Monday, January 28, 2008

FO: Starsky

Here's my first finished sweater of 2008: Starsky.

Pattern: Starsky, by Jordana Paige. Knitty Winter 2005 issue. Size small (40.5").
Elsebeth Lavold Classic AL, Color 002, just under 12 balls.
1) I knit the back and fronts as written, except I added some waist shaping. Some other finished projects of this I've seen on Ravelry have looked on the large side so I wanted to make sure it had some shaping, even if it came out big (which it didn't).
2) I knit the sleeves as directed, but when it came time to sew them into the caps, they didn't fit. My row gauge must have been off (didn't check), so I ripped back the sleeve caps and did decreases every 4 rows instead of every other row. This worked well and the sleeve fits nicely.
3) For the collar, I knew ahead of time that I wanted buttons instead of the belt. I did short rows, but I did more of them and wrapped/turned in intervals of 6 stitches instead of 8. I also knit the collar until it was about 5.5" wide at the bottom instead of 3.5".
Verdict: Wonderful! As much as I loved Juno, Starsky is a much more practical knit. The collar fits under a coat easily and I like that it's wide enough that I can button it all the way up and wrap the collar around my neck (as demonstrated, above right). The Classic AL is one of my favorite yarns EVER. It's soft but really warm and hasn't shown signs of pilling. I am usually very sensitive to itchy knits, but I wore just a cami underneath this one.

I received another award! Monica at Rubys N Purls gave me the You Make My Day award. Thanks, Monica! [ETA: Jillian over at sknitty also gave me this award. You all know what a big fan I am of Jillian's work.]

Here’s how it works:
Give the award to up to 10 people whose blogs bring you happiness and inspiration and make you feel so happy about Blogland! Let them know by posting a comment on their blog so that they can pass it on. Beware! You may get the award several times!

This is tough. I subscribe to 113 blogs, so how can I pick just 10? Well, here goes.
1) Lynne at I was knit together in my mother's womb. This is one funny gal who knits great stuff and is currently designing her own sweater.
2) Claudia at Mr Puffy. Claudia makes beautiful knits, my favorite lately being the Pufflet.
3) Wanda at WandaWomanKnits. She is always making something beautiful and always reflects on her knitting.
4) Silvia at silverknits. Silvia knocks out projects quickly and always keep me inspired with her marathon training and home remodeling.
5) Ginnie at Windy Knitty. She always makes beautiful stuff - check out her Buttony sweater.
6) She beat me to it, but Emily from MLE Knits. I just went over to her blog and saw that she gave me the same award. Great minds, I guess! Emily knits really great stuff - check out her Buttony sweater.
Anna at Anna's Flying Needles. This gal is the best darn wrap/lace/scarf knitter I've seen. She has tons of them - go check them out!
8) Faith at No More Sweaters!. She is truly hilarious. If she weren't into knitting, I would tell Faith to do stand-up.
9) Rachael at Catty Wampus. I always have a new post of hers to read and besides knitting, she always has yarn porn or something else to show you.
Kara at knitting lemonade. She is freakin' hilarious and knits fabulous stuff, too!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

FO Roundup

My friend's baby was baptized over the weekend, and as part of his gift, I made some knitted goodies. I'll warn you: what you are about to see is high on the cute-meter.

Pattern: My own, using a simple top down raglan calculator and measurements for a 1-2 year old.
Yarn: Leftovers! I ended up with not an inch to spare of any color, so I really think the knitting gods were looking out for me on this one. I used Knit Picks Swish Superwash in Charcoal, Dublin, Ocean and Capri Blue. The stripes were random and the buttons are little tractors from Joann's - they made the sweater!

Bill got me the book Itty Bitty Nursery for Christmas, and in it are the most adorable little pacifier clips. I knit up the elephant and froggie for this little boy. I wanted to keep the frog for myself - they are so cute! I bought the clips at Target. They took about 2 days to complete - lots of sewing and cutting, but well worth it. I used some Di Ve Zenith (which is very splitty but soft) and some leftovers from other projects. Another great stash buster.

I posted more pictures on Ravelry. I couldn't stop taking photos of these guys!

I know I promised WAY back to give reports on the Christmas scarves I knit this year. Well, here goes:

Pattern: One row handspun by the Yarn Harlot. I added a reversible cable to the center.
Yarn: Queensland Kathmandu Aran in hunter green, 4 skeins.

He likes it!
Pattern: Farrow Rib Scarf for my brother
Yarn: Patons Shetland Chunky Tweed, 3 balls in charcoal.

He's not smiling, but he likes it!

I know I also promised to tell you what all that red yarn is for. Well, I want to get some knitting on it started, but before I divulge the whole story, I can tell you it's a sweater (surprise) and it's in my Ravelry queue, if you really want to know. Starsky is almost finished (the collar is taking forever) and will debut in the next post.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Settling in to 2008

Hi there! I'm finally back into the swing of things work-wise, house-wise and knit-wise, and I have lots to show you. I've been knitting away at Starsky, and have completed the seaming and am working on the collar now. Here's a pre-seaming progress shot:

It fits OK so far - the sleeves are a little snug, but I think some more blocking will relax it. Let's hope!
I've also put in a little more time on Gretel. I'm through the fitted section and am now into the regular/slouchy section. I think I'm going to make the slouchy version, since I should have enough yarn. I'm using this nice, fluffy alpaca I bought at a farm stand in October.

I also started a stash-busting, really easy top down raglan for my friend's baby. He's a big boy and has already outgrown a hat and booties I made him. This is a 1-2 year old size and should be plenty big for a while (he's only 9 weeks old!)

I'm using some leftover Knit Picks Swish Superwash and just making up stripes as I go.

There's also been some stash enhancement . . .
First, I won a skein of Sundara sock yarn in Lenten Rose from Lara over at Yarn It! Thanks, Lara!! Most of you know that I have never knit socks before, but this soft stuff might be enough to entice me to make some socks out of it. If not socks, it might become some nice gloves or a scarf.

I also succumbed to some Webs' closeouts. I bought several colors of Di Ve Zenith, which is on closeout for #3.99 a ball. It was rumored to be as soft and have similar consistency to Karabella Aurora 8. I have to say, it is really soft and does remind me of the Aurora. It's lighter and a little splitty, but I'm excited to try it out. I bought enough brown for a sweater and a few balls of the green, blue and orange to make some toys/baby items for friends.

And, last but not least, I bought 19 (yes, that's 2071 yards!) of Classic AL in Aged Wine (a nice, pure red) to make what will likely be my BIG BIG project of winter '08. But, I'll have to keep you in suspense about that until the next post.

That's alotta yarn!