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Thursday, May 30, 2019

A New Cardigan

Sophie cardigan 
I finished knitting my Sophie Cardigan and it only took me two weeks to get buttons sewn on it!  This is the first time in a while that I've knit anything this complicated and while it wasn't difficult, it also wasn't autopilot stockinette knitting.
Sophie cardigan
I knit it in Blue Sky Fibers Woolstok Worsted in Spring Ice and this was my first time using this yarn.  It's a very nice yarn with the slightly crisp feel that non-superwash wools have.  When I washed it, it softened up nicely but it won't ever be quite as soft as a superwash wool.  I'm not saying it's scratchy at all though.  I could definitely wear this against bare skin comfortably.  It just feels wooly.
Sophie cardigan
I enjoyed knitting this cardigan and I think it will get a lot of wear.  Years ago I had a store bought lambswool cardigan in a slightly darker blue green that I wore until it was felted, threadbare and ratty.  Hopefully this one will get just as much wear!

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Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Repeat

Free Your Fade 
Last month I knit a Free Your Fade in jewel tones, which I love.  As I was knitting it, however I began to think about doing one in grays and blacks.  In a neutral colorway, this wrap would go with everything.  I kind of shelved the idea until Caleb got me a gift certificate for Eat.Sleep.Knit.  for Mother's Day.  A couple of days later I had my grays in hand and wound the skeins for knitting.
Free Your Fade
I chose Madelinetosh Pashmina for my yarn.  (If it's going to go with everything, it's going to get a lot of wear and who doesn't want to wear Pashmina?)  My colors are, from light to dark:  Moonglow, Charcoal, and Dirty Panther.
Free Your Fade
This pattern is pretty fast to knit up and the knitting itself is simple, so I didn't mind making another one so soon after the first.  Also, going from multi-tonal jewel colors to nearly solid grays made the knitting process feel completely different.
Free Your Fade
One thing I should note, Pashmina has less yardage per skein and while I had checked the yardage I used of the third color in my first Free Your Fade, I knew I was going to be playing yarn chicken.  Sure enough, this is the end of the skein after binding off.  I had to stop doing picots for the last couple of inches to even get this.  I'm not worried about it since it's not obvious, but if anyone else decides to use Pashmina for this project, you need to know that running out of the third color is a real possibility!

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Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Angel Cowl

Angel cowl 
I made a little crocheted cowl out of super soft and light weight Malabrigo Lace yarn.  The color was Plomo and I just kept crocheting until I ran out of yarn.  I used the Angel scarf pattern which is temporarily unavailable but I had downloaded it ages ago.  I decided to crochet it together to make it a cowl instead of a scarf.  The first picture shows it doubled, but you can see the length of the single loop in the photo below.
Angel cowl
Crocheting laceweight yarn on a 4.5 mm hook means you see progress pretty quickly.  Add in a simple, repetitive pattern and you've got a great project!  This was fun to do and in the light laceweight yarn, I can probably wear it most of the year here.
Angel cowl
In other news, Logan had a medical issue and while medically it wasn't a big deal, it meant he had to wear the Cone of Shame for four weeks.  Logan dealt with it by bashing into anyone and anything with the cone (I've got the bruises to prove it).  Max dealt with it by spending the first three weeks hissing, growling, and fully puffed at Logan.  The last week he decided he just didn't care anymore I guess.  Anyway, yesterday was Logan's post op and he's healing nicely and cone free this morning!  I can't even tell you how many happy dog noises he's made this morning.  We're all happy to get things back to normal!

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Wednesday, May 08, 2019

A New Cardigan

Sophie Cardigan 
I've been knitting on a cardigan lately and I've finished the body now.  This is the Sophie Cardigan, knit in Blue Sky Fibers Woolstok Worsted in Spring Ice.  I started it back in March but set it aside to knit my two fade shawls.

I've now finished the body and while I've sewn down the facing (there's a knitted on facing on the button band, giving a little bit more stability to that section), I haven't yet woven in any of the ends.  I plan to weave in ends before I start the sleeves, but to be honest I don't really want to.  On the other hand, I won't want to weave them in at the end either.

There's kind of a lot going on with this pattern, but once you get past the shoulder and neck shaping it becomes a lot easier.  I'd always rather deal with pattern complexities at the first part of a knit when it's fresh and exciting than at the end when I'm ready to get it finished and move on.  Even the various cable patterns are pretty easy to memorize, so I wasn't dependent on my charts for every single stitch.

The pattern has three-quarter length sleeves, but I'm thinking I might make it long sleeved.  I'll have to check my yarn amounts, but I think I'll be alright.

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Thursday, May 02, 2019

Scrappy Striped Socks

Scrappy Striped Socks 
A few weeks ago I saw a pair of socks on Pinterest.  They were plain stockinette socks with a ribbed cuff, but they were knit from fingering weight scraps left over from other projects.  I didn't even take time to pin the original idea (sorry) before I was upstairs sorting through my own leftovers!

I decided to use mainly pinks and reds with a little bit of orange and my tiny remaining bit of Cosmic Wonder Dust (the white speckled stripe in each leg).  I pulled 80 grams of yarn for this project and when I was done, I had three grams left - next time I'll get a little bit more just for breathing room!

Once I had my yarns, I carefully divided them in half and then bagged the halves separately so I'd have equal amounts of each yarn for each sock.  I could have just started knitting but I was afraid I'd end up with one sock more red than the other if I didn't divide the yarns.  I also picked specific yarns for cuffs, heels, and toes.  I felt like that would help tie the socks together as a pair.

I know what you're thinking - what about all those ends?  Well, I kind of cheated.  I didn't want to weave in thousands of ends either, so I did it as I went.  As I was getting ready to switch colors, I cut my working yarn about 10 inches long and then folded it back on itself.  Then I took the end of the next yarn and threaded it through the loop and let it fold back on itself about five inches.  Then I knit with the yarn doubled and when I ran out of the working yarn, the next stitch was the new yarn and I just kept going.  At the end I had some yarn tails to trim, but the only ends that needed weaving in were the beginning and ending ones!
Scrappy Striped Socks
The one thing about this end management technique is that the doubled yarn sections gave me fewer rows per inch than I usually get in fingering weight socks, so I almost went too far on the foot before beginning the toe decreases.  I should also note that I didn't start and stop new colors at the same place on the sock.  I rotated my joins around the circumference of the sock and just let the color jogs fall where they would.

This was such a great pair of socks to knit that I'll definitely be doing these again.  The random stripes were fun, but I started wondering if I could blend the colors from one shade to another - kind of a sock fade!

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