My current work in progress:

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


Zig-Zag Gansey

I finished my Zig-Zag Gansey. Here it is, being modeled by the ever-lovely Gwendolyn.

I knit this with Lion Brand Cotton-Ease in the “Blossom” colorway using a U.S. size 6 needle to get 4.25 stitches to the inch. (I’m a loose knitter.)

It was knit in pieces, then joined at the shoulders using a three-needle bind-off. I picked up and knit a neckband after that.

The sleeves are three-quarter length and knit from the bottom up, then attached to the body (drop-shoulder construction) using a three-needle bind-off.

Then the only seaming left to be done was the side and sleeve seams.

The Cotton-Ease was quite pleasant to knit. The acrylic content in it gave it a bit of stretch so my stitches were nice and even, and it was quite pleasant to knit and easy on the hands. I just lightly steamed the pieces before putting the sweater together — no severe blocking needed.

I haven’t yet decided whether I will write up the pattern and make it available. The large pattern repeat makes it difficult to resize — I’d only be able to offer it in a couple of sizes. Adding/removing one pattern repeat from the front and back results in an 8.5″ difference in size. But I’ll fiddle with it and see what I think.

Book Giveaway!

I just received a review copy of this:

This is the Vogue Knitting Stitchionary Volume One: Knit & Purl. It was released in hardcover a few years ago and is now due to be released in paperback early next people. The nice folks at Sixth & Spring Books sent me a review copy of this new paperback edition.

This stitch dictionary contains over 300 stitch patterns, all beautifully photographed and presented.

It’s a great resource and I frequently use my hardcover copy when I’m looking for a stitch pattern.

I don’t need both the hardcover and paperback versions, so I’m offering this one up to one of my readers.

To be entered in the random drawing for this great stitch dictionary, please leave a comment on this post (you know the drill: emails sent to me via the “contact me” form or comments on other entries aren’t included in the drawing) by noon Eastern Time this Thursday, February 23, 2012. At that time I’ll use my WordPress plug-in to select the winner from the comments to this post.

Lucy clearly needs to work on relaxing.


  1. Your sweater is fabulous!

    Oh, and I need a stitch dictionary really bad.

  2. Oh, didn’t the sweater turn out nicely! And yes, Lucy looks very stressed.
    ccr in MA´s last blog post ..Updates for today, and the cats

  3. Barbara Von Gehr says:

    That’s how they help US destress! I would love to win the stitch dictionary. Thanks!

  4. Very pretty sweater!! Pick me pick

  5. Tiffany Newman says:

    Always love the pics of Lucy….

  6. omg, I’m first?!? Throw my name in the hat for the stitch dictionary. One can never have too many of those.

  7. the sweater is gorgeous! and not just because I love pink. lucy’s photos always make me smile. would love a stichionary 🙂

  8. That gansey looks absolutely lovely. Cotton-Ease is a great yarn, I used it for a summer-time fashion scarf and it’s wonderful. Lucy is as adorable as always.
    Jessica´s last blog post ..Slowly Chugging Along

  9. Your sweater turned out great! And te book would be a great help with my knitting adventures!!!

  10. What a fantastic book, thank you for this give-away. – I don’t think I’ve ever seen Lucy look so tense!
    Lorraine´s last blog post ..I’m Hooked!

  11. Danine Imboden says:

    Love the sweater!! I get a kick out of reading your blog. Keep it up!! The book would be awesome for my library..thanks. 🙂

  12. You know what they say: “a good stitch dictionary is a girl’s best friend.”

    Oh wait, maybe it’s just me that says that…

  13. I’m finding that I urge for stoichiometric more and more frequently. Just browsing through patterns is such an inspiration.

  14. The book looks super helpful. I just got a bunch of natural wool to make my husband a gansey sweater, so that many stitches to look through would be nice.

  15. you did a great job on the gansey and nice color selection. Lion Brand Cotton Ease is nice to knit.

    The book would be nice to have and as always Lucy is adorable.

  16. I’d love to win a copy! I’ve checked it out of the library, but never bought one for myself. By the way, they are releasing the paperback “early next people”??? I think you’ve got an error there! Probably your brain thinking faster than you type. 🙂

  17. I’ve been wanting a book like this so I can try to design something myself.

    I’m making a fisherman’s knit sweater for my 30 year son’s request.

  18. Love the sweater. Would love to hear your thoughts on the how the cotton ease holds up once you have worn it a while. Would love to win the book.

  19. Your sweater turned out lovely!

    I used to work in a library & remember shelving the stitchionaries a lot. Of course, I didn’t knit then & now that I do we have moved away and my local library cannot get volume 1 for me no matter how hard we try!

  20. great sweater! i really like cotton ease, too. knits up well and holds up well to putting in the laundry machine.

