Thursday, July 31, 2008

Long Lacy Vest 長蕾絲背心

Long Lacy Vest

線材: Filatura di Crosa Brilla (58% 嫘縈, 42% 棉), 色號#311 黑 - 8 球 (120yd [110m] / 50g)
圖樣: 柳屋/樂天市場免費圖樣
針號: 可樂 6/0 3.5 mm 鉤針(織主體下半與裙緣編),可樂 5/0 3.0 mm 鉤針(織主體上半與袖緣編)
尺寸: 胸圍 88 cm
製作日期: 2008/07/13 - 2008/07/24

Yarn: Filatura di Crosa Brilla (58% viscose, 42% cotton), color #311 Black - 8 balls (120yd [110m] / 50g)
Pattern: Free pattern from Yanagiya's Weekly Newsletters
Hooks: Clover 6/0 3.5 mm crochet hook (for bottom 1/3 of the main body and hem ruffles), Clover 5/0 3.0 mm crochet hook (for top 2/3 of the main body, v-neck ruffles, and sleeve edging)
Size: Chest circumference 34 5/8"
Duration: 2008/07/13 - 2008/07/24

Long Lacy Vest Modeled


It's finally done! This is the only one that I have very very much wanted to make ever since I started subscribing to Yanagiya's weekly newsletters. Every week they will send three free patterns for knitting or crochet, with a bunch of other links and promotional information on yarn and other crafty items. This one I believe was from last November. And it is for these wonderful freebies that I continue to subscribe to the newsletters. Otherwise the newsletters would have been totally useless since they are all in Japanese, and they don't ship outside of Japan even if I wanted to buy yarns. Oh, how I wish they would ship to US, cause some of those yarns are so yummy!

Original pattern photo, pretty cute, huh?!
Long Lacy Vest Pattern Photo

這件嘉莉也有做喔!高手就是高手,她的看起來好工整好美。我覺得我用的線可能太重了,織好時尺寸與織圖一樣,穿起來卻拉的好長。雖然可以用腰帶紮一下,可是這樣腰間就有一大坨,加了一圈輪胎,看起來很胖... 嗯,可能用個寬腰帶效果比較好... 哈哈,也許重點是,這件衣服要瘦人來穿才好看... :( 哎,該繼續努力減肥了...

Kelly also made this top. She did such a great job, hers looked so much better than mine. I think Brilla may be a bit too heavy for this design. When I first finished this top, the size was exactly the same as the pattern, which is perfect. But as I wear it, it drapes and stretches, and it becomes too long. I did make and use the belt as called for in the pattern, but it just creates more bulk around the waist. To make it work, I think I need a wide belt, maybe even one of those kimono-sash type of belt, to define the waist. Or maybe the point is, I should continue to work hard and loose some weight, hahaha...

Long Lacy Vest Ruffle Closeup

Monday, July 21, 2008

No Wool in July

After struggling for a few weeks, I gave up. It was just too hot to be working with wool. So, as much as I would like to finish the Silver Belle Cardigan, I decided to put it on hold for a while. And I was so close to the finish line too. Just a few more straight lines of cables and button panels, and I will be done. But I just couldn't take it any more. Working with wool in 90 degrees weather, with no air conditioning, is just inhumane.

和 Silver Belle Cardigan 努力了幾星期後,還是決定暫停一下。天氣實在是太熱,在這種天氣下織羊毛線簡直是虐待。我已經快織完了說... 再幾條麻花、前襟釦洞,就好了呢。可是我受不了啦,編織應該是休閒調劑身心的,織到這麼受罪就不值得了。

Pictured below is the "skirt" of the cardigan, and one of the sleeves and body. The other sleeve is also done. I plan to pick it up again when the weather cooperates.


Silver Belle Cardigan WIP

This is what I have been working on this past week. A long, lacy vest, with a wide v-neck and lacy ruffles. It is going well, and I should be able to finish it in the next couple days.


Lacy Long Vest WIP

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Cobblestone Pullover

Cobblestone Pullover

線材: Jo Sharp Silkroad Aran Tweed (85% 羊毛, 10% 真絲, 5% 開絲米爾), 色號#120 灰 - 12.8 球 (104yd [95m] / 50g)
圖樣: Interweave Knits 雜誌 2007 秋季刊
針號: 美制7號 4.5mm 輪針
尺寸: 胸圍 122 cm/48 英吋, 身長 74 cm/29 英吋
製作日期: 2008/05/08 - 2008/06/24

Yarn: Jo Sharp Silkroad Aran Tweed (85% wool, 10% silk, 5% cashmere), color #120 Ash - 12.8 balls (104yd [95m] / 50g)
Pattern: Interweave Knits Fall 2007
Needles: Addi Turbo US size 7 (4.5mm) / various length circulars
Size: Chest circumference 48", length 29"
Duration: 2008/05/08 - 2008/06/24

當初在雜誌上看到這件毛衣時,沒太大的感覺,翻一翻就過去了。直到偶然間看到 Tiennie 的成品 (),驚為天人,馬上加入待織清單中。這件是由下往上輪編,衣身織到胸下時暫停改織袖子,然後全部連起來織胸口、肩膀、領口,一氣呵成,唯一需要縫合的只有腋下衣身和袖子的接合處。看似簡單,抓密度卻是花了我不少精神。從沒織過這種較粗而且粗細不均的毛線,這幾年織的都是偏細線,試織片時也沒多想,織了一塊12公分見方的織片,量了密度,重新算了針數就動工了。

When I first saw this sweater on the magazine, it didn't do anything for me. Then I saw Tiennie's gorgeous FOs (1, 2), I added it to my to-knit list right away. This sweater is knit from bottom up in circular fashion, stops at the chest to knit the sleeves, and then connect the body to the sleeves and continue to knit the yoke. The only seaming is at the underarm. The construction is simple, but I did struggle with the gauge. Having worked with mostly DK weight yarn, this is my first time knitting with aran weight and tweedy yarn. As usual, I knitted a swatch, measured for gauge, recalculated the stitch counts, and cast on.

