How is the knitting going?

10-04-19 Mitts try 1

In an effort to straighten up my thoughts and plans a bit, here’s an update on how the knitting is going in this neck of the woods.

First up, fingerless mitts for my Etsy shop. The above are my first pair trying out a lacy pattern and they are as finished as they are going to get. I have to say, they look a lot better in the photo than in real life. To my eye, the busy dye pattern on the yarn, which I think is gorgeous, doesn’t work well with the lace motif. The glove doesn’t seem to sit too well on the hand, with the lace motif looking a little off-centre. Not to mention that I hurried the first mitt and am not happy with the quality of it. I think these are destined to go to charity. I have cast on for a second pair, but I haven’t got far:

10-04-19 Mitts try 2

For these I am using John Arbon Knit by Numbers 4-ply and everything about it is making me very happy. I am experimenting with positioning the lace panel at the side of the back of the hand to see if I like it.

My golden/mustard/yellow sweater is still patiently awaiting its turn in my affections. I fear that might not happen until the autumn, but we will see.

Over the past week I have been mainly working on the Gaudi cardigan and I’m pleased with the progress I’ve made. As of today, I have the back and both sleeves completed, and am just about to embark on the armhole shaping/colourwork section of the first front.

10-04-19 Gaudi

I am still keen to get this cardigan completed so I can be wearing it. I think I may crochet the button band as I did this with one of my all-time favourite cardigans and it has stood the test of time extremely well. The additional sturdiness of the crochet really helps on button bands, and also the button-holes are so much neater than on knitted bands.

I have been looking at a few of the patterns in the Rowan New Vintage DK pattern book and thinking how splendid they would look in a gradient of one colourway. That could be achieved using John Arbon Knit by Numbers yarns, or wools from the Shetland suppliers. I might do one myself.

Other than these, I have no real plans or thoughts or dreams on the knitting front other than to reach the finish-line on the cardigan and mitts.


How is your knitting shaping up? Have you taken an inventory recently and come to any conclusions about the projects you are working on?


 

A cast-on, an update, and a modification

07-01-19 sock progress
Plain vanilla sock using yarn dyed by Noodle Soup Yarns of Norwich, UK

THE CAST-ON

On New Year’s Day I finished the socks I had been working on seemingly forever, and I put away my sock-knitting project bag so that I could concentrate on the Gaudi cardigan. Then my sister appeared wearing the beautiful hat she had whipped up in a trice from the Noodle Soup Yarns skein that I gave her for Christmas and I suddenly knew I had to cast on a sock with the skein I had gifted myself at the same time. Although this skein is named “Spooky Smog, as I wound the wool it made me think of a kingfisher in a deep, dark wood, so I am calling these socks “Kingfisher in Fangorn Forest”. Thus far, it has to be said, the kingfisher itself is absent, but I am enjoying the forest nonetheless.

This is my standard sock pattern, 60 stitches on 2.5mm KnitPro Zing needles and the yarn base is a 3-ply 80/10/10 mix of Superwash Merino/Cashmere/Nylon. It is a tiny bit thicker than a lot of sock yarns, and I am loving the fabric that this is creating. It is very squooshy. Noodle Soup’s dyeing is very luscious and, even though this is a really saturated colourway, there is no dye coming out on my hands as I knit.

I made good progress after casting-on yesterday, and have turned the heel of the first sock and started working on the foot. One thing I experimented with on my previous pair of socks was using what Interweave Knits refer to as a Barn Toe and I was very pleased with the way this fitted. I will use the same method for these socks.

GAUDI UPDATE AND MODIFICATION

07-01-19 gaudi progress
Gaudi progress as at 7th January 2019

Here is my progress to date on the back of the Gaudi cardigan. I am so pleased with how this is knitting up, although I am debating back and forth with myself as to whether or not I like the yarn (Rowan Felted Tweed DK). So, on the plus side, I love the colours, I love the tweedy effect and I love the feel of the fabric created. The only downside is that I don’t like the alpaca content and that’s something I struggle with regardless of the brand of yarn. I just don’t like alpaca, even a tiny bit. I hate the constant barrage of what look like dog-hairs that come off it as I work and I don’t see that it adds anything of value to the feel of the yarn. However, I am reserving judgement until the project is finished, and it is not something that is going to prevent me from wearing and adoring the cardigan.

Now, to the modification. I remember the good old days, back in December 2018, when I was all gung-ho about how I was going to knit Gaudi exactly as it was written. However, time has moved on and I am a more experienced person now, so I have changed how the colourwork ‘yoke’ portion is knitted. The pattern is written to utilise slipped stitches and I did a few rows in this way without too much trouble. However, the way the raglan shaping is constructed meant that I was stranding the yarn across the back and it seemed to make more sense to me to do the colourwork similarly to how you would do a Fairisle pattern. I ripped back and started working it this way, and I am really liking it – both how it looks and how pleasurable it is to work. Here’s a close-up:

07-01-19 gaudi close-up
Modified colourwork section

I know this is less three-dimensional than it would be with slipped stitches, but it appeals to me.

I hope your knitting, or any other craft pursuit, is going well and that you are making progress towards any goals you have set.