Tag Archives: sweater

Yarn Emergency

I ran out of sock yarn on the Friday at the start of the Labor Day holiday weekend. It caused a bit of panic, but not much because I had a huge work project to complete, and a fiddle I should practice, so there wasn’t going to be much time for knitting anyway.  I was bemused that I had reached the bottom of my stash.

I was wrong. I finished the work project quickly, and got in some fiddle time. I decided not to buy yarn on Sunday because I was going to spend Monday with Jen, and it’s much better to go yarn shopping with a friend that alone.   I cast on for a sweater using some Aran wool yarn I had on hand.

Big mistake. All the yarn shops we tried to go to were closed on Monday. Not just holiday weekend closed, but never open on a Monday closed.  As a union member, I’m all for everyone having Labor Day off. I kept reminding myself of that in the midst of my totally first world yarn crisis.

We ended up at Michaels, where I got 4 hanks of Patons Kroy sock yarn (my first time getting box store sock yarn), two of plain charcoal gray and one of variegated blue and gray.

When we got home, we spent a good hour looking at yarns online, and bemoaning the difficulty of finding useful yarn. There’s too much luxury yarn (silk and cashmere blends) and not enough utility yarn (superwash wool/nylon blend).  But that’s a post for later.

Here are the socks that ended the stash:

red socks

  • Yarn: Hazel Knits Artisan Sock in Path to the Peaks
  • Needles: 2mm/US0
  • Pattern: The ubiquitous broken seed stitch

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Another post about knitting

But this one is a cute baby sweater.

  • Pattern: Seed Stitch Baby Jacket by Elinor Brown
  • Yarn: Lion Brand Wool Ease Solids & Heathers in Color 107 Blue Heather, 2.5 balls
  • Needles: US7/4.5mm

I love the idea of a baby hoodie, and this one is in seed stitch, which is my current knitting obsession. I love the texture the stitch makes.

The yarn is tough to photograph- it’s a wisteria blue, but it’s heathered, so it changes a bit.

And there’s no need to tell anyone I put the buttonholes on the “wrong” side, ok.


I have so much knitting to do this winter.

  • Finish socks for Jen
  • Hat for Hannah
  • Kilt hose for Howard
  • Fingerless gloves for Jerome
  • 3 eggplant hats (mom, dad, baby) for Rachel
  • Finish my argyle mittens
  • Finish my green fitted pullover


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Emerald Isle Cardigan

Hooray! A knitting FO!

  • Pattern: Emerald Isle Cardigan by Melissa Wehrle, Kntiscene Fall 2009
  • Yarn: Ella Rae Classic in 138/ Olive Heather, 8 Balls
  • Buttons: 1″ birch buttons from Button Boy on Etsy.
  • Size: 37.5″
  • Modifications: No sleeve tabs, knit 42.5″ sleeves.

I started this sweater in March, and finished it once, but the 42″ version was huge on me! So that version was frogged and re-knit at the 37.5″ size. It’s still a little tight– I’d like another inch or so of ease, but I’m not going to reknit it again!

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Looking for the Sew, Mama, Sew Giveaway Day post? It’s here.


National Knit A Sweater Month 2009. Something to do in November for those of us who can’t  write fiction (or take photos).

I thought that I’d try it again this year. I had made abortive attempts in the past (like that Rogue that got to the hood, but never any further), but this year was different. I needed the sanity-inducing (or distraction causing) scope of a Big Knitting Project.  I had a number of ideas floating my in my head and in my queue, and I started with Thermal in a green sport weight yarn I bought at NHSW a few years ago. By using sport instead of fingering weight called for by the pattern my gauge was off enough that I basically had to rewrite it. That turned out to be to much of a hassle (and too much math) for me to deal with in the midst of the craziness that has been my life. So I frogged it.

I managed to score 10 balls of Patons  Classic Wool when it was on sale at Michaels, and that yarn matched what was needed for the February Fitted Pullover.  It was fate.  10 balls of yarn for $25? And a gorgeous free pattern? I cast on for that sweater on November 15. Sure, I can knit a whole sweater in 15 days. And do Thanksgiving. Of course I can. Why are you looking at me in that funny way?

So I started knitting. The pattern is very easy to follow, and the lace was dead simple. TV knitting until I came to the shaping, but even then, not that difficult.  I tweaked it a bit to work for me, but that’s not surprising. I made it longer in the body, increased the sleeves at the elbows for a fuller upper arm, and raised the neckline.

I had the body done by Black Friday. I spent the day at home knitting and recovering from three Thanksgivings the day before (two dinners and one breakfast). The sleeves were the trickiest bits, with the fitting and re-fitting, but I ended up doing M for the lower arms and the L for the upper arms, and did I mention that I went for full sleeves not 3/4 sleeves?

