Honestly I am not quite happy with the result. It is a bit too big at the shoulders and upper arms, and there's also excess in the underarm area. I tried it on several times as I worked on the upper body portion. Somehow everytime I tried it on I was not able to pull the two markers to meet at underarm (an indication to start working the main body), and so I kept on knitting. When I was finally able to meet the two markers, it felt tight and I had to stretch the fabric to do it. I decided to add another 4 rows before starting the main body to give it more room. This turned out to be a wrong decision. The shoulders and upper arms are now too roomy. Knitting the shoulder portion was also a pain. It just seemed never ending. I started with a 24" circular, and had to switch to 32" to accommodate the ever increasing number of stitches.
I kind of screwed up the waist shaping too. It wears and looks as if I started the decreases too low. The pattern has the shaping done every 5 rows. Well, it probably meant every 5th row. For whatever reasons I interpreted it as having 5 rows in between shaping and actually worked the decreases and increases every 7th row. Don't ask, I don't know what I was thinking. Can I blame it on too much late-night knitting?! ;)
I also had to rework the neckband, bottom hem, and sleeve hems. Initially I worked everything in size 8 needles, including the neckband and bottom hem in seed stitches, which turned out to be terrible looking (see photos below.) I tried size 7 needles on the first sleeve, still puffy. Ripped it out, tried size 6 needles, now, finally, that's more like it. I went back and ripped out the bottom hem and re-knitted it in size 6 needles. For the neckband (it was worked top down), I used the circular needle to pick up all stitches on the first row of the stockinette portion (below the neckband) and unraveled the neckband. Then I worked the neckband from bottom up in size 6 needles. This is the first time I tried a stunt like this. Not fun, but I am glad I did it. The result is much better, and I feel like I've learned something new.
The bottom hem and the sleeve hem were puffy... 下襬和袖口泡泡的...
The button band is a bit too narrow. The button holes (as per pattern) were too close to the edge, I worked it as follows: k1, yo, ssk, p1, k1. And I worked a button hole every 2 1/4 inches, approximately every 9th row.
Patons SWS is splitty. It's not terrible, but just annoying at times. Knitting the yarn is not too big a problem, and if you do have to unravel, be ready to deal with some tangled mess!
This method of knitting a raglan cardigan is really simple and straight-forward. I have already prepared yarn to make another for my son. I would probably work the button band separately by picking up stitches from the two front panels. This way I can do a 1x1 ribbing all the way around. I think it will look better.
Yarn: GGH Soft Kid (70% super kid mohair, 25% nylon, and 5% new wool), #72 Baby Blue - 2 balls (151yd [138m] / 25g) Pattern: Interweave Knits Spring 2007 Staff Project (TKA Project #16) Needles: Addi Turbo US size 8 (5 mm) for ribbing, Addi Turbo US size 9 (5.5mm) for lace Size: 13 1/4" high at center back, 23" long from cuff to cuff Start: February 21, 2007 Finish: February 23, 2007
This was a quick and easy knit. I spent about 8-9 hours to knit and then steam blocked it. The pattern called for 13 repeats of the lace pattern, I did 14 and had to stretch the fabric a bit to get the measurement. I guess I am a tight knitter, the blunt tips on the Addi Turbos were a bit difficult for some of the k2tog and ssk. Maybe next time I should try other needles.
This lace pattern is not difficult, I memorized it after a few repeats. And luckily no mistakes along the way. The only thing that turned out a bit odd was the "yo, k2tog" at the CO and BO ends, the holes at the CO ends were much smaller than the BO ends. Not sure why that is. I kept poking at them to try to make them bigger and more even...
And I am in love with this yarn! GGH Soft Kid knits up so beautiful, airy, and warm. I am tempted to make another in dark taupe, or maybe ivory. And maybe even substituting the Traveling Leaf lace with a different lace pattern. That would be fun! For this lace shrug, I only used maybe 1/3 of the 2nd ball. I wonder what else I can make with the remaining 2/3 of a ball?
The Top-Down Raglan Cardi has been drying on the blocking board for two days now, and it is still damp. Although there have been some light showers, the weather really isn't too wet. I guess I didn't squeeze out enough moisture before I put it on the board.
While waiting, I started the next TKA project - "Reading-in-Bed Shrug" from IK Spring 2007. Knowing this project was coming, I picked up two balls of Lang Venezia when LYS Creative Hands had a sale a few weeks ago. The gauge was exactly the same as the suggested yarn GGH Soft Kid, and I love the color. Blue and purple is one of my favorite color combinations.
I am not sure if it's due to the higher acrylic content (50% acrylic and 50% mohair), the swatch felt a bit stiff. The stitches were uneven, and the color variation just seems to interfere with the lace pattern. I just did not like how it turned out. Well, off I went to another LYS to see if I can find GGH Soft Kid.
