I just looked and I can’t believe my last post was in November! Things have been crazy with it being senior year and all. I actually graduate in about a month! I’ll be starting a post-bac research position at the NIH on June 1st which I’m really excited about. Beyond having the opportunity to do some awesome science, I’m excited to have real free time!! And that means more time for knitting!
Until then though, I’ve just been able to fit in a bit of knitting here and there. I’ll use this post to fill you guys in on the projects I’ve completed since my last post.
First is the Nutkin beanie– a pattern from the knit picks website. My younger brother is obsessed with squirrels so this seemed perfect for him. To make things even better, I snagged some wonderful cashmere blend yarn from Knit Picks on sale! This project took me about a year on and off since the yarn was really small making progress pretty slow, but I’m proud of the result:
Next up in my month of hats, was a secret snowflake gift for a new medic in the EMS organization that I volunteer for. During his interviews, when asked what breed of dog best described him, he answered “A bulldog, because I’m short and stout.” Needless to say, when I found this next pattern, I had to make it for him. It was my first time holding three colors across a row which was pretty rough, but I survived and the finished product is pretty awesome if I do say so myself!
Finally, my boyfriend’s birthday was in mid-December and of course I had to knit him something. First, I made a snowflake hat to help him get through the winter in DC where he’s working now.
I also made him this Guston Pullover sweater. I used Knit Pick’s wool of the Andes tweed yarn which was much softer than I expected. It was my first time making anything with button holes which was a challenge, but the finished result was so comfy that I almost couldn’t stand to give it away:
Well, I think that covers everything I’ve done since my last post. More posts will come soon as I’m learning some double knitting and am planning to maybe even release my own charts/pattern pretty soon! Thanks for your patience with my lack of posting! I’ll talk to you all soon!
The day after my MCAT, I drove the 9 hours from St. Louis to Minneapolis where my family lives. We then headed up to our cabin in northern MN. There isn’t anything that I need to accomplish this week so I started working on the Song of the Sea scarf using my Fyberspates rural charm yarn. It took me a few hours to wind the yarn into a ball since despite my best efforts, it ended up in a tangled mess (I don’t have a swift and ball winder although I want to get one after having to do it by hand). I then had to start over after several rows because my counting was off but after all of that, things have been going pretty smoothly!
I knit the large waves yesterday and now I’m on to the medium waves. It takes me awhile to knit each row since there are 256 stitches but the scarf is actually knitting up relatively quickly. It’s a really great pattern- easy enough to memorize but not so easy that it’s boring. It’s nice to have something to work on where I don’t have to be staring at the charts the entire time like I had to do for the octopus sweater. Overall, song of the sea is going well! I’ll post more pictures once it’s done!
It’s finally here! My awesome skein of yarn for the Song of the Sea scarf was finally delivered today. It’s a beautiful sea foam green and so soft! I can’t wait to start using it! It’s a blend of 70% Blue Leicester, 20% silk, and 10% cashmere and the color is Pale Turquoise. There are a lot of subtle variations in the color which I think will knit up very nicely. Now I just need to wind it into a ball. Right now though, it’s going on my shelf- It’ll be my reward for finishing the MCAT this Saturday!
Ive really been struggling to get the second sleeve on the octopus sweater done. The fact that it’s finals time and I feel guilty for taking time away from studying to knit hasn’t helped so I’ve decided to take a little bit of a break from knitting the Embrace Octopus sweater and find some fun summer knits to make.
First in my queue is the Song of the Sea scarf. It’s a beautiful lace scarf and I think it’ll make a good first lace project for me.
I just bought a beautiful skein of yarn for it as a birthday present for myself (I turned 21 yesterday!)- Fyberspates Rural charm in pale turquoise. It’s 70% Bluefaced Leicester, 20% silk, and 10% cashmere and I think it’s probably the most expensive single skein of yarn I’ve ever bought.
After Song of the Sea, I really want to knit something that I can wear this summer in St Louis when it’s going to be 100 degrees and humid. I found this really cool pattern on Ravelry- the #22 Lacy Tee from the spring/summer 2013 issue of Vogue Knitting.
I haven’t picked out yarn yet but I’m thinking of using something in linen or cotton since I’ve never knit with either of those fibers before. Do you guys have any suggestions?
I’m really excited for this summer. I was awarded a biomedical research fellowship so I’ll be working in a biology lab full time which will leave me lots of time on the evenings and weekends to catch up on my knitting. I can’t wait!
After three and a half weeks (1 to 1.5 of which were spent waiting for my yarn to arrive from knit picks after I ran out), i finished the Afmaeli sweater! This was a really fun sweater- the beginning went quickly since it was just plain stockinette stitch and the end was really fun with all of the colorwork. It helped that I used bulky weight yarn so the sweater knit up ridiculously fast.
