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Posts Tagged ‘Sweaters’

Take this sweater for example:

I will be the first to admit, it looks kind of odd, laying there, on the table, just to have it’s picture taken.  You can, however, get a really good look at the color play caused by the yarn this way.  I love that part.  And actually, I really love the sweater.  The ‘sleeves’ go just over the edge of my shoulder, still covering my bra straps, and the whole thing looks really kind of nice.  And I am not the only one who says so.  It took me a while to knit it, but it was fun.  The yarn had been given to me by a dear friend, as a secret Santa present.  The pattern?  It is called Summer Darling, a pattern from Drops.  I made mine a little longer then the pattern called for, I happen to be kind of tall, and the top fell quite a bit above my waistband without the extra length, something I am not fond of.  Now it falls right at my waistband, and I am quite happy with it.  I called my version Purple Pleasure…  😀

The bottom edge has a little pattern/lace to brighten it up:

I used Plymouth Yarn Fantasy Naturale Solid, a 100% cotton yarn, in the purple colorway, with the very catchy name 9563.  I ended up buying a 5th skein, for a total of 700 yards, and when I was done, I had about 11 feet left!  The yarn, being cotton is a bit on the splitty side, but it’s beauty (for me) made more then up for that.  If I would make this top a gain, I would probably rewrite it for a lighter weight, since we do not need heavy summer tops in our neck of the woods.  Fantasy Naturale is an Aran weight, and belongs more on a winter sweater, though it being cotton does make all the difference.  Even with our hot days (yes, we already hit 90 several days here) it is a very comfortable top to wear.  The color is gorgeous, consistent, and does not appear to bleed.

Definitely a pattern I would recommend, do not let the odd looking finished product fool you.

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Completely done

I realized that it has been a few weeks, but for good reason.  My poor DS1 did not have a single sweater to put on when the weather turned cold over the last couple of weeks.  What is a knitting mommy supposed to do?  Knit him one of course!  LOL

Truthfully, I started it sometime in July, but did not really start working on it until after I finished my shawl.  (Some priorities are made here… 😀 )  A couple of days ago, it got finished.

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It has warmed up now, of course, but when it gets cold (Texas standards anyway… 😉 ), he will have a sweater.

The pattern is this aran sweater from Drops.  It is a fun pattern, except for the fact that I needed a size 5/6 circumference, 7/8 body length, and 11/12 sleeve length!!!!  I guess my kid has long arms.  LOL  I used Caron Simply Soft in Autumn Red, and it turned out very soft and squishy.  The hardest part was to keep track of 3 different charts with 3 different number of rows simultaneously.  But once you get it started, and are able to read your knitting that was actually not bad.  The patterns are pretty instinctive.  Oh, and I changed the ribbing to 2×2 ribbing, instead of the 1×1 the pattern requested.

A sneak peak of my next project? Alright:

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I can finally tell you about a lovely little sweater I made.  The thing is, a group I belong to made a present for a member who was pregnant.  It was sort of similar to a baby-shower, and everything was handmade.  It was collected by a wonderful member who then sent it on when the baby was born.  But, I did not want to show off what I made, until the new parents received it.  You might have noticed that I am silly that way…. 🙂

Last week we received the message that the brand new mom received our goodies, and loved them.  What did I make?  Well, see for your self:

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A little Raglan, about a 6 month size, though I made the body a little longer, and the sleeves as well.  I like it when a sweater can grow a little with the child.  You want to see the top a little more closely?  Here you go.  I found the most darling heart shaped buttons, that I thought would go wonderfully.

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The idea for the sweater came from the Yarn Harlot.  Other then that, I just made it up as I went.  It’s a top down, basic, raglan, with some ribbing at the neck, wrists and bottom.  Also a little opening at the neck, so it is easy to get the baby’s head through, with the afore mentioned heart-shaped buttons to close it up.  The buttons came from Joann Fabric.  The yarn is Debbie Bliss’ Prima, and I used just over 2 and a half skeins.  It’s color 35706 (you have to love it when they number, not name the colors! :D), a gorgeous, deep red.  The yarn is composed of 80% bamboo, 20% merino, and is lovely soft to the touch.  Most importantly, it is machine washable!  (Flat dry though)  Knitting it was quite comfortable as well, it didn’t split, at least not enough for me to be bothered by it.  I used US 6 (4 mm) needles for most of the sweater and went down to a US 4 (3.5 mm) for the ribbing.

