Posts by Julia

I’m a transportation cyclist and knitter. I love steel bicycles, wool yarn, and loud music.

FO: Miel

Miel
Pattern: Miel
Yarn: Valley Yarns Northfield Hand Dyed by the Kangaroo Dyer (Lupine)
View My Ravelry Project

I finished knitting my second Miel cardigan on Saturday. In the bright sun, it’s surprisingly difficult to photograph, and the shade is no better. But the sweater is nice, and hopefully purple is still the favorite color of the four-year-old Vivian, who is receiving this on Thursday.

Miel
Miel

FO: Babies Sophisticate

Babies Sophisticate
Pattern: Baby & Child Sophisticate
Yarn: Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Worsted Weight (left: Evergreen, Avocado; right: Indigo Heather, Seraphim)
View My Ravelry Project #1 / View My Ravelry Project #2

Baby Sophisticate is a fun, quick pattern. I chose it because I wanted a cute, mostly stockinette cardigan in a variety of sizes that I could customize with mosaic knitting. I used the charts from the Rusted Roof Shawl and Walk in the Woods.

In addition to the obvious addition of mosaic knitting, I also cast on two additional stitches, which I used for a slip stitch edge while working the garments. I then picked up the collar stitches from the slip stitch and cast on edges at a ratio of 1:1, because I’m a #lazyknitter and instructions like “pick up 1 sts for each garter stitch ridge, 3 sts for every 4 rows along sweater sides and 1 st for each cast on st around left edge” make me cringe. I’m happy with how both collars turned out.

If I did this again (and I might), I’d probably play around with the mosaic patterns a bit more. For the green version in particular, I should have added a stitch at the center back so that the fronts would be even. I also could have removed one mosaic repeat in favor of longer horizontal stripes in the front. I don’t totally love the way the fronts look on the green Sophisticate. But on the whole, I’m pleased with how these turned out.

Baby Knits for June

I’m not entirely sure what I was thinking, nor do I think this is even necessarily possible, but I’ve decided to set aside my personal knitting this month in order to focus on baby knits. Because there are several patterns I’ve wanted to knit for awhile, and my boyfriend’s sister is due towards the end of June. In theory, I’ll finish those two WIPs pictured above and transform all of that yarn into sweaters and maybe a diaper cover. Plus a cardigan sized to fit a four-year-old.

On one hand, it seems a little too ambitious. I work 46 hours a week, and I don’t have an abundance of spare time. On the other hand, I can usually finish a three to six-month sweater in about two days, if I don’t have any major distractions. But I’m also going camping for six days later this month, which will provide me with lots of free time while simultaneously diverting some of my attention away from my usual activities. (I’ll be without my bicycle for six days!)

Baby Knits for June

But rather than thinking about what I could accomplish or typing about what I’d like to do, I should probably just be knitting. (And in fact, I’ve completed half of this sleeve while not so carefully considering my words for this post.)

FO: Miel

Miel
Miel
Pattern: Miel
Yarn: Valley Yarns Northfield Hand Dyed by the Kangaroo Dyer (Limoncello)
View My Ravelry Project

My boyfriend’s sister is expecting her second child later this month, so knitting for the tiniest of humans has been back on my radar again. (I knit her first child seven sweaters before she was one.) I have a handful of patterns already picked out, but as soon as I saw Miel in my “Pattern Highlights,” I had to make it, and these two hanks of this Northfield yarn, which had been kicking around my stash for almost two years, seemed well suited for the pattern.

The day I cast on, I knitted to an inch and a half or so past dividing the body and sleeves. It is apparently an astonishingly fast pattern. I can’t decide if it was the combination of yarn and pattern or if I’ve somehow become a fast (English style) knitter, but this cardigan seemed to knit itself. I finished the body in a couple hours over the next two days. The sleeves materialized before me while I played board games and drank beer on Saturday night.

Miel

Not only was this a fast project, it was really enjoyable. The cardigan itself looks impressive, as, in my opinion, cables always do, but it’s also simply a pleasant, intuitive pattern. It’s the type of project you can multitask while working on. You can drink beer. You can play board games with friends. You can wait in line while you knit. You can watch TV and have conversations. And then you look down and see that, instead of needles and yarn, you’re now holding a sweater.

I think I like this yarn too. I’m curious to see how it wears, as some people complained about pilling on Ravelry. I already have plans to knit another — possibly two — in Northfield. We have friends with two young daughters, and I’d like to make their oldest a cardigan in the 4yo size. And I think my boyfriend’s niece will receive one of these when she turns two later this month. And really, that is, I think, one of the signs of a really good pattern: planning the next project before the first is off the needles.