This was my first ever yoke sweater and I have to say that I really enjoyed it. I like that I only had a few decrease rows and didn’t have to worry about doing decreases every row in one spot like in a raglan. I didn’t really swatch this sweater either since I wasn’t sure if I had enough yarn- I just did my measurements off of the first 6 inches or so that I knit and confirmed that I was at gauge. Thankfully the sweater fits my friend Neveda really well! The only problem is with the sleeves which I should have measured since she is kind of short and has shorter arms than I do. That’s not a usual measurement to make so it didn’t even cross my mind. The sleeves ended up a bit long as a result but they aren’t too bad.
I did have a lot of yarn problems with this sweater though. I didn’t order enough black or green yarn from knit picks when it was on sale and by the time i needed it, they were out of stock in the green. This is where I had to be a bit creative. I found a Donegal Tweed yarn at the local yarn store in a bright yellow color and added that in instead of the green. I actually think it turned out looking really nice! I ran out of black yarn too but thankfully they still had some skeins of it available online so I just had to order more. Unfortunately knit picks was super slow and it took them almost a week to actually ship the yarn so I was stuck waiting, unable to work on the sweater for a while.
Despite my problems running out of yarn, I really loved working with it. I used City Tweed from knit picks which is a blend of Merino wool, baby alpaca, and Donegal tweed. Its a beautiful shiny yarn and its so incredibly soft! I want to make a scarf out of it sometime just so I can have it up against my face- it feels amazing. The tweed looks great too in this sweater. I like how it helped tie the colors together. All in all I would definitely recommend this yarn. It’s amazing!
With the amazing yarn and beautiful colorwork, I had a hard time giving this sweater away. I might have to make another one for myself! For now though I have plenty of projects to work on and classes just started up so I have a lot less time to knit. I’m taking fewer classes this semester so hopefully I’ll be able to finish the octopus sweater in the next month or two!
Well, I’m still waiting to get the yarn from Knit Picks so I can finish the Afmaeli sweater (I ordered it almost two weeks ago!) so I started working on the Embrace Octopus sweater. This is the first time I’ve ever had two sweaters going at the same time but it’s a little less daunting than I expected. What is daunting however is the charts for the octopus sweater. There are 6 pages of charts with very small stitch blocks- they are definitely the most complicated charts I’ve ever used. They aren’t too difficult to follow, but they require a lot of concentration.
Yesterday I had a moment of panic when I realized I had somehow lost 5 stitches and my stitch counts were off. Thirty minutes and lots of frantic counting later I figured out where the lost stitches belonged and added them in. Thankfully I didn’t have to rip out any rows.
Right now I’m about halfway done with the main body of the sweater. The tentacles are looking pretty cool- especially the ones with suction cups! Besides requiring a frustrating number of floats, this sweater is actually a lot easier than I thought it would be. It just requires a lot of concentration.
I’ll update you all again when I finish the body section. No guarantees on when that will be though. Classes start up again on Monday and I won’t have time to sit around all day and knit.
I am deviating from the pattern a little bit. Based on people’s comments on ravelry, I decided to use worsted weight yarn instead of bulky and go down a couple needle sizes. I was a bit worries about it being too small even after swatching so I tried it on after about 20 rows of the colorwork and it looks like it should fit just fine!
I decided to save a bit of money on yarn since I have so many projects going so I’m using Lion Brand wool-ease yarn which is 80% acrylic and 20% wool. Usually I hate acrylic yarn but this stuff doesn’t feel too plasticky and it has the added bonus of being machine washable. I got it on sale at Joann’s Fabrics for about $3 per 85g skein (each skein is about 200 yards). I bought 7 skeins for a ridiculous total of $21 in yarn for the whole sweater. A pretty good deal if you ask me even if it did mean I set aside my inherent hatred of all things acrylic. Like I said though, this stuff is actually pretty nice- I’ve used it in sweaters before and it’s pretty soft and wearable.
All in all, I’m really excited to wear this sweater!!
After running out of yarn and ordering more, I finally finished the Min Ulla scarf on December 28th. This was such a fun pattern to knit- it took a long time but I never felt bored or tired of this project. The pattern is $6 on ravelry and it is worth every cent. There are tons of fair isle charts which I’m sure I’ll be able to incorporate into other projects down the line and the directions are succinct and well-written.
I loved working with this yarn as well. The darker color is Ella Rae classic heathers in Black-brown and the cream is Cascade 220. Both knit up really well and are pretty comparable (the Ella Rae wool is a bit cheaper). They’re also really soft after blocking.
Speaking of blocking, I had to use a ton of pins on this scarf. My tension wasn’t consistent so I had to block out the differences in width. Thankfully it worked really well and the scarf looks great now. It gave me a good excuse to try out the blocking boards I got for Christmas!