Sunday, February 27, 2005

Things are happening

In Oscar speech fashion:

Thank you everyone for your advice about the pink Louet yarn for my Vintage Pink Cardigan from Interweave Knits.

judyouzts - I'm glad you're enjoying my blog, and you aren't the first to tell me that pink looks good on everyone.
CatBookMom - I agree that the coincidences were almost a bit much, and the pink (I think) is even lovelier in real life.
Sara - I love working with Louet and it doesn't disappoint. I'm not sure why it's not more popular, because the yardage is excellent! I think it's not distributed as widely as, let's say, Debbie Bliss.
June and 1nderlandwoman - I'm destined, you are both right.
yarnhappy - thank you, I hope the pink looks good in real life and in pictures, and thank you for your comment about my lacy scarves.
My knitting posse - you know who you are, I would not be giving this speech if it weren't for your constant support and advice... and reminding me that patterns using needles larger than US 7 are not for me :).

So, the verdict is that I'll be making the Vintage Pink Cardigan using the Pink Panther (rrarrr!) Louet. There, I said it :).


Someone told my brain I had won the lottery, when I actually hadn't. Evidence:

Working clockwise, first, I got 11 skeins of KnitPicks Merino Style in hollyberry for my Adrienne Vittadini sweater. I haven't swatched for this sweater yet, but using some of my favorite sweaters as templates, I have so far figured out the precise sizing.

Second, I got 6 balls of elann's Sock It to Me Collection Esprit. I haven't done anything with this yarn, but I didn't hesitate to buy a lot of it because I can wear socks made out of it! As opposed to wool, which would make my perpetually-hot feet sweat way too much.

The dark looking hanks curled up are KnitPicks Alpaca Cloud in midnight. This yarn is absolutely fabulous: very soft, and I love this color - it looks pretty much as it does on their website: almost black, with greenish/bluish/tealish hues. I have a lacey something or other planned for this yarn that I'll have to tell you about in another post.

Then I got one skein of KnitPicks Merino Style in vanilla as a potential candidate for the Vintage Pink Cardigan, but decided to go with the pink instead... so I'll just keep it for stash enhancement purposes :).

I got a lightly-used copy of Elizabeth Zimmerman's Knitting Without Tears in an out-of-print hardback edition. I love this book so much, and I can't wait to read it again, this time underlining all the important quotes. She says things that make sense, and that's so refreshing.

And last, but certainly not least, I got the pink Louet for the Vintage Pink Cardigan. Enough has been said about the yarn, but I'll add that at this point I've swatched for gauge and figured out exactly what size I need to make it.


Now I shift focus to the two sweaters, the Adrienne Vittadini and the Vintage Pink Cardigan. My knitting group seemed more excited about making the cardigan first, and I'm leaning in that direction myself because of the Clapotis. I'm not going to rant too much right now because I just got back from knitting group where I was my alter ego Grumperina. Suffice it to say that I'm afraid the Cardigan will become quite popular and soon everyone will be making one. I will then abruptly and immediately lose all interest in making this sweater.

Believe it or not, the pattern for this sweater is written without any shaping! A sweater flows over the curves of a woman, hips, waist, chest, and pullover sweaters without shaping are often able to absorb the curves by stretching. However, add a button-band in there as for a cardigan, and lack of shaping leads to serious pulling and exposure! So the bottom line is that I've started to rewrite the entire pattern. I will be adding shaping, making the sweater an inch longer (as written it's borderline cropped) and creating a size between the pattern's smallest and second-smallest sizes. Except the bust, where I'll be making some crazy increases :).

Gosh, I would look like a ridiculous monkey if I just made this sweater boxy, as written. That would be a monster mistake. That would be like making a drop-shoulder sweater. Or using Fun Fur. Although a drop-shoulder sweater in Fun Fur would be alright because you couldn't see the ridiculous placement of shoulder seams.

I will be casting on shortly, and I'll be making the front panel with the fancy edging first, because increasing the length of the sweater by an inch will dictate the number of edge repeats.


The second Backyard Leaves scarf is still in progress, and I'll do my best to finish it up soon. I'm not the kind of knitter who can start a new project before finishing the previous one. I know, this is very unusual.

I went to a party this weekend, where I saw one of my creations, the zipped cardigan with a matching hat being worn by baby Nicolas. It looked like crap, completely pilled and fuzzed, even though I gave it to them only in the beginning of January! I was very upset about this, but I think it's just that elann's Peruvian Collection Highland Wool is not meant to be machine-washed frequently. I actually machine-washed it before I handed it over, and then blocked, and everything was fine, but the wool is not superwash, and the baby (according to mom) wears the sweater a lot, so the number of washings took their toll. Oh well. We live, we learn. I'm allowed one mistake, right? From now on I will only use machine-washable yarn for garments that will be machine-washed frequently.


At 12:43 PM, Anonymous Athelas said...

I first saw the Vintage Pink Cardigan at and fell in love! I think a number of people will be making that.
I agree about the lack of shaping and will need to make similar changes. Are you going with the 3/4 sleeve?
I'm curious about the 5.8 skeins--the pattern calls for 8 to 9 146-yd skeins of the Blue Sky, and I thought the Louet was a bit shorter than that?

At 12:51 PM, Blogger grumperina said...

Hi Athelas, thanks for letting me know that this sweater is about to join the "popular" list. I'm going to get started tonight. I'm planning to leave the sleeves alone, although I'll be doing them last so I have plenty of time to change my mind. I purchased my Louet in 100-gram skeins, which have 225 yards of yarn in each one. The 50-gram skeins, I think, would be a bit shorter as you point out.

At 1:07 PM, Anonymous Athelas said...

Aaahhh...then the price you got them at was GREAT! (I should have noticed that!)
I thought of using some heather yarn from my stash, but when I knit up a swatch of that front part last night, I decided it would look better in a solid.
The Blue Sky Alpaca and Silk sounds wonderful, but I don't have the pennies for that right now :-(
Ooooh..just interrupted by the UPS man with the yarn for my dd's sweater! I'm off to swatch!

At 2:03 PM, Blogger grumperina said...

I agree, this sweater is best done in a solid color. I considered the following colors: cream, white, pink, light blue, muted red, gray. I think the detailing would be wasted with black, and black yarn is so hard to knit with, but it would look great nonetheless. Also, a lilac or lavendar for people who can pull it off would work.

At 1:56 PM, Anonymous Michelle said...

Wow! Ok, don't tell me you're not even a little curious as to how your cardigan would look unshaped with a Fun Fur capelet attachment? Scratch that: Festive Fur. I was just trying to challenge myself to think of something repulsive. My blog is broken and won't let me update :^( So I have to infiltrate yours :^)

At 3:00 PM, Blogger grumperina said...


Poopy, I tried to leave you a comment on your blog, but I guess it doesn't do comments right now either. It's on strike. It has a Fun Fur fetish and it has heard what you say about it.

You are the only one who would recommend a Fun Fur (or better yet, Festive Fur) capelet as an addition to that cardigan. Tell ya what, I'll also make those ridiculous overalls from K1 and wear the trio as one complete outfit. Of course I'll have to wear the cowboy hat (trimmed in Fun Fur) and cowboy boots, too. Yeeehaw!


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