WIP Summary: May 2017

Find Your Fade
Pattern: Find Your Fade
Yarn: Madelinetosh Euro Sock (Antler, Havana [Minimal / Optic], Crudo, Burnished)

If I had to pick a “WIP of the month,” it would probably be my Find Your Fade. I’ve been chipping away at this very consistently since I cast on and, on Monday, while I sat on a lawn chair at an annual Memorial Day party, I finally reached the point in the pattern where the increases and decreases cancel each other out (Section Seven). I’m on my fourth color of six and seem to be at approximately the halfway point.

Gull Island
Pattern: Gull Island
Yarn: Mirasol Yarn Llama Una (Black Dahlia)

Gull Island was my second most-worked-on project this month, however it’s still just 3/4 of a sleeve and most of a body. I’m still have one or two inches left on the body before I set it aside to finish the sleeves and join all of my stockinette tubes. I would like to see this project finished before the end of June, but I’m not sure how serious I am about this goal.

Coloring
Pattern: Coloring
Yarn: West Yorkshire Spinners Wensleydale Gems DK (Jet)

This is probably the project I’m most in need of, but I worked on it the least this month. I keep switching between knitting the sleeves two-at-a-time and working them separately, unable to decide which method I prefer for this particular project. (I generally prefer knitting sleeves simultaneously.) Despite my indecision, I somehow managed to half-complete both sleeves, and I’m hoping to buckle down and put a big dent in this project next month. I suspect I won’t be finished with it by the end of June.

Baby Sophisticate
Pattern: Baby & Child Sophisticate
Yarn: Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Worsted Weight (Indigo Heather, Seraphim)

I cast on this little three-month-sized cardigan yesterday afternoon. My boyfriend’s sister is due next month, and I’ve been squeezing in baby sweaters throughout May. (Hence the slow progress on my own sweaters.) I actually knit two Flax sweaters this month — both of which still require finishing — as well as a Miel cardigan. This Baby Sophisticate has some mosaic work on the back, but I don’t love it. More on that in a later post.


Seasmoke is still languishing on my needles. It’s ignored, but not entirely forgotten. Instead of working on it this month, I impulsively cast on a Cameo Flower shawl, which I’ve enjoyed working on. Currently, I only work on it on Saturdays, and only on the foul-weather Saturdays, so it too has recently come to a bit of a standstill, but I might move this into my at-home rotation in order to get it off my needles.

WIP: Find Your Fade

As I anticipated, I ended up casting on my Find Your Fade shawl sooner rather than later. It was too hard to resist the charm of the yarns I selected for this project.

After casting on, I quickly realized that it’s equally hard to not give in to the impulse to knit “just one more row.” Similar to my previous experience with speckled yarn, I’m thoroughly enjoying the unpredictability of each colorway: watching how each singular hank transforms into fabric, and blending two in the “Color Melting.” And since I decided to skip the lace sections and knit the entire shawl in garter stitch, this has become an incredibly relaxing and mindless project, making it even harder to put down. It’s the perfect WIP for nights when I get home from work at 22:00, which is four times a week. (The fifth night I get home at 23:00!)

Additional changes: I cast on a couple of times, ultimately deciding that the YOs looked messy and caused a loose edge. I’ve opted to knit a kfb as the increase and slip the stitches along both edges. The recommended double decrease also wasn’t to my liking, so I’m working a centered double decrease (s2kp2), which creates an elegant line of stitches.

Pattern: Find Your Fade
Yarn: Madelinetosh Euro Sock (Antler, Havana [Minimal / Optic], Crudo)
View My Ravelry Project

FO: Palmyre

Palmyre
Palmyre
Pattern: Palmyre
Yarn: Madelinetosh Farm Twist (Oeste), Madelinetosh DK Twist (Sweet n Sour)
View My Ravelry Project

Palmyre has been on and off my Ravelry queue since I first saw it a couple years ago, and I’m so pleased with how it turned out. This project went so quickly and effortlessly that I’m pretty certain it knit itself. And, as I recently mentioned, the Farm Twist was also a very nice yarn to work with.

I decided to do the bind off with a different yarn, just to give it an extra pop of color. The coral-like reddish edging matches some of the more subtle flecks of color found in the Oeste yarn, but I also briefly considered a bright green yarn and, halfway through binding off last night, it crossed my mind that the leftover Mineral from my French Cancan might look quite nice.

This shawl is most likely destined to become a gift, but I think I’ll have to knit one for myself.

Palmyre

A couple comments on kntting Palmyre: I often forget to weigh my yarn (as I did here), so I don’t know exactly how much I used, but I did need to break out the third hank of Oeste to finish the lace border. I was about five or six rows from the end of the chart. The only modification I made to the pattern was to knit a longer garter tab before picking up stitches, because I don’t like it when that gets too tight and causes a bump in the shawl. If I could do it all over again (and I probably will), I would experiment with slipping the outer edge of the garter tab, since that would better compliment the top edge of the shawl.

Palmyre