I have another new pattern release this week! This is Glenwood, part of the SweetGeorgia Yarns Fall 2015 collection:
I’m so excited that this one is finally out in the world! I’ve always wanted a snuggly, cushy, long cardigan—the kind you never want to take off. The shawl collar can be folded if desired, but I also like it the way they’ve styled it in these photos.
I usually like a seamless construction, but for a garment like this, seams are essential to give the sweater structure and prevent sagging. Seaming is SO EASY on this one, though! The waffle stitch pattern makes it incredibly simple to line up the pieces and keep track of where you are.
Here are the pattern specs:
Yarn: 7 (8, 9, 9, 10, 11, 12, 12) skeins SweetGeorgia Yarns Superwash Worsted in Magpie (200 yd / 183 m per 4.06 oz / 115 g skein; 100% Merino)
Side note: Ohmygoodness, this yarn. I used SweetGeorgia Superwash Worsted for this sweater, in what is possibly the most beautiful shade EVAR, Magpie. It’s a greeny-blacky-bluey color that looks completely different under different lights and one that I find absolutely irresistible. It’s aptly named, trust me.
Needles: Size 6 US / 4.0 mm straight or circular needle; Size 7 US / 4.5 mm straight or circular needle; Size 6 US / 4.0 mm circular needle, 32” / 81.5 cm or longer (longer needle recommended for larger sizes)
20 sts and 28 rows = 4” / 10 cm in Waffle Stitch using larger needles
20 sts and 32 rows = 4” / 10 cm in garter stitch using smaller needles, stretched lightly
21 sts and 28 rows = 4” / 10 cm in Stockinette stitch using larger needles
(Note: Stockinette stitch is not used in this cardigan.)
Chest circumference: 30 ¼ (35 ½, 39 ¼, 42 ¼, 45 ½, 48 ½, 51 ½, 55 ¼)” / 77 (90, 99.5, 107.5, 115.5, 123, 131, 140.5) cm
Length: 22” / 56 cm from underarm to hem (all sizes)
Sample shown is size 35 ½” / 90 cm
Intended to be worn with 1-3” / 2.5-7.5 cm positive ease
Pattern includes a 6-page PDF (both written directions and charts)
Notes: I was actually astonished at how quick it was to make this sample. The fact that it’s constructed in pieces means it’s easy to bring around with you, and the waffle pattern is so simple that it’s memorized in a flash.
And this made me very happy… check out Glenwood in the top 5 patterns on Ravelry’s Hot Right Now list last week, yay!
What I’m Knitting
The 3/4 sleeves for the sweater in progress are now done! So that means I’m ready to join and start raglan shaping:
I have to figure out how I want to do the raglan lines. I’m not a huge fan of the simple p2tog/ssp decreases for reverse-stockinette sweaters, so I’ll have to play around a bit and see what I want to do. Stay tuned!
What I’m Cooking:
Vegan, gluten-free stuffed peppers (with quinoa and zucchini and lots of other good stuff). They were very tasty, but next time I’ll cook them longer–the peppers themselves were a little tough.
An easy weekday stir fry over rice, with white asparagus. It was tasty, but honestly, I didn’t notice much of a difference from regular asparagus. But isn’t it pretty?
And faced with a banana tree full of overripe fruit, I made banana muffins. We were out of walnuts, so I went with almonds. They were really good! I might make them this way again next time.
What I’m Reading
I finally finished The Raven Boys (that ending! OMG!) and started the sequel, The Dream Thieves. It’s excellent so far:
What I’m Knitting
I picked up a sweater WIP that my Ravelry project page tells me I started all the way back in October of 2013. That was just a few days before I found out I was pregnant, and, well… eleven published baby designs later, here I am coming back to it, haha.
This was my original concept sketch for this sweater:
I was looking for a way to incorporate some bobbles into a design. I love them, but they’re so impractical most of the time. Before I abandoned this project, I got all the way up to the armholes in a lovely yarn, Stonehedge Shepherd’s Wool Worsted:
So I started a sleeve a few days ago! I’m abandoning the idea of using the same texture pattern on the sleeves because I think it’ll be too overwhelming. Instead, I’m going with 3/4, reverse stockinette sleeves. It’s a lot of purling, but oh well. I think it’ll look good in the end. Hopefully it doesn’t take me another year and a half to finish it.
What I’m Cooking
A friend of mine is expecting her third child any day now, so I made her a few meals and froze them so she can just defrost when it gets crazy. No pics of the enchilada casserole because it just looks like a big tub of sauce once you assemble it, but I got one of the quiche, which came out rather pretty:
I decided to make my good old standby, quinoa-kale-lentil stew (she’s a health-conscious mama, so I figure she’ll need something for when she’s ordered pizza for the fourth night in a row and is dying for something healthy). The recipe has you put the kale in at the very end and stir it around until it cooks down and gets velvety. Every time, I think I’ve ruined it by putting waaaaay too much kale in:
What I’m Reading
Still working on The Raven Boys, which is really, really good. The prose is a little bit too much on the literary side for me sometimes, but I can see why so many people recommended this book.
