FOtastic

I’ve been a bit of a lurker lately.  I’ve been reading everyone’s blogs and looking at your flickr photos, but just haven’t felt like I have much to say, or the brainspace to put anything into words.  Feel a bit on the back foot, just in general.  That’s not really accurate.  I feel like I’m riding in the passenger seat a bit.  Everything seems to be on hold – until my sister moves out (soon!  Scary!) until it gets warmer and lighter (hooray for solstice!) until… I don’t know what else.  But I miss chatting at you guys, and I have to talk about craf camp and Julia and my FOs.

Queen’s Birthday long weekend I went on another lovely craf camp.  It was LOVELY.  But that deserves its own post, not to be part of this bitsy one.  While I was on camp, I pestered Suse and Janet into taking photos of my two finished jumpers – Emily, which had been done for a while, and Cinnabar, which I seamed up finally that weekend.  It just needed the arms attached.

Here is Emily (rav link).

You can see the line where I lengthened it and the grafted it – the band originally started where that line is… much too short.  I could have lengthened it a couple inches more, I think, but I’ve decided I’m happy with where it is.  I shortened the sleeves, too, since I knit this out of regular yarn not cracksilk haze as the pattern calls for, so instead of being soft and billowy around my hands they were just bulky and annoying.  I didn’t do bust darts because the neckline is so low, and I don’t think it needs them, although looking at the curving-up hem on that last closeup it wouldn’t have hurt.  The fit is ok – I just did the shaping in the pattern and it doesn’t match me perfectly but it’s pretty good. I might have to start lengthening jumpers from the middle by knitting and extra inch or two between the hip decreases and the bust increases, since that is where I have the extra length (I’m long waisted.  Most people fit two sideways-hand lengths between the bottom of their bust and their waist, I fit three) and most jumpers – this one included – sit a bit out above my hips because of that.  Looking at the photos I feel like it’s a bit lumpy bumpy, but I can’t work out how much of that is 1)because it is 2)because it’s photos of me and everyone always thinks they look terrible in photos even if they are FINE and 3)because I made it so I know all the places where it is not-quite-right, could-be-better, wish-I-had.  Why are we always so hard on ourselves?

The yarn is Bennet & Gregor and I LOVE it to pieces.  It is soft and smooshy and the blended colour is really interesting – you can see the darker strands if you look close and that gives it depth and saves it from being to beige.  There definitely needs to be more of this in my wardrobe.  In varying colours – natural sheep colours, of course, since that is what they do.  They don’t have an internet shopping cart, but they are very friendly and helpful – if you contact them, Nancy will send you out a colour card, and they take mail orders.  They are usually at Bendigo Sheep & Wool as well, keep an eye out for them.  Their yarns have some vegetable matter in them, but it’s a small price to pay for not using sulfur to process tehm (says the itchy one) and it’s not enough to be annoying.  The yarn is an absolute pleasure to knit and to wear.

I haven’t gotten heaps of wear out of this one, but I think that’ mostly because it’s gotten cooooold and this isn’t really a full coverage jumper, and because you can see whatever you wear under it it is less versatile for layering.  I think it will be the perfect transition season jumper, though.  I am not 100% happy with it, but I love the overall look and I am ignoring that line.  Because this jumper is done and I am f*&king NOT regrafting it.  So there.

What I would change: the adjusted sleeve length is perfect (ravelry tells me I made them SIX CENTIMETRES shorter) but I wish I had been more carfeul when I picked up stitches on the sleeves and seamed them, because they are a bit bunchy chunky there.  Not too bad, but a bit irritating.  I would have made it much longer – when I fixed it I knit three extra inches and I wish I’d done just one more.  I wish I had seamed better (I’ve recently given up and learnt mattress stitch and folks… it makes SUCH a difference) but overall it’s a good, servicable, wearable knit. 

What I love: The yarn.  The neckline.  The yarn.

And here is Cinnabar (rav link).