The neckline went smoothly, until the end. It’s 1130 pm on Noveber 30, and I’m thinking I can do this. I can finish this. I have 3 more rows to knit on the neckline, sew up the side seam, and insert the sleeves.  I can do it—.5h to go. No problem.  There’s nothing in the rules that says the sweater has to be blocked and dry by the 30th, just finished knitting. Maybe I can get away with not sewing in the sleeves. As long as all the knitting’s done, right?

Then my needle breaks.


I’d been using my Bryspun 32″ US5/3.75mm circs, my favorite needles, for the body (I’d been purling the straight rows with 2.5mm circs to correct my gauge, but they don’t count, my sweater was knit on those Bryspuns). The point snapped off one of the ends about 2″ down, leaving a jagged plastic stub connected to the cord.  Thank the knitting gods that I was on the garter stitch section and not doing lace.  I took this as a sign to stop knitting and go to bed.  Probably a good idea.  I wasn’t going to complete the sweater during November. I could live with that.

So I got up early the next morning and finished it.  I had about 15 minutes of knitting and sewing and then I washed and blocked it.  The blocking scared me because the sweater grew. Exponentially. I thought I’d messed up my gauge, because even though our relationship has improved tremendously, math is still not my friend.  So I threw the sweater in the dryer for 30 min. It’s ok, because my new apartment has a front-load dryer that has more computing power than my desktop. I was able to set it for delicates, extra low heat and about three other things. It felted the wool the teeniest bit, and stopped the exponential growth. And it helped dry it enough so that I could wear it today.

Even if I didn’t finish it in the month of November, finishing a sweater in 17 days is still an accomplishment.

  • Ravelry
  • Pattern: February Fitted Pullover by Amy Herzog
  • Size: 36″/Medium. Increased to Large for upper arm and sleeve caps.
  • Yarn: Patons Classic wool in Old Gold, color 00204 (total cost $12.50)
  • Needles: 32″ US5/3.75 Bryspun circs (RIP), 40″ US1/2.5mm for purl rows when worked flat.


  • Worked garter stitch rows for 10 rounds
  • Added 2″ to body lenght
  • Full length sleeves (11″ to elbow, 18″ to sleeve cap shaping), made larger sleeves Knit in pattern for 11″. Increase from M to L sleeves using this formula:
    1)@start of round (one lace repeat): k2, yo, (k1, yo,)x3, k2 (11 sts), work in established lace pattern to end of round.
    2)Knit one round
    3)k2, yo, k4, yo, k3, yo, k2 (14 sts), work in work in established lace pattern to end of round. 7 sts/one lace repeat increased.


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Socks for sanity

Since I’ve blogged last I’ve had to move, again.  Total crazies. Lots and lots of crazy. Metric fucktonnes of crazy. So I’ve been knitting a lot of socks. Lots and lots of socks to combat the crazy. Because socks are not crazy.

Mostly, I’ve been working on these kilt hose for B. He chose the patterns and I designed them. The foot is Elizabeth Zimmerman’s Moccasin Sock, so that the socks can be re-soled if necessary.

Some plain stockinette socks in Trekking XXL color 146. I love the muted red/orange tones.

And finally years after the trend peaked, a pair of Jaywalkers in Regia Galaxy Saturn.

Oh, and I also decided to do NaKniSweMo. Because knitting a sweater in the midst of moving and general craziness is a good thing. Or whatever.  So I’m working on the February Fitted Pullover in Patons  Classic Wool in Old Gold. 11″ of the body done, which is more than I have in this photo, but I haven’t taken a new photo because it’s just more lace right now.

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A new life

I got this aran at Goodwill many years ago. It reminds me of my grandfather and The Clancy Brothers. It’s been my go-to sweater for when I need another layer. It’s tough, hard wearing, and worn smooth.


I washed it over winter break, and noticed a hole in the arm. Some of the threads had split in the middle of one of the cables and it wasn’t darn-able. That hole made it unwearable. It wasn’t even on the elbows, where I could have hidden it under fusty-but-cool leather patches (a sure sign of academia)


I debated the sweater’s fate for about a week, and then I decided to frog it. I spent some quality time with NCIS and Top Chef last night, ripping apart one of my favorite garments and all-time top thrift store finds. Only about 60% of the sweater was salvageable, due to the weird construction of the sleeves and a few mistakes I made cutting the seams.

I got 473g of 11 wpi yarn, for a total of  929 yds. It’s a 3-ply DK weight, in a good, basic white.


I’d like to use it in crock-pot dyeing experiments. It will have a new life in some project down the road.

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