Oh, Andi!

This photo was taken before I blocked the cardigan.

 

I finally finished my first Andi Satterlund cardigan pattern and it is PERFECT. It fits me beautifully. Everything worked out great. I love it. Its a very retro looking caridgan but its knit up in worsted weight yarn so it knit up quickly.

I knit up the Myrna cardigan in more of the discontinued yarn that seems to make up most of my stash these days, the Classic Elite Summer Set. Summer Set is a cotton blended yarn that reminds me a lot of Classic Elite Premiere or Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece.

I had just 665 yards of the Summer Set which was JUST enough to complete the cardigan. I had about 50 yards left even though I made the cardigan a bit longer than the pattern originally recommended. I probably added a couple inches to the length and it hits just at the top of my hip bones. Still, its a cropped cardigan and the shaping worked out super flattering.

I was sitting on posting this on the off-hand chance I got a photo of me wearing this but time is of the essence so I’ll post this with just the flat photo and hope that’s enough to inspire you to try one of Andi’s excellent patterns. I know I will be knitting more of her designs soon!

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Sometimes, a sweater must die

It took me two years to finish the Reine cardigan which looked so lovely in the Brooklyn Tweed Loft it was originally knit up in. In my budget-bin, discontinued Reynolds Wash Day Wool, to get gauge, the fabric was too floppy. It was basically hole-y knit up on the recommended US 7 (4.5mm) needles. I also followed the pattern recommendations for the length of the cardigan which was too long for me. And I skipped the pockets which was why I wanted to knit the Reine cardigan specifically but then I didn’t like the size and shapes of the pockets so I didn’t include them. And that little saggy point at the bottom makes me horrified! I also totally misunderstood the short row shaping of the sleeves and have weird bulges. It was just a sweater train wreck. I couldn’t decide whether to just pitch it or frog it and try to reuse the yarn.

After trying to wear it to work on several occasions and then changing into something else, I just threw the cardigan on my ball winder and spent Saturday morning with a cup of coffee, scissors and the ball winder furiously winding. I decided to save the yarn to make a new cardigan — something with a better fabric density and a better fit for my shape.

Funky grandpa cardigan

The grey and turquoise colored stripes together. So pretty! (The fabric is bumpy because I didn’t wash the yarn after frogging it. It should smooth out with a good steaming)

 

So I chose the Funky Grandpa cardigan which is knit at a much tighter gauge and let me combine my love of stripes and use lots of stash yarn. I’ve been stealing my husband’s Grandpa-style cardigans recently so it seemed appropriate to make my own. I’m combining the original Reynolds grey yarn with some Colinette Jitterbug in Elephant’s Dream and a skein of Stitchjones Merino Sock in Petrol blue. I love the look of the colors together even though I won’t get the color changing effect of the original design but I love the pops of turquoise stripes against the grey.

I hope this is a better use of the yarn and will be a better fitting, more loved sweater. Its well on its way as I’m way more excited about it than I was about the Reine cardigan so my outlook is hopeful.

Funky grandpa cardigan

I’ve got about 7″ completed and joined the front panels and the back last night.

 

Funky grandpa cardigan

The deep blue (petrol) is the top of the shoulder and will relate to the sleeves and a pick up edge for the ribbing.

 

On The Pins: The Suzon Shawl AKA The Potato Chip Knit

On Monday evening, I cast on the Suzon (Fabulous Carnival) Shawl, inspired by my Circus-inspired knitting projects and its the most “one more row” knit I’ve ever worked on. Instead of worsted weight yarn, I’m using fingering weight and US size 4 needles. With the long color change of the Crystal Palace Mini Mochi Juniper Fireworks yarn and the squishy, clean ivory solid from Knit Picks in a simple, easy fisherman lace, I am loving this knit.

I once heard someone refer to a knitting project as a “potato chip knit” a project you want just one more bite, one more row and this is my first genuine experience with this idea. Each section of repeats is just ten rows so once I finish the color striping, I just want to whip through the fisherman lace and then the next ten color rows.

The photo above is the result of just two days of work (in between full work days and finishing two other projects). Yep, that chippy!

I look forward to knit night tonight to work through a few more repeats!

What’s off my pins: Scarves of January

Japanese Waves

In January, I tackled a couple scarf patterns. I started with the Japanese Wave Pattern which is a very simple lace design that created just enough texture to keep the pattern interesting but not so much as to compete with the handpainted yarn. I used one ball of Malabrigo sock yarn in the colorway Rayon Vert. I titled the project Marsala Waves since the yarn was very much the same color as Pantone’s Color of the Year for 2015. I knit until I was out of yarn and it ended up being at least five feet long. I sent it to one of my pen pals as a gift and I do hope she likes it.

close-up Shell & Shale

The next scarf I knit was a simple Feather & Fan design that was made from frogging a Purl Ridge cowl whose bind-off was too tight and the whole thing rolled most unappealingly. I ripped out the cowl and then just re-knit it in the Feather & Fan pattern until I was out of yarn. It ended up being about three feet long after blocking so despite the modern handpaint colorway, is about the size of a vintage neck scarf. I’m certainly more inclined to wear it now than in its previous incarnation. The yarn is quite soft but I’m inclined to overdye it for a more consistent color. I think I’d wear it more if it were more solid in color.

Shell & Shale

Off The Pins: Handwarmers for the Mister

twisty dark mitts

While I was under the weather last week, I took a break from working on my vintage NaKniSweMo sweater with the bobbles and worked on a few projects that were simple and pretty brainless for the NyQuil-haze.

My husband was asking for new handwarmers so I found some black Shepherd’s Shades in my stash and matched it with the Toshette cabled mitt pattern and then I added pots of tea and lots of silly TV watching and voila! Manly twisty dark mitts! I added the thumb gusset per Maratini, alternating the increase for the gusset with a plain row until I had about 11sts between the markers. I also added an extra repeat of the cables above the thumb to cover my husband’s long fingers.

twsity dark mitts

He hardly takes them off and now they are civered with cat hair too. Darn black yarn!

What’s On My Pins: Matthew’s Vest

Matthew's Vest

Earlier this year, I attempted to make a vest for my darling husband from a pattern in Nikol Lohr’s book called Literary Knits. I made the Sal Paradise Vest but, in the end, Bob felt like the neckline was too low for his tastes. Because of the unusual construction of the Sal Paradise Vest, top-down from the neck, I couldn’t frog back and fix it without disassembling the whole vest. As a result, I decided to use a different pattern to remake the vest. I used the Matthew’s Vest pattern from the Green Gables Knits book.

Matthew’s Vest in knit in the round from the bottom up and I love the way the cable wraps around the neckline.

Matthew's Vest

I think the new vest turned out really well. The cable was just enough fun to keep all the stockinette from getting too boring. The ribbing at the bottom is a sort of mistake rib and the ribbing on the neck and arm holes is a standard ribbing with a knit bind off, instead of in pattern which helped to pull the edges in since the ribbing was not done on smaller needles.

(What’s On My Pins is a regular feature focused on projects I’m currently knitting. Knitting needles used to be referred to as “pins.”)