Yarn: Tilli TomasPure & Simple (100% spun silk), Atmosphere - 3 skeins (260 yd / 100g); Tilli Tomas Rock Star (70% spun silk, 30% beads), Atmosphere - 2 skeins (150 yd / 100g) Pattern: By Wendy Bernard for Stitch Diva Studios Needles: Addi Turbo US size 4 (3.5 mm) / 24" and 32" circulars (for diamond patterns), Addi Turbo US size 6 (4mm) / 24" and 32" circulars (for stockinette portions) Size: S for chest circumference 33" Start: January 1, 2007 Finish: February 13, 2007
線材: Tilli TomasPure & Simple (100% 絲), Atmosphere - 3 綑 (260 yd / 100g); Tilli Tomas Rock Star (70% 絲, 30% 珠珠), Atmosphere - 2 綑 (150 yd / 100g) 圖樣: By Wendy Bernard for Stitch Diva Studios 針號: 3.5 mm/60 cm & 80 cm 輪針 (模樣編), 4 mm/60 cm & 80 cm 輪針 (平針部份) 尺寸: S (胸圍33寸) 開始: 2007/01/01 完成: 2007/02/13
Sahara is finished at last. It was really an easy knit, it shouldn't have taken more than a month if I had time to focus. The pattern was well written, very detailed and clear. The sweater is knit from top down, beginning at the back of the neck. Stitches are picked up and knit for the neckline and sleeves. The only seam to sew is at the neckline. Not a whole lot of finishing work. I love it!
The only things that were a bit troublesome were the "k3tog tbl" and "p3tog tbl" in the necklines and hems. With the slippery Addi's and smooth silk yarn, I could not do the "p3tog tbl" at all. I tried for several minutes and just couldn't pull the wrapped yarn through. So I went with these short-cuts:
k3tog tbl - slip 2 sts as if to purl, knit next st through the back loop, pass the 2 sts over the knit st
p3tog tbl - purl 1 st, slip next 2 sts as if to knit, move all three sts back to left needle, pass the 2nd st over the purled st and off the needle, pass the leftmost st over and off in the same manner, move the resulting st back to right needle
Waist Shaping & Hip Increases - knowing that I don't have a wasp-like waist, I did the shaping decreases a total of 4 times (every 10th row) instead of 5 times. And thus the hip increases were also done 4 times
The sleeves are 17.5" from underarm instead of 16" before the hem. I actually had finished the sweater this past Sunday with the 16" sleeves, tried it on, the sleeves were way too short, and had to rip out the hem and added another 1.5".
Sahara is very comfortable, and I like the fit (it is a bit too snug - I must not gain weight...) In hindsight, I wish I didn't pick such a fancy yarn (although I jumped at the opportunity to work with TT yarns...) With silk and all those beads, I wonder how often I will get to wear this? Now that's motivation to make a short-sleeve, more casual version of it. Maybe a cotton-silk or rayon-blend yarn for the summer?
Can you believe it? I couldn't. I couldn't fit the Little Star Sweater through my son's head. I don't think my son's got a big head. It's got to be the sweater... I followed the pattern exactly for the neck portion, but it didn't fit...
What to do? Although I know it would look totally professional with a full-fashioned button panel and button holes, I just didn't feel like reworking the neck portion. I decided to undo part of the seam along one side of the neck, and used crochet to add edging and button loops. And I found these little star buttons to go with it.
Yarn: Rowan Cotton Glace (100% cotton), #809 Pier - 3 balls, #800 Bud - 1 ball, #725 Ecru - 1 ball (125 yd [115m] / 50g) Pattern: Adorable Knits for Tots by Zoe Mellor Needles: Addi Turbo US size 4 (3.5 mm) / 24" circular Size: For 1-2 Yrs (Chest circumference 25" Length 13.5") Start: November 6, 2006 Finish: January 31, 2007
線材: Rowan Cotton Glace (100% 棉), #809 淺藍 - 3 球, #800 淺綠 - 1 球, #725 乳白 - 1 球 (125 yd [115m] / 50g) 圖樣: Adorable Knits for Tots by Zoe Mellor 針號: 3.5 mm/60 cm 輪針 尺寸: 1~2歲 (胸圍25寸 長13.5寸) 開始: 2006/11/06 完成: 2007/01/31
Finally, I finished it. This is the first sweater I made for my baby boy Connor. I fell in love with it the first time I saw the book on the store shelves. Most people make baby clothes "before" the babies arrive. I procrastinated till now... feeling guilty... Actually I was still working before Connor was born. A really stressful job, 50-60 hours a week, day and night. Even though I put in all those overtime, our project was still lagging behind. All I can say is, our project planning was done very optimistically... At the time, I was lucky if I got enough sleep. I knitted, but just some easy, mindless scarves and ponchos. Looking back now, it was probably good that I didn't bother making clothes for Connor. Like all babies, he grew out of his clothes every 2-3 months. And during his infant stage, he spit up all the time. I usually had to change his clothes 3-4 times a day, did laundry almost every other day. I don't think my handknits can take this kind of abuse.
This is also the first time I tried the intarsia technique. OMG! It is tedious! Lots of planning and counting blocks on the chart. And tons of loose ends. I counted, there were a total of 49 loose ends in this little sweater. 49! I know, there are a lot more sophisticated intarsia FOs out there, mine is easy compared to them. But this is about as much as I am willing to do. I will think twice before I embark on another intarsia project.