My newest sweater pattern is included in Knit Picks’ Golden Morning collection! This is the Elva Cardigan:
This flowy, lightweight cardigan is designed to be worn open or with a skinny belt. The garter fan pattern, charted and described line by line, adds a gorgeous detail to the sweater back, while easy raglan shaping and flattering lines make Elva easy to pull on and hard to take off.
Constructed from the bottom up, the sweater is worked seamlessly with raglan sleeve shaping. The elbow-length sleeves are worked with a slight flare at the cuff and then joined to the body at the yoke.
I’ve been in love with the laceweight-at-a-loose-gauge concept for sweaters since I knit myself a Featherweight Cardigan years and years ago. It was my go-to sweater when I lived in LA: just the right amount of warmth for overactive air conditioning or a cool-ish night, but small and lightweight enough to fit in my purse. So I thought it was about time I designed one myself!
Bonus: laceweight yarn sweaters are very economical. This one only takes 2-4 hanks of Knit Picks Shadow (a really lovely yarn with subtle heathering that gives the finished sweater shine and depth).
I added a little flair with the fun-to-knit lace pattern on the back:
To be entered to win, leave a comment on this post and tell me what you’re planning for spring and summer knitting. Do you switch over from wool pullovers to lace shawls, or carry on with bulky accessories all year round?
I’ll use a random number generator to choose the winner this Friday morning, so comment by the end of day on Thursday to be entered! I’ll ship anywhere in the world, so this contest is open to everyone. Good luck! :-)
I finished this little sweater a few weeks ago, but I never got around to blogging about it.
Pattern: My own (very first self-designed baby garment!).
Yarn: Malabrigo Worsted in Emerald, about 1.25 skeins. This yarn has been marinating in my stash since August of 2012 (long time readers might remember it from this birthday wrap-up post!). I love using long-term stash yarn.
And yes, it’s completely impractical, since the yarn isn’t machine washable. But it’s cuddly soft, and I figure my baby will probably fit into it for about 30 seconds anyway, so I’m willing to do a few hand-wash-and-dry-flat rounds.
Notes: I was shooting for a 3-6 month size, since my little one will be born in July and this won’t be worn until the fall. I think I pulled it off, but the sweater looks so teeny to me… I guess time will tell.
My plan is to write up this pattern and get it tested this summer, and then I can make this part of the baby collection I’m planning to release this fall.
I really like the little cable pattern on the back. It shows up so nicely in the Malabrigo:
I’ve been hard at work on a secret, very large, commissioned project. Since I can’t actually show you what it is, here’s a teaser pic:
As you can see, it’s got lovely squishy garter stitch and a texture pattern, and it’s in one of the nicest yarns I’ve had the pleasure to work with. I’m sad I have to wait to share it until the pattern is released!
To distract from the lack of actual WIP pictures, I’ll show you the other stuff I’ve been working on: re-blocking samples for TNNA this weekend. Our cross-country move last summer was not kind to my poor sweaters and accessories.
I’m still nervous about the show, but as you can see, things are coming along nicely. My next post will probably be a TNNA wrap-up, so wish me luck!
Gosh you guys, I was overwhelmed by the lovely comments on my last two sweaters. Way to give a gal a big head! I started designing because I had trouble finding simple designs that suited my figure, and it’s so gratifying to hear that other people appreciate them too.
So of course, today’s FO Friday post is someone else’s design, haha.
Remember how I said I was addicted to baby knits?
(I don’t think the intended recipient of this little sweater reads my blog. But Laura, if you’re reading this, act surprised, okay?)
Pattern: Baby Sophisticate (Ravelry link) by Linden Down. I modified the pattern quite a bit. One thing I love about designing is that it has given me the confidence to make extensive mods to existing patterns with confidence. I have my favorite techniques that I know work well, and I sub them in frequently when I’m not a fan of the technique given in the pattern.
That said, sometimes I like trying a new technique too! This is a top-down pattern, and it uses the backwards-loop cast on for the raglan increases (instead of the more usual kfb or M1 increases). I’d never considered doing them this way, and to be honest, they were a little fiddly to work, but I like the clean lines they made.
Yarn: Berroco Vintage in Indigo. I’ve used this yarn for a few baby knits now–it’s probably my favorite acrylic/wool blend. Soft, great depth of color, non-squeaky, and washes really well. I used one full skein and maybe a fifth of another.
Which brings me to my main modification: a very different gauge. The pattern specifies 15 sts over 4 inches with size US #8 needles, which I knew right off the bat I wasn’t going to get from anything thinner than a chunky yarn (and it would be pretty bulletproof on size 8s, at that). Most of the people who’ve posted FOs on Ravelry used worsted or Aran weight yarn and did modifications for gauge, too. Mine ended up being 4.5 sts/in on size 8s, which gave me a nice fabric.
