Category Archives: Knitting

Cozy Cosima


I have had Cuzco Cosima from Berroco booklet #281 in my knitting basket for an age. I actually started the sleeves twice. I am glad I didn’t finish at the time I started it, because I have learned so much in that time, I don’t think I could have made this sweater anywhere near as well as I did. Score one for procrastination!

Truly, when deadlines are arbitrary, I think of it less as procrastination as Knowing Thyself. If it’s a drag, put it away. Hobbies are supposed to be fun. If it’s meant to be, you’ll pull it out again someday and work on it. If not, you’ll decide then what to do with it.

I was very bold with this project. Other than using the recommended yarn (which I never do, but this was on sale), I did little else as instructed. I read a lot of reviews of this sweater on Ravelry that said the sweater was much bigger than represented in the photo. Many recommended going down a pattern size in front. I believed them, after glancing at the schematic. How is a 13″ left front, even with overlap, going to result in a 36″ finished sweater?

I decided to make a small for the back and extra small for the fronts. I also knit this in one piece. I had to do a lot of fancy math to get the pattern to work out well. To be honest, I always find it annoying when a sweater is to be pieced but then does not include extra stitches for a selvedge so you can seam the thing without losing part of the patterning. Duh.

I also made long sleeves, which I thought looked crappy in reverse stockinette. I wanted them in stockinette, but then the rest of the sweater would not match well since it is in reverse stockinette. So I worked the chart over the middle of the sleeve stitches, making mirror image sleeves.

Sleeve detail

It was quite tricksy when I combined the body to the sleeves, remembering which row, facing which direction on which section. Add to it all the decreases, which meant losing part of the pattern each right side row, and this became an exercise in logic and concentration.

I’m happy with the look of the sweater, in terms of not messing up the chart. The yarn seems a little too cushy, if there can be such a thing. It’s thick yarn. I want to block it so the lacework shows well, but I don’t want to make the sweater too big.

I did make some decreases at the side seams, and moved to a smaller needle (twice) in order to shrink this down enough at the upper bodice without messing with the charted stitches.

Afterthought: I wrote the draft of this post on June 10, but it has been unreasonably hot for so long, I just never could make myself put it on for photos!

Sleeves puff out where the shirt underneath ends. Blurg.


The Wonder of Goal Setting


I am one of those people that gets a little anxious when I don’t follow through with a commitment. No matter that it was a breezy, passing goal I made on a blog in January. It kept gnawing at me. So, true to my word, I have completed three sweaters. I am now very tickled with myself, both for being a Good Girl and for having added some much-needed warmth to my wardrobe.

For the first round of photos, I was playing with my new iPhone 4S camera, which is supposed to be better than the plain ol’ iPhone 4. Hmpff. You be the judge. I just got the phone two weeks ago when my perfectly serviceable Palm Treo (yes, I know, laugh it up) finally started acting funny. Husband convinced me to get the 4S due to the improved camera (and because he wanted to ask Siri ridiculous things, like, “Where is the nearest bordello?” Turns out there is one in Holland, MI. Who knew?) Anyway, I’m not in love with the camera, but here goes anyway.

Sweater one: Miette. Love, love, love. And blogged here. I will redo this one in another color, maybe changing up the lace. I forgot to note in my previous post that I used Berocco Comfort yarn in “Teaberry”.

Sweater two: #28 Buttoned Cardi. Oh, so love this one. I made many, many mods, based on my experience with Miette. I used Galway by Plymouth Yarn, in color 156 (sorry, discontinued). I didn’t love this yarn, but it’s ok. I will be wearing it over other things, so softness is not the highest priority.  I read that it felts readily, so I will have to be careful with it.

“Better” iPhone 4S camera. Right.

Ok, maybe not fair to complain about the camera, considering my boy took this photo while looking up from his videogame. But still.

Cable detail. Lovely!

Sleeve detail

Sweater three: Jewels. My, how lovely. Great pattern. I had a yarn emergency with an oddball color. Same dye lot, but it did not match. I had to make do with three little skeins, so it is a bit short. I like it though. I used Sheep Shop Yarn Company (out of business, see review here), in Sheep Number One weight, color A078. I want to love the yarn, but I am annoyed about the color. The last skein really isn’t the right color either, but it is better. Also, it seems like it will felt in a heartbeat. Maybe even with regular wear.

Short rows to the rescue

Bottom third still looks funky. I might have to frog. Grrr.

I had been avoiding knitting sweaters, hence the goal. I had a streak of bad luck in the fitting department. So I knitted a bunch of lace shawls, consulted friends, thought about sewing constructions, and did a little research. Using Ysolda Teague’s fabulous book, Little Red in the City, I learned to design and knit short rows. What a difference.

My Magenta Miette


I have been playing along with Me-Made-May, behind the scenes. I didn’t take the pledge, but I have been participating. A few days ago I kind of forgot about the event and thought, “Oh shoot, I meant to wear handmade this month” but when I thought back, I realized I had been wearing Me-Made anyway! I guess that says something about the contents of my closet and how often I choose handmade instead of store bought.

