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September 22, 2009

Knitting Pure & Simple :: Summer Cardigan

Knitting Pure & Simple Summer Cardigan #221
[Ravelry] for more details

My blogging has been infrequent since I've been focused on knitting productivity. I've been trying to discipline myself to stick with one project until I've completed it (not so easy when I'm addicted to starting new things). If you're on Flickr, you'll see that I've shared more in-progress photos over there, but there's only so much you can blog about a plain vanilla sweater. I used to own a cozy 100% cotton roll neck sweater that I bought at J. Crew in the early 90's. I loved that sweater and this summer cardi was inspired by it - it's the same color and nearly the same texture. And since shifting my focus to knitting (and crocheting) things I can wear, I've possibly solved my wardrobe deficit. Perhaps I can get away with just purchasing new shoes and new jeans -- and making the Fall sweaters and tops myself. For upcoming knits, I'm sticking with a palette of dark neutrals and have already chosen yarn and patterns. My Ravelry queue is up-to-date if you'd like to check it out.

Knitting Pure & Simple Cardigan with buttons
Remember the buttons?

I was delighted with this basic little cardigan. I'll definitely wear it, but it's purpose is also to serve as a template for future sweaters. This one's a little short and has no shaping whatsoever, but I can attempt that the next time I knit this pattern and make my own improvements.

September 07, 2009

The lull between projects

Everything came to a halt last week when I caught a cold and the last bit of sock monkey assembly had to wait. I'm delighted with him -- even his silly oversized ears. (I'll re-do his ears some day, but for now, they stay. My ears are big too). I attached his arms only to take them off to try to figure out a more elegant way to seam them. There's not much in the book in the way of instruction.

Thank you all for sharing your sock-knitting techniques and preferred tools! I'm keeping an open mind and expanding my horizons. I want to at least have a solid understanding of techniques beyond double-pointed needles, so I'm challenging myself to try different techniques. Ann, my co-worker at Twisted Yarns, sat down with me a little over a week ago and taught me the two socks on two circulars method. The objective is to have a finished pair of socks when you've completed all the knitting -- no more second sock syndrome! Unlike the two-at-a-time on ONE circular, the two distinct circular needles makes everything a little easier to keep track of and like she described to me, two circulars gives you an "escape route" should you need it. I didn't get to work on them at all last week, but I'm past the ribbing and ready to start knitting the plain portion of the sock.

Two socks on two circs

You can also use this technique to knit two sleeves at once -- it's the same concept! It does take a little more time, but you simply keep your eyes on the prize - a matching finished PAIR of socks (or sleeves).

Here's the yarn I'm using:

Crystal Palace Mini Mochi

It's Crystal Palace Mini Mochi; the self-striping colorways are similar to Noro. Mine's color 103.

I'm sorry if I've left a few of you hanging with unanswered emails and comments on Flickr and Ravelry. I'm over my cold and beginning to catch up.