cute. I got quite a few compliments at school (and a fair few “Can you make me one” as well. Erm, no! (Although the very skinny teens who asked would probably take next to no time to knit for!!)  I can see me getting lots of wear out of this – maybe not this year – this cold spell can’t last forever (can it?) – but next year and beyond.

Better than a bought one

Last week I went shopping looking for some winter clothes for work. I was really surprised to see that across the board, the shops are offering plain coloured or striped tops, merino or cotton, and knitwear over the top (or suit jackets which don’t work with my job).  The thought of parting with cash to buy a mass produced piece of knitwear, made from inferior yarn – or worse, acrylic, made me think I had to be able to do better than that!  I had a quick hunt through Ravelry’s pattern database, and my stash and came up with a neat free pattern called Rosa’s Sleeveless Cardi.  It uses 12 ply yarn, huge needles, is knit seamlessly from the top down, and has really simple lines.  In my stash was some soft merino possum yarn that needed a project, and a match was made.

This only took three days to knit up, and took around 300g (less than 570m) of yarn.

After the raglan increases, you knit straight for 30cm and then start increases that create an interesting side detail and funky hem.  Despite the lack of increases, the loose gauge makes this a very flattering fit.

The pattern is for small/medium, which I am not. It gave another cast on size for a large, and I worked with this number, adding further increases to 20 rows, and then casting on a couple of stitches under the arms too.  I knit an extra 5cm in length, and also a couple more increases to get the length I wanted. This did grow a little on washing, so perhaps that was unnecessary.  I didn’t need to block this much – just a wash and then I lay it out in the sun – yay for easy-care garments!

I’m pleased that I knit this up, I hope that it gets lots of wear over the coming cold months. It should make a nice addition to my winter wardrobe – warm but light.

July 2018
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