This one was a bit epic.  I was determined to do this one RIGHT and I ripped and I ripped and I ripped.  And it’s still not quite right, but it’s close enough.

Issues with it: The collar is a bit weird – I had trouble making the placket the right length to sit right.  Since I don’t intend to add buttons, I’m not fussed.  I might have to undo that bit where it’s all bunched because I seamed it badly (on the left of the neck in the above photo).  The right sleeve is a bit wider than the left because I switched to circs for that linen sitch band, and my gauge was looser than on straights.  Again, not much, but enough to be a bit irritating, especially when putting on jackets, etc.  It’s actually a wee bit long.  I deliberately made it long and I love the length, but it bunches up when I sit down, so I end up tugging it back into place when I stand up.  This is more pronounced because the whole thing is just a bit big.  The yarn (just Bendigo 8ply rustic in Red Currant) bloomed quite nicely when I blocked it.  I also made a larger front size to compensate for absentmindedly casting on and knitting half of the back before realising I was knitting it a size too small.  I needn’t have gone up an extra size, it’s plenty big.  The extra size in combination with my laboriously knitted bust darts means it pooches a bit at the shoulders/underarms (you can’t see it in those photos because my hands are on my hips stretching the extra fabric out).  It’s not that big a deal, but it looks more pronounced to me because I am looking down, which makes it obvious.  I’m sort of tempted to find a dryer and chuck it in for a minute to shrink it just a biiit, but the thought of actually doing that is a bit scary.

Most of these issues are not actual issues.  It’s just that it’s turned out to be a different jumper than I thought I was making – I thought I was making a form fitting jumper to be worn over a tshirt.  Turns out I was making a comfy winter jumper to be worn over at LEAST two shirts.  I’ve worn it twice every week since I finished it, and I see it being in high rotation for many months to come.  It’s comfortable, well made (except for that fracking placket bit) and the red is lovely and makes it look smart.  I am not 100% happy with this one either, but I am very very proud of it.  I definitely took more care with this, and I feel like I’ve learnt a lot.

Things I love: the colour.  The length.  The beautiful seams.

I really need a better system in my wardrobe.  At the moment I have NO ROOM so all my jumpers are shoved into the top bit of my wardrobe.  Really, shoved.  This makes it very hard to find anything, and I just wear the same ones over and over.  I now have enough hand knit jumpers that I could probably wear one a day to work without repeating (although a couple of them I don’t really wear much) and I’d like to get more use out of them while it’s still cold.

While we’re on the topic of FOs, you can see another one in the Emily photos.  In my last minute packing frenzy for craf camp, I chucked a skirt into my luggage.  It was part of a set that my sister bought at an op shop, of a cape and a skirt.  Sort of like this, although slightly less lairy.  Here it is, on the floor at sewjourn.

The sister kept the cape, and since the skirt was teeny, she said I could have it, because I had admired the fabric.  It’s not pure wool, but close enough.  It really is teeny: it literally only just fit my thigh.

Please to excuse my tres sexy pj pants – I spilt tea ALL OVER my jeans (it was v. dramatic) and had to wear my pjs for half the weekend.  Because I am classy, that’s why.

Anyway.  Janet had very kindly borrowed her mum’s sewing machine so I could have a go at sewing.  And did I!  I did.  Janet was very patient with all my nervousness and umming and ahing, and I chopped away at the skirt, refaced it, and took it in a bit.  Then the lovely Suse pinned the hem and I hemmed it (by hand and everything!).  Ta da!

I love it.  I haven’t worn it to work yet, since it’s been too cold really, and I’ve been too tired to futz around with stockings.  But it will be worn.  Oh, yes, it will.  I wore it home on the plane, too.  Looking at this photo reminds me of my pirate-plaid skirt that would go very well with cinnabar.  Must crack that out when it warms up a bit.

