FO and WIP

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A finished sweater and a new one started!

Both are Top Down Raglan Sweater Generator

Finished sweater is about 672 yards of reclaimed DK weight yarn.

size 8 needle.
gauge – 4.5 st per inch, 5 rows per inch.
42 inch bust – loose fit
Did neck band with size 6 needle, wrists with size 8 and garter stitch for bottom band.
Decreased every 3 rows instead of 4 on the sleeves.

I probably should have gone with size 6 needles for the wrists as the ribbing is a bit loose. Sleeves are a bit long but the cuffs fold up nicely and I may want that bit of extra length in the middle of winter when my hands are ice cold.

Other than the sleeves, the sweater is everything I wanted. Almost oversized, baggy, comfortable sweater. Much like the sweatshirts I’ve been wearing.  Honestly I’ve been wearing it for a few days and it’s so comfortable and warm but so far not too warm. I’m very pleased.  Oh and that lighter band of grey across the middle is not visible in real life.  I’m sure it’s probably there as the shades of grey did change from skein to skein but the camera picked it up much more than the naked eye does.  Or it might be my camera as it does seem to extend onto the sleeves and each sleeve was one skein.  Oh well, camera is old.

The WIP sweater is handspun corriedale, sportweight – ish with size 6 needles.  I used the comfortable fit instead of loose fit to make is a bit smaller. The first sweater is almost too loose.  Color is off in the pic.  My camera hates purples.  This yarn is unevenly dyed, the skeins were dyed at different times and some are almost variegated.  I’m just going to knit them as they come and if I don’t like it in the end I can always toss the finished sweater in the dye pot to even things out.

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Sweater decisions

No picture because it’s the same as the last, just longer.

I tried it on today and I’m pleased with the fit.  Big and comfy.  It’s possibly a bit too warm until the temps drop a bit more.  Currently it’s in the 30’s most days.  Once it drops below freezing on a regular basis, this sweater should be perfect.

Right now, unblocked, it sits at my waist.  I need to decide how much longer it needs to be.  I’m planning 2 inches of garter stitch instead of ribbing.  I don’t want it to draw in at the bottom.  Experience blocking the dressing gown tells me that this yarn grows a lot in blocking.  Probably 2 inches or more on something that was already from my neck to dragging on the floor and that was I was just trying to flatten it, not stretch it.

It’s about 6 inches to where I want it to fall.  Subtract the 2 inches of garter and that’s 4 inches.  But that measurement is for the blocked sweater.  I don’t think garter stitch will stretch as much as stockinette so it’s really just the 4 inches I need to consider.  Do I knit 2 more inches and plan on 2 inches more in blocking?  It’s a very stretchy yarn so it can take a hard block if needed.  It could be a little shorter or longer in the end without a problem.

I just grabbed the sweater and yanking hard on it lengthwise I can pull it 10 inches longer.  I think 2 more inches of knitting will be fine and I can block it the rest of the way.  Maybe 1.5 inches to account for stretch in the garter section.  Can you tell I’d like to finish knitting this sooner rather than later?  I still have to knit the sleeves and I’d like to be done or close to done by the end of Thanksgiving weekend.

And I’ll have to make these same decisions for the sleeves.  Those will end in 2 inches of ribbing.  I’ve also noted that people had problems with the decreases being too slow in the sleeves.  I can see how that may be a problem.  For this sweater it’s 2 stitches decreased every 4 rows, starting with 91 stitches.  I’ll try that at first but anticipate having to increase faster after the elbow.  Probably a lot of trying on when I get to that point.

Sweater WIP

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Top Down Raglan Sweater Generator – I just wanted a simple, top down, in the round sweater.  This one is free and so far, pretty good.  I wouldn’t recommend it for a beginner.  While I’ve not knitted a sweater before (unless you count the dressing gown as a really long cardigan) I do have a lot of knitting experience so the not very detailed instructions are not a problem.

The nice thing is that you input your bust measurement, needle size and gauge (it does require a swatch but I used the dressing gown as it is the same needle and yarn) and type of fit (I chose loose as I wanted it big and almost oversized. and then it spits out the instructions.  So if I wanted to add a pattern or lace or whatever, I would do my swatch in that to get the gauge and theoretically it would fit just fine.

Honestly, I’m happy with plain sweaters for now.  I have already started planning my next sweater out of some handspun.

WIP and Polwarth fleece

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Sing a Song of Sixpence shawl – I have just started the 6th stripe.  The last increase row was just before the aqua stripe started.  I have 10 stripes to go.  I’m very pleased with it even if it feels like there are a million stitches.  It’s folded in half for the picture.  It’s actually a full circle. Hand spun and hand dyed CVM wool.

 

Polwarth fleece – This is 1 pound and I paid $22.90 including shipping from Raw Fiber Arts Co on Etsy.  It’s got little bits of vm throughout but that’s not a big deal to me.  It’s actually quite clean compared to some fleeces I’ve dealt with. I expect it’ll wash up to a bright white.  I was quite impressed that it was a full chunk of fleece and not a jumbled up mess.  It was easy to pull the locks and the staple length is mostly quite long.  It is so so soft and doesn’t have a lot of lanolin.

It arrived in today’s mail and I swear, all I was planning to do was take it out back, spread it out and take pics and then bag it back up.  I’m busy and/or it will be raining for the next few days and I can’t wash until Monday. Once I got my hands in it, I was doomed.  I spent the next couple of hours pulling the locks and bagging them up for scouring.  And I loved every second of it.  Well, at least it’s all ready for Monday.

In other fleece news, I’ve made an appointment at a new sheep farm for this Saturday.  This one has Cormo, BFL, Shetland and Corriedale.  I’m not sure what I’ll be getting.  I’d love to try all of them but her prices run much higher than the other farm (actually the new place has more normal prices.  The other place was super cheap.)  She’s willing to sell partial fleeces so maybe I’ll get a few pounds of several.  I won’t know until I see what she has and get my hands into them.

