Gull Island

FO: Gull Island

Pattern: Gull Island
Yarn: Mirasol Yarn Llama Una (Black Dahlia)
View My Ravelry Project

I meant to block this. I’m usually very good about blocking knits, and I actually really enjoy that final step in the process of knitting a new thing.

But, after finishing this sweater on 8 October, it sat, neatly folded, on the corner of my desk for weeks. Over a month. Nearly two. And at that point, I decided to just start wearing it. Because it’s incredibly soft and quite warm, and I really like a good henley.

So I’ve been wearing it with all of the slight imperfections that disappear with a good wet block in plain sight, and I’ve accepted that it’s simply not going to get blocked until I wash it for the first time. Sometime next year. Probably. I’m kind of expecting it to grow, which is okay, because I like my sweaters kind of oversized.

Gull Island

I vaguely recall not loving knitting with this yarn, but honestly, I worked on this project for such a long time that I can’t really remember the details. I do remember that this project underscored that I don’t like bottom-up sweaters. But the yarn — it might have shed more than I wanted it to? Perhaps it was ever so slightly splitty? Who knows. It’s presently lovely, and I have only good thoughts about it.

Advertisements
Bromley

FO: Bromley

Pattern: Bromley
Yarn: Jo Sharp Silkroad Aran Tweed (Ash)
View My Ravelry Project

Since the beginning of the year, I’ve been telling my mother that I’d knit her a hat. She’s a very picky person, and it was difficult finding a hat pattern that she liked. So I didn’t produce a hat last winter, nor this summer, and then suddenly it was late fall, and I wanted to be able to bring her a hat on Thanksgiving.

Bromley, with its subtle texture and beret-like shape, seemed like something she’d like. (She’s a hard person to please.) I didn’t end up loving the process of knitting it, but eventually I found my rhythm, and I finished knitting it yesterday (Thanksgiving) morning. The cabled texture was kind of hard to capture in a picture, but I think it looks nice.

Bromley

The crown shaping was a giant pain in the ass though. Twice because I wasn’t reading the directions. Once because I was reading the directions, and I simply didn’t like what I saw. So I went a bit off the pattern for the crown shaping. Instead of starting each decrease section with a k2tog, I knit an ssk and ended with a k2tog. And then I worked the left and right cables based on what appeared in the previous rows.

It worked out perfectly, and I’m not at all convinced that there’s a problem with the pattern, because who knows, maybe I made a mistake in my setup, which caused the crown shaping to not really work for me.

Erie Hat

FO: Erie Hat

Pattern: Erie Hat
Yarn: Stone Wool Romney + Merino (Quartz 03)
View My Ravelry Project

Another simple ribbed hat in another yarn from Stone Wool.

I followed the pattern with three minor exceptions: I did a long tail tubular cast on; I didn’t begin the decreases until I had knit 8″; and after the final decrease round, I did one additional round of k2tog.

I’d like to think that I’ll block this before I wear it, except that I’ll probably wear it tonight.

Pom Pom It!

FO: Pom Pom It!

Pattern: Pom Pom It!
Yarn: Stone Wool Cormo Worsted (Tobacco 03)
View My Ravelry Project

I had every intention of blocking this, but then it briefly got quite cold, and this cozy hat was the first thing I grabbed. I wore it on my bicycle, I wore it while I worked, and then I stopped caring whether it was blocked. Maybe in the spring.

I’ve knit myself a lot of hats, but I can never seem to knit one that I like on my own head. But this one — I like it. I skipped the pom pom, because I’ve realized that, while I like poms, they make it harder to stuff hats in coat pockets and overstuffed bags. I also skipped the twisted rib, because I was feeling lazy and I had already done a non-twisted tubular cast on. (I actually think twisted rib looks a lot nicer than regular rib.)

Really, you don’t need a pattern to knit something like this, but knowing a number of stitches to cast on using which needles and what weight of yarn is useful. And I appreciate that Stephen West is giving this information out for free.

Milliken

FO: Milliken

Pattern: Milliken
Yarn: Mountain Meadow Wool Sheridan (Prairie)
View My Ravelry Project

This is one of the first yarns I purchased, once I decided that I was going to start wearing colors. Sure, I have a couple of stranded sweaters that aren’t black, but now I’m wearing blue jeans and non-black work pants and earth-toned flannels. (Plus my standard black tee, as some things do not change.) All of this is a lot of color by my standards, and I like it. And it means that’s a wide variety of yarns that are available to me now, like naturally dyed yarns or American and British wools that often don’t come in black.

