Saturday, March 20, 2010

Still knitting and learning ...

from the Green Sweater project, and to a lessor extent Poppy's Turkish Slipper Socks. The Green Sweater project continues to show me neat and clever little tricks, but I'm also just a knitter and I had to frog back a good inch or so of the sleeve after discovering a dropped stitch ...I briefly thought of looping it back up ... but you know even when you loosen the stitches either side to make room .. it always looks squished. So frog it was ....

The neck is now finished and stitched down, all the better to try on the cardigan as I work the sleeves. I gleaned that idea that while trolling Sunday's Green Sweater KAL on the Knitters choice forum on Ravelry .. and it was a very good tip. Also on that forum there is quite a bit of discussion about the width of the sleeves ... with quite a few knitters slimming down the sleeves, or knitting this as a historical garment, and planning to knit another to wear with slimmer sleeves. Those kind of discussions do make me think about what I want .. and they make me worry about what I would do if I finish it and don't like the shaping or fit. I started to wonder if I should modify the sleeve (the pattern gives instructions for a slimmer sleeves and some knitters have modified further for an even slimmer sleeve). I read that lots of knitters had worked the sleeves 2 or 3 or more times .. so decided to at least try knitting the original sleeves shape.

Then I discovered yet another clever variation of the shaping already in play in the neck-band, the underarm gusset is wide, and the stitches are decreased away either side of the two points where the steeked edge and underarm stitches meet. I've continued my slipped stitch side seam up into the gusset ... and discovered that this quadrupole decrease doesn't add any extra fabric around the body.

See? The decrease raises the underarm point quite a bit, a relief as the original underarm point is quite low. Now I have decreased away all the underarm gusset stitches the only decrease is at the top of the arm, forming first the shoulder shape and now angling the sleeve down and narrowing it at a rate of 2 stitches every second row until there are only 40 stitches left. It will be a loose sleeve, but I think because the lower section of the body is quite a slim fit, and because I knitted the body to the longest size and the smallest size width-wise that it will be a fairly flattering garment. By that I mean it will fit closely around the hips and waist, and show that there is in fact a body underneath the looser sleeves that is smaller than the sleeves .... that is the hope anyway. Knitting this has taught me new ways to consider shaping as a decorative element, beyond the standard in-at-the-waist--out-at-the-hip-and-bust shaping that is relatively easy to adopt. Two things are tumbling around in my mind, I need to knit another in red, in the Regal 2 ply soon, and more people should knit this (only 128 projects on Ravelry, and in 497 queues).

Poppy's turkish sock (based loosely on the one by AZ in Knitting Traditions, grows well, but slower than it should as the Green Sweater has me distracted. I've completed one slipper sock, and as AZ says the socks are a tad tight to pull on but once on feel fine. I've left a cm or so growing room at the toes for Poppy, and wonder if that will be enough to last the winter. I enjoyed working the knitted braid at the top and did attach a tassel - that way Poppy will know which is right and which is left - the tassel can go to the outside of her foot. Poor Poppy was excited when I finished the first sock some time last week, she spent quite a bit of time hopping around the house with one sock on and one sock not there yet .... but then noticed and verbalized that I was knitting 'my-project' not 'her-sock'. She noticed and verbalized this several times over the past few days. Yesterday I promised her that I would start her sock ... then I did sneak little knit sessions with the Green Sweater ... she noted those also, but I pointed out that it was not the end of 'today'. Finally after the evening meal I disciplined myself, broke away from the Green Sweater, I finished the 2nd skein of yarn, and it seemed wrong to start a new skein when Poppy was wanting her sock, and so I cast on for her sock. The SS (Second Sock) is now well up the foot, with only an inch or so before the heel. It is faster the second time thru.

I had fun working patterns into the stitch count, and while they are not too adventurous, I did play with the heel a little. I've mirrored the diamond on the heel, which looks quite cool when worn. I really want to work on the Green sweater ... but I will dedicate today and tomorrow to this, and to finishing my future SIL's lace jacket. Then I can ball up the last two skeins of yarn, and knit more on the Green Sweater to my little hearts content. Monday is a public holiday here and the weather is being unpredictable, hot and windy with threats of rain ... is perfect for indoor knitting. Soon we are all off to watch Alice in Wonderland in 3D ... which should be fun all around (and fun to watch Poppy and Toby experience 3D for the first time).

take care
hope your knitting has you enthralled as mine does

na Stella


Mary Ann said...

I love the turkish socks! WOW! And the green sweater is breath-taking!
Love your blog! Happy Knitting!

Diantee said...

I'm one of those with the Green Sweater in my queue. Guess I had better get on with it!

KathyR said...

The Green Sweater is coming on a treat! Lots of choices to make in it to help it become truly "yours" as well. Wonderful! As for the Turkish Socks, the completed one looks superb - I really like the way you've done the heel. Very clever. No wonder the Little Bear wants her second paw to be covered now, Mum!

Knitting Linguist said...

Ooh, so many good things. The green sweater is definitely in my queue - I even have the pattern here at home! I don't have the yarn yet, though, and I am still currently relishing not having any big projects OTN (and am using that time to hit the wheels); this will probably change soon. I'm loving Poppy's socks, too! I should check below, but did you say what pattern that is? Hope you ended up having a wonderful weekend!