I’m still plugging away on my Bevin sweater. I’ve made real progress this week, though. Here’s last week’s shot:
As you can see, I’ve finished the front and just completed the twisted-stitch motif on the back. I’ve been feeling like it’s going really slowly, but hey–nothing like pictures to show you the objective view of things.
I’ve also been working on the pattern writing for the white hat I showed you on Friday.
I went back and forth on a name several times. Molly of deepbluerenegade suggested Dandelion, which I really liked, but a quick Ravelry search turned up pages and pages of patterns with this name. So in the interest of making the pattern easier to find, I decided to go with… drumroll please…
If you’re wondering what timekeeping has to do with anything, Dandelion Clock is actually a common name for these things, from a kids’ game where the number of puffs it takes to blow off the seeds is supposed to tell the time:
Well, I guess Knitting & Crochet Blog Week must have taken a bit more out of me than I thought, because it’s been over a week since I last posted. Oops.
Anyway, during that time I’ve finished a prototype for a new hat design (more on that Friday!) and started this:
I’m knitting another sample for my own Bevin Pullover pattern, in the called-for Knit Picks CotLin yarn. The first sample was shipped back to me just as I moved across the country, and between a wonky forwarding order and the not-very-conscientious tenants who moved into our apartment after us, the sweater went missing.
I was never totally thrilled with the original pattern pictures anyway, so I’m not too upset. They were taken on a beach in the middle of summer, so I was trying my very best not to sweat profusely the whole time. This is my chance to knit a new version and do a new photoshoot. I’m just lucky Knit Picks got some nice ones, which they graciously allow me to use as I see fit:
Their model looks gorgeous in the white color, but I think the teal is better for me!
It’s pretty bizarre to be knitting from my own pattern. It’s been long enough since I wrote it that I don’t really remember much of the process, so it’s like reading something someone else put together! So far, so good. We’ll see if I manage to get through it without getting frustrated with myself…
The purple vest is almost ready for public viewing! We did a very successful photoshoot in our new backyard. It has this great wooden fence, which makes an excellent photo backdrop. Here’s a sneak peek from the photoshoot:
I’m done with the Excel sizing (XXS to 4X for this pattern), so the next steps are to lay out the pattern, finalize the chart, and proofread. Then I’ll put the pattern up for testing on Ravelry (likely in the Testing Pool group–if you think you might be interested in testing, drop me a line!).
I also need to think up a name for the pattern. Since it reminds me so much of grapes, I’m thinking maybe Concord Vest? Like these concord grapes:
And I’ve started another project! While looking through my Madelinetosh stash to get ideas for Madelinetosh May projects, I was struck with a colorwork hat idea. I tried to be good and wait for May so I could do the knitalong with everyone else, but I couldn’t stand waiting, so…
The main colorwork pattern is in Tosh Sock in French Gray and Norway Spruce. The lining (to be tacked up when the rest of the hat is complete) is Tosh too, but laceweight so it’ll tuck under without much bulk. I love how the design is going so far!
I don’t know what my deal is, though: usually I’m strictly a DK and up gal, but my last three projects have been on size 2-5 needles. Guess I’m branching out a little…
The sweater design is still rolling along! I just started the bottom ribbing on size US #3 needles, ugh. But I should be done with the body later tonight.
Last weekend, I was working merrily along on the neck increases below the sleeve split when I realized I’d made a pretty serious math error when I set the whole thing up. This is, unfortunately, as much a part of my design process as sketching or swatching. (That’s what I get for trying to crunch numbers while watching Supernatural episodes.)
So I had two choices at that point–rip out the entire yoke of the sweater, back to the point when I started the neck decreases–about an inch from the cast on–or rearrange the numbers so they worked with what I’d already done.
Guess which one I picked?
Turns out I like this neckline shape better anyway, though. I’m calling it a fortuitous accident. :-)
I also cast on a little mini-project yesterday:
It’s an in-progress Owl Puff (Ravelry link)! A friend of mine has helped me tremendously with the fiction-writing side of my life and loves owls, so she’s getting a little surprise in the mail as soon as I can get to the craft store to buy some felt and safety eyes.