  21. I’m continually amazed by your design creativity – it looks like it comes so naturally to you!

  22. Beautiful Sweater. Thanks for sharing the construction of it and your thoughts on the yarn.
    Kathom´s last blog post ..Overwhelmed

  23. Love how the sweater turned out! One day I’ll be brave enough to try and knit one 🙂

    The stitch dictionary looks fabulous–even just those two pages I can see!

  24. What a beautiful sweater! I love stitch dictionaries!

  25. I just can’t tell you how much I love that sweater! The color, the pattern, and it looks so soft. Best of all is the 3/4 length sleeves. I can’t stand long sleeves ….

    And, yes, I would love to have that book. If it isn’t too expensive, I’ll probably buy it if the Random Picker doesn’t pick me. 😉
    KateJonze´s last blog post ..Fresno 28th "The Sounds of Mardi Gras"

  26. Your sweater turned out beautifully. I have seen Cotton Ease at the store but never have bought any. Good to know it works up well–maybe I’ll try a sweater for my granddaughter out of it. And yes, it would be great to win the book….

  27. The sweater turned out lovely. I really love your color choice.

  28. I wish I were as relaxed as Lucy. Thanks for the contest, and I would love to win the stitch dictionary. Your gansey looks great and has inspired me to consider Cotton Ease. Thanks

  29. I love how the gansey turned out. One day, I’ll be finished school and I’ll have the time to design my own sweaters.

  30. That’s a gorgeous sweater you’ve made!

  31. Love the sweater! Although I’m as self proclaimed yarn snob, I can’t always afford the finer yarns. I’m so glad to see something made with less expensive Lion Brand turn out so well. And of course, I’d love to win the stitch dictionary.

  32. Beautiful sweater…I love the simple construction and the zig zags. It looks so cozy. I’ve had my eye on a stitchionary for a while, it would make a great addition to my library.

  33. Sweater looks great! How does it fit?
    Heather Kinne´s last blog post ..Episode 66 – Addict

  34. Annie Wilson says:

    I’m always so jealous of kitties. I’d love a stitch dictionary!

  35. Please enter me in the drawing!!!!

  36. I like those stitches on the page you photographed. One can always use another stitch dictionary. Thanks, Wendy!
    Debbie M´s last blog post ..TAST Week 7

  37. Gorgeous sweater, thank you for sharing your progress and blogging about it…such a great resource!

  38. I love the sweater! I am fairly new to knitting, and could really use a stitch dictionary!

  39. I love the zig zag pattern! Simple and elegant.
    I would love the stitchionary, all I have available is the Internet… Thank you so much for the giveaway!
    Chana´s last blog post ..How it begins. And why we have to stop it.

  40. would love to win this stitch dictionary

  41. Good to see a designer use cotton yarn in a sweater, as someone from the South 🙂

    Me, plz, for stitch dictionary entry. I loves me a good stitch resource.

  42. Lucy is the best relaxer in the world. Love your zig-zag gansey. You never cease to amaze me

  43. I’m excited to hear that this is coming out in paperback. I may have just found my anniversary present to myself.

  44. Ooooo…. Shiny!

  45. beautiful sweater!

  46. Beautiful gansey! I just attended a workshop taught by Beth Brown-Reinsel on ganseys – a wonderful experience. She recommended using Brown Sheep cotton fleece as a non-wool yarn. I’m glad to learn of another cotton that would be appropriate. I’m eager to start a gansey for me and my husband.

  47. I’ve borrowed a couple of the stitchionaries from the library, and having my own copy of volume 1 would be a dream come true!

  48. I love your Zig-Zag Gansey. I liked knitting with the Cotton Ease when I made a purse with it a while back.

    Please enter me into the drawing for the Stitchionary. I’d love to have a copy. Thank you.
    Nan´s last blog post ..Tote Bag – Plan B

  49. Hi Wendy
    The sweater looks amazing! I have enjoyed following it growth. I am currently planning to knit your Two-thirds shawl and received the yarn yesterday. I went for fyberspates Scrumptious in Slate. I have a knitalong to complete and then I will be getting stuck in. Thanks for the giveaway. C

  50. I, too, have a love of Cotton Ease…it’s one of my favorite “go to” yarns. Plus, a gazillion colors and cheap 🙂

    As for the book…I can always use another stitch dictionary 🙂
    Renee Anne´s last blog post ..Self-Imposed Year of Projects: Update #7

  51. I would love to win – thanks!

  52. Your Zig-Zag Gansey is BEAUTIFUL! Wear it well! Now that I see how nicely Cotton-Ease works up, maybe I’ll find something to knit with the skeins in my stash!
    Also, thanks for sharing the book.

  53. I’ve been dying to try that book for a while, but have never gotten around to getting one. I love the big pictures of each swatch.

