Sunday, September 14, 2008
Pattern: Rambling Rose Cardigan by Laura Zukaite, from Interweave Knits Winter 2006
Started: January 2008
Yarn: 2 skeins Socks That Rock heavyweight each in Haida and Pond Scum (with plenty yardage leftover)
Needles: US 5 circulars
I wore RR out in public last night! And I got a million compliments! OK all of them came from Duck. In response to my repeated questioning. It's been ages since I've worn a handknit out in public - so sad - so I was feeling a little self-conscious, or something. That and the fact that Pond Scum is so very grellow, which I was totally into. I mean I still am. But when I stepped outside it became all RAR I'M GRELLOW RAR! and I got a little scared brandishing the grellowness about out in public so blatantly. It is very grellow right? That's sort of a hard color to wear.
But don't listen to me, because at the end of the day I love my RR and am thrilled with the way it turned out. It fits me to a T. I went down a needle size which I always do. The biggest modification was to make it longer, and to omit the intarsia scallop ribs from the body and the sleeves. I found the scallops to be a little much. Also, I was too lazy to knit them.
Of course there is that huge mistake of knitting a leaf motif repeat extra on the left front that on the right front, and seaming it all up before I realized what happened. I cried for about ten minutes and then I didn't care. Because unless you're looking for it, you won't notice anything's amiss. I did remove the 3rd button from the bottom, so that when I button up the entire cardigan, I could just sort of tuck the extra fabric underneath the button band, and there would be no extra buttons dangling by itself. There are some other mistakes I made here and there when knitting the intarsia but again, it's not there if you don't see it. (But from the photos below you probably will!)
Knitting the yoke in intarsia I will say was a pain in the freaking ass. I wouldn't do it again. Knitting in the yoke as written avoids having to seam, sure fine. But this is a cardigan, so you'd only have to seams the sleeves onto the body anyways. And having to seam raglan sleeves (which is what they are), the easiest of all sleeves to seam, is 10000% easier than having to manage 9 separate bobbins of yarn while you knit 200+ stitches back and forth. Then when you finally make it out alive, there are all the ends to weave in. I did not enjoy that process one bit, and if was done all to avoid seaming, then the yoking wasn't worth it for me. Otherwise, as first-time intarsia knitter, knitting intarsia was easy and a lot of fun.
So that's it! My first finished sweater of the year - better late than never! So thanks for sticking around to hear the end of the long and bumpy tale of the Rambling Rose...
Filed Under: Completed Projects | Rambling Rose
Friday, September 05, 2008
Thank you everyone for your kind condolences regarding my pinheaded mistake of knitting Rambling Rose in different lengths. Thank you. It lessened the pain. And then my non-perfectionist tendencies lessened it more. Or maybe it was laziness. Pragmatic laziness, though. I could have fixed it but then, life is too short to worry about asymmetry, you know? I'm asymmetric by design anyways - my right foot is slighter longer than my left, fingers on right hand longer than those on the left, right eye more myopic than the left eye, etc. It's all good.
As soon as the weather cools I'll do some proper model shots. I've got it all figured out. It needs to be a layered look. But it's so hot for that right now! I love it! Go summer go! Just a little bit longer please...
In the meantime I started a pair of Red Sox for myself. I made a pair a couple of years ago for a family member - and posted about them exactly two years ago, huh! - but I'm doing it a little differently this time by adding corrugated ribbing for the cuff so it looks more closely like the socks on the official logo. I made up the pattern as I went along, nothing crazy.
The yarn is Sundara Yarn in a beeeeyooootiful color called Claret over Garnet (.or maybe it's the other way around? Can't remember) and some undyed yarn for the heel/toe. I have this feeling these socks will only be drycleaned, or not cleaned at all. Once the cuffs turn pink they can no longer be deemed Red Sox. And I would cry.
Filed Under: Rambling Rose | Socks | Red Sox
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Yeah that's right! I knit one leaf repeat too many on one side, and am only discovering it NOW when I buttoned the whole FRACKING thing up. Through all the blocking and seaming, I DIDN'T CATCH IT. Up until this very belated realization, I was convinced I had just completed the most flattering, perfect-fitting garment ever known to me. I was about to hand myself a medal. Mouth the words to the national anthem. And then while at the top of my game, retire.