And along those lines: I signed with a literary agent for my fiction yesterday! It means I’m that much closer to my goal of writing for a living. So it’s been a very good week all around. :-)
Earlier posts in this series: Design Process Part 2: Sketching, Swatching and Math ~ Design Process Part 1: Inspiration
The next step in the design process is, of course, to knit the sweater. (Actually, I shouldn’t say “of course”. There are plenty of designers who work out the whole pattern for the sweater, grading and all, before they knit a stitch of the actual sweater. That just doesn’t happen to be my process.)
I’ve been working on it for a few days, and I just split the sleeves off last night:
I’m very pleased with the sweater so far! The only hiccup I experienced was a slight change in row gauge from my swatch to the sweater. In the swatch, I got 8.5 rows to 1 inch, which didn’t change when I blocked it. In the sweater, I’m getting 8 rows/in. Luckily I noticed this in time to realize I’d need to shorten the yoke depth by a few rows. Not a big change–but something I always check now, after being burned by gauge swatches before!
And look, it fits rather well (these pics were taken at about 11:00 last night, so please forgive the messy hair and lack of makeup):
Another reality check I do as the sweater progresses relates to the amount of yarn I’m using. There have definitely been times where I assumed I’d need a certain number of skeins and completely mis-estimated–and that’s much nicer to figure out at the beginning of a sweater, so I have time to order more.
But it looks like I’ll have plenty of yarn. I still have well over half the giant skein left, which should hopefully get me the rest of the way through the body. And if that works, I won’t have to worry about alternating skeins at the changeover point (a real concern when working with handpainted yarn). So bonus!
I’m still working on the same sweater, but I’m not quite as lovey-dovey about it this week.
I finished the body and the neckband, which is good:
But the little jog where the neckband ribbing meets the placket ribbing is bothering me. Which is bad.
It’s especially bad because I wove in all the ends already… thinking that the main reason I didn’t like the look was because there were dangling ends everywhere. *facepalm*
I think I might have to unpick all the ends, rip it out, and try again… which doesn’t make me very happy. But if there’s one thing I’ve learned from my year + of designing, it’s that time spent re-doing something that isn’t quite perfect is time well-spent. That was true when I wasn’t designing, too, of course. I just didn’t want to hear it then.
Want to help me get psyched up for all that ripping? :-(
I’m still knitting away on my Tosh Merino Light sweater:
The placket part looks so weird before the buttonbands are added, doesn’t it? I have to keep reassuring myself that it’ll all look fine once the finishing is done.
Now that I’m past the part where the sweater is joined together, it’s smooth sailing (no more purl rows, yay!), so I should be able to make some good progress on it this week. I’m hoping to at least have the body and sleeves done by next Wednesday (the finishing would be great too, but I’m not sure if that’s a realistic goal).
I’m a few inches farther now than that picture–and I only just ran out of the first skein of TML! Knitting fingering weight on size #6 needles is definitely a good way to stretch out your yarn, that’s for sure. I’d be surprised if I used all of three skeins for the whole sweater, since I’m planning to do 3/4 sleeves anyway.
I finally got a chance to get started on my new sweater design! (See this post for details.)
I am completely in love with this project. The Tosh TML is amazing to knit and to look at, and the pattern has just the right amount of juggling to keep me interested (the twisted rib on the back, raglan increases, and neck increases).
We’ll see if I still love it later….
I’ve got a colorwork design in beautiful Madelinetosh Tosh Vintage to show you today! As of this afternoon, I have the body and both sleeves finished:
I was originally planning to do a smaller version of the body motif for the cuffs, but it’s a 22 stitch repeat and would have made the sleeves too hard to size up or down, so I went with a simple 5 stitch repeat that (hopefully) does a good job of echoing the main pattern instead:
Usually I have trouble coming up with clever names for my designs, but this time I think I have a good one. The colorway is called Betty Draper’s Blues, so I’m calling the sweater Blue Betty. Perfect, isn’t it? :-)
Now, on to the yoke!