Notes: I detailed all my modifications on my Rav project page, so I won’t repeat them here. One thing I wanted to mention, though, is a confession: I usually hate doing short rows. It’s not so much the wrapping and turning, but the picking up the wraps and making it look decent that gives me problems. This pattern has you pick up the wraps, so I was resigned to gritting my teeth and getting through it.
BUT, I learned on this project that you don’t have to pick up the wraps in garter stitch–they’re pretty much invisible anyway!
This immediately fills my mind with garter stitch-short row ideas.
And the pièce de résistance: robot buttons! I found out the parents-to-be are going with a robot theme for their little boy’s bedroom, so I found these from an Etsy seller. I think they’re perfect!
Whew, it’s been a while since I’ve posted! I do have a pretty good excuse, though. Besides the fact that my current knitting projects are two secret yarn company designs that I can’t show you, no matter how much I wish I could, there’s also this:
As of last week, the hubs and I are the proud owners of this house! We’ve been busy running around getting things ready to move in. I’m going to have a great workspace for my knit designs and plenty of yarn storage space. It’s pretty dang exciting.
But somewhere in the middle of all that, I managed to wrap up test knitting on my newest sweater design and get it published. So here, without further ado, is Full Circle:
I finished the knitting on this sweater back in the summer (gulp! Can’t believe it’s been that long!), but I couldn’t show it as an FO because I sent it in for an online magazine’s call for submissions. When I got the word they weren’t going to use it, I started the process of self-publishing the design. And now I get to show it off!
Pattern: My own Full Circle Cardigan pattern. I wanted a long, cozy cardigan when I moved back to the Midwest, so I decided to design one. I threw in the fun bubbly cables because, well, I like cables.
Yarn: Araucania Toconao, purchased from Little Knits when they were having their ridiculous full-bag sale ($35 for ten skeins!). I loved working with this yarn–it’s squishy and reminiscent of my beloved Tosh Vintage.
The only thing that bothered me, actually, was the obvious inaccuracy of the yardage given on the yarn label. I used about 6.5 skeins for the whole sweater, including two extensive swatches. If I use the 139 yds/skein given on the label, this was about 900 yds. I can’t knit a regular-length, all-stockinette sweater with 900 yds of Aran weight, so I knew that was waaaay off.
With some help from the Little Knits Ravelry group, I figured out that their skeins are regularly in the 160-170 yd range, which made much more sense, so I put a note in the pattern to this effect. I guess it’s better to get more yarn than advertised rather than less… but it’s still rather annoying.
Notes: I think my favorite part of this design is the teeny sleeve cables. They make me happy. :-)
I thought it might be fun to look back at my knitting progress this year, so I went through my Ravelry project pages and tallied it all up. And holy wow–I finished 27 projects this year. Nine of those were full-sized sweater designs.
That’s a lot of knitting, yo.
Here are the self-designed sweaters (minus two that are secret designs for yarn companies–I can’t blog about those until they’re published next year):
Two FO Fridays in a row! Baby sweaters are addictive, yo.
Again, apologies for the non-modeled, craptastic blocking shot. My niece lives about 1500 miles away, so getting her to model the FO wasn’t really feasible.
Pattern: Latte Baby Coat by Lisa Chemery (Ravelry link). I made the largest size (3T-4T). The pattern was well-written. It included tons of options, which makes for a slightly more cluttered pattern, but I always appreciate having choices.
Yarn: Cascade Eco+, 1 skein in Purple Jewel Heather. The pattern calls for 1.5 skeins for the hooded version in the largest size, but mine took only one, and I had a good sized ball left over. I did rip out my swatch, though–if I had kept a decent-sized swatch, I might have been closer to the end of the skein.
This yarn has been marinating in my stash for more than a year, and it was good to finally use some of it up. I usually avoid baby/toddler knits with non-superwash yarns, but since this is more of a coat anyway and likely won’t fit her next year, I’m not going to be terribly upset if it gets ruined. Plus it was really quick on #10 needles!
Notes: It turned out really cute! I was worried about rippling on the edge, so I bound off very tightly the first time… and then had to rip it out and re-do it when I realized her face wouldn’t fit into the tiny head opening. Doh. But I think I got the tension right the second time.
The balloon is something I’ve recently started using to block hoods. It works like a charm! No more flattened or weird-looking hoods.
When it’s dry, I’ll sew on buttons. I’ve got these neat Celtic knot ones in my button stash that should be perfect.
And it’s good that I’m done with baby knits… because a huge box of yarn just arrived for two commissioned designs that will be due in the new year. Unfortunately, they need to be kept secret, but I can tell you I’m about a fourth of the way through a gorgeous cabled pullover in one of my favorite colors. More on that later….