So, I went back and forth for a while about what color to get to finish off the kid’s sweater. And, while I was leaning toward the nice light green, or a neutral oatmeal/gray, they were adamant that they wanted RED.
I managed to talk them down from RED red, to this nice shade of “Black Cherry.” Not necessarily what I would have picked, but, hey, it’s not my sweater.
It took a while for the yarn to show up, so I haven’t gotten far, but I’ll be honest, I like it more than I thought I would. I figured the red + green would look so Christmassy, that I wouldn’t like it, but I’ve surprised myself that I don’t hate it.
(Would I have preferred not running out of green yarn to begin with? Yes. Would I have picked another color if it had been up to me? Yes. But, such is life with a preschooler.)
What new color combinations have you tried recently?
OK, not huge. But I’ve definitely underestimated how much yarn I would use for this sweater.
To be fair, I also underestimated how big this sweater was going to be, so it only goes to figure that I’d underestimate the amount of yarn that I’d need. (My kid is 4. I’m pretty sure this will fit them when they’re 12.)
I’ve got maybe a full skein left in total, and I’ve used probably 2-ish skeins already. And, since I’m barely 3 inches into the body and only at elbow-level on the sleeves, I can’t imagine that one skein will be enough to finish up.
To make sure I’m using my yarn as evenly as possible, I had the brilliant idea to work the body from one skein, then work the sleeves from opposite ends of a second skein at the same time. While this might make a lot of sense from a theoretical standpoint, it’s proving to be more trouble than I expected. The amount of time I spend carefully organizing my yarn and untangling it is getting a little out of hand. But, I’ve made my choice, and I don’t feel like going back on my plan.
Anyway, I’m going to have to go get more of this yarn… and I think I’ve got two choices:
Buy the same color, and hope the dye lots are close enough. (I bought the original yarn maybe 10 years ago, so there’s no chance that I will find the same dye lot).
Go for a different color for a two-tone sweater. And, if I go this way, what color should I pick? Play it safe with brown or gray? Go wild with a bright contrasting color? Or monochromatic with a different shade of green?
OK, so. After a nice long sit with my swatch and a stroll through Ravelry, I think I have a plan.
I’m going to go ahead with the kid sweater, but not necessarily set out to felt it, at least not right away. I figure it’s good to know that it has the potential to go through the wash without fully losing its shape, but I’m not sure how many washes it would have before fully disintegrating.
Anyway, here are my inspirations:
First, the In Stillness Mini. Such a lovely sweater- I love the simplicity of the broken rib and the stockinette. I think I’d like a different shoulder, and maybe a longer section of yoke.
And this adorable little sweater (Harry by Liudmyla Babintseva). I really like the vibe of this one, but I’m not feeling the fancy ribbing/cables right now, especially if I intend to felt this up down the line. I’d hate to do all that work and lose it by sending it through the wash. I love a Henley collar for kids’ sweaters. They look so fancy, and are great for fitting over gigantic melon heads.
So here’s my plan: I’m going to make a crew-neck/Henley sweater with set-in sleeves and a yoke of broken rib that goes just past the armpits. I want to make it as a top-down sweater so that I can use every last inch of my yarn (I’m about 90% sure that I have enough, but it’s going to be tight either way). I think I’m going to reach for my favorite Ann Budd pattern book since my kid is finally big enough to qualify for the kids’ sizes, and because I’m a basic b who pretty much just makes the same sweater over and over again.
What’s your favorite thing to knit for the kids in your life?
I’ve *technically* finished my crochet sweater, but I just am not sure about it. Maybe the sleeves need to be shorter… or longer? Or maybe it’s just not the sweater for me. I don’t know. But either way, it’s in time out for a minute. I’ll show it to you later, don’t worry.
Anyway, I was looking for something else to work on. Something simple and brightly colored and something that is sure to be successful. I dug around and found, in the bottom of my WIP box, this just-started sock. It’s just a regular-degular sock in Felici from a couple years ago. I could make it in my sleep, which makes it easy to pick back up again.
It was about three inches long when I found it, and now I’m fully around the heel. It’s funny though, I truly don’t know when I started it. Last year? Maybe. Longer? Could be.
But, I suppose that’s the good thing about knitting, you can put it down and pick it up again months (or even years) later.
What’s the longest you’ve had a project in hibernation before you started working on it again?
I know I keep saying “Wow! Crochet is so fast!” And it is. But that’s only when I actually sit down and do it.
Which is why, even though crochet is super fast, compared to knitting, I’ve only gotten… about an inch and a half more put on my sweater since the last time I talked to you about it… weeks ago.
It’s a combination of things. I’ve been super busy with the kids (the big one is being very Four and need lots of help with big feelings, and the little one has decided that 5:00 is a great time to get up in the morning). I’ve got a new project in the works with Knit Picks that I can’t talk to you about… yet. And, when I actually have a little time to myself I’m more likely to sit down and want to scroll on my phone than actually do work (even if it’s fun “work”).
All that’s to say, when I do work on it, this sweater is going quick. I just haven’t been actually working on it. Fingers crossed something will change soon and I’ll get a little more bandwidth to finish it up… I’m so close!
Do you have any projects wasting away in your to-be-knit pile?
I’m of two minds about this sweater. But what’s new?