Filed Under: Rambling Rose
Monday, August 25, 2008
After a 5-month hiatus (FIVE?!) from Rambling Rose, I have finally laid aside my irrational anger towards reknitting the buttonbands.
I've only knitted the left-side buttonband, but considering how LITTLE TIME it took for me to get it done, and to get it done right, I am ashamed of myself and quite embarrassed for waiting this long to do it. Rambling Rose laid crunched up in a plastic bag for all this time, beautiful beautful Rambling Rose please forgive me.
Based on the very helpful comments from this post, I was able to pick up the correct number of stitches for the band. I had a slipped-stitch selvege for the front right and left panels, and had picked up and knit each of those slipped sts for the buttonband. It resulted in major puckering and pulling in of the fabric; clearly my ratio of 1:2 was short; I cried; I swore; I threw it aside in disgust. When all I really had to do was go for a ratio of 2:3 by picking up every slipped stitch, and knitting through the front and back of every other stitch as well (I usually pick up all stitches first, and then knit them. I find the mechanics to be much easier this way).
Worked like a charm! Happy happy joy joy. So the plan is to finish the other buttonband after work today, block tonight, head to the DMV tomorrow in Chinatown to get my license renewed and re-registered to vote (IMPORTANT!), and then stop by Windsor Buttons for the perfect set of buttons, which I will then immediately sew on as soon as I return home. And Rambling Rose at long last will be finished done complete, wheeeee!
Filed Under: Rambling Rose
Thursday, June 05, 2008
Needless to say I've come down with a raging case of knitting standstillitis. I believe the cure for this evil will be time. Time and perhaps more sangria (I really have been drinking a boatload of that stuff lately, so much that the acidity from the wine and fruit and whatnot has burned a little bit of skin off the roof of my mouth, aren't you glad you asked, but all that vitamin C surely is good for you).
I mean the other day I actually did only one other activity while watching TV, and that was to sit on the couch. Hands idle, except when they were required to convey more sangria to the lips, needles nowhere to be seen. It was so wrong yet so right. For our week at the Cape, it was only after everything else was packed away did I think to bring some knitting along, and even then I couldn't decide what, because I didn't know what I wanted to knit, so in desperation I stuffed 6 random cakes of leftover sock yarn into a bag and decided I would make a Chevron Scarf out of them. It's going to look interesting, that scarf. If I ever finish it.
Is this the beginning of the end?
And I have so much inspiration that ought to keep me going too...
1. Two gift certificates to Purl Soho from Kitty, burning a hole on the refrigerator door since September!
2. A whole rainbow of Sundara Sock Yarns, burning a humongous but pretty hole in the drawer since the winter!
3. And of course, Rambling Rose, on the brink of world domination...yet burning a sad, lonely hole in this bag since March.
I did bring it down to Atlanta in April hoping my mother would finish it for me, but with the move and whatnot there was no time. Now it's June and it's supposed to hit 90 degrees this weekend (heaven!). 90 degree weather does not bode well for our little sweatery friend here. Nor for the bottles of rum I will destroy while making more sangria and/or mojitos.
Filed Under: Rambling Rose
Monday, March 31, 2008
For I have just knit the ugliest pair of button bands ever in the history of knitting.
Don't come any closer. I am ugly.
Poor Rambling Rose. What did you do to deserve such inelegant, pigeon-toed button bands?
All I did was pick up the selvege (slipped stitches) along the front panels, like we do when we pick up the slipped stitches along the gusset of a sock heel. Why did it pucker so much here? Did the ribbing of the button bands pull the fabric in? Should I have gone up a needle size? Should I occassionally knit into the front and back of a few of the slipped stitches to increase the pick-up count? Will you do this for me?
As far as mistakes go, this is pretty fixable. Easily fixable. In all the time I spent screaming "EFF! EFF ME! EFF me in the effing HOOHA," I could have ripped out the bands and redid them three times over. But for some reason I just so don't want to do it. I don't want to figure out how to knit a smooth button band when it shouldn't have required any thought to begin with. You're supposed to simply pick up the slipped stitches and, the end! But no! Now I've got to experiment with RATIOS and different needle sizes and whatnot so I've tossed it aside for the moment. I am angry at it. I am angry.
I'm seeking a little therapy by knitting socks again.