  54. I’ve had that book on my wishlist for a while… maybe I’ll win it. 🙂

  55. The sweater is beautiful and I would love the stitch dictionary.

  56. Would love to be the owner of this great resource!

  57. so lovely I have always wanted the series this might be the start for me!!
    Kelly McCullough´s last blog post ..Shetland Spinning

  58. Love your sweater and love the book. I don’t know how your kitty stands the stress……..

  59. Please enter me in the contest. I’d love to win that book.
    Becky´s last blog post ..Sunshine and Rain

  60. This sweater turned out lovely! I would never have thought to use this yarn for anything other than placemats or dishcloths, so I now feel enlightened. Thanks for opening up this drawing for the stitch dictionary.

  61. Your sweater is lovely. I would love to win this book. Hope it is my lucky day.

  62. I would love to win that book.

  63. Here’s a stich dictionary I don’t have!
    Amy Lamash´s last blog post ..Let me Tink About it..

  64. Love the sweater,hope to be picked for the book.

  65. I love the Vogue stitch dictionaries.. but so far I have only had brief flings with them from the local library. Owning one would be awesome!

  66. Love the sweater. Nice to know that there are a few blends out that that are nice… my cotton knits always stretch out of shape… no matter what I do! Thank you for the inspiration.

  67. Teresa Ruch says:

    I would love a book. Thanks

  68. I’m just starting to learn more intensive knitting techniques and this would be super helpful!

  69. Christina Myers says:

    What a pretty sweater….and handy book, too! Would love to win!

  70. Count me in, please. 🙂
    Anna´s last blog post ..Mark’s guest blog

  71. I love the color. Do you make sweaters with armhole shaping or do you prefer the drop shoulder look?
    Beverly´s last blog post ..Setting Goals

  72. I don’t know how Lucy gets it all done. She seems very busy.

  73. Would love to have the Vogue Knitting Stitchionary. And your gansey is beautiful.

  74. philhellene says:

    Oh yes please, yet again!

  75. (Not That) Joan says:

    Congrats on finishing the gansey– curious to see where you go next! Yes please, I would love to be entered in the draw for the stitch dictionary!

  76. Thanks for a chance to win the stitch dictionary! It would be inspirational to have in my library.
    Your sweater in beautiful.

  77. Wendy, I love your gansey (and a great color, also). I would love a chance for “Stichionary”. Lucy better to be careful and not get too relaxed.

  78. Love the gansey – looks so very comfortable. I’d be very happy to win the book as my stitch books have been lost in moving at some point in time.

  79. My mother asked for dishcloths, so I’ve only just started knitting with cotton (again, after a bad first experience that left my fingers very sore!) and I’m quite interested in trying the cotton ease as well. The gansey looks beautiful!
    Imogene´s last blog post ..Joy of completion

  80. Love the gansey – looks so very comfortable. I’d like to see a pattern at some point – maybe a wider separation between the zigzag pattern? I’d be very happy to win the book as my stitch books have been lost in moving at some point in time.

  81. Your sweater is the perfect touch of pink for the month of Valentine’s.

    I’d love to win the stitchonary. I’ve been oogling those books for years, and I’m thrilled that they’re coming in paperback.
    Ely´s last blog post ..The Vintage Veylas….

  82. Lovely sweater, lovely lucy, need stitch dictionary. And tea.

  83. Great sweater! I’ve been eyeing this book for awhile…glad to hear it’s coming out in paperback.

  84. Oooh – I’d love to win that stitch dictionary!

    I like how the new sweater turned out though I’m always leary of 3/4 sleeves.
    Maura van der Linden´s last blog post ..Word for Writers

  85. I’d like to curl up with Lucy for the afternoon. Winning the stitch dictionary would just be a bonus! Thanks

  86. Thanks for the giveway.

  87. Wendy, I just found your blog and love it!!! I am new to knitting, and I hope to knit as well as you some day. The book looks like something I could use. thanks

  88. Ooo a new dictionary (for me :))

  89. golly, those books are brilliant!

  90. Barb Bartelme says:

    Great sweater. Have been thinking of doing a gansey style sweater and lap robe/blanket for a new niece with a finer yarn. Like your designs and also would like a chance for the stitch dictionery.

  91. How generous, I would love to win a copy of that stitch dictionary!

  92. Thank you for the honest evaluation of Cotton-Ease. I am looking for a yarn for a baby sweater, but have specific colors in mind. I’ll check it out! The sweater looks great!

  93. The sweater is lovely as is the picture of Lucy. Thank you for the book giveaway.

  94. How nice to know someone else is a loose knitter-all my friends are the opposite and think I am the odd one. Would love to have a stitch dictionary.

  95. Your Zig-Zag is so lovely! I’ve been moving away from patterns and designing/modifying more and more these days. A stitch dictionary would be just the thing, then. 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

  96. Very nice gansey sweater. I love that color . Would like to win the dictionary of stitches.

  97. Sweater looks great!

    Would love to win this book. Place waiting in my library for it. LOL.

  98. Great sweater. I can tell that Lucy is thrilled to bits. Or maybe she is exhausted from her role as quality control officer.

  99. I love your sweater! I also would love to win this book. Thanks!

  100. Love the sweater, will love the book more!!