One Sleeve Down!

Only one more sleeve to go!

One sleeve down!
Looking snazzy on my chaise lounge, along with the new KnitPicks Harmony needles and my remote control.

Oh, and a sweater too, I guess.

I decided to go with a picot hem for the edging. I also decided to go with 3/4 sleeves – not only do they suit the sweater I have in my mind’s eye, they also are faster to knit! These will fall barely past my elbow.

I finished the hem for the second sleeve on the way to work by way of a doctor’s apointment – people give you funny looks when you knit with DPNs in public, but when you’re hemming a fold over edge, working with five DPNs and a circular needle? People either thought I was crazy or a genius.

Second sleeve begun!
Cell phone picture, since it will (hopefully) be much longer by the time I make it home!

And even though I did most of the actual hem row (the knitting of the cast on with the current row) while on the subway, I only dropped one stitch, caught it before the round was over, and easily fixed it. Go me! At this rate, I may actually get the second sleeve done with my morning commute!

Elizabeth Zimmerman says a sleeve should start with 20% of the body stitches, and evenly increase up to 33%. This was for full length sleeves – I decided to start with 25% as my cast on, since I was working the shorter sleeves, only to actually finish reading the page later in the evening to discover that 25% is, indeed, the percentage that EZ recommends for 3/4 length sleeves. I was incredibly proud of myself.

The Elegant Gauntlets are feeling neglected…

But what they don’t know is as soon as I’m done with the sleeves, they’ll be my commuting project.  And I will finish the pair!

Small Update.

I’m a crazy person.  Even though I have a few knitting deadlines coming up (Dan’s Aran, which I started in April, is supposed to be done by Thanksgiving – his scarf, by Christmas. Not to mention the holiday knitting I have planned…), I decided I want to finish the Cascade Wave Sweater by Rhinebeck.  Do you think I can do it in three weeks?  I got the yarn yesterday, and am working on the first sleeve right now.

In other news, Lindsey sent me a wonderful yarn care package.  She picked out all of the yarns and roving as good “quick projects.”  And she picked well!

Lovely get well package from Lindsey!

There’s a skein of Noro Kureyon, 4 oz of a roving (I love the colors and never would have picked them myself!), and the wily skein in the back is Malabrigo Aquarella, a single ply thick and thin bulky yarn.

I’m a square!

 Also, I signed up for Rhinebeck Blogger Bingo (actually, Lindsey and I signed up as a square together.

I didn’t play last year because I was on a bit of a blog hiatus, but this year we’re going for both days, I’ll have my NJ Representin’ Ravelry button, and I am excited to meet other people who love yarn as much as I do!

Finally, a picture of the finished sweater!

I finished Emerald a solid two weeks ago. I haven’t taken pictures of it because I kept on missing the light when Dan was home to take modeled shots, so today, when I was home and it was light and I was alone, I took some non-modeled pictures. I didn’t feel like playing with the self-timer today.

As you may remember, I modified the sweater pattern to 4spi from 3spi, on US9s with hand-dyed Cascade Eco Wool. I thought I was going to have to over-dye the entire sweater when I was done, but I think that unless you’re looking at the sweater really, really close up, you don’t notice the four slightly different dye-lots that came from the mediocre dye job I did. It does need a good blocking, but I always find it hard to block seamless raglans – I really should have done it before I did the shawl collar.

The shawl collar is probably my favorite thing about the sweater – Amy Swenson, the designer, incorporates short rows into the top, which actually makes the top of the collar lie down flat! without pinning! or sewing! or stitching! It’s kind of magical, and I plan to try to technique out when I eventually put the collar on Dan’s Aran.

The cable details on the raglan are also beautiful – it’s a very nice detail that looks great in the bulky yarn.

It would have been a really quick knit if I had stuck with the original gauge – as it is, it took about a month of knitting, which still isn’t very long! I’m happy with how it came out, overall – and if you’d like to see a modeled view of it, find me at Rhinebeck! It’s what I’ll be wearing 🙂

Bonus: Look what I finished!

 

OK, not the sweater. BUT the first sleeve, which I’ve been working on since JUNE. I’m excited! Now I just.. have to, uhm.. knit another one. Oh.

Planning Sweaters.

I’ve always been inspired by the beautiful seamless yoke sweaters that Adrian of Hello Yarn makes. Their color and texture always accent the yarn and construction of the sweater so beautifully, and it makes me want to abbandon all of my projects and just create EZ-Style seamless sweaters with colorful yokes. As weird as it sounds, you know what pushed me over the edge? This beautiful, seamless, lump-free armpit. Just look at it! It’s the simplicity and perfection of the knitting and yarn that just did it for me.

I bought a small pile of Cascade 220 to build the sweater with. The background color will be the charcoal grey – and the accents in the yoke will be these heathers.

Using the Wave chart that Adrian created for her Rhinebeck sweater last year, I played with the colors I had choosen and came up this this pattern. The background will be the grey.

 

I’m going to do a fold over hem at the bottom and the wrists, using the celery (the lighter green) as the contrasting color. I might do a picot edging – I haven’t decided yet – I may swatch and see how it comes out. The base of the sweater will be a classic Elizabeth Zimmerman build your own seamless sweater, from “Knitting Without Tears,” with the possibility of some waist shaping thrown in, just for fun.

