October 21, 2014

The Everdene Wrap

It's been a year since Knit Picks published my Everdene Wrap in their bulky collection, and the rights just reverted back to me (yeah!).  So, let's take a minute to re-introduce this quick-knit, easy cabled and ruffled wrap.

The wrap is knit flat in a single piece on US 13 needles with bulky weight WOTA. The center is herringbone stitch, so this is one very cozy wrap!  Both edges of the central fabric are flanked by giant, closely connected trophy cables that are worked the entire length of the wrap.

The ends of the wrap naturally ruffle, and then there are also buttons to hold the wrap around your torso.

Unfortunately, the pictures don't include the wrap being worn correctly--there is an additional "invisible" button that secures the end hanging down in the pictures to the underside of the wrap to give the wrap a poncho feature.  That's how I'd wear it, anyway.

If you are new to cabling or even to knitting in general, this is a great first cabling project.  I could even see this being worked up in tonal or kettle-dyed yarn, as well as the solid color.  If you were just that kind of determined, you could also work the cabled edges in an intarsia fashion and do the edging in a different color than the body.

Anyway, if you are so inclined, the pattern can be purchased here:  Everdene on Knit Picks.

October 20, 2014


It's that crazy time of year when I want to drop everything that I am working on and start a new project.  I have a few old projects that seem to have just been dragging their feet and not getting finished, mostly because of pattern designing and the making of gifts which have kept me from being able to knit on the old projects. Call me selfish, but I am desperately wanting to make or finish something for myself for a change.  I don't think I've knit for me since maybe June?  (Sigh.)

I started this boot cuff in Swish Worsted (Lava Heather), then ripped it totally back because, well,  a honeycomb cable wasn't what I wanted after all, and have knit back to about half-way through the project.

I am, however, wondering why in the world I didn't cast on to knit these 2-at-a-time because now I am going to have to make another one and we all know about THAT syndrome!  I had planned to knit these in June and to make a pair of fingerless Urbanista gloves to round out the set.  Sadly, this is not what I want to be knitting, as it turns out.

But, ahem.  There's another call for pattern submissions for fall/winter sweaters that just hit my inbox. So, Friday I sent the kids off to school and sat down at the computer with an idea, did a little swatch, and by 10:30 am I had written a complete cable-y drop-shoulder sweater pattern in 5 sizes.  I picked out the yarn and ordered it. This will be one of those can't-show-you projects.  I've too many of those going on around here already, and that's probably what is causing my start-itis.  I know what I want to knit for myself: a shawl, 4 pair of socks, and some new Sportswoman gloves.  I also happen to have all the yarn I need for these projects.  Something tells me, though, that I will be starting another test-knit just as I am wrapping up another gift project and my just-for-me agenda will get set aside.  Plus, my children have begun giving me their Christmas "orders", which include Sportsman gloves, socks, and several beanies.

Christmas is in 9 weeks.  Yep.  Definitely not getting to my own personal knitting agenda until January. Sigh. Sigh. Sigh.

October 01, 2014

A week for the books

Today, Wednesday, will be the pinnacle of the awful of this week, I hope, I hope.

It's just been a crappy week already.  I'm sick, Rocket's sick, Honey's out of town all week, the weather is crazy and so is my arthritis.  The stress meter is, as we say around here, "fit to bust" from real estate drama with the house that just won't sell and oh-my-God-could-they-just-approve-the-barn-loan already!!

On Monday, I had to clean the house from top to bottom so the appraiser could make snide comments and take pictures for all of 5 minutes.  The appraiser also took pictures outside of our building-less farm and our animals inside their pasture fences and said "You know, these pictures might make it look like you have a working farm--as in profit-making instead of the money pit that we actually have--and banks DON'T like to give loans to build barns to WORKING farms" and I'm thinking "... because ... a farm with no animals would put a new barn to better use?!?"  I also had to take Rocket to the doctor because she has allergies, a cold, and maybe strep throat because it turns out she's a "carrier" for strep.  In layman's terms, as I understand it, that means that she always has the strep virus present in her body and can, at any time, make all the rest of us sick, even if she, herself, presents no symptoms.  I feel like crap. That was Monday.

Tuesday was finish-the-last-sleeve day for the (formerly) gorgeous fingering weight cabled sweater that I have been killing myself to finish before a submission deadline over the last two weeks because a finished product always goes over better than a pencil sketch.  I finished it and I blocked all the pieces to standard body measurements for the size I knit.  Which was just dumb (D-U-M-B) on my part because the yarn, formerly elastic merino that didn't need to be stretched to standard body measurements--yes, I neglected to think about ease when I blocked it, yes I did--lost ALL elasticity about 10 seconds after I got it wet. It did not return once the pieces were dry. That was Tuesday.

Wednesday rolled around and the weather had cleared so it was time to clean animal pens and steam clean the carpet and run cough drops to school because Rocket forgot them and make the regular trip to Walmart.  And, since it was all blocked up and ready for seaming (which I hate, hate, hate doing), I thought that I would seam my (WOW that looks big!) sweater pieces together and that might tighten things up. The seams turned out nicely for a change. The sweater, however, is about 3 sizes too big for me and who knew that you could knit a 40-inch bust size and end up with a 54-inch bust size after adding a little water?  So I wet it again.  I put it in the dryer.  (Yes, I said it.  I put pure merino wool in the dryer!)  Now we're down to 2 sizes too big and not even felted-looking.  I've wet it again and tried to scrunch it together to be the realistic measurements that I knit it to be and it's laying there, taunting me, and threatening not to shrink down any further.  The neck is a bit wonky now, so that throws the hole neck edging plan that I had out the window.  The deadline is in 5 days.  I'm right there on the edge.  Right there. And I have no plan to finish the neckline.

I tweeted this picture earlier today when I was thinking that this sweater probably just looks bigger than it is because it's the first time the pieces have met one another other than on the mannequin. I was so proud of my perfect seaming of a purl stitch seam that I was sure that things would work out fine.

I was so naive then.

And then, to make matters worse, I upgraded my iPhone and what the heck I automatically get an app to keep track of my fitness, nutrition, vital signs, and sleep habits? There's a few more invasive apps.  You can't delete them.  I have tried. I have a possibly ruined sweater AND Big Brother on my iPhone.  Great.  That's just great. (Please let the rest of this week be more blue skies and butterflied and less mudslide.)


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