Tuesday, July 22, 2008


Someone asked me the other day, "Are you still knitting?"

So it's obviously time to do a fibrey post...the last time I talked about knitting was on June 18. The thing is, as Kristine noted not long ago, people are interesting because they grow and change, and converse about more than one subject.

But here's some knitting for Annalea, who bemoaned the lack of knitterly content on the blogs lately.

My cousin had a little girl a while ago, and I knit her a sweater. But I knit the three month size and finished it when she was nine months old.

So I gave that to another, newer baby, and cast on another sweater. This time I knit the 1-2 year size.

And now she is two years old. And here is the sweater:

But it's a drop-sleeve, so I think I can have it finished by the weekend, if I try really hard. It shouldn't take me too long to knit two little drop sleeves - they are pretty short. Then next week I can do seaming and button bands and buttons and weaving in........

I have a feeling it's not going to fit her for long, if at all. Maybe I should start something else.

I like this pattern - it's a Sirdar, from book whose cover has ripped off so I can't tell you the number. This is the fourth sweater I have made from it - two of the others are here and here. The only thing I don't like about the patterns is that they are all written out. No chart in sight. It makes it very hard to keep my place, and very hard to spot a mistake in the pattern. (This sweater had two so far.)

The yarn is also Sirdar - Snuggly DK. I still like it even though it's all synthetic. It's incredibly soft, not too pilly, and washes well. It took me a bit of practice to get the tension right on the stranded bits though - it was quite tricky. By the time I knit this piece it was coming along, though, so it doesn't look too bockety.

I am working on getting my WIPs out of the way so I can knit the Rheingold Wrap. I have been resisting the temptation of swatching this project, but last night I fell and now this is on the needles:

The swatch is half-done - sorry about the unsatisfactory picture. (My tension is apparently unsatisfactory too - I can see white bits through that knitting. I'll have to go down a needle size.)

Can I just say I HATE this method of swatching fair isle? You are supposed to cut the yarn at the end of every row, knitting all the chart rows from right to left. The problem is, I'm such a cheapskate and a yarn-hoarder that I kept trying to find a way around Alice's directions. I tried knitting it in the round (messed with the tension), tried carrying long loose strands across the back so I could rip it out later (kept entangling my fingers) and tried snipping the ends really short (unravelled the knitted edge). In the end, bitterly defeated, I just did it the way she wanted me to. But I hate the trailey ends of yarn and I hate the waste...I have this horrible feeling I'm going to run out of yarn and have to order more, which will of course be a different dye lot. I did order extra yarn (I wanted an additional 30 centimeters) but I've grown pessimistic about my ability to eke out yardage.

Speaking of which, I have run out of yarn on the lace shawl. I am about 45% done the border, and have three inches of yarn left....just enough to spit splice the new ball in. It has arrived at the yarn store, and I just have to drive 40 minutes to get it.

I've read elsewhere that the yardage guidelines in Victorian Lace Today are unreliable, but I didn't know HOW unreliable until I ran out of Zephyr on this project. The book calls for 1700 yards and I bought 1890 yards. I should not have run out.

In other news, the visit with Ox and Ames is going so well. We are having an absolute blast. We are getting a lot of swimming, canoeing, and eating done...luckily the first two are so far balancing out the third. Until they leave for their new home at the end of July, posting here will continue to be spotty and unreliable. Hopefully there are still some readers when I get back...


kate said...

Lovely knitting!

VLT has gorgeous patterns, but the yardage requirements are whacked. Check out the group on Rav, and you'll see!

Sale starts next Tuesday. I have to go to Courtenay on Wednesday anyhow, so I'm hoping we can swing a field trip. If you can't come we can pick up your yarn for you.

Can't wait to see you Thursday, feels like forever!

Ames said...

First, I can attest to the fact that the baby sweater is cuter in real life. And, darn it, I wish I had a baby it would fit.

Secondly, I had to laugh over your swatching the Reingold, after our conversation yesterday.

Third, we are having a blast.

Fourth, the frigid water swimming, paddling, and walking is NOT outweighing the eating. (not on my part anyway.) I am ready for another swim, btw.

Kristine said...

Further proof that swatching is evil. :p

Gwen said...

I'll be here. Just like I'm here now, and you're all there. Oh sorry... did that sound bitter? It should, because I am. >:(

I think I gave you that Sirdar book, yes? My kids are begging me to start knitting again, btw. I might start with a little sweater or something. We'll see.

YTT said...

I wanted to swing by and say thanks for your comment on my blog - I was touched you still remembered me after all this time.

But then I had to laugh at what was obviously a case of serendipity because I just posted on my blog a picture of my own shawl from Victoria Lace Today, and I've had the same problem: also about to run out of yarn just before the end. And mine is handspun, so I have had to go begging on Ravelry to try to find the same fiber.

Great minds, or knitters, think alike.

Rachel said...

I really like that sweater...the cables and the 'plaid' bands on the sleeves and waist. Very very cute!

And let me just say WOW on the Rheingold Wrap. That is stunning and I can't wait to see your progress through that...irritating swatch and all!

Shan said...

Kate: a yarn trip sounds good. See you Thursday, too...

Ames: we have to go to the Falls soon. I think we may have to take all the kids and do it in shifts. We should bring a big floatie or something to give them rides on.

Kristine: Amen.

Gwen: wish you were here. And the Sirdar book is not the one from you - the one from you is "Denim Family" or "Family in Denim" or some such thing - this one is something like "A Cottage Baby" or whatnot. I've lost the cover and can't recall.

YTT: I'm on my way over to check your post!

Rachel: yes, the Rheingold should be an interesting project to follow. I am a little nervous about it...mainly because of foreseeable tension issues.

Karen S said...

Wonderful knitting! I'll cheer for the sweater.

I happened to click on the link for the wrap... that might become one very, very expensive mistake... it is WONDERFUL (must own, must own...)

Shan said...

Karen, watch out. The fatal beauty of that wrap turned my pockets inside out. But I, like you, had to have it.

Now all I have to do is KNIT the bloody thing.

lizbon said...

Geez. And I was so proud of myself for having knitted two whole rounds of a years-old WIP sweater last night.

Wool + scorching heat and humidity do not a happy combination make.

Dave Hingsburger said...

OK I know nothing about knitting but I think those sleeves are (forgive me I'm gay) darling. Lucky kid, let me know if you'd like me to commission you to knit something for baby Ruby (see her on my blog) on her second birthday coming up in September. You interested?

Shan said...

Dave: betcha. I'm browsing patterns as we speak.

Dave Hingsburger said...

Why not put up two or three pattern and have a 'half soled boots' vote on the ultimate cute thing to knit for a two year old girl. Input is always nice. Her birthday is around the 15th.

Tabatha said...

Your knitting terrifies me a little bit. WOW! You are amazing! My little projects are so little. I really love what you do! Even the swatches are so very cool.

I am so glad that you are having fun times with Ames and Mark.