Knitting!

I’ve started a ridiculous number of projects this week, most of which are not at a stage interesting enough to look at.  I’m completely smitten by Veronik Avery’s Linden though (Ravelry link).  In fact, the entire Twist Collective Fall issue is fantastic.  Beautiful patterns, most of which I’m dying to knit.  The weeklong search for the right yarn ended with some Jo Sharp Silkroad Aran Tweed in the most perfect blue-violet colour…exactly my favourite colour.  It’s a smaller gauge than required, but I’ve had great luck in downsizing the needle and upsizing the pattern, so it was worth a shot. I knit 2 (yep! two chances at being lied to!) swatches:  1 with the pattern suggested 5mm needles, and one with 4.5mm needles.  I also knit a cable swatch…Clara Parkes’ article … it’s brilliance.  After washing and blocking, I actually got gauge with the 5mm needles AND liked the fabric better than the 4.5mm fabric, so for a while it was looking like I wouldn’t have to make any changes.  So I knit the back…washed it and blocked it.  The fabric isn’t dense enough for my taste.  I could continue, but the sweater would be much more lightweight than I’d like.  So I’ve moved on…

left front, 4.5mm needles

left front, 4.5mm needles

This is the left front.  I’ve knit one size larger than I need on 4.5mm needles.  The fabric is great and the dimensions are dead on the size I want.  I’ve omitted the 2 stitches of garter stitch that would happen along the cable at the opening of the sweater.  The organic edge of the cable is wonderful and curls in just enough to create its own finish.  

There are 2 patterns to keep track of:  the cable pattern and the decreases in the body of the sweater.  To help me keep track of which row I’m on in the cables, I’ve come up with this system:

 

there are 3 knit rows between cable repeats in this pattern, so Ive got 3 markers ready to go

there are 3 knit rows between cable repeats in this pattern, so I've got 3 markers ready to go

 

move one marker each time you finish one knit row...when all 3 markers are at the top, you know its time to cable

move one marker each time you finish one knit row...when all 3 markers are at the top, you know it's time to cable

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Are you sitting down? Sedated? Good…let’s begin…

I had visions of dragging out this saga over several blog posts…a photo by photo, day by day serial, if you will.  But in the interest of keeping Mel from becoming an 8:45 am alcoholic, Tracey from causing an international incident at the border, and Leslie from calling the Sweater’s Aid Society on me…well, just watch and see.

First let me say this is all the Techknitter‘s fault.  Do you know of Techknitter?  LOVE the Techknitting blog. It’s made my left leaning decreases oh so Beauuuutiful now, instead of all lumpy and bumpy.  And just when I thought I’d have to live with the way too long Susie-sleeves, well along came a Ravelry link to the Techknitter’s article on SHORTENING too long knitting (or lengthening, which I’m sure is important to someone out there…just never one of my problems)!   

So we were here:

Which led to this:

And this:

(notice the important live stitches all safe and accounted for…Leslie, take your finger OFF speed dial)

Then it was time to unravel the extra length down to the cuff.  (Dude, I seriously over estimated how long my arms are!  There was about 4 inches of unnecessary knitting there!)

Because the cuff is knit sideways and the sleeve knitted up from the cuff, there were no live stitches to worry about on the cuff side.  All that was left was to stitch the cuff to the live stitches.  I tried a few things (3 needle bind off, stitch to stitch sewing, mattress stitch) before deciding on a modification of kitchener grafting which left a nice flat seam.

See?  All better! 

(Susie thanks you all for your notes of concern and assures you that she is quite attached to indigodragonfly…thanks in part to the unraveled yarn that keeps them tied together.