First, I’m excited about how fast it’s going, which isn’t usually the case at this point in the process. Most of the time when I’m three-quarters of the way in, I’m very frustrated and not seeing much progress. I’m just not used to how fast crochet is. I had a 2-hour Zoom meeting last night, and managed to get through 4 repeats- almost 6 inches of sweater! (I know it doesn’t look like I’m going that fast compared to last week, but that’s mostly because I bought myself a paint-by-number kit that’s taking up most of my attention. I have no regrets.) And, I even like the way the fabric is turning out. I think it’s going to be cute- I love the bobbles (even if they’re a pain to make).
However, I’m real skeptical that this is going to be a cute sweater. It’s just so… rectangular. To be fair, it is a style that I’m not too familiar with (drop shoulder, cropped, oversized sweaters aren’t usually my bag), so maybe this is how it’s supposed to look. Maybe it’ll turn out amazing after I seam it up and put it on, and I’ll never want to take it off. But right now I don’t have a lot of faith in the finished sweater.
Either way, I guess I’ll just keep trucking along and trust the process. I like the finished picture in the pattern- fingers crossed that it turns out that cute!
When’s the last time you were skeptical of a pattern halfway through?
OK. I gave up on the striped sweater. I’m sure I’ll come back to it, but right now, it’s not “sparking joy.” So, into the hibernation pile it goes.
I thought for a while about what I wanted to make next- I wanted something quick (or at least quicker than the striped sweater) and I wanted to use my stashed yarn. I thought maybe a scarf or a hat, but none of my yarn was exciting me, and I couldn’t find a pattern that spoke to me.
But I do have a sweater-quantity of fingering weight yarn that I thrifted from our local craft-supply-resale shop (Seattle Recreative… it’s really amazing, if you’re ever in town). It’s in two lovely shades of blue-gray. I like it, and want to make something with it, but I don’t want to knit a sweater with fingering yarn. In fact, that’s the whole reason I am looking for a new project!
Then it hit me! I don’t want to knit a sweater, but maybe I want to… crochet? It’s been a minute since I pulled out my hooks, and I don’t think I’ve ever actually crocheted a garment (maybe some hats in high school?). I took to Ravelry to look up crochet sweater patterns, and dang! Crochet patterns have gotten cute since I last looked at them!
It was a tough choice, but I settled on The Goldfinch Sweater by Hailey Bailey, a super-cute, boxy, lightly cropped pullover with lots of texture.
I got to work, and within an evening, I already had several inches worked! It’s wild how fast crochet is compared to knitting (especially knitting on tiny needles).
It took me a bit to figure out how to read the crochet pattern- I truly don’t know the last time I crocheted (let alone used a pattern), but I’m figuring it out. It’s actually kind of fun to re-learn a new “language.” I already love the results, and can’t wait to keep going!
I’m officially at the “Are we there yet” phase of this ding dang blanket. I’ve made it this far, but is it far enough?
And while every big project has this moment (at least for me), this blanket is giving me extra trouble deciding when enough is enough.
There’s a “ribbed” quality to this pattern that I underestimated when I was swatching, and I’m having trouble figuring out what it’ll look like blocked. For example, when I just lay the blanket flat, it looks long and narrow:
Surely, it’s ready to bind off, right? The goal is a square-ish blanket, maybe slightly longer than it’s wide, but I certainly don’t want a long, skinny blanket.
But then, a moments later with a little futzing, and suddenly my long, skinny blanket is short and chubby and could definitely use a couple more skeins.
I think with blocking it’ll end up even wider, which means I should do more knitting. (Which is not the conclusion I was hoping for.) But then, on the other hand, after it’s been used for a while, will it just relax back into its long, skinny shape?
I’ve got 2 and a half more skeins. I’ll probably do at least one more full skein (plus whatever I need to do to get to a stopping point). Then, I’ll have a debate with myself about stopping. And then convince myself that I need to keep going. And then I’ll keep knitting until I’ve accidentally run out of yarn, at which point I’ll have to debate about ripping back or ordering another skein to finish the project. What? I’m sure I’m not the only one.
I pulled my wedding blanket out of storage the other day, and have started working on it again. It’s great! I still love it. The pattern’s just tricky enough that it’s interesting, but simple enough that I have it memorized (or maybe I’ve just worked it a million times, so it’s just gotten stuck in my brain). I love the gray-brown of the natural wool, and I love that it’s gotten to the keeps-me-warm-while-I-knit size. It’s all just lovely (and massive! Each repeat is about 4″ across).
Only one thing about it is wrong. The timing. Here’s the timeline for this project:
I “finished” my big-brother sweater last week, and I’m on to the little brother.
I did the first in the 4-6 year size, and this one in the 6-12 month size, and the difference is wild.
Like, I know that obviously the big one will take longer, but when compared to the big sweater this one is just FLYING off my needles.
I’ve been working on it for essentially one day, and I’ve made it almost to the armpit split. And I don’t have a ton of knitting time these days (obviously).
I just love this caramel-golden-yellow color, too. It’s so warm and cozy, and puts me in mind of something delicious and full of toffee.
Speaking of toffee, there’s really something just so tempting about knitting for babies. Even with the same pattern, a sweater for a grownup might be a whole meal, but a baby sweater is dessert. Or coffee and a slice of cake. Or a caramel apple from the state fair.
Or maybe I’m just hungry.
Have you ever knit the same pattern in different sizes? What’s your favorite size of sweater to make?