Julie knits and writes and knits.

Archive for OTN

Twin Fair Isle Sampler Vests

Posted via email from JuJu

This is how the knitting fates will get you…

Recall this project from, well, ever so very long ago? A cute little project that started out normally enough. Coneived to be a fair isle sampler of peries and medallions in a lot of fun colors of a size big enough and construction complex enough to get a really good feel for traditional Fair Isle knitting. So I knew, before investing in a larger project, whether this sort of thing would work for me, or not.

I targeted a nice young man to receive the results of this little experiment. And then the project…. lagged. Not because I didn’t love it. I do love it, but because other knitting, as it will, jumped to the front of the line. By the time I cut the steeks and added the arm and neck ribbing, the child had outgrown the vest by… oh… 3 years or so.

Luckily, there are always new babies around. The right kid at the right size in our family happens to be a twin…. so… the second Fair Isle Sampler Vest is screaming along, really trying to make it before the two-year-old twins turn four.

Meantime, the yarn has been discontinued. More or less. But good hearts at Ravelry saved me there.

I think I will make it, puling off the second vest in a month or so if knitting, and clearing the size 3 needles for the next project. One inspired by the Atlantic and granite and fog:

Say, want to keep up with this? I’ve just added the new WordPress email subscription feature, right there in the next column at the tippy top. Subscribe, and you’ll get the posts as I add them, sporadically, sure, but, you know… as they come…


Girasole for the soul

Oh my goodness. Working on brooklyntweed’s lovely Girasole, a wedding gift, already overdue. Finally decided on cascade ecological wool after hemming and hawing for weeks. The yarn seemed underwhelming for so long… Until you knit with it. Knit stitches transform this yarn completely. I am in love.

The pattern is made for knitting addicts, each row lulling you to the next, each chart charms you into trying the next one…

Almost done with the sunflower… It’s good to get a little sun in January…

It’s fun.

So not working

Took a great sockitechture class with Cat Bordhi, a wonderful experience I recommend to anyone. And while she offers up a wildly generous formula for making up your own socks as you go a
along, and encourages you to just go, take risks, still it seems that not all ideas are good ones..

The slip stitch rib in the center? Ooooooogly.

Ribbit, ribbit…..

Peacefleece Tunic Update

So close…

Barb modeling

Barb modeling

Here is Barb modeling the Peacefleece Tunic. It’s come a long way from its beginning... which was just a bunch of yarn in my stash and a sketch:

Peacefleece sketch

Peacefleece sketch

Of course it’s a Zimmerman yoke sweater with lots of modifications. I am not happy with the neckline, which I’ll rip back, bring in more closely, and work up the standing collar in a color pattern, as I had envisioned it. It’ll be a bit tricky to work those patterns, but I’ll figure something out.

Once again, I’ve knit the hems, and everyone at my knitting sleepover likes the idea of the brown rolls showing rather than stitching the hems back. We’ll see.

Here my friend Barb is modeling the thing, because, my hips are not the same size as they were when I started this sweater. That’s a problem. I’ve contemplated steeking slits into the sides, etc., but it looks so great on Barb, that I’m thinking I’ll take the Zimmerman high road here… This tunic fits her the way it was supposed to fit SOMEBODY… right? So maybe it’s Barb’s.

On the other hand, I’m redoubling my intention to meet my goal of getting in the pool every morning….

Let’s see how long it takes me to make that neckline look the way it should… If you have any brilliant ideas for this project, I’d love to hear them!

Yes, you’re right, I’ve been lagging

Not in my knitting, mind you. I’ve been knitting. Not in a finishing mode much lately. However, I’m destined for a knitting sleepover with buddies at the end of the week, and have finishing on my mind for a couple of projects there. Depends on the ratio of silliness:knitting. We’ll see.

Meantime, though, babies have been happening, and garter stitch very much in the air, thanks to garter mojo oozing from northern Wisconsin and Brooklyn. Smacking me upside my head from both directions.