It was a quick and easy project, that worked out very well, if I do say so myself.

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When I wrote about the new additions to my knitting library, Projektmanagerin asked whether I could review the Fishermen’s Sweater book. It has been a while since I had to write book reports, but here goes:

“Fishermen’s Sweaters, 20 Exclusive knitwear designs for all generations” is written by Alice Starmore, who, according to the introduction, grew up in a Scottish fishing community. She grew up learning to knit fishermen’s sweaters. The edition I have is the 2009 reprint of the 1995 paperback edition. There is also a hardcover 2000 edition that is currently available from Barnes and Noble, and I would assume other places. I am linking to Barnes and Noble, as I bought the book from them. I am in no way affiliated with them, other then a satisfied customer.

The book has been divided in 5 parts, “Scotland”, “England”, “Ireland”, “Points North, South and East”, and “New World”. It has a variety of traditionally knitted sweaters and variations there off. Traditionally knitted sweaters of the Scottish Isles are knitted in the round, with gussets under the arm, and with the front and back divided for the yoke. The arms are picked up at the shoulders/armholes, and knitted to the cuff. According to the author/designer, this was because the cuffs and lower arms wear out quicker then the rest because of the work fishermen do. Makes sense to me! Thirteen out of the 20 designs are designed this way, according to Ms. Starmore.

The first thing I noticed is that the picture used for the front cover is pixelated and looks like someone messed around with the contrast. Thankfully that does not appear to be the case with the pictures inside the book. In fact, some of the pictures inside the book seem very detailed, and almost seem to pop off of the page. Really too bad that the picture used for the front wasn’t representative.

I love tradition and traditional ways of doing things, so I am thrilled to be able to knit Scottish fishermen sweaters, just like the people of the Scottish fishermen communities used to make them. The book shows usually 3 sizes per pattern, though some of the patterns have fewer. Apparently the sweater patterns were traditionally specifically designed for one size, and whenever the size changed, the pattern changed. It was not “just” filled up with stockinette. As a matter of fact, most of the patterns in the book (with the exception of the multicolored ones) hardly have any stockinette on them at all. It is all patterned with knit/purl combinations, or cables.

The measurements are always (or at least everywhere I have looked so far) given in centimeters and inches. And there are diagrams of each sweater with the appropriate measurements. One thing some people may not be as fond of is that the pattern sections are presented in charts. The language used is British English (i.e. colour instead of color), something that may look somewhat weird to those of us who use American English in every day use, but it seems rather appropriate. Also the yarns weights used are given both in the British terms (4-ply) and the terms more comfortable to those of us at the other side of the pond (Sport, which is actually given as US Sport) In the back of the book there is information like weight/yardage of the yarns used. There is also a section on knitting techniques, knitting abbreviations, and a few translations of British terms to the American terms.

One thing that has bothered me is the spelling mistakes or typos that I have noticed already, and I haven’t read the whole book cover to cover yet. As an example, on page 6, in the center column, about 2/3 down the page it says: “I feel avery strongly that this traditional method of construction should be revived for knitters today, …” It seems to me that either the sentence was changed or that the a was somehow added in front of the word very. But I find it a little sloppy that this and at least one other made it past the proofreaders.

Alright, now for the patterns. THE reason I bought the book. There are 20 patterns, 5 of them are children sweaters, the rest are for the most part unisex sweaters, though most of them are modeled by women, and only one of them has both a male and a female model wearing the sweater. The sweaters have lots of patterning, but mostly, like I said before, knit/purl combination patterns and cables. There are 4 sweaters that have color patterning instead, one of which is actually a combination of color and texture.

The most difficult part of this book is choosing which pattern I might want to make first. It will be a while before I can cast on, and I try really hard not to pick my patterns before I am ready. I just might get startitis (the syndrome that makes you start lots of projects, it can’t be your own fault after all, right?) and start them before I finish some of these other projects…. I really like Stornoway and Eriskay. I also like the 4 Irish sweaters, but them, I am a sucker for cables. The 4 new world sweaters are really neat to. So, I am not going to tell you which one I am most likely to knit, or which one will be first. If you want to take a look at which patterns are included in the book, and you are part of Ravelry, here is an overview of all the sweaters, and if you click on each sweater, you might find more then one picture. The only one not shown is Breton, which is a child’s sweater with blue and white stripes. In my opinion the least interesting of the set, as it is just stockinette stitch and blue and white horizontal stripes.

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