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Seems like fair isle is my technique of choice these days.  Just finished the Fair Isle socks for Patons Yarns.  Go check ’em out…

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Over on the Patons Blog you will also see that we are in the midst of a Knit-Along.  The pattern is a tam and it’s beautiful!  Please feel free to join in on the fair-isle fun!  We are all using Patons Classic Wool in 5 different shades.  Think vintage for my color selections.  Seriously, it reminds of a sweater that just walked out of the 1960s and I LOVE IT!

Alright, so my next big Patons project calls for the new Patons Pure.  This is a 100% organic cotton in worsted weight and it’s lovely people.   Go find some, touch it for a little and let me know what you think.   Since my little sister is graduating from college and it’s her birthday, the Cables and Lace Hoodie (Ravelry Link) in ‘Butter’ will be her gift.

As for my personal knitting, I am going to start the Autumn Rose Pullover.  I know, I have said probably a gazillion times by now that I am going to start this, but really, I am going to cast on as soon as I cast off the Fair Isle Tam.

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3943734808_221b02528e_bProject Specs

Pattern: Vine Yoke Cardigan by Ysolda Teague

Pattern source: Ravelry and Twist Collective

Finished Size: 44″

Supplies: Size 9 24″ Circular.  6 skeins of Cascade 220, Red (9404).   Scrap Yarn.  9, 1″ buttons.  Darning needle.

Date started: 8/20/09

Date completed: 9/21/09

Wow, one month to complete an entire sweater.  For me, that is impressive.  I cannot say enough good things about patterns written by Ysolda Teague. Wonderfully written, creative construction and over all very interesting to make.  I LOVE that there are only two seams to sew in this sweater.   The yoke pattern is super easy to memorize, yet stays interesting throughout the entire process.  I also love that I am good at making buttonholes now.  When you make nine of them roughly three times over, one becomes a buttonhole pro.  So yes, I did have to start this cardigan over multiple times.  I wanted it to be perfect as this was a birthday gift for my Mother in law.

I followed this pattern as is.  However, if I were to make this cardigan again, I would definitely go down a couple of sizes than what I think would be correct.  In other words, it runs really big.  Personally I like my clothes to be fitted, but not tight.  Although, not so fitted in the sense that I could not put something on under it either.  So sort of fitted is what I like!

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As I mentioned in my previous post, blocking really makes this cardigan awesome.  The vine yoke really lays down nicely and allows you to fully see the detail of the pattern.  Also, something else to keep in mind is that this cardigan really stretches length wise after blocking.  I remember thinking about how short it looked and hoping that it would stretch.

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IMG_2714Project Specs

Pattern: #20 Ribbed Mini Dress by Mari Lynn Patrick

Pattern source: Vogue Knitting, Spring 2007 via Ravelry

Finished Size: XS

Supplies: Size 6 needles.  9 skeins of Queensland Rustic Wool in Purple.  Darning needle and a little scrap yarn to hold live stitches.

Date started: 5/18/09

Date completed: 8/5/09

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4 months.  WOW.  That’s a long time and a lot of stitches.  Back in May a friend of mine commissioned me to make this dress for her.  I immediately said yes and figured it would be a great challenge.  As with most projects that I take on, this dress ended up being way more than anticipated.  You see, the pattern calls for 2 strands of lace weight yarn held together.  Instead we chose a worsted weight yarn (feels more like DK in my opinion).  Turns out I had to re-write the ENTIRE pattern.  This really put my math skills to the test.  Thank gawd for gauge.  The only similarity between my dress and the pattern is the way the final product looks (which is a lot I know).

This dress is knitted from the bottom up.  Why not top down is my big question?  It would have been a LOT easier and neater.  I often wonder why patterns are written, in my opinion, more difficult than necessary?  The original pattern also called for this to be knit in several pieces.  I ‘just said no to seaming’ and knit the dress all in the round up to where the arm hole decreasing begins.  Have to admit though, the arm pieces were a bitch.  Again, because I could not follow a pattern I had to make it up on my own.    After three unsuccessful attempts I finally got it right and then had to make the other arm.  BAH!   With all projects come new chances to learn.  I can honestly say that I am successful at seaming now.  Like, it actually looks good.