I also traced off a pattern from one of Janet’s Ottobres and sewed another skirt, which just needs hemming.  Which of course I haven’t done.  But it has a ZIP!  The most badly done zip in the history of zips, but still!  A functioning ZIP!  Oh, and I also finished Damson on camp, but I ran out of yarn on the cast off.  This is what I had after I eliminated a purl ridge and cast off again:

One.  Inch. 

And it was too tight.  So I ripped it when I got home and recast off with different yarn, but I haven’t reblocked and photographed it yet.  Hmm, this sort of turned into a craft camp post.  Well, let’s change directions and make it a FO post, since I don’t think I’ve talked about Sahara (rav link), have I, since I finished it?

I really need to find somewhere where I can take self portraits.  I have no good photos of this – I asked my sister to take some, and this is what I get:

No, no, take photos of the TOP!

No, of the TOP!

Well, yes.  Technically that was what I asked for.  OH HAI INTERNET HERE ARE MY BOOBS.

It’s been a while since this was done.  Don’t really remember much about the knitting of it.  Rav tells me I used a smaller needle and a larger pattern size, to get a fabric I liked.  I used Elsebeth Lavold Silky Wool which is ACE and I would totally knit with more of it if I could find it somewhere that doesn’t charge as much for shipping as for the yarn.  It’s surprisingly warm, but also nice and cool in hot weather.  It’s a wee bit scratchy (for sensitive folks like me) so I almost always wear it with a singlet underneath – for modesty as well cos, dudes, that’s a LOT of boob.  But it’s a flattering length of neckline for the big busted among us – breaks it up a bit.  I pretty much knit this to pattern apart from diddling with gauge and adding bust darts, and the shaping is excellent.  Oh, I believe I lengthened it as well.  Since it was top-down, I could try it on to see where the shaping should be, which was wonderful.

I had a bit of a wrangle whether to knit the cap sleeves, short sleeves, or long sleeves.  I am very happy with the cap, and sort of converted to the whole knit-tshirt thing.  I’d previously thought it was a bit silly, but no!  It’s so useful!  I see more in my future, if I can find appropriate yarn… why is it so hard to find summer-weight yarns in Australia.  Counterintuitive.  But I would love to have a long sleeved version of this as well.  I see on rav that some people have knit it in wool, and it looks fine.  I’d do a DK and do the same gauge shenanigans.  I reckon it’d be ace.

God, that boob photo is confronting.  Note to self.  Find place to do FOs, STAT.  I don’t have any finished photographs of Rogue, either.  I wish I had crafty papparazzi here ALL the time.

And to finish off, here’s a WIP.

Remember my granny hexes?

Gosh, the colours in that bottom one are making my heart thump!

I was doing them on a 3mm hook.  Once I had a few of them I put them together and realised that they were too stiff.  Not nice for a blanket at all.  So I decided to get a bigger hook and restart them.  This was a bit disenhearteining, so they languished.  Then, last Tuesday, I decided I had to restart them RIGHT NOW.  Possibly spurred on by the granny blanket I found at the Pt Adelaide Market for three dollars. It’s lovely, too, I wish I could show you now, but the photos are still on my camera.  Anyway, I went to look at other people’s crochet to see what size hook I should use and got enchanted by Lucy’s Hexagon how-to.  Then I got sad because I didn’t have a 4mm hook, which meant that I couldn’t start them AS SOON AS I GOT HOME.  I was emailing S and mentioned this.  He was picking me up from work that evening and… he brought me a 4mm crochet hook.  That man knows a way to a crafter’s heart.  WAY better than roses, I tell’s you.  I might have blushed.

So, anyway, I started with some hexagons that night.  I thought I’d ordered white yarn to edge them, but apparently not, so I’m just cranking out little circles at the moment and I’ll start joining them later.

All in a row

I’m actually quite happy with that as it gives me time to build up some colour diversity.  I might need to order some more yarn for them, because otherwise I’ll use up my leftover yarn too quick.  There’s some rainbow wools scraps leftover from this blanket (rav link). 

