My current work in progress:

Sundew,by Martin Storey, knit from Rowan Softyak DK, using 3.25mm and 4mm 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. The sweater looks great! I’d love to win the book…

  2. I love your sweater and appreciate hearing about the yarn. I would love this book as I read knitting books the way some people read novels. Learning new stitches is great too!

  3. Your knits are such an inspiration! The book would be a great tool for a new knitter! 🙂

  4. paula henderson says:

    Love the Gansey sweater. I’d love to win the stitchionary. Hugs to Lucy. 🙂

  5. I would love to have that Stichionary. The sweater is marvelous (as usual) and I always enjoy a picture of Lucy hard at work! (Mine is doing the same thing right now)

  6. Really like the sweaters you create. I am a very large woman who likes a lot of room in her sweaters and so many of yours look so comfortable. I hope you do put this on ravalry if you can work out the details for sizing. Of course I’d love to win the drawing as well.

  7. Yay Stitchionary! Would love to win it! The Cotton Ease looks nice.
    Kristen´s last blog post ..Unknit

  8. You sweater is so beautiful. The stitch book would be a lovely addition to my collection of books. I love reading your blog & your books! Thanks

  9. Karina Bates says:

    What a great book. Thanks for offering it, it would certainly come in handy!

  10. Excellent sweater. Excellent book.
    SueV´s last blog post ..Christmas for Kaia

  11. I have wanted this book for quite awhile, just has not been in my budget and winning it would certainly be a treat!!

  12. I would love, love, love the book!

  13. Cathy Chesnut says:

    Never have too many stitch dictionaries.

  14. Lucy relaxes better than anyone! Clearly supervising a knitterly household is exhausting!

  15. Love the sweater, and could use the book.

  16. It would be awesome to win this!

  17. Would love the book. I’m about to start teaching a beginner knitting class; this book would be real handy! BTW I really like the zig zag gansey!!

  18. A beautiful Gansey Sweater. Beings the very beginner I am this give-a-way could come in handy….

  19. Lovely sweater. Would love the book 🙂

  20. Kristen Machowski says:

    Once again a beautiful pice.

    Thank you for thinking of us and giving the book away. This would be very helpful to me as a newer knitter. Good luck everyone.

  21. Digging the sweater, even though I look weird in Gansey, or really an repeat lengthwise pattern, sweaters. And I could totally use a stitch dictionary!
    GL Blumenshine´s last blog post ..Mind Blowing

  22. Love your sweater! Enjoying my knitting and cat as well.

  23. I can’t decide what I like more… The fabulous patterns or the pics of Lucy!

  24. Great gansey! I’d love to win the book. Please pick me!
    Geri´s last blog post ..Quilts and More

  25. Poor Lucy must be working so hard! I hope she gets a chance to relax soon.

    Please enter me in the drawing for the stitch dictionary. Thanks!
    Lynn Z´s last blog post ..Wrapping things up

  26. Sandra Kerr says:

    What a pretty sweater!
    And I would absolutely love the book!

  27. How did you know I’ve been recently on the lookout for a good stitch dictionary?? Thanks for hosting the contest.

  28. The gansey is beautiful! Just amazing.

    Yes, please sign me up for the book, I’ve always been tempted by those Stictionary books when I see them in the bookstore.

  29. Great Sweater, pleasing design and color. The book looks wonderful – had thought about purchasing the hardcover, but never did. Would love to win, Thanks!

  30. Suzie Picciano says:

    Lovely sweater. As always would love to increase the library of stitches!

  31. I love the sweater and hope you can write a pattern. I have the stitch dictionary but would use a second copy for the small library I am accumulating for the women in my church who do participate in knitting! thanks for the drawing.

  32. Ooh, I’ve been thinking about getting some of those books.

  33. hey Wendy, love the sweater

  34. Love this sweater, especially the zig-zag pattern! Had never worked with Cotton-Ease so was glad to hear that it was pleasant to knit with. Would love to get my hands on a copy of this book…sure would help my designing of baby blankets (something I love to do).

  35. Thanks for a chance to win the stitch dictionary. Love the new sweater!

  36. Connie Lindstrand says:

    I am finishing my first pair of socks thanks to one of your patterns. Knitting a pair of socks was on my “bucket list” and I have really enjoyed it. I am just hoping that I can remember everything that I learned in the class as I attempt to turn the heel of the second sock by myself. I would love a chance to win your book. Thanks for inspiring new knitters!