Pomatomus (or the Best Sock Pattern Ever) in Sundara Yarn "Aqua Over Lilac"
I'll finish the cardigan once I'm feeling a little more rational.
Filed Under: Rambling Rose | Socks | Pomatomus
Monday, March 24, 2008
I've just finished the yoke and will be starting the neckband and button bands tonight. Oh the bliss of knitting from a single ball of yarn!
Filed Under: Rambling Rose
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
Miniscule progress on Rambling Rose. I lopped off all the yarn balls and am dealing with several yards of yarn at a time instead. Better. But still messy.
I tried on a sleeve and boy. it is tight. I really hope this turns out because if it doesn't I just might have to hurl myself off the roof. I just might.
OK. So. In an effort to get myself back on this blogging horse I have devised a scheme in which every day (heh) I will post about a topic which will differ day-to-day but remain consistent week-to-week. ie I will post under the same topic every Tuesday. Topics are to be determined by myself and rules may change at anytime.
So for today, Tuesday, I bring you...My Favorite Things. Besides Knitting.
These are candles from Diptyque, a perfumerie based in Paris that also sells soaps and house sprays at - I will not lie - kind of exorbitant prices. Except I think it's worth it, and who doesn't deserve to splurge on themselves every now and then?
I love this place. Unlike walking into say, YankeeCandleCo. and having your little body pillaged with a freight train of a million headache-inducing scents, walking into Diptyque is a subtle, tranquil, zen experience. And if you're lucky the lady working there will actually be FRENCH who speaks perfect English with that wonderful French lilt, and if you're really lucky, she also distributes wine on the side, so when she's describing to you a scent, it doesn't simply smell "good" or even "fruity," but has a base note of "bananas" or reminds one of "ghosts in the closet." Hee hee!
My favorite one included Feu de Bois (Firewood). It was like Santa Fe on chilly nights, but I came away with wanting Paris a little bit more. Myrrh. It smells like a 600 year-old French cathedral, dusty, damp and cavernous. So while it's burning, you have to talk in hushed tones.
Cathedral in Aix-en-Provence, France. Taken August 2007
Filed Under: Rambling Rose | Tuesday is for Favorite Things
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
I've stalled big time on my knitting because I've reached the yoke for the Rambling Rose cardigan and now it's much less knitting and much more wrangling. And crying.
The right front panel is joined with the right sleeve is joined to the back is joined to the left sleeve is joined to the left front panel. That's what, about one trillion some-odd stitches squished on a needle with 9 strands of yarn - kept wound in small balls - jangling and twisting like windchimes in a hurricane and it SUCKS. I suppose I could/should make the balls of yarn smaller but I feel it wouldn't make the process any more manageable. The whole yoking was a bad idea. Fine so you don't have to seam later, but seaming is a small, TINY price to pay for not having to knit back and forth - no yoking in the round, this is a cardigan! - and deal with the all that yarn getting all insane all over your lap. Nightmare.
Here is a shot of Veeb's humungous backside to make everyone feel better.
Filed Under: Cats | Rambling Rose
Friday, February 08, 2008
Here are some better photos of HRM the Kooch.
(Love my little Duck to pieces, but the guy cannot for the life of him take in-focus photographs.)
I jumped the gun with all the seaming. That photo in the magazine is misleading. The awesome belt which really is the whole reason why I started this 2-year knitting sojourn, is not actually belt. WHAT? you say, if not a belt then what? Well, they are actually ties which end at either side of the waist. One tie for the right, one for the left. The right tie is attached to the waist seam of the front right panel, and vice-versa for the left. THEN the left and right front panels are seamed to the back panel.
Does not that sound entirely nutters to you? And how odd would that look, a cardigan with a half-belt? And how empty and naked the back.
So screw the instructions and the design, I'm making a full belt.
Here are some more photos of Rambling Rose to fill up space. I blocked the back and fronts and let us now bask in the glory of the awesome stitch definition. Go STR Go.
Filed Under: Rambling Rose | Rowan | Kooch
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
The makings of the Rambling Rose cardi from IK Winter 2006, using STR heavyweight in Pond Scum and Haida. These are flying of the needles.
We now conclude this drive-by post. Better than none at all, right? :-/
Filed Under: Rambling Rose