 

The scraps are lovely – both the colours and the yarn – so I might get me some more of that.  Or maybe just some more Bendigo, since that’s cheaper and that’s where I’ll be ordering the border yarn from.  If anyone has any 8ply scraps in bright colours that they are feeling guilty about: I’ll have em!  I have less yarn to work with than I thought because I rejected some yarn for being too muddy.  Don’t worry, though.  Those hexagons didn’t go to waste.  I upcycled them into hats:

Hats for cats

Anyway, I had booked in a ‘hermit weekend’ to spend by myself, having some down time and cleaning my house, which is a bit trashed.  I DID mop the floors, but apart from that I mostly slept and spent quite a while this weekend sitting on the couch drinking tea or beer (in the evenings) and crocheting away.  They are like potato chips, I can’t stop.  I have about twenty some now.  I think I want to make it big enough to be used on my queen bed, but I might be kidding myself.  Then again, I’m sort of happy to be working on this for years.  My favourite part is choosing which colour to use next.  Looking at them makes me really happy.

Like candy

Ooooh, shiny happy colours!

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Well, hello!

My holiday has trickled away nicely.  I spent the first four days of it in Melbourne and it was lovely.  I’d love to tell you more about it and maybe I will in a bit (except that we all know how those kinds of blogger promises turn out, don’t we?) but for now I have a more pressing concern to voice.

I picked up Sahara again because the temperatures were in the 30s – and will be again this weekend.  And while I love touching wool, sometimes it’s just not an option.  Looking at my Ravelry page I see that I didn’t say when I had started – but blog posts tell me about August some time.  Which seems right, hot weather and all that.  I also see I went down a needle size which is annoying as I have just started the ribbing in the bottom in the size called for in the pattern.  I wonder if I care enough to rip it?

I did some mods on this and although I didn’t note the basics, I kept very good notes on the changes.  Which is a blessing because it’s been picked up and put down lots.

I did an extra repeat on the neck lace and, as predicted, that makes it a bit tight there.  Not in a stretchy way, more in the way a halter neck pulls.  Which is slightly irritating but not more than that.  I don’t think I’d do that again, but I’m not fussed – certainly not enough to unpick it!  I suspect it will be a bit too big, actually, since it fits about right now and I am a bit plump from winter.  I also made it longer, partly because I always tug things down and I am FINALLY learning to make them longer to avoid this, and partly because I didn’t do short row shaping or darts at the boobs, and so expected the front to be a bit higher than the back.  Although I discovered today that there is lovely shirttail shaping at the bottom.  I really am enjoying this pattern.

However, none of these are the issues.  As intimated, I have reached the end of the body – almost.  And now the question of sleeves arises.  I have two full balls of the Elizabeth Lavold silky wool left (which is lovely, I would definitely consider working with it again, even if I did have to pay the ridiculous price) which surely is enough to do full sleeves.  That was my original intention, if I had enough yarn.

But now I am wondering if it wouldn’t be better with short sleeves, as a t-shirt type top.  The yarn is lovely and soft and cool.  And the extra repeat at the neck means it isn’t too booby at all – just exactly enough cleavage for a summer top, I feel.  But with long sleeves, I think I’d be inclined to wear it over things.  Which is all to the good, but maybe not as practical. 

I really enjoyed this pattern, maybe I should make another in a more wooly yarn, since I seem to enjoy knitting things twice anyway.  And that one can have long sleeves, and this one short.

However, since I have been mulling the question for a good hour now, I thought I’d ask the internet if it had an opinion – do you?  I really like the look of the long sleeve ones on ravelry, but not that much more than the short sleeved ones.  I have reached the point of ‘really?  This decision is this hard?’

Also, I listened to this today, which I think sheds some more light on it:

I’m off to rip the last three rows and redo them in a smaller needle.  Sigh.

Hussy!

