Monday, March 19, 2007

Knitting Deadlines

I have been feeling very stressed lately, as in Must finish Mike's sweater vs. Finish knitting the 4 baby gifts in various stages of progress. Mike's birthday is end of month, while the babies were born November, January and February. There is a 5Th baby due early fall, I believe, but I must check that due date.

1. usually small, quick, cute, and portable.
2. designs are usually uncomplicated, at least the ones I choose to knit.
3. projects are easily put down and picked up again.
4. yarns range from inexpensive to obscenely pricey ( cashmere on babies just becomes a luxurious spit up garb for an sleep deprived mom to handwash-I don't think there's anyone I'd want to put through THAT!)
5. as seen previously on my Fairy Booties, embellishment can really enliven plain vanilla knitting, and the possibilities are endless!
6. babies can really wear color!
7. people go ga-ga over handknit baby items and that's worth it to me!

I bet , Gentle Knitter, you thought Ballband Dishcloths was my favorite thing to knit? Nope! It's Number 2.

Back to Mike's Miracle Sweater, so named because it will be a miracle if I ever get it done!
The top photo is the back of Mike's sweater and if it looks big to you, well, it is! It measures 25 inches wide by 31 inches long. Mike is built very similar to Hoss Cartwright ( YEE-HAW all you guys old enough to remember Bonanza!) I purchased this yarn YEARS ago from WEBS
and it sat waiting...waiting...waiting... till I tried to knit in stockinette without the benefit of swatching first. SWATCHING? WE DON'T NEED NO STINKIN SWATCHING! You guess it! I ended up completely frogging it because it wrapped around him like a bathrobe!!! Plus, knitting in stockinette was a real snooze!
So, again the yarn rested. And while it did I searched and searched for a suitable stitch pattern. Finally, I found a version of the Imitation Fisherman stitch. Probably found in on of the Barbara books, with several aliases , but here it is simplified and committed to my ever dwindling memory:

Row #1 K3, P1
Row #2 K2, P1, Knit3, etc.

The pattern gives it a nice corrugated look plus it stretches and recedes to accommodate weight loss or gain!

So anyway, I got carried away with knitting the first side as I didn't remember to start decreasing for the v-neck shaping on the side opposite of the armhole beginning.
Now, I have to frog back to the 19 inch mark or slightly above to begin v-neck decreasing. SHEEEEEEESH! Thank God for Ann Budd and her Pattern Guides! I'm following her guidelines for the drop shoulder cardigan. I measured a well fitting cardi in order to get my working measurements in the beginning, so I think I am on the right track. It just seems endless!

This family baby sweater is being knit for a girl with Checkeaton yarn, which is very nice to knit with. I particularly like the little flecks of contrast color that appear in the stitches. I am nearing the halfway mark, and as you can see, it is knit from sleeve to sleeve.

What is in the water where I work?

I have 3 co-workers who have recently given birth- 2 boys and a girl. One on the way.

I've begun knitting a pair of little Mary Jane's with Schachenmayr yarn, and am using #3 DPs but doing straight knitting garter stitch. There are three different balls of this brand in the photo. I will do the Cupcake Hat finally, sizing it to fit an infant by knitting with #4 DPs. The darker pink variegated will be the cupcake ribbed bottom and the pink flecked yarn will be the cake top. Yarn purchased at Knitwitz and Sew Much More -one of my Knitorious Places to shop yarn!

One of the boys will get a hat, booties and sweater with the camo, because they are a farming/hunting family. Maybe the Mason-Dixon baby kimono? I have ribbon that'll go nicely with camo? Hoping they will enjoy that. The other boy will no doubt be gifted with a yellow and blue sweater which lies asleep in the UFO section of my Yarn Room, but is 75% completed. It's good to have a plan!

I've been intrigued by appliqued needlework and embroidery of late, having been inspired by many of the blogs I've been fortunate to discover.
After reading the tutorial over at Shim and Sons I tried my hand at some applique onies using baby flannel.

Not being happy with the thickness of the stitches on the middle one, I'll rip that out and try again using a lazy daisy chain or running stitch around the bunny.
I find this immensely gratifying.
The possibilities are endless with these baby clothes. I picked up several onesies at the $ store, and bought several baby themed flannels in quarter yard amounts, so it's not expensive to experiment. I do intend to sew any button embellishments onto the onesies very securely, as one would do with a sweater.

This is the Wedding Ring Dishcloth, pattern purchased from Harvest Moon Designs
Very quick, easy, fun to knit! I'n done with the cloths for now until I get my knitting priorities completed! Hold me to this, Ya hear?

1 comment:

Secret Pal said...

Oh, it's so nice to see other people with more than one project going at once. It all looks so great. I want to make that baby sweater knit from sleeve to sleeve. I saw it at my LYS and it looks fabulous! Good luck with the sweater. I hate frogging. I have a friend who kindly offers to do the job for me any time I need it. Isn't that nice?

Looking good, Mrs. B!