My current work in progress:

Comfort Fade Cardi by Andrea Mowry, knit from Miss Babs  Kaweah in the Parchment, Old Gold, Petrified Forest, and Espresso colorways, using 3.75mm and 4mm needles.

Loose Ends

A day off work is great for tying up loose ends and for finishing stuff. Like Deirdre.

deirdre070306 Loose Ends

Deirdre is knitted from Rowan Calmer yarn in the Calmer colorway on US 6 (4mm) needles.

deirdre070306a Loose Ends

It’s my own design, pattern not yet available.

deirdre070306b Loose Ends

A day off work is good for finishing up a pair of socks, too.

falconseye070306 Loose Ends

These are toe-up socks, knitted from Socks That Rock sock yarn in the “Falcon’s Eye” colorway using my Generic Toe Up Sock Pattern on US 0 (2mm) needles.

A day off work is also good for just contemplating life:

lucy070306 Loose Ends

Circular Thinking

Okay, so the 30cm circs aren’t that bad.

Emma in Seattle commented:
Wendy, have you checked out the elastic circular needles? Here’s a link
Maybe the 10″ stretchy circular needle meant for sock knitting will work for the lower sleeves.

Yes, I have seen them. The stretchy circulars only come in size 2.75mm. My fair isle is knitted on 3mm and 3.25mm needles.

I first saw them mentioned a few weeks ago, and was all ready to order one needle to try out. Then I saw that they are currently available in one size only. I use 2mm needles for socks, and as I said, 3 and 3.25mm for fair isle, so the 2.75mm that they are offering is of little use to me. They do state in their FAQs that they may be adding more sizes, so hopefully they will. If they make a size I think I can use, I’ll definitely give them a test run!

Renada commented:
You’ve knit Norweigian mittens on dpns would the fair isle sleeves be that much different?

The difference lies in switching from a circular to dpns, which is what I would be doing on a fair isle sleeve. While there are not many things that mess with my gauge, switching from a circular to dpns does. For the record, I don’t really like knitting Norwegian mittens on dpns, but it is a necessary evil. 😉

Hpny Knits asked:
Why not use 2 circs? it’ll make your life so much easier.

Why not? Because as I mentioned in my June 27th entry, I loathe the two circs method. For me, it’s almost as despicable as the magic loop method. Almost.

If you like and use either of those methods and enjoy them, more power to you! They are just not for me.

Christina asked:
I have a question about traditional fair isle motifs: is the XO pattern in your cardigan a traditional one? I ask because it is identical to a vest in “Folk Vests”

Okay, of course I had to go look at Folk Vests to see. 🙂 I don’t see a pattern in Folk Vests that’s identical to the Mara XO pattern, but there are several that are similar.

The Mara XO is a traditional pattern — a lot of the motifs that Starmore uses in her fair isles are. I remember when I was knitting Marina, one of the motifs seemed familar. And I realized it’s very similar to the one in Frogner. Check it out here.

LornaJay asked:
Brief technical query:
The sleeves on Mara appear to be more of a set-in style – but I can’t see any shaping after you’ve picked up the stitches at the armscye to knit down.
Is it cunningly disguised, or is blocking going to solve the “arms in the air” pose?

Apart from the standard decreases down the “seam,” there is no other shaping in Mara’s sleeve. So we’ll see how it turns out.

So, here’s where I am on Mara:

mara070206 Circular Thinking

And for Sheila who asked:
When decreasing for sleeves, what is the best way to keep track of your decreases on the chart?

Here’s a picture of my chart:

chart070206 Circular Thinking

It’s on a metal board, and the horizontal black magnetic strip marks the current row. The shorter vertical strip marks which is the first stitch of the round. When I do a decrease, I move it to the left. Low tech, yet effective!

lucy070206 Circular Thinking