So when I saw that Heritage Woolery would be closing its doors in December, I jumped at the opportunity to buy a generously discounted pile of 100% American-made yarn in non-black colors. The “Prairie” colorway, slightly more olive green than the pictures show, of this Mountain Meadow bulky yarn was especially attractive to me, and I purchased a vest-quantity of it.

Milliken

Initially, my plans were to knit a different Elizabeth Smith-designed vest, but the Quince & Co. “Arctic” collection was published not long after I made my yarn purchase, and I really like the simple design of Milliken. This is actually the third pattern I’ve knit by Elizabeth Smith, so there’s definitely something about her designs that speak to me.

The vest is intended to have 9″ positive ease, but that’s a lot of ease — too much, I thought. So I knit the 40″ size, which, after blocking, was in fact 40″ wide. I added an inch or two to the body, because there are few things I dislike more than feeling like I’m pulling on the hem of a sweater all day, because it’s too short. In retrospect, I could have made this longer, but since it’s a thick fabric, I might end up being happy with this length when I’m riding my bicycle.

The only big change that I made to the pattern was to extend the slipped stitch and garter motif into the cowl neck. I also shortened the collar, because an abundance of fabric around the neck will definitely become too warm on my bike.

Very pleased with how this turned out, and it looks like I might be able to wear it tomorrow, as the weather report is currently predicting a high of 37°F and a low of 26°F. (Maybe it’s also time to shut my bedroom windows.) That’s definitely cozy woolen vest weather.

Gable

FO: Gable Sweater

Pattern: Gable
Yarn: unknown fingering, 100% animal fiber
View My Ravelry Project

So, it’s been awhile. I had a pretty horrible summer, and a lot of things in my life changed. And it got so bad that I stopped knitting. Then I moved. And now I have a different job with normalish hours, which leaves me time to knit, which I resumed doing in earnest in September. I’ve actually finished a few projects since the end of July: Find Your Fade, my Palmyre shawl, an Overskyet shawl, my Coloring cardigan, and finally the Gull Island henley, which still needs to be blocked and will likely end up in a post here.

But today, I’m sharing my recently completed Gable.

Gable

A couple notes about the pattern: the sweater is constructed from the bottom up, but I’ve never enjoyed knitting sweaters that way. I’ve done it. And when I cast on for Gable, I had actually just finished Gull Island, also bottom-up. So I was kind of bottom-up’ed out. Instead, I decided to knit Gable from the top down, basically reversing all of the instructions until I completed the yoke, at which point I could knit the body on auto-pilot.

This worked really well for me. I’m incredibly pleased with my decision, because I’d probably still be working on this if I had started with the body and sleeves separately followed by the yoke. I might have also had issues with the fit, because I’m part of the #noswatchclub. I did have to shorten the yoke to fit my measurements.

Gable

As far as the yarn goes, it was gifted to me last November by a friend, who had had it in her stash for years. The labels are long gone, but the bleach test revealed that it was 100% animal fiber. It feels like wool. Very scratchy wool. I don’t think it’ll ever be a next-to-skin garment, but I’m quite looking forward to wearing it as an outer layer. It seems like it would be a durable fabric.

Anyway, I do believe that “I’m back.” I missed knitting, and I’m glad that I’m doing it again. Another recent change is I decided to stop wearing all black all the time, which has opened up entirely new yarns and designs to me. It’s very exciting, and I have some sweaters in my queue that I’m really looking forward to working on this winter. But more on that later.

FO: Cameo Flower

Cameo Flower
Pattern: Cameo Flower
Yarn: Malabrigo Yarn Arroyo (Archangel)
View My Ravelry Project

I finished knitting the Cameo Flower shawl on Saturday after making a trip to my LYS to pick up a third hank of Arroyo. It was much more purple than the first two, but really, none of my hanks matched, so I just went with it, and I think it isn’t very obvious.

Cameo Flower

This was a nice project. I cast on for it rather impulsively back in May and breezed through the body repeats pretty quickly. The charted sections seemed to take a lot longer, but I think that’s just because I set this aside to work on other projects. The lace is, in fact, very easy to keep track of and went pretty quickly once I dedicated some time to this shawl.

Because of a recent turn of events in my life, this has become kind of a sad project for me. I never really put much thought into how an FO can embody or reflect the moments and circumstances in which it was created. Some knitters talk about how they can look at a sweater and remember where they were and how they were feeling and stuff like that. I’ve never felt like that before. But some things have changed between when I cast on this shawl and when I bound off, and while I took pictures of it this morning, I found myself thinking about those changes and remembering the moments I worked on this — where I was, what was going on — and I realized how very heavy this FO makes my heart. So I guess I understand now what those other knitters are talking about.