Friday, May 20, 2011
My Estelle cardigan is finished, and I have to say I'm sad it's all over. This was the most fun knit I've done in a long time, and I think that's due to several things. It was knit on larger needles so it really moved along; it had enough going on with new construction techniques (for me, knitting top down is new) and design features to keep my interest; and the yarn is wonderful to work with, so it was a nice tactile experience as well.
I like the navy color I chose for mine, but there are some equally great colors popping up in the KAL. One knitter is doing hers in a bird's egg blue, which looks really cute.
Here's the back, with the ribbing:
Full disclosure: I did have a moment of horror when I was completely done with the sweater and decided to soak it to even out my stitches on the sleeves from using DPNs. When I put it in to soak I could feel the yarn go soft and loose, and knew it was going to be an entirely different gauge when I took it out. I hadn't expected this, because the yarn is fairly sturdy and spun in a worsted fashion, not a loosey goosey yarn like an unspun single or something. I could not resist trying it on damp and it was a different sized sweater, about 3 to 5 inches longer than it had been! So I freaked out a bit and dearly wished I'd washed the swatch I'd made before starting to knit. However, the next day all was well. I got the idea to try to dry the sweater in the dryer on a rack that you insert to dry things flat. After about 20 minutes or so on the lowest heat, I took it out, and lo and behold, it had sprung back to its original size. Amazing! I've never worked with a yarn that does this before, and I don't know if it would have done it on its own without the extra heat of the dryer, but I'm awfully glad it did. Faith restored in my knitting, and I'm happy with the project.
Now that I'm done with Estelle, I perused the Quince pattern section and came across this cardi that had only just been added to the website. This is the Abigail cardi by Cecily G. Macdonald and it's worked in their fingering weight wool/silk blend called Tern. Tern doesn't come in the whole color range of their other yarns, and it takes the dye differently than the wool, but what they've got is lovely. I actually like the pale color above called Oyster. I've been interested in doing a project using small yarn on large needles, and that's how this is made. It's done on US 6s, so it shouldn't take forever to knit, even in fingering weight, and you get a lovely lightweight thing that's perfect for places where there's too much air conditioning or at the park before the sun hits or something. I'm debating on whether I should use some Hempathy I've got in my stash, or splurge on the Tern.
There are other things that I liked in Quince's pattern section. The cardigan below, really a jacket, is called Solstice and is also by Cecily G. (I'm reminded of the giraffe in Cecily G. and the Nine Monkeys by Curious George author H.A. Rey). Anyway, it's done in Osprey, their next heavier yarn from Lark, on 6.5 mm needles.
This one is called the Annabel pullover, by Carrie Bostick Hoge. Also done in Osprey, it's a cropped pullover. There's also a cardigan version sold as a separate pattern.
And last, the Fiona pullover by Pam Allen is made with their unspun bulky yarn Puffin. Isn't that a great name for a bulky yarn? An easy top down sweater. I could see this in several colors, but my favorite is the ice blue called Glacier.
Just a little bit of inspiration for you!
The yarn shop where I work part-time is participating in the LYS Tour of the Puget sound region, which takes place over four days. I've never done this tour of 25 local yarn shops, but quite a few knitters make the rounds to all of them, which makes them eligible for prizes. The shop should be quite busy today, but in a happy way.