  37. Since you aren’t offering up the sweater, I hope I can win the book instead…..

  38. The sweater turned out great. I always look forward to the Lucy pictures. It’s too bad she is always so stressed out. 🙂

  39. mememememe

  40. What an awesome sweater!

  41. HI Wendy,
    As usual, your sweater turned out purr-fectly gorgeous. I’d so love to win the copy of Stitchionary….those books are so helpful. No wonder all of your projects have such beautiful designs.

    Hi Lucy,
    If you want to learn to relax, we’d be happy to show you how…although, you really look like you’re doing pretty good!
    Cassie & Zoe

  42. I love your new gansey, I will make one some day. Your style is great. I would wear a sweater shaped like that. I would also like to win the stichonary you are giving away. Sounds like a good reference book to have on hand.

  43. Reading up on your progress daily, gives me my creative fix for the day.
    Love the new sweater and love Lucy more!
    Thanks for the chance to win.
    Moz´s last blog post ..What a Hoot!!

  44. The sweater turned out lovely! As for the book…ooh, ooh, ooh, pick me, pick me, pick me!!! (all said while waving hand frantically in air)

  45. What sizes do you think you’ll be able to release if you do decide to put this gansey out as a pattern? I think it’s lovely and I’d love to give it a try.

    I also wouldn’t mind that Stitchionary 😉

  46. I would love to own that book =)

  47. What a pretty sweater! I also love the Vogue knitting books.
    Martha Frey´s last blog post ..The Princess Shawl/ Row 209 of Border

  48. The sweater is lovely. How many hours did it take you to make it? Please enter me for the book drawing.

  49. I like the color of the sweater. Is it light purple?

  50. Kathy in Alaska says:

    Your sweater turned out beautifully, Wendy! Thanks for the chance to win the Stitch Dictionary. Best to you and Lucy from me and Rocky.

  51. Congratulations on the Gansey! It looks fabulous. And that stitch dictionary looks really very useful too — thanks for the giveaway! 🙂
    Heather´s last blog post ..Winterburn: all start!

  52. Nice sweater- love to see Cotton Ease in a sweater.

    I love the stitch dictionaries I have and would love to see the Vogue editions.

  53. Dawn in NL says:

    The sweater looks great and I am sure the stitchionary would come in useful for me to make my own 🙂

    All the best,

  54. Beautiful, beautiful (sweater).
    As for the book – my daughter swears by hers and is gradually collecting the others in the set. I’d be very happy to start with this one! Thanks for the opportunity.

  55. The sweater is gorgeous although cotton is not really my thing. Stitchionary however, very cool, especially with my new sock obsession.

  56. I’d love a copy of that book!

  57. Karen Shannon says:

    You’ve inspired me to try knitting with cotton. I have always avoided it because it has no elasticity. Any place I can go for tips? I am sure there are methods that work better with cotton.
    I love the Vogue series on stitches – I will be very happy if the random wizard picks me!

  58. Who doesn’t love a good stitch dictionary!

  59. Very pretty sweater. That book would be very nice to add to my library, I have Volume 6. Thanks for the opportunity.

  60. As a beginning knitter I have no knitting reference books. This would be a good start.

    Learning a lot reading your blog. Thx

  61. Great job done on the sweater, love the pattern. Please count me in for the draw.

    Love the picture of Lucy, My whippet Trevor sleeps like that sometimes, one time he was sat on a chair behind me and pushed his front legs out like Lucy and effectively pushed me off the chair the cheeky chappie 🙂

  62. I would sure love to win a stitch dictionary. Thanks for the contest!
    HannahB´s last blog post ..Travel Thursday: Vegas

  63. I could definitely use that stitch dictionary!

  64. Anne Marie B says:

    Have been wanting this series…. Thanks or the give-away!

  65. Love ganseys and yours is lovely.

  66. Catherine P says:

    Love the sweater!

  67. I do love cotton-ease. I’m usually not a yarn snob, except I avoid acrylics, usually. But that cotton-ease…I have it in every color it comes in secretly in my stash.

  68. The new sweater is lovely. I always have problems with cotton and its lack of elasticity but tend to shy away from acrylic. Maybe I should rethink. Meanwhile, please enter me for the new Vogur paperback stitch book.