So a couple of these:

BSJ in handspun for baby Michael

BSJ in handspun for baby Michael

BSJ for the next baby

BSJ for the next baby

And that led me quite naturally to get started on that Meg Swansen vest that Jack claimed from the sweater room at Schoolhouse Press.

I can’t tell you how many sweater patterns and vest patterns I’ve dangled in front of that man, how many discussions about what woolen garments he will and will not wear, but nothing could quite prepare me for his falling in love with this:

Megs Vest on Blurry Jack

Meg's Vest on Blurry Jack

Megs Vest Back

Meg's Vest Back

Now, of course… he’s not a frog guy. And he does like his more sedate colors, and so here’s where we are so far….

Megs Vest in Jacks Colors

Meg's Vest in Jack's Colors

It’s a kissing cousin to the BSJ, a friendly little knit, starting with the cast on that runs down the fronts of the vest from armpit-height around the back, mitering up the front of the vests until you complete the fronts to the side of the body, then knitting back and forth the way you would a Zimmerman saddle to knit up the back to the armpit. Then you work strictly on the back until you get to the back of the neck, work the fronts down from the back of the neck, working some cute short rows to make those nice cuppy shoulders, and join back at the front with a three-needle bind off. Icord for about four years around the entire outside. We will not include frogs.

He sees this as the perfect around-the-house deep winter warmer upper. No sleeves is the part that makes him happy. And there’s a definite Robert Bly kind of pull my old hippie has to this garment. No doubt about that.

Knitting it up in two plies of the magical Unspun Icelandic that Schoolhouse Press sells. This stuff is really wonderful to work with. I’m dying to finish it so I can tackle some single-ply projects. I can see myself getting a lot done in this wool.

The pattern? It’s scratched on notes from my class in Marshfield, and not mine to share anyway. But if you’re interested, all you really have to do is whine enough to the folks at Schoolhouse, and I’m sure a pattern will surface somehow.

Hudson Bay Blankets X Zimmerman

Here’s the bug currently up my nose….

Hudson Bay Point Blankets

If you live anywhere in the vicinity of the Great Lakes or Great Plains or Canada, these blankets are familiar as family.

And I’m especially in love with the Capots or Capotes, coats made from these blankets. Here’s how to make a capote if you’ve always wanted one.

What I’m thinking is, these blanket aesthetics would work really, really, really well with a lot of Zimmerman garter stitch designs. Certainly the Tomten is an ideal blanket coat pattern, if you wanted to knit your blanket rather than sew it. The BSJ would look pretty great with the Hudson Bay blanket colorways, yes?

I’ve got three projects in my head that will be informed by this idea. A whole tomten coat for me, the Meg Swansen vest I pored over and plotted at camp for DH, and an endless stream of BSJs, in blanket stripes.

The Swansen vest is cast on in the amazing icelandic wool from Schoolhouse Press.

My tomten and the BSJs will be an exercise in stash burning of a lot of old Galway.

Am going to do some figurin’ and then cast that one on today while I Knit In Public at my LYS, Lizzie Ann’s. I’ll be there mid-morning, tea in hand. We’ll take over the sidewalk. Bring your knitting and a folding chair!

A few FOs to show off soon, believe it or not…

Fitting Shoddy

See how much I don’t want to prep taxes? Three posts in 24 hours. That’s how much. And then whooping cranes flew over my house. Am I supposed to file papers when that’s going on? And then the girl stopped by for a fitting:

I’m making her hold her arms like that because the sleeves aren’t sewn yet. Those Zimmermanesque saddle shoulders are perfect. The provisional cast on threads will all be hems. But first, we were looking for the right neckline. We think this is basically it. Sort of a bateau. Bateauish.

All the open holes in Shoddy will show when she wears something dark under it. We’ll have a shoot when it’s all done. but this is a step in the right direction… Now I have to figure out how to finish that neck… Pick up stitches along the new line, yes. Trim back anything extraneous, of course. Knit the hem out. But a proper turning ridge? Should I do a turning ridge? Just press and hem? Hmm… Back to the swatches for some expermenting. Any advice, anyone?