1/2 of a FO!

After losing my beloved Koigu Elegant Gauntlets over two years ago, I’ve finally taken it upon myself to knit another pair.

Lindsey, modeling them in September of 2004.  I left them on the train while commuting to my internship in March of 2005 – along with my first felted Bottom’s Up Bucket Hat, with a pin my mom gave me for my 21st birthday that I loved.  I was most sad about the pin.

 

I recently placed a KnitPicks order (see my next post for info on that project!), and two skeins of their new self-striping sock yarn came along for the ride – Felici, in “Aurora.”  Though I did order the yarn before seeing Sandra’s amazing socks knit in the same yarn and colorway, it did seal the deal for me that I needed to be knitting with the yarn seconds after it arrived.

 

I knew they were destined to be the Elegant Gauntlets from the Purl Stitch by Sally Melville because a) I needed glove-y things for the winter and b) I’m not too good with finished socks.

 

Also in my KnitPicks order were some of the new Harmony Wood DPNs, which, oddly enough, are the same color as the Aurora colors (except for the blue).  I felt very co-ordinated.

 

Felici: Love it.  Love the colors, the striping ratio, the softness! (it’s so soft in the skein, and the fabric on 3mm needles feels like an old worn t-shirt). I want it in all of the colors.  It makes me want to knit socks.

 

Morning and evening.

 

The DPNS: Really inflexible for wood (which I don’t mind), very shiny, pretty colors, and SUPER sharp points (unlike any wooden needles I’ve seen before).  Very sturdy, and I love that they give you six needles, because I always lose them.  I don’t love that they don’t have the size of the needle somewhere on the needle itself, especially because I store my DPNs loose in a box, and even with the number stamped on the side, I have started projects with three of one size and four of another.

 

But look! I finished one of the gauntlets!

 

 

 

I cast on for the other on my commute this morning – I started these last Thursday, do you think it’s wishful thinking that they might be both done in a week?  Last time, I knit the first one in about a week, and it took me three months to finish the second.  Oops.

 

But it’s actually getting a little chilly here – I can feel fall in the air.  I need some gloves!

 

 

 

Baby alpaca in the deep blue sea…

001.  I was going to devote my life and a good chunk of money to KnitPicks for having come up with a wooden interchangeable needle set UNTIL I discovered that they don’t make a 16″ cord (am I wrong?  Please correct me.  I want to be wrong).  16″ is my favorite circular needle size EVER.  Perfect for hats, sleeves, and almost anything knit flat (especially scarves!).  I mean, the other sizes are swell, but I adore 16″ circs.  So you only get a little bit of love from me KnitPicks (mostly because they have a bunch of different US2 and US1 sizes so you can actually get the correct metric sizes for your colorwork/socks, and they’re fun colors AND their DPNs come with 6 needles!).  OK, maybe that extra needle at a still incredibly reasonable price has made me like you more than just a little, but I’m still angry about your interchangeable needles (please note they do have fixed circs at a very good price, so I may eat my words when it’s needle buying time).

002. Emerald is done, buttons are sewn in, but I keep on not being home when it is light out (or when I am, my camera’s battery is dead).  It looks a little funny – I wish I had added one more buttonhole, and it could use a good steam blocking.  Maybe that’ll help.

003.  Lindsey and Ben were in the area this weekend, and Lindsey and I had a little swap – I gave her three skeins of bright orange Blue Sky Alpacas Bulky, and she knit me a green neckwarmer out of bulky baby alpaca.  So soft! So green! I’ve stolen pictures of Lindsey modeling it on the car ride down.

Look at those cool buttons!

 

 

She made up the pattern – you can read about it on her blog.

 

In addition to the yarn, Lindsey went home with the stripey Noro scarf I finished a few weeks ago.  It just really liked her (well, the feeling was mutual).

 

When Lindsey was telling me about the project, Dan starting singing a song about the baby alpaca yarn to the tune of Raffi’s “Baby Beluga.”  Lindsey went into my bedroom to change, and we could hear her singing it.  Dan made up a verse for it, but I really like the one Lindsey did:

 

Baby alpaca in my sweater vest

I love you above all the rest.

BABY ALPACA BABY ALPACA

Your yarn’s so soft and small

I love to make a ball…

Almost a finished sweater.

Emerald is finished. Ends weaved in (well, most of them) and everything. All it needs is a quick steam blocking and some buttons. As you may remember, I changed the gauge up a bit (4 spi from 3spi). I actually suceeded – it fits, it fits well, and I am in love the shawl collar (the short rows are genius).

Which I didn’t get till today even though I finished the sweater last Sunday. I had a hard time deciding on which ones to get.

I went to MJ Trimmings (next to Bryant Park – and it’s Fashion Week! It was nuts!), and found the buttons I wanted in about a minute ’cause I had already picked them out online. They’re simple wood shanks, and I think they’ll be perfect for the sweater.

 

I’ll sew them in this weekend, and have pictures by Monday! Hurray for finished sweaters!