If I Were an Octopus…

I often wonder why God didn’t give moms more than two arms. How are we supposed to hold a baby, stir the soup, pick up the socks, go to the bathroom and answer the phone all at the same time? It just doesn’t make any sense. I have been known to lament the apparent shortage of arms in the past,mumbling something to myself about how during childbirth we should sprout another – at least the first couple of times. It has vexed me time and again. But, today, I am thankful that I only have two arms. I am knitting sleeves.

Although, I really can’t complain about these sleeves. These are interesting sleeves.

They are a fun knit, and I am actually looking forward to working on the second one… tomorrow.

But, I am glad that I only have two arms!

Labyrinth in Louisa Harding Grace, whale

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The Year of The Sweater Project Continues…

This year I set out to knit seven sweaters for myself. I realized that have been knitting for a few years, but I always for others. Until this year, I had not knit a single thing for myself, so I decided that this is my year. I picked out seven lovely patterns, bought a whole bunch of yarn and have been working on it off and on ever since. So, here is where it stands:

Sweater #1 – Vine Lace Cardigan in Malabrigo Chunky Pink Frost was the first sweater I made for myself. I knit it in one week (you gotta love bulky yarn!). It is big, squishy, and while not very flattering (I did say “bulky” yarn!), I am very pleased with it. Completed in April.

Sweater #2 – Tea Leaves Cardigan in Madelinetosh Merino Worsted Fig is my favorite so far. The color, the feel, the style, the buttons. Love, love, love! This is the sweater that makes me wish for winter to come quickly. The only downside is that I think it’s gonna pill something terrible! Completed in May.

Sweater #3 – Mondo Cable Cardi in Dream in Color Classy Dusky Aurora is the workhorse. A beautiful yarn, that also happens to be superwash, a simple pattern and an awesome color! I took this one camping last week and loved every minute that I wore it. This baby grew a bunch when I blocked it, but that doesn’t dampen my enthusiasm for it one bit. Completed in June.

April, May, June. Each month I completed an entire sweater! I didn’t realize that until just now. That is really very cool! So, what happened to July and August? Summer heat? That, or the allure of lace…

Sweater #4 – The Shawl Collared Cardigan in Wool of the Andes Worsted Cranberry is not in a happy place. I made some dreadful mistake somewhere, but I have gone too far past it and must now fudge some fix. That is why this sweater is hibernating. I am thinking that soon it will see the light of day, though. It’s been awhile since I looked at it…

Sweater #5 – Labyrinth in Louisa Harding Grace Whale is my current project. I thought that I would make some killer progress on the first sleeve last night while watching a movie with the Man, but I found “Edge of Darkness” a little too riveting for much knitting… (Either it was the intensity, or the fact that the speech was mumbled and we had the subtitles on so we could know what was going on. Too bad they had to use such horrible language. I really hate that.)

Sweater #6 – was Tissue Cardigan from Interweave Knits in Knit Picks Shadow Spice, but since I just finished the Wispy Cardi in Malabrigo Lace Amoroso, I have decided to bump the Tissue Cardi off the list and count the Wispy as Sweater #6! Perhaps the Tissue Cardigan will be knit some other time. It really is lovely, and I have the yarn – if I can manage to save it. It is lace weight. And gorgeous. I don’t know, it just might have to be a lace shawl or something lovely like that. (I have yet to make anything from “Knitted Lace of Estonia” and you know I am dying to do that!) Completed in September.

Sweater #7 – the plan is to make Vine Yoke Cardigan in Malabrigo Worsted Velvet Grapes. I hope that is what I do… 🙂

So, in summery- Seven sweaters intended, six started, of those, four completed. And it is only September. Cool.

Any ideas for next years goal? I am thinking socks. (I hear you gasping. I still have a few months to warm up to the idea. And I must say that having a drawer full of hand knit socks is mighty appealing!)

Drumroll, Please

At long last I am ready to show you my Wispy Cardi! (Please excuse the crappy pictures. If you remember, my camara go sand in it, so it’s Photo Booth pictures or nothing!)

Three things about this Cardigan:

1. It is so soft. I mean incredibly, wear it on bare skin, wrap your naked baby in it soft. I love how it feels. I used Malabrigo Lace Merino, and I am hooked!

2. It looks great…. from the back.

From the front, not so much….

I guess it is okay, but for some reason, I thought it would make me look like this. Nevertheless, I think I will still wear it. Fat girls are entitled to cute clothes, too.

3. I loved this knit, from the excellently concieved and written pattern, to the gorgeous yarn, to the speedy execution.

So, there you have it. The Wispy Cardi by Hannah Fettig in Malabrigo Lace Amoroso.

Five Things About My Mermaid

First: It is finished! Blocked, buttoned and done. This is the third sweater in the “Year of the Sweater” project I have going on. (It was the fourth to be cast on, but the Vera Sweater is still in time out.)

Second: It grew. A LOT. I don’t think I even swatched for this one, let alone blocked the swatch like I know I am supposed to. It is top down, so I tried it on as I went and it was fitting perfectly. As soon as I lifted it from the water, I knew. It was growing. Even though I stopped 16 rows short of what the pattern directed on the sleeves, they are still a tad too long. I had envisioned a more clingy fit, like the one on the model in the picture. I think I will be happy with it anyway. It is so lovely.

Third: It only took 4 (plus a tiny bit of the fifth) of the 7 skeins I had bought. That means I have enough yarn to do something else. This pleases me to no end! This yarn, Dream in Color Classy is so nice. I love the colors, the way they play and never pool. I love the way that I can wear it without worry, because it is superwash. I love the squishy softness, and the gorgeous drape after it is blocked. Love, love, love.

Fourth: I didn’t follow the pattern to the letter (I know, shocking…). Besides the sleeve changes I already mentioned, I placed my buttons lower, made button loops instead of sewing on snaps and added one more repeat of the cable pattern to the body. I also changed the ribbing from 5/1 to 4/2. And, as you can see in the pictures, I intend to wear it with the collar folded down, instead of buttoned up to the chin. I think it looks better like that on my body type.

Fifth: I can’t wait till it gets cool enough to wear this masterpiece. It was torture to wear it for the short photo shoot (with my seven year old photographer, Noah). I sadly put it away with the winter clothes. It will be such a treat when the weather turns cool and I open that box to find this waiting for me! I love it.

Mermaid, the Mondo Cable Cardigan by Chic Knits in Dream in Color Classy Dusky Aurora

It seems that when one has a cavalier attitude about casting on projects and never finishing anything, one also has seasons of getting a lot of projects finished in a short time because everything is already half way (or mostly) complete. I like those seasons. I also like casting on. I guess I just like knitting, whatever season. I bet you already guessed that!

Pathetic

One sleeve. That’s it. Sixty five (very short) rows are all that separate me from victory. Only ten inches of easy knitting would make the difference between, “See this sweater I am trying to make”, and, “Hey, look at the sweater I just made”. That isn’t much. Maybe an hour or two left and I am home free. The end is right there, nearly in my grasp. So, why does it still look like this?

Mermaid Mondo Cable Cardi in Dream in Color Classy, Dusky Aurora

I blame the weather. It’s hot and that is a big wool sweater! Also, I blame the lace. This is how I spent much of my weekend:

working on Gold Aeolian Shawlette in Madelinetosh Prairie, Nutmeg

(thanks to one of the kiddos for this flattering picture…) I know you can’t really see it, but I also got the machine out and did some sewing. The girls and I all got some new skirts. Very fun. Highlight of the weekend.

The lace is really whipping me good.