Over a year ago, Miriam Felton hosted a knit-a-long for her Chromaticity Cowl, and I jumped in. I went stash diving and knew that one of the yarns would be the leftovers of some Fleece Artist in my favourite colour, moss, that I purchased in 2007. The other colours were the challenge. I knew I wanted the green to be the star so the others would be greys, but I wasn’t sure even after doing black and white photo contrast tests if I chose the correct yarns until I started knitting. My initial choices did not provide enough contrast so I set the project aside for many months.
A month ago, while I was reorganizing my yarn stash and reviewing UFOs (unfinished objects), I pulled this project out and decided to finish it. I changed a few things, I only knit 5 rounds of hexagons instead of the seven Miriam designed and while my floats are neat, I decided to fully line it to help use up all of the charcoal and dove grey yarns. It’s a beautiful cowl and I’m very happy with it. What surprised me the most is that there are still a few yards of Fleece Artist remaining!
Today over at little acorn creations, I posted a quick interview Riin of Happy Fuzzy Yarn. We talk about her yarn business, knitting designs, and bunnies. Discover your answer to the question, does yarn make you happy?
I started this sweater in May 2013, to go along with a KAL. I finally finished it last Saturday night, a week too late for Rhinebeck. I swatched for this sweater, by knitting the sleeves. Why did I knit my sleeve instead of a normal swatch? I struggle to actually knit swatches because it bothers me that after I block and measure them, they mostly just sit around ignored in my swatch box. I am impatient and could foresee not wanting to knit the second sleeve and then turning it into a vest! It would have been a pain to rip out the sleeve if it didn’t work out, but I knew if I made gauge (which I did) then I would be a sleeve ahead.
Swatching was essential for this project to answer two questions: 1) would my yarn substitution work? The yarn I used (now discontinued) is structurally different from the suggested Fiber Optic Kashmir. 2) I also wanted to see if my idea to knit on the lace edge would work, its designed to be sewn on later. The answer was yes and sort of. After making gauge, I decided to forge ahead with this yarn anyway. Knitting on the lace worked perfectly, but because it’s a dark charcoal grey sweater, the lace detail is lost.
This sweater was knitted in fits and starts and when I finally finished the second sleeve at the end of August I knew I had to make some changes so I would actually finish it. I wound three balls off the cone and knit the back and both fronts at the same time. I thought about knitting mostly seamless, but I wanted to practice my seaming so I forced myself to knit it flat. It got to be a tangle at times, but I think it worked out overall. I went into the seaming knowing that the lengths were equal and that helped.
I then needed to make a decision if I was going to knit the lace and cable edging or not. For the bottom I knew I didn’t want the motif. This is the same yarn I knitted the Whisper Cardigan out of, and I knew that it really likes to roll. So I knitted a hem and faced it with some green in the same yarn. I was going to knit the collar in brioche, but due to needle choice ended up doing a 1×1 rib instead, knitting it directly onto the fronts. I like the understated effect, though wish I had remembered to increase the stitch count once I made the switch from brioche to ribbing as it’s a bit narrow. I ended the ribbing with a tubular bindoff and that little detail makes me very happy. More notes about my design modifications can be found on my ravelry project page.
I’ve worn this sweater every day this week, it’s now my favourite sweater!
The first week back after the holiday cycle is always a challenge. This year I revised my planning system* so it has been productive and not overwhelming as in years past, but it’s still been quite the week. Monday morning I couldn’t find the new can of coffee I’d squirreled away in the cupboard and that made the day an interesting one (I drank copious amounts of tea instead). A nor’easter in town didn’t help. Today had its own set of of distraction, so all in all A Week.
This sweater started life as The Jumble Sale Kimono for the Widow Mayhew’s Daughter by Andi Smith. While it still echoes her design, I’ve made extensive modifications along the way to accommodate my very differently structured yarn, my preferred style, and my desire to finish it (I cast on in May 2013!). About 40% of the collar still needs to be knitted, but the end is in sight and hopefully I’ll have a new sweater in time for my birthday.
* I’ll discuss more about my new system soon. I’m very happy with it. ^ back to top