  69. And that picture show why I want to be someone’s adored little cat in my next life. We can never have too many stitch dictionaries, right? Your gansey has turned out beautifully. Currently, the only cotton yarn I’ve got in the stash is Lily’s (various Sugar ‘N Creme), which isn’t very easy on the hands. When I cut down the stash a bit, I’ll probably get some LB Cotton Ease.
    CeltChick´s last blog post ..Hard workin’ Mama

  70. That sweater is lovely!
    Mujercita´s last blog post ..WIP Wednesday

  71. Your sweater is beautiful. Please enter me in the book contest.

  72. Oooooh, I have been eyeballing that stitch dictionary and am glad it is coming out in a paperback edition. I am gonna have to buy it if the great RNG doesn’t pick me to win it.

  73. Me please for the stitch dictionary- I would love to try to incorporate more stitch variety in my knitting.

  74. Sweater should be perfect for spring!
    Thanks for the opportunity to win that amazing book 🙂

  75. sweater is gorgeous, a lovely color too
    Kathy´s last blog post ..On the Catwalk, It’s Haute Cature

  76. I’d love the book, and a trip to Kinko’s to have that sucker spiral-bound would make it even MORE useful! 🙂

  77. Your sweater turned out great. Looks like a good book also.

  78. Kristine M. says:

    I love that sweater. I have Cotton-Ease somewhere in my stash with no idea how to use it. Maybe a copy of the Vogue Stitchionary will help!

  79. I love stitch dictionaries. I’d love to win this one! Please release the gansey pattern, it’s great!

  80. I’d love to win the paperback! And I’m going to give Cotton Ease a try. Thanks Wendy!

  81. Lynne Hutchinson says:

    The sweater looks great. Lucy needs something to lay on again. The stitch dictionary looks very interesting.

  82. the book looks very inspiring and helpful.. hope I win 🙂

  83. I would love to win the book. Thanks for the chance. Love your sweater. Would love to see you design a cardigan

  84. That would be a great addition to my library! Thanks!! Count me in 🙂

  85. Great giveaway, thank you!!

  86. I’ve had that book on my wishlist over at Paperbackswap for decades (it seems!). I’d love to get a copy, either way. Lovely of you to offer all these knitterly treasures.

  87. Pick me, pick me! Looks like a great book!

  88. Thanks for the giveaway, Wendy. I’ve been wanting to add a couple of stitch dictionaries to my library. Congrats on getting your sweater finished!

  89. Your sweater is beautiful! So much work has gone into it. The book looks very inviting.
    Michelle´s last blog post ..Aunt Passed Away

  90. I love Cotton Ease for baby hats and sweaters and for knit caps for teens who like to wear them year-round (wool cap on teen in summer = not pleasant wet dog scent!). As usual, Gwendolyn looks lovely with the new addition to her wardrobe. Please enter me in the draw. I often check out the hardcover from my library for inspiration. A book on my own shelf would save a trip.

  91. Nice sweater!

  92. Hmm…three needle bind off on sleeve? You pick up stitches on the body to then bind off with live stitches on the sleeve? Never done it, sounds interesting.

  93. Wendy, I hope you will make this pattern available. I would love to make it for myself. I think the vertical lines will be very slimming and I love Cotton Ease and am glad you used it.

  94. I’ve just recently realized how invalueble stitch dictionaries are. Thank you so much for this opportunity and I really do like your zig zag sweater. It looks very comfy.

  95. Love the sweater, great job – I have a couple of the Vogue Stitchionary books but not this one, would love to have it as part of my collection!

  96. Do you do much knitting in the round? I taught myself to knit in high school but only did scarves for family. Tried a sweater – guage said good – sweater was way to big – took it out and knit it again with smaller needles and it was still too big. Threw it out. My friend got me knitting again in the round. No sewing things together and you can try it on as you go and make adjustments.

  97. I’ve looked through that series of books, and they are lovely and useful. But I cannot rationalize spending more money when I already have no room on my bookshelf. I think I could find room, if pressed, if I knew the book was on its way. Or maybe it would find a spot as star of the coffee table…

    It’s been fun watching the sweater birthed and developed, and now finished. Have never knit anything in cotton larger than a small kitchen towel. I should think that bit of nylon would make the experience nicer.

  98. I would love to win this book – thanks!

  99. Nice, very nice sweater.
    Thanks for another wonderful give-a-way.

  100. That book would go nicely with my Vogue Lace Stitchonary!