26 September 2011

Pink and ginger

Hurray! Janette's Rare Yarns came up with 8 balls of Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Astrakhan in Ginger, to go with the light pink I've already got. Orange and pale pink will be beautiful, right?

25 September 2011

Stripey jumper

And here are my plans for the rest of the year. First of all, I've just bought some Debbie Bliss Alpaca Silk Aran, to replace my lovely arm-warmers that I lost two years ago:

They were in Teal, but this time it's Navy. And, I've just realised, they were DK and the yarn I've just bought is Aran, so they will probably be a bit thicker and not quite as long. Hm.

My second plan was for a jumper. I haven't knitted a jumper since the teal one which I finished in 2008, because jumpers aren't generally my style so much. However, they are everywhere on the catwalks for this season, and I love the big-jumper-and-pencil-skirt thing that I've seen in a few magazines. So I had planned a big pink jumper:

Top-down raglan (of course - I don't knit any other way if I can help it!), ribbed, straight-sided. But then I got 500g of Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Astrakhan on ebay:

I am not usually one for the crazy textured knits, but that's because they're usually polyester. This is gorgeous - a pain in the hole to knit with, I expect (I've only swatched so far), but incredibly soft and probably very, very warm. So I've moved away from the idea of ribbed, and also I think I like the idea of it being a bit more cropped and blousy. A bit more like:

But this, of course, means I have to find some beige or orange Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Asktrakhan from somewhere, and it's been discontinued. Wish me luck...

Orange cardigan

And here is project 2 - another 4-ply vintage cardigan pattern from the same car-boot sale.

Link to scan of pattern.

It's been knitted very tightly on a 3.5mm needle, because I want it to be very light but hardwearing. As expected, I managed to finish the knitting very precisely at the end of summer - tsk! However, it’s wool and bamboo, so I’m still expecting to get some wear out of it over the autumn and winter.

It's a fairly straight-forward construction - back, 2x front, 2x sleeves. Everything has now been finished and blocked:

I modified the arms substantially, because I want them to have a slight puff in them, so instead of doing a straight decrease every 2 rows, I made them more curved. The yarn is also lovely - Sirdar Baby Bamboo, in a colour called Tigger! As I said, I've been knitting it very tightly, but it's stood up to that and hopefully will be good and long-lasting.

Will probably start sewing it up tonight, so fingers crossed it fits!

marybe, just maybe, I am back

Perhaps it's time to resuscitate this blog? I have some exciting knitting coming to an end, anyway, and some exciting plans for the next few months. This is what's blocking upstairs:

Dolman-sleeved cardigan

- a 1950s pattern that I got at a car-boot sale in my parents' village. I love this cardigan - and my colourway is much nicer than the one in the picture!I spent most of winter 2010/11 knitting it. It's an extraordinary shape - knitted from right wrist to left wrist in one piece, then picked up and Fair-Isle knitted around the neckline and front, then 4” of rib on the bottom, and then a separate button band made and sewn on. I finished the main body in February or so, blocked that, then sewed up the sides and completed the colourwork and the ribbing in in the winter, but put it away halfway through sewing the button band on because it was April and I obviously wasn't going to wear it in the summer, and have just got it out again and finished sewing it up. It's now having a second block.

IF it fits, it’s totally Dior New Look, with a high neck and sloping shoulders. I really have no idea yet whether it not it will, though. And if it doesn't, well, it’s been a beautiful knit. The Rowan 4-ply is absolutely gorgeous - pure wool, but such good quality that it has a really silky finish. I’ve also learned a lot from doing the Fair Isle. I also have all the Fair-Isle colours left over, so I will probably try and make a tank top or gloves or something to use some of it up.

Really, really hope it fits and works!