I’m going great guns on Rogue.  I’m up to Chart b, which is the neck bit.  That’s not freaking bad for a week and a half of knitting!  I reckon tonight I’ll get at least a good way towards having the front done, which means that it’s only the hood and the sleeves left.

Which of course means I’m starting to itch to knit other things.  What’s that?  The Juno that hasn’t been touched for almost three weeks, and is the only thing I’m knitting with a deadline?  Nope.  Not interested.  Well, what about Emily, which needs only to have the neckband finished – maybe three hours of knitting, if I’m dawdling – and then it can be seamed?  And that you want to finish before Bendigo too so that you know how much yarn you’ve got left over from that?  Nope.  Boooooring. 

I sort of want to finish Sahara.  And I feel like I should while the urge takes me, in case it languishes for another three months.  I’m up (down) to the waist, so it’s so close to being done!  But that’s not what’s occupying my brain at the moment.

No, I want to knit the red bendigo rustic yarn that I bought for NaNoSweMo, two years ago.  Actually, I don’t want to knit it that bad.  But I want another 8ply jumper, and I want that yarn not in my stash.

See, I’m really really dying to knit Jaali.  As in, I already bought the pattern.  I was thinking about using the bendigo for this but…

It’s boring.  It’s normal.  It’s ordinary.  I want yarn that SINGS.  yarn that has depth.  Yarn that I can wear with snobbish pride.  This is why I want to finish Emily – because I want to buy more of the same yarn and dye it to make Jaali.  I mean, doesn’t this pattern deserve a beautiful yarn?

front cables jaalicable details jaali

Mmmmmmmm…. cabley goodness….

So.  I’ve been cleaning out my Ravelry queue.  Now I only have 15 pages!  That’s only about 500 things… totally reasonable, right?  Ahem.

Anyway.  I cleared out a bunch of patterns that were perfectly fine, but nothing fantastic.  because there are enough things that I am burning, burning to knit that are breathtaking and challenging.   And I want to knit them.  And I want to knit them with beautiful yarn, yarn with a story.

But I also want a red jumper, and I have this yarn.  So…. my current contenders:

Cinnibar pullover.  (rav) (non rav) This is what the yarn was originally intended for.  I suspect that if I don’t knit it with this yarn, I won’t knit it at all.  And I would like to own it.  It’s simple enough for the yarn, and that I’d get a lot of wear out of it, but also interesting enough that I would be excited to wear it.

Sidelines.  (rav) (non rav)  I also really want this top.  But…. I already have plenty of stockingette stuff on the go.  I am not sure I would finish it.  And I suspect that it would benefit from a slightly semi-solid, like in the picture.  Some of the ones on the rav are a bit… well… boring.

Desiknitter’s photo

Ogee tunic.  (rav) I really really really want this top.  But maybe not in red?  I’m thinking more in a cool colour, or a nuetral colour.

The same goes for other contenders in my queue.  Riding to Avalon wants to be a dark neutral or even a black.  Baby cables wants to be a blue or a green.  Mirage does too.  Rambling Rose requests a blue gray or a white, please!  Tangled yoke… dunno.  Nuetrals again, probably.  Certainly not red.

I think I’ve decided on Cinnabar.  Whic means that I will change my mind four or five times before I get around to knitting that yarn… if I ever do.

What do all y’all think?

Some Knitting and Some Nesting

I am feeling a bit swamped with the knits at the moment.  I have too many things on the go, too many things I want to do, too many things that are halfway through and no end in sight, and have reached the fiddly bits, so that they’re hard to take places.

This weekend I have had people over every night at my new house.  This was sometimes pleasant, but made me a bit cranky this end of the week, since I feel like I haven’t done anything – nothing around the house, nothing on my knitting, and the headway I’d started to make on my podcasts (down to 5.5 days of audio in my podcast playlist!  Yay!) is loosing ground.  In fact, I feel like the unpacking and sorting is going backwards, since I cleared out the second bedroom last night so that my sister’s stuff could start being moved in before she herself moves.  This is a Good Thing, as it means that I don’t get used to using it as a dumping ground, and it feels more like a two person house, which is something I want to maintain so I don’t get a rude shock.  But it also means that there are books in piles in the living room, and DVDs in boxes taking up one whole wall of same.

