Friday, March 8, 2013


The ribbed body section is done – that was easy! Now, looking at the schematic for the sleeve/yoke section, when it gets right down to it, there are some details and measurements missing. I suppose I could just wing it, and reknit if it doesn’t work out, but I like to plan and have a little more accuracy. Here’s what I did: I use the KR11 for my sizing and shaping, so I drew the basic outline using the measurements given, but the actual angle of the decreases from the underarm to the back neck and how wide the back neck should be are not given – there is also a shortrowed dart thing on the other side to shape the back underarm area. I set the mylar in the KR11 and programmed it for the stitches and rows in the actual pattern (16 sts and 26 rows to 10 cm) and manually advanced the rows and plotted the decreases (shown in the green dotted line – the dart is the green dashes) according to the original instructions. Now, all I need to do is set in my stitches and rows from my stockinette swatch (I'm cheating here - didn't make a new stockinette swatch - used the numbers from my 'Angled with Attitude' - same yarn, same application, fairly recent, I'm sure it will work) for the standard gauge machine and this great little gadget will do the rest!! So cool!

Thursday, March 7, 2013


OR, how many swatches does it take to steal an idea?
I’m ripping off another design – well, whatever…it was originally done on the bulky machine and I always thought it would make a nice standard gauge cardigan – ‘Rib’nShrug’ by Alice Tang, from Knitwords #53. My niece, Wendy modeled it and it looked so nice on her – really, I have been meaning to make it for her – she’s coming over next Friday, the 15th, and I’m going to commit to it right now.
Now, how do you take something designed for one gauge and re-design it for a finer gauge? We have the schematic but obviously swatches need to be made and new calculations for the new gauge. The body seems pretty simple – it’s actually a ribbed rectangle used sideways – can’t get much easier than that. The rectangle works simply in this design because of the ribbing – it will make a flat piece with no need to worry about facings or edgings as long as the cast-on and cast-off, which form the front opening edges, are done properly and kinda sorta match. Ouch? Not much information in the pattern – it just tells you to cast on and cast off – how did I let this get by? Oh well, sorry…
So, the original is K3, P1, K3, P2, K3, P1, K3, P2, K3….
Swatch #1 (right) To start, I arranged the needles and did a wrapped cast-on, hung the comb and T7/9, knit 20 rows. T10/10, K1R. Transferred sts up and chained off. My thinking was that I needed to have a  looser stitch on the rib bed to match the main bed stitches so it wouldn’t pull in too much – wrong! – the rib bed stitches distorted and looked ugly. And the cast on and off were bad. Swatch #2 (centre) I chained on, main bed only, knit one row. Brought up the rib bed and transferred to my needle arrangement. Had a time hanging the comb, not acceptable – work on that later.  T7/7, K20R. Transfer up. T7, K1R stockinette. T10, K1R. Chain off.
Well, the rib is better, but maybe it should be thicker/wider and the start and finish need some work.
Swatch #3 (left)  - K3, P2, K3, P3, K3, P2, K3, P3, K3…
Just on the main bed, cast on with waste yarn and put in the ribber comb – (see how to do it – wasted…not! Nov 25/08).
Then with main yarn doubled, I chained across loosely. T7, K1R. Transfer to new needle arrangement. T7/7, K20R. Transfer up and knit a row of stockinette. Main yarn doubled, T10+, K1R and chain off – too tight? Huh! Actually the cast-off is good (it’s holding the length of the rib better), the cast-on side is too loose (it’s waving with the rib), but we’re on the right track!
I chose this pretty seafoam 4 ply wool – I think it will look good on her – I made an executive decision to widen the background for the ribs and I’ve changed it to K4, P3, K4, P2, K4, P3, K4, P2, K4 etc…oh, and side away is right side, shown in blue swatch - talk to you later!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013


 It crossed my mind that it was about time for a new issue of Knit’nStyle – I clicked through and sure enough, there it is! # 185, the summer edition. I’m pretty pleased with the photo they have – check it out! I talked about the yarn (Linsey Berroco – see ‘light bulb moment’ Nov 18/12) earlier. I finished it up and shipped it off to KnS in late November – I got this note back:
Top arrived yesterday… hung it up and everyone walking past my office is in love with it…Thank you!
 I figured it was because they needed something bright to cheer them up – it was just after the bad east coast storms – their office is in NJ and the area had been hit pretty bad. Anyway, check it out - I was happy with my finished product, but seeing the finished thing in the magazine is nice too! I wonder if they will translate this one into a hand knit version?
Speaking of hand knitting, is it stealing if I see a hand knit garment and make a version of it on the machine? No answer required, but here’s what I did – the new Vogue Knitting has a pattern called ‘Tie Back Top’ – I was not really inspired by it until I went to their website and checked it out in the VK360 – they have a video of a model in the garment – shows so much more than the photos in the magazine!! I thought it was really cute and would make a nice coverup for some cute, tiny gal for a warm vacation or it could be worn as evening wear with a cute bra top or tank. The one in VK is hand knit in a DK yarn and has a stockinette front and very open lace back – I made this one on my standard gauge machine with lace (Silver Reed) carriage using Silk City Zephyr, a fine, linen/rayon with a beautiful sheen  - it’s actually the leftover from my ‘Sophisticate’,  which was in the first ‘Serial Stuff/POM’ collection – it is very lightweight, drapy and the perfect weight for warm weather. I made it with the lace neckline lower than the other and made deep armholes, all edged with my XOXO trim from ‘Band Practise’. The lace pattern is from ‘Me Cozy’, Knitwords #48 – I gave the brother version of my stitch pattern there too. Didn't bother with the ties because I think this is a closer fit through the upper body and really only flares from the waist. Finished, ready to wear in 2 days!! I had to make Sunday supper…
I'll call it inspiration - I'm not writing the pattern!