Yoke of Cobblestone Pullover


Since my gauge was different from the pattern, I had to recalculate all the stitch counts. Plus the size I want (chest circumference 46") falls between the 2nd and 3rd sizes from the pattern, I couldn't follow the pattern as is. After about 5" into the body, I stopped because it just looked so big. I couldn't get an accurate measurement with all the stitches scrunched together on the circular needles. So I moved about half of the stitches to waste yarn, flatten it out and measured - and it was a good thing that I stopped to measure, the circumference was 52"! I frogged the whole thing and started over. This time I recalculated based on the total number of stitches and the circumference of the sweater. But I still don't quite understand why my first attempt was off by so much, the gauge went from 17 to 16.67, it is different, but shouldn't be that big a deal.


After I restarted, it was smooth sailing through the main body. The circumference remained a perfect 45.5". The trouble came again when I started the first sleeve. Four inches into the first sleeve, I had to stop and re-evaluate. The sleeve looked big again, and it measured big. Not sure why my gauge failed me again, I frogged the sleeve, recalculated based on my latest sleeve gauge, and restarted. Why does something seemed so simple be so difficult to grasp?

Sleeve & Hem of Cobblestone Pullover


When I first cast on this sweater in early May, it was still cool in the mornings and evenings. Still good weather for knitting wool. But the weather took a dramatic turn after a few weeks. While working on this sweater, I was sweating through 80-90 degree weather, with a fan directly blowing at me. With the oil prices sky high, and the prices of everything going up, I try to conserve and not indulge in air conditioning when possible. I just didn't anticipate having so many problems with this sweater, that it would take so long, and the weather would heat up so quickly. I really hated knitting wool in this kind of weather. But I also knew if I put it aside, it would probably remain an UFO for a long long time.


And so, I finished it, after too many scorching hot afternoons. After a good soaking bath, I laid it flat to dry. And now it's picture time, I took out the ruler and measured again, @#$&%! It went from the perfect 45.5" to the oh-too-big 48"! What happened? The strange thing is, the main body became wider and longer, but the sleeves were okay. Sigh... I don't want to reknit it again, at least not now. I have been knitting for four years now, this is the first sweater for my husband. I thought this would be a quick and easy knit, given that I have tackled more difficult projects, never thought that this would be a failure. The body is too wide, makes the perfect sleeves look too skinny almost.

Cobblestone Pullover


1. 身片和袖子密度不同也許是因為織的方式不同,身片是用一隻80cm輪針輪編,袖子是用30cm和60cm兩隻輪針來織,用兩隻輪針時可能不自覺地抓的較緊,所以比較密?

2. 身片變寬變長也許是因為下水時被整件衣服的重量拉的變形?試織片時也有下水定型,不過那麼小一片是不可能因重變形的。從水裡拿出來時已經很小心了,可是將近13球羊毛線泡了水後的重量不容輕視,要完全沒有拉到是非常困難的。也許下次應該噴濕定型就好?

3. 用粗線時試織片應該織大塊一點,因為算密度時些微差距都會影響很大。

Looking back, I think my problems were:

1. The main body and the sleeves were knit in different fashions, sort of. They were all knit in the round, I used a 32" circular for the main body, and used a 12" and a 24" (two circular needles) for the sleeves. I think I tend to pull the yarn tighter when working two circular needles and maybe that's why the tension on the sleeves is tighter?

2. The sweater might have been pulled out of shape as I took it out of the water? I also wet blocked my test swatch, but obviously weight doesn't play a factor in a 4.5" square swatch. I was being really careful taking the sweater out of the water, but with nearly 13 balls of soaked wool, it was very difficult not to pull it at all. Maybe next time I should just spray it instead of soak it?

3. I should have made a larger swatch. With a heavier yarn, every bit of differences counts.


I used to love this kind of construction, knitting in the round with minimal sewing, easy and simple. Now I realized how cumbersome it could be, when the entire garment sat on my lap, it was heavy and difficult to maneuver. It was cumbersome to carry around the house, impossible for on-the-go car-knitting. I had to lift up the entire sweater and repositioned to continue knitting in the round for each turn.


The yarn was also quite annoying, with so many twigs (?) embedded in the yarn strand. I had to stop so often and used a tweezer to pull out these twigs. If they were poking at me while I knit, they would be poking at my husband when he wears the sweater, and that's not a good thing. I thought about switching yarn, but given the price of these guys and the fact that I really do love the compositions (wool, silk, and cashmere), I decided to stick with it. The good thing is the yarn became softer and easy to the touch after a good soak, it really is very nice, once all the twigs are gone.

The "twigs" pulled from the yarn
Twigs from Silkroad Aran Tweed