 

Knitting WIPs and more

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Vinorina – A bottom up shawl that is quite slow going.  A lot of stitches. It’s finally worth showing now that you can see leaves along the bottom edge.  It’s a little fiddly at times.  On a few rows the stitch markers have to move and then move back on the following row which always make me a little paranoid that I’ve messed something up.

Speaking of messing things up A Downton Wedding Shawl is in time out. I’m off by one stitch on the stitch count.  But I’ve gone over it and I can’t find the mistake.  It goes from 347 stitches to 262 stitches in one row and I’m a stitch short.  When I do the math to get to 347 and then the math to get back to 262, I come up with my stitch count and not the one in the pattern.  I’ll probably finish this section (when I’m not so annoyed at it) with my stitch count (as long as it keeps working) and just fudge an extra stitch before the next section.

These are my bookshelves.  One side is random books, spinning books and pattern books.  The other side is stitch pattern books (minus one Brioche book, which is in a project bag.)

The other pic is my project bag/spinning wheel corner  All of the projects I keep in my room are there plus all the extra bags.  The bags in use have tags so I know what’s inside without having to open them.  A few projects have two bags, one for the main project and one for the extra yarn.

Knitting WIPs

I forgot to post yesterday.  I was caught up in rearranging/reorganizing a part of my work room and totally forgot.  I’m sorry.

I used to be a full time polymer clay artist.  I mostly made beads but dabbled in just about everything else you can do with polymer clay.  I had a business selling my creations for over 10 years and amassed a huge amount of supplies.  Eventually I burned out.  Attempting to keep up with fads and online sale sites changing policies and fee structures just took all the fun out of it.  I abruptly stopped creating, leaving me with around 100 lbs of clay and supplies/tools.  I dabbled in many things for a few years before finding my love of knitting and fiber.  I packed up most of my clay and supplies but kept them in my room.  Much of it is sensitive to heat so must stay in climate controlled storage, meaning my storage cubbies were out of the question.

I still don’t want to part with my polymer clay supplies as they do come in handy now and then.  I made around 30 drop spindles with polymer clay whorls and one of these days I want to get around to making shawl pins/clasps.  But those bins and drawers of supplies were cutting into fiber storage space.  My husband offered up some space in his basement (I have the extra bedroom, he has most of the basement for his workspace.)  So I moved much of the supplies to the basement, only leaving that which might be useful for other crafts (paints, glitter, etc.)  Wow, that opened up a lot of room.

So then I had to rearrange my fiber stuff to fit in the newly opened up space.  I’m quite pleased so far.  I don’t think I’m quite done.  Some things may get moved around as I use them and find that a different spot works better.  Now I just need my husband to build my project bag corner and I’ll be set.

Anyway, before this organizing frenzy I did get knitting done.

Sing a Song of Sixpence – I just started the 3rd color.  There are six colors but 15 color changes.  This is handspun and hand dyed CVM.

A Downton Wedding Shawl – I’m sort of plodding along on this. I’m about 1/3 through section 3.

I’m also waiting for books to arrive from Amazon.  As well as books from inter-library loans from all over my state.  I’m trying to put together a wish list on Amazon so that when I do find myself with some extra cash I don’t have to spend days deciding what books to buy.  I also like to see books before I buy them.  Too often the reviews and descriptions don’t tell me enough to know if a book will be useful to me.

Once the Amazon books arrive I’ll have to show a pic of my bookshelf.  Interestingly about half are stitch pattern books, bought from thrift stores and rummage sales.  I never pass up a cheap stitch pattern book.

Knitting WIP

Sorry for the lack of WIP post last week.  It was our birthday week (my husband and I share a birthday, 4 years apart) and he took the week off of work.  We were snowed in for the first day so did a Downton Abbey marathon.  That turned out to be so much fun that we did it the next day (and the roads were still messy anyway.)  The next two days we spent out shopping.  When I did have time to knit I worked on my cowl design which I couldn’t show you anyway.

I finished the cowl over the weekend and will be releasing the pattern tomorrow.  Since finishing the cowl I’ve been working on A Downton Abbey Wedding Shawl.

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I’m three rows from finishing the third section. Three (increasingly difficult) sections and a border to go.  Although to be honest, the eyelet rows are the most difficult for me.  It’s not that the stitches that are difficult but for some reason they make my hand hurt.  I have to take at least an hour break after finishing one to let my hand rest.

I’ve got the chart and yarn picked out for my next design but I’m taking a break from designing.  I don’t want to burn out on doing colorwork and I would like to make more progress on my other WIPs.

Speaking of other WIPs, I have made some progress on some of them but it’s either not enough to make it worth showing or so boring that I’m just waiting until it’s done. My Jacob wool garter shawl is one that’s boring.  I knit on it during Nascar races and I’m making good progress but really, who wants to see acres of garter stitch?

Oh and on one of those shopping days we stopped at a yarn store and I got some beautiful silk (Mawata) hankies for spinning.  I’ve never spun them before and I’m a little intimidated by them.  I’ve researched how to spin them and I understand it but I just haven’t gotten up the courage (or the time) to start spinning.

I may or may not get a WIP post up next week.  I want to sew more project bags and I’m hoping to start next week. There’s nothing wrong with having dozens of project bags is there?  I need to find a way to store the ones with projects in them.  I can’t leave them on the floor or the cats will get into them and I don’t have any spare horizontal surfaces to put them on.  Maybe I can put hooks in the ceiling.  Or I’ve got a bit of empty wall above my spinning wheel.  I’ll have to see if my husband can build me something there.