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STILL Making Swatches

And, I should really be done with that by now. But an earlier bit of procrastination has now added a little excitement to my days. Actually, I was mulling the whole thing over – letting my subconscious work on it. Yeah, that’s it.

After spending most of today knitting bits of fabric, measuring them in all their different dimensions and what seemed like hours of fiddling with arithmetic and schematic diagrams, I am finally happy with the idea. Now, part of tomorrow is set aside to actually draft the instructions.

This one is a sweater and is worked in 5 colors of Cascade Yarns 220 Superwash. I’ve not used this yarn before and it is wonderful to work with. It is everything you would look for in a good basic yarn. Easy to work with, good stitch definition, huge color range, 100 % wool and washable too!

It works to about 5 stitches to the inch on size 7 needles. So far, I haven’t found anything not to like about it. We’ll see how it works into an actual project.

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A Completed Sweater – Too Little, Too Late

Well, that title just about sums it up. I mentioned starting another sweater for my goddaughter in my last post, and it’s finished. Here’s a peek:

The problem is that the temperature here is in the mid eighties to low nineties now. That is definitely too late! As for the too little part, it’s very likely to be too small by the time cool temperatures roll around in November or so. Even though I made it purposely large, she will have probably outgrown it by then.

Oh well, nothing to do now but move on. That’s what I’ve done with the next little girl project. Because it is warm now, it seemed that a lacy, feminine vest/overdress would be a good choice. Because knitting and crochet have different “personalities,” they lend themselves to different applications. This idea is the basis for my book, Knit & Crochet Combined: Best of Both Worlds.

For this new project, I chose to crochet because I like the look and feel of that technique for this type of garment. It has a substantial hand and nice drape and weight. Using a cotton blend yarn keeps it from being too hot – an important consideration here. Another thing crochet has going for it is that it is faster for me than knitting for a similar size item. Maybe this one will be done in time for her to wear it! Here is a preview:

The bodice is a denser wavy shell stitch while the skirt is a much lacier wave stitch pattern. Since it is meant to be worn over another outfit, the neck and arms are a little more open. The yarn may or may not give out, so I’ll have some decisions to make regarding the front bands and the edgings, if any, when I reach that point.

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The Sweater is Finished!

Well, it seemed to take forever, especially at the end, but I’ve finished the sweater for my Goddaughter. And, just in time to give it to her this weekend! We’ll be seeing her and her parents for a special breakfast at Disney World so I can see if it fits her as well if she likes it. Surely, after all this effort she has got to like it!

Here it is in all it’s finished glory.

The front (forgive the adult size hanger, no small ones on hand):

A detail view of the front:

For the closures, I found some decorative coat hooks and loops at Joann’s while I was looking for grosgrain ribbon to finish the inside band. There is a hidden coat hook at the top neck to keep it looking tidy. The flowers are all attached individually – there are 18 of them – in clusters of three. The embroidery is simple chain stitch with the darker shade of wool that I split down to two ply.

A bit of explanation about that ribbon facing inside. Normally, the cut edges would have been fine the way they were. But, because I had used a thread color that stands out so it would show in the photographs and changed the band treatment from what I had planned, they were unattractive and really needed to be covered. While the ribbon isn’t my favorite thing to have in a sweater, it doesn’t give like knit fabric after all, it is better than the edge that was there and still suits the more coat-like nature of this sweater.

The back:

The little decorative belt is just single crochet with coordinating buttons sewn at either end.

Overall, I am pleased with how it turned out. The color scheme is as I had planned, feminine but not babyish and it has a nice overall decorative effect. Maybe, if I hadn’t already worked on the finishing for so long, I might have done a different type of embroidery on the fronts or, perhaps, more of that same theme. But, she is only two and will outgrow it if I don’t finish it!

Now, the knitting bug is backing off a bit . Embroidery has been calling my name lately! I’ve already started an old fashioned table runner using the very grannyish, but still attractive, Aunt Martha’s transfers and am checking out the Sublime Stitching patterns as well.

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In Progress: STILL Working on the Sweater

Yes, I am still working on this sweater. It seems, to me anyway, that I am the slowest needle worker in the world. But, some of that is just because I am working on way too many projects at one time. In addition to this sweater, there are two other sweaters on needles plus a multitude of other types of projects.

Not that I’m blaming the weather, no this dawdling is all my own, but it is hard to concentrate on warm sweaters when the temperature is in the eighties. This looks like one of those years we won’t have a winter. I hope my goddaughter gets to wear this sweater at least a little bit this year!

Now, to show off my progress on the front bands, neck and sleeves. Last time, the fronts of the sweater were just cut open and all wobbly and scary looking. I had planned a crochet band, but that just didn’t work out. So, falling back on good old garter stitch, I was able to work a nice continuous band on the fronts and around the bottom in the contrasting color.

As you can see, the neck edge is now finished in a lacy crochet collar to match the bands. It is a very simple crochet pattern of mostly chain and single crochet that I made up by trial and error. It is quite full so it ruffles nicely. The same crochet lace is on the sleeves as well, only there are not as many rows.

Another view of the sleeve showing the stitches a bit better:

There’s not a lot left now: a closure for the front, the belt on the back, and the flowers and embroidery. What am I thinking? There I go again with that crazy talk about finishing it quickly!

These last details and some inside finishing work should be posted here soon!