Saturday, February 28, 2015

A New Smocked Vest

This is another one of those projects with many twists and turns during the knitting process.
It once again proved that I'm one that cannot help herself to tweak ideas as I go.

Initially, I was thinking a swing vest with asymmetrical opening at the front, and lacy collar using variegated yarn.  But half way up the waist line, I wanted to add a little gathering over something like 20 stitches at the left front, near the waist.

I did some improvisations of the gathering, and fell in love with the smocking effect I came up with. So I changed my mind and wanted to use the smocking stitches for a much larger area.

After ripping one days' work back, the sweater was joined at the front with some overlapping. Then I proceeded with the smocking at the front.  I was so glad I did, because the progress before that was slowed to a crawling pace due to boredom. But the smocking stitches made the knitting so much more interesting, and I once again picked up the pace.

Because there are already a lot of elements for the sweater, I decided the neck should be in the same color, so I ordered more yarn. I also changed my mind about the sleeves design. It went fromplain tank top style to a little short rows for a slice of triangular sleeves to cover up the shoulders more.

Another change of plan was letting the front just swing open instead of few button close to the waist.

The whole time I worked on the smocking, I was wishing I didn't do the asymmetrical front of different length on each front. But in the end, I liked it and was very happy with the asymmetry.

I used Berrroco Ultra Fine Alpaca in the color Turquoise Mix.  It's a beautiful color that's extremely difficult to photograph.  I used size 4 needles to give it a very drapey fabric.

This top has matching lace hem edge with the neck, with a little ribbing at the back neck area.  I think this sweater is a sign that I'm ready for spring.  I also want to make one in Quince & CO. Sparrow (linen yarn) for the summer, but maybe with the front in round without splitting.  Maybe...

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Happy, Happy, Year of the Sheep

This is the year for us knitters!  Lunar new year is here, and it's the year of sheep, or goats, or rams.
May your new year be filled with tons of yarnie goodness.

In my design related news.  I published a pattern last week, and another one today. Both are top down seamless constructions.

The first one, Colors for a Cloudy Day, and this sweater calls for DK yarn. It is in raglan sleeve style.

The second second sweater is Cowl Belle. And it uses Aran weight yarn, and it's in round yoke style.

I have something on my needle but it's so slow going, even though it's basically stockinette stitch. Because of an ongoing art show I'm in right now, I've been spending more time painting than knitting (and loving it).  Maybe this weekend I'll make some more progress and I'll have more things to blog about soon.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Second Pair of Jewel Socks

I finished the second pair of Jewel Socks.  Again I used Knit One, Crochet Two, Crock-O-Dye for the main color.  Used left over yarn for the contrast color on the motif and added contrast color heels and toes this time.

I'm in love with this stranded colorwork motif.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Sweater Take 2

Here it is, all blocked! The sweater that came from the unravelled yarn of "Disappointing Sweater."
This time, I'm much, much happier.

The yarn, Cascade Highland Duo, is a super cuddly aran weight yarn.  I used the same texture stitch yoke as the neck and cuffs for  "This Wednesday Morning."  Yes, I do have an affinity for cowl neck or some kind of tall, but not too tight neck.  It's something I use again and again in my designs.  I can't help it as I think it creates a flattering silhouette.

The yoke is round yoke with increases rounds along the yoke.  I made it with about 5" positive ease. The result? a very comfy sweater that I can relax into. The sweater also has a gentle dropped hem on the back.  I first made the ribbing on the first sleeve cuff 4" long, then I ripped it back and did it for 6" which I like the proportion much more.

I feel like I'd redeemed myself.  Now I can happily move on to the next project.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Plum Rain

Plum Rain is now published on Ravelry.
I have un-linked my patterns at Ravelry from LoveKnitting with EU purchases.  Any EU knitters who prefers to support their own country's new VAT policy can still find all my patterns, including Plum Rain and future releases available on LK for purchases to be purchased directly.

I lost some sleep over this decision.  In the end, I found the Ravelry linking to LK not really compatible with me.  I spent a bit too much time in January trying to check and check, wait and wait for the patterns to be available for EU knitters, and answering inquiries from EU knitters.

Little update on the unraveled yarn, I also just finished knitting a sweater with it.  the sweater is blocking now.  I'm liking it a lot better than the Disappointing sweater it once was.  Well, that's not hard.  We'll see how much better is it this time.