This dress was made to fit a little snug.  As we all know, wool yarn stretches.  Thus why it looks incredibly tiny.  Also the ribbing makes it look even smaller.  I had Diane try this on many times throughout the process so we already know it fits.  (YAY!!)  The plan is to wear the dress (or tunic) with leggings, tights or even jeans.  I know she has been thinking about pairing it up with some super fun boots too.  Perfect for fall/winter here in Austin, TX.

If you are interested in making this dress in an XS size using worsted weight yarn please drop me an email.  I am more than happy to share all of my pattern notes and drawings.  Having no idea how copyright laws go I feel uncomfortable just posting them right here, as this is not my original pattern.  Send me an email if you are interested…  fiberfervor@gmail.com

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RAVELRY LINK:  Diane’s Dress

summerlinProject Specs

Pattern: Summerlin by Alice Schnebly

Pattern source: KathrynIvy.com via Ravelry

Finished Size: 1 Year

Supplies: Size 6 needles.  1/2 skein of Love It in Red, Less than a half skein of Comfort in Aqua and White.

Date started: 5/22/09

Date completed: 5/24/09

Well, I finished my portion of this project rather quickly!  What a great way use up leftover stash from previous projects.  Now, if I only knew how to sew in a straight line, I could finish these dresses.  These tops (of dresses) are being shipped off to my Mom.  She knows how to sew in a straight line and will be attaching skirts to these little numbers.  How fun!  A joint project.  More pictures to come soon!!

IMG_1834Project Specs

Pattern: Rusted Root by Sarah & Rachel (Zephyr Style)

Pattern source: Zephyr Style, found via Ravelry

Finished Size: Medium

Supplies: Size 6 24″ circulars.  4 Skeins of Berroco Comfort in Lovage

Date started: 1/18/09

Date completed: 5/20/09

Wow, this project took what seemed like forever to finish.  It started out with a bang and then, well, became distracted by other projects.   Malabrigo March to name a few.  Overall I am very pleased with how this sweater tee turned out.   After 3 years of knitting, I thought it was about time I knit something for myself.  Isn’t that amazing?  No scarf, nothing.

I followed the pattern as is.  Before you cast on, I highly suggest doing a couple of practice rounds with the lace pattern.  Unfortunately, I learned this the hard way.  Pretty sure I cast on and then re-cast on for this project 5 or 6 times.  This was my first go at any type of lace whatsoever.  While it turned out to be easy after I got it down, the first couple of attempts were a mess.

Also, had I known the crochet cast on technique prior to starting this project, I would totally have used this method.  The sweater is knit top down raglan style.  However, you knit the entire sweater and then finish up the neck ribbing last.

As far as sizing goes, I would suggest going down one size that you would normally wear.  I have pretty broad shoulders and have always been a size large.  Even in my skinnier days (pre-baby) I had a hard time fitting into a medium.  Must have been all of that rowing I used to do.  I knit this sweater in the medium size.  Definitely try this on as you go.  You will save yourself time and a huge headache by doing this.  Yeah, it’s a pain in the ass to put all of the stitches on scrap yarn, but it is totally worth it.  I totally loved that this sweater had NO seaming!

Great project for a sort of beginner knitter!!

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Where did the month go?  Seems like just yesterday I put up my ‘to knit‘ list for Malabrigo March 2009!  Well, I successfully finished the (very short) list and even added two more projects around mid-month.  Still have the Fiddlehead mittens on the needles and I suspect they will remain there for a little while longer.  I haven’t lost interest, but I have decided that I won’t be able to wear them for a while (live in H-O-T Texas).  Might as well concentrate on more spring/summery projects for the time being.  With my first Malabrigo March under my belt, I think next year I will try and take on more projects.  There will be more time to prepare and stock up.  So, here’s to next year and the many, many projects I will take on and stress myself out with!  HA!