Tuesday, April 17, 2007

I can't come up with a clever title today...(long post)

But I'm not sure I have to. I have lots of eye candy today. Okay, so you might not call it eye candy, but I'm pretty darn proud of it. Everything is knitted, seamed, woven, blocked, and looks pretty good, if I do say so myself. (And I do!)

Sorry for the above pic - I didn't have anyone around to take a picture of me wearing the sweater (and shorts, gotta love California!), so I had to fall back on my mirror routine. It fits pretty well, actually, although there is just the tiniest bit of weirdness where the front isn't quite centered, but I can live with it. I'm so happy - just over three months to make this sweater!

Project Specs:
Pattern & Source: Short-Row Striped Pullover from Interweave Knits, Fall 2003
Designer: Fiona Ellis
Yarn: KnitPicks Wool of the Andes - Stream (MC), Cloud (A), Wheat (B), Rain (C), Fern (D)
Needles: KnitPicks Options - US 7
Date Started: January 15, 2007
Date Completed: April 17, 2007
-I knit the sleeves first and used them to check gauge. My stitch gauge was spot on throughout the project, my row gauge was slightly off, creating a longer garment. I can totally live with that.
-I knit both sleeves at the same time and used the Twisted German Cast On, for a stretchier cuff.
-The sleeves took longer than the front and back. In my knitting journal, I have noted that I finished the sleeves on March 2nd, 44 days after casting on. I started the back on March 4th, and completed it on March 7th, three days after casting on. The front took a bit longer. I don't have the starting date noted, but I did have to wait a week to get more yarn to finish it.
-I did the neckband in solid MC instead of the intarsia stripes.
-This was fun. I'm not sure I would do it again - weaving in the ends is really the best way to handle them, and it takes FOREVER. Knitting them in as I worked just didn't give me the look I wanted. The seaming wasn't so bad, but trying to keep the stripes matched up on the sides was a bit of a pain. But damnit, I did it and it looks good!

I haven't decided on a next sweater project yet. I found some colors that I really like for my designed sweater, but they're an acrylic yarn and I haven't found a gauge that I like with it yet. I'm thinking of maybe trying a linen yarn? I'll have to look around for some options.

Anyway, I have not succumbed to Cara's miter madness, but I have found enjoyment in this:

This is the start of the baby blanket for my coworker. Rather than the Mason-Dixon style blanket, this one is worked more like entrelac, where you pick up the stitches from the top edges of the "valley" squares to create the next tier of squares. I got the idea from Shelly (the tutorial is on her sidebar) and the good folk of Knitting-at-Knoon. I am doing a few other personal modifications, as well. First, not a modification, but a mistake. See how the line of decreases in the initial row is horizontal and the rest are vertical? I'm going to rip those squares out and re-do them. Second, I'm going to do base triangles at the end to give the blanket a nice square edge - pointy tips and baby just doesn't sound like a good combination - but rather than picking up one edge and sewing the other in, as in the KnK pattern, I'm going to play around with doing them the same way as the rest of the squares, only instead of decreasing all the stitches down to a point, binding them off to create a flat line. I'll have to play with it.

Oh, and Knitting-at-Knoon provides these great templates for planning out your blankets, and I kind of got a little crazy playing with different layouts.

I can't say as I care for the Mason-Dixon stripey miters, but these little guys are PERFECT for show knitting. They are quick - I can do two or three squares per show - and are garter stitch, so pretty much mindless knitting. I'm hoping to get the majority of the blanket done during the run of this show, as the next is with said co-worker, so I will have to be a little sneakier about it.

And, I'm about two rounds away from finishing this:
The first of the Green Gables socks. I'll finish this one and cast on the next tonight, before I pick up the baby blanket again to rip the initial squares out.

Class talk after the cut It was also really great to get to class again last night. There were so many people there, including another new white belt. I was partnered with a blue belt girl I've seen there before, but never been partnered with. She was really nice, although I still wish she would have taken a step or two back during kicking drills. I ended up kicking her wrist instead of the target several times. It hurt my feet, so I'm sure it didn't feel so good for her. Ma'am initially had Other Orange Belt Kid and I working with the group of white belts, but cut us loose after she could see us getting bored as she kept going through the form step by step with them and told us to work together on our own. She was going to have the two of us work with the other orange belts while she worked with the new white belt, but we ran out of time. It was kind of nice that she asked, though, and I was surprised at how much of the form I remembered. I can't wait to go again on Wednesday - I'm totally taking advantage of having these nights off during performances! Some of the guys were teasing me that they'd see me on Thursday (sparring night) but not quite yet. Hopefully over the summer, though!

Now I need a new epic project. Or maybe I'll just stick with the blanket for now. And play with sock yarn.


Cara said...

Your short rows looks FANTASTIC!!!! This was such a crazy project with all the ends and such - but I loved knitting it.

Yours fits so much better than mine! It looks great!


Mindy said...

The sweater looks fabulous! I don't think I would have ever made it through all those ends.

jeannie said...

The sweater is really great! You did a SUPER job. The lining up weirdness at the neck doesn't show in the pictures so I can't tell that it will affect the appearance.
I'm really enjoying reading your blog too.
Happy knitting!

Kathleen C. said...

Fabulous sweater! You did a really, really nice job on it. And I know how much work it was, but it looks like it was totally worth it in the end.
The blanket... about the horizontal line... could you do another row of horizontal decreases on the last row? It might look like a sort of balanced choice rather than a mistake? Or maybe not. Rip away! (I probably would too.)

AR said...

Wow you've been busy! Great knitting!! I am so in love with your sweater. LOL

Coleen said...

Love the sweater! It came out great!