My current work in progress:

Seaforth designed by Alice Starmore, knit in British Breeds 5-ply Guernsey Wool on US 3 needles.


Archives for October 2008

Rib and Lace Cardigan

A week or so back, I got the Holiday issue of Vogue Knitting and was delighted to find something within its depths that I wanted to knit. This:

This is a Deborah Newton design: Rib and Lace Cardigan. The pattern calls for a wool-blend yarn — Nashua Handknits Grand Opera, to be exact. I decided to make mine in a cotton blend.

I was originally going to use Calmer, but changed my mind. Calmer is so soft I was afraid it would make for a very droopy cardi. So I dug into the stash, and came up with Rowan All Seasons Cotton, which is a much sturdier yarn than Calmer.

I’m using color # 224 which is called “Sea Spray.” As I recall, it is a color that was never released by Rowan. I got mine from an eBay seller in the UK for a ridiculously low price. ($2.99 per skein from seller “Cucumberpatch” — she still has some last time I checked.)

I did a teeny-tiny gauge swatch and was pleasantly surprised to get gauge with the suggested needle size — a U.S. 6.

The lower body of the cardigan is knit all in one piece, and then divided at the armholes and the fronts and backs knit separately, of course.

So I cast on yesterday and made a start. The pattern has you start the lace pattern on the very first row, but as it is based on stockinette, I had visions of the edge curling up and annoying me forever after. So I knit 2 rows plain before starting the lace.

I’m happy I did — the garter stitch ridge makes a nice edge, I think.

And Lucy is all about being a spokesmodel these days!

Daily Sweater

Here it is.

I attempted an in the mirror shot, but was not able to get a decent shot, so you’ll have to settle for Gwendolyn modeling it.

Penny T asked in the comments:

Your daily sweater is going to be a keeper, it appears. I’d like to make one, but the thought of all that stocking stitch in DK is too daunting. How do you think the sweater would work in worsted weight?

I think it woild be fine. The stitch gauge on this is actually 4.5 stitches to the inch, so that’s almost worsted anyhow.

Roseann asked:

Is that a 12″ circular needle you are using for the cuff? How do you use it without hurting yourself? I flirted with 12″ needles very briefly for socks and I just couldn’t take the stress on my hands.

Nope, that’s a 16-incher.

Like the ribbing around the bottom, you increase stitches before starting the cuff, so that the ribbing does not pull in. Therefore, a 16-inch needle is very comfortable to use for the cuff.

I enjoyed knitting this sweater very much, and at some point can see myself making another one.

But right now, this is what I’m working on:

Care to hazard a guess? Pattern and yarn?

As you can see, Lucy is helping.

Back to Work

I dragged myself back to work today, whining all the while. After five days of being a lady of leisure and hanging out with good friends, it was not fun. There — don’t you feel sorry for me? 😉

I am this close to finishing the Daily Sweater. If I had worked on it a bit more yesterday, it would be done now, but I was not in the mood. I spent a good part of the day playing with Lucy.

But here is the Daily Sweater, and tomorrow you will see it as a finished object. I’ve got half a cuff left to knit.

Book Giveaway

It seems like a few of you wanted this book, huh?

A number of you asked why I was giving it away. Well, I did consider keeping it for myself because it is a very nice book. But I am drowning in knitting books. I buy a lot of knitting books. And I am fortunate enough to be on the list to receive review copies of books from Potter Craft, and I take advantage of that. Most of those books I pass on to someone else. Because they were free to me, it seems like the right thing to do. Yes, I know I kept the Mason-Dixon Knitting book. Shhhhhh! you can’t have a rule without exceptions, right?

I was tempted to keep the Leapman book because it is a very nice book indeed, and full of stuff that I could see myself making at some point. But my rule of thumb is — is there something in there you want to cast on tomorrow? No? Then pass it on. I have approximately eleventy-billion cabled knits that I have made over the years, and I haven’t worn any of them for at least 3 or 4 years, given my internal thermostat issues. Since the focus of my knitting is elsewhere these days, I’d rather the book go to someone who might use and enjoy it now, rather than have it sit on my shelf for possibly years before I pull it down again.

Oh, here is the cabled skirt:

Okay, so on to picking a winner.

Over 600 comments! Wow! The random number generator chose comment #290, and that was Tiny Tyrant. Ms. Tyrant, I’ve emailed you. 😀

Thank you to everyone else who commented. I didn’t have time to respond to the comments individually, of course, but I read all of your comments and appreciate them all. It’s fun to meet “new” readers this way!

Tune in tomorrow, kids, for the completed Daily Sweater and for a sneak peak at my next project. For now, here is a shot of Ms. Lucy that shows off her pretty blue eyes.

Continuous Cables

I recently got a review copy of Continuous Cables by Melissa Leapman.

This is the second cable book by Melissa Leapman — two years after her Cables Untangled.

This book concentrates on Celtic knots and closed ring cables. There is an extensive techniques section.

There are 20 designs.

There are sweaters, a skirt, a couple of throws, a hat, some very inventive baby blocks, pillows, place mats, and a shoulder bag. The designs are all very appealing (well, apart from the cabled skirt, but that could be just me).

And there is an extensive stitch dictionary of closed ring cables.

Very, very cool, because these all look new to me — at least I don’t think I’ve never seen any of them before.

Okay, who wants my review copy?

Leave a comment to this entry if you’d like to be entered in the drawing to win this book. I will randomly pick a winner tomorrow (Tuesday October 14) afternoon.

Today is a government holiday (Columbus Day), so we are having a quiet day at home. Lucy clearly had too much fun this past weekend, because this is what she has looked like so far today:

And That’s the Weekend That Was

My guests this weekend were Dani and Aimee. We had a wonderful time and they are now on their way home.

We ate brownies for breakfast.

We had adult beverages at night.

The weather cooperated.

And I found that when you stay up until 3:00am every night, you get a lot of knitting done. Imagine that.

When I went into the guest room after they left, I discovered the lovely gift they left for me — a handmade oak trivet.

When you stand him up, his middle makes a basket!

Thank you so much, Dani and Aimee — for this beautiful gift and for the gift of your company and friendship!

Lucy sez:

“Hey! Where did my new servants go?”