Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Small FO and a WIP

I thought I'd get an early start on the mother's day gift project and knitted up this neck warmer for my mother. She loved the neck warmer I knitted for her last year. She loves the neck warmer concept because it keeps her warm without having to deal with scarf tails. I figure if she likes them, she clearly needs more of them. This one is based on this free pattern. I used a different yarn with a finer gauge. I really like the soothing look of the mistake rib stitch pattern.

Next up, I'm currently finishing up Parasola, from Nora Gaughan Vol. 6. I had to buy the booklet after I saw a sample garment knitted up at Stitches West. I just finished doing the large ornament, and it seemed to take forever. Before embarking on it, I thought of searching da web for a crochet stitch that would give the same look, but I got lazy and just decided to knit it. It probably would have been much faster done in crochet. This is partly because I'm not that adept at small circular knitting.
I changed the shaping of this sweater from A-line to the more standard waist shaping. I also reduced the width at the bottom by about 2" from the smallest size because I was afraid of ending up with too much of a tent-like look.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

FO: Tarte

I just finished knitting Tarte, a Berroco free pattern. The yarn is Rowan RYC Cashsoft DK, a merino wool, microfiber, cashmere blend. I chose this pattern because I really liked the cables combined with open stitches in the front. (The back is all stockinette). The red color is more of a winter cheery color than a spring color, and I started it back in February in the post-holiday/Valentine's day/Chinese New Year red season, but I'm happy to wear in the spring because it's just the right amount of warmth.
The biggest adjustment I did with this pattern was to make the front narrower. In the smallest size, the front is 42 stitches wider than the back, and that just seemed too wide to me, even allowing for the scrunching effect of the cables. I made my front only 18 stitches wider. I based this on the fact that there is a maximum of 6 3x3 cables at any one time, and I allowed 3 extra stitches for each cable to compensate for the scrunching. In order to do this, I also had to narrow the stitch pattern a bit because the original pattern was wide enough to cover most of the front. I changed the four strips of open stitching from 4 YOs each to 2 YOs and also changed the K3tog and SSSK to K2tog and SSK, respectively. I also made my usual shaping and length adjustments for a good fit.

One of my favorite things about this vest pattern is the edging used to finish the armholes and the neckline. It's done as a row of single crochet followed by a row of reverse single crochet. The end result is this cool looking braided effect that does not even look like crochet to me.