This morning I finally got to wear my lovely Miette. It is on the way to 81 degrees outside, so I am no longer wearing a sweater over my t-shirt. But I looked damn good for two hours there, and I got a great compliment, so I’d say Miette is a keeper.

Bust Dart


Note bust shaping

I didn’t work short rows, I just used the pattern instructions for the bust darts. However, I started the shoulders in a size small, then kept increasing under the bust to a larger size. I decreased again for the waist, and increased out again for the high hip. I should have moved some of the hip increases to the back, because the increases I did in that short area between waist and hem made the sides stick out funny. It’s fine if I keep the sweater buttoned, which I guess I will always do!

I love this sweater and took lengthy notes so I can make it again. I plan to use the same basic shaping but change the lace pattern to mix things up a little. Oh, and next time I’ll put the buttons on the correct side.

#28 Buttoned Cardi

Bad name, good project. I would call this Wheat Chaff.

That is one crazy cable.

I started this a few days ago with Galway yarn, which is too heavy, stiff, and scratchy, yet I am plowing onward. I don’t really know why except that I was on a long work assignment and had only that project in my bag, so I just kept knitting it. I am a driver, and I get paid to sit and wait while my passenger does her job. It was either knit this, or nap in the car.

The #28 Buttoned Cardi is from the Fall 2009 edition of Knit Simple. I made a lot of modifications to knit it in one piece, remove ease and give it some waist shaping. I may not be thrilled with how it all works out, but then I’m not afraid to frog and start over.

The cable is unlike any I have worked before. On the row below the cable (purl side), you have to slip 2 stitches where the cable is centered. On the right side, you then hold three stitches to the back and then work one of the slipped stitches, then the three held stitches; then you hold the next slipped stitch to the front, knit three, then knit the held stitch. It is one tight little cable, let me tell you. You stack four of those babies for this sweater. One of them is right on the front edge of the sweater, so I’m not sure how that is going to block flat, but we shall see.

Left front, stitch marker for side seam, and part of the back.

I had a goal, way back when, of completing three sweaters this year, not including the Dahlia, which was probably 7/8ths finished when I made my goal. I finished my Miette for the first, though I still need to find it some buttons. #28 Buttoned Cardi will be the second. I’m still contemplating the third. I have several pullovers in my queue, but I find that I prefer cardigans these days because, for the first time in my life, I get too hot. Suddenly. Intensely. I think you can see where I am going with that. I’m 45, after all. I can’t be trying to strip a sweater off over my head before I turn all red, get sweaty, and puke. Buttoned cardis it is! #28, even.



Unblocked Maluka

You know how it is when someone in your knitting group makes something great, and you all gush over it? A few weeks ago Lisa showed up with a Maluka. MMMMMmmmmmm! So pretty. She said it was really fun to knit. We all passed it around the table and petted it. Several people started writing down the name of the pattern so they could make it, so I said, “Let’s do an -along. A Maluka-along. NO! A Malukalong!”

It IS fun to knit.

You cast on and knit just 20 stitches, working the border first. After you make the 30-something 12-row repeats, you will have a lovely, long sawtooth edge. You pick up all along the top, smooth edge of this band, and knit short rows to complete the stockinette upper portion. It makes a very pretty crescent arc. This is a shawlette, really, though I suppose you could easily knit more teeth and then increase the number of stitches you pick up.

I am using Plucky Knitter yarn. Oh dear, so beautiful. Go see.

Impatient Reveal


It isn’t blocked. The ends haven’t been woven in. I haven’t even thought of buttons. Yet, here I am, bursting to blog about my Miette. It’s so lovely!

This is a sweet little pattern, free no less, by Andi Satterlund. I used a hot pink shade (Teaberry) of Berocco Comfort yarn.

I made a boatload of modifications, mostly because I was between sizes. Also a little bit because I am not in my 20s. That means I had to lower the bust darts (which required rewriting the lace part), make it longer, and add width below the waist. (See how I didn’t say anything derogatory about my body? I’m trying to stop doing that).

I can’t wait to model it for you.

Reveal Backlog


What a fabulous day! It’s so sunny and warm, it makes me very happy! I enlisted my reluctant child to take some photos of my knitted creations since the light was good.

Look at those colors!

I know I am long overdue. May I present Milo.

Child needs to concentrate on getting the whole project in the frame.

And Larch.

Child needs to take one step closer. Maybe he thought I would pinch him if he got too close.

Bitterroot as well.

Child, child... it's a good thing he is cute.

Bitterroot again.

At least we got the whole scarf in the photo.

And finally, It’s Not a Drop.

Not bad, kid!

Here is an extra shot of Ginkgo, even though you may have seen it already. What the heck, right? I was outside with an armful of scarves after all.

I think I should mark a line where I want my photographer to stand. And center my scarf on my back.

Did I mention it is 75 degrees out? Ok, that is all the fun with photography we can stand for one day. I love reveal day!