The trouble is, I don’t have enough furniture – I need a chest of drawers and maybe a wardrobe for my bedroom and bookshelves for the living room.  But I dont’ have the money to buy them at the present time – this is my second fortnight of paying double rent, since I broke the lease on my last place, and all the bills with the connection fees are starting to come in.  Ouch.

It’s not that I can’t afford it – but there’s not a lot of extra cash floating around.

That said, I got rid of what extra there was, this last weekend.  I was at the Port Adelaide Fisherman’s Markets, at Mel’s stall, and I had a wander around afterwards.  Last time I was there, Emma and I found areally nice tea pot that I dithered about, and then decided that I’d go back for.  I wanted it for my Birthday do, which is going to be an afternoon tea, of the refined sort.  I have been slowly collecting odd cups and saucers, napkins, and the like.  Anyway, when we went back it wasn’t there.  But this time:

Teapot by you.

A miraculous reappearance!  Not the best photos, but they were last-minute mornign snaps.  I’m sure you’ll forgive.

Teapot by you.

It was only $12, so I bought it, on the theory that if I didn’t, I’d be kicking myself.

Bought with a similar point of view was this:

Gourmet by you.

I’d just walked past a really really nice and perfect mirror for $99, which there is no way in the world I can afford right now.  And then there was this, for $10.  Snapped up!  The astute among you will notice, from the colour of the wall, that it is in the kitchen, and not the hall as I have been scheming.  It looked weird there, what with it being my its lonesome, and also saying ‘kitchen’ on it.

Besides, the kitchen is the most together room at the moment.

Check these out:

Canisters by you.

The far right canisters I have had for a while.  The middle ones were bought on the last cousin op shopping trip.  They are aluminium and I was originally scared that they might give me brain cancer, but then I decided that if I am going to get brain cancer, I’d rather get it from my canister what I love than from my deoderant, and so I’m using them.  But my favourite ones are the ones on the right which are, as Jac points out, Shiny.  I bought those at the Fisherman’s Wharf Markets, as a substitute for the teapot, that other time.

See the tags on them?  Since some of them are not filled with what they claim to be (third from the left, for example, says ‘tea’ but in fact contains rice) and others are duplicate (three types each of flour and sugar) and I apparently have dementia (hello aluminium canisters) and can’t remember my own name, I labelled them.

I used these:

Labelling by you.

They are from Print a Day and they are PERFECT.  See?

What she said by you.

Brown Sugar by you.

But even this project, simple as it is, is only half done.  Yeesh.

I also printed out the list ones of the matrioshkas and also the toadstools (SO EXCITING I LOVE THESE I AM YELLING WHY AM I YELLING?)

To do by you.

SUCH a terrible photo, I do apologise.  Also, I need a better magnet.  Or maybe I’ll get a clip and a magnet and clip them.  Or, I saw a thing on craftzine about making pieces of paper into a pad using special gum or jsut regular glue.  Anyway, it’s exciting.

Also exciting is the fact that I am up (down?) to the waist on Sahara.  I basted the neckline and tried it on, and it fits.  I took some photos because I don’t have a mirror I can see all of myself in, and I needed to look at it.

Sahara4 by you.

I’ve since sewn the neck up properly and although I need to redo it because the seam is not very neat, it does sit a bit better than this.  I think I shall sew up an inch or two of the split, as well.  I knit it a repeat wider than the pattern said, because I was concerned about the fit and if it would stretch accross that opening properly.

As you can see, it does fit.  I’m not sure how neatly, though.  Here it is without the front sewn up.

Sahara2 by you.

The shoulder sit better like this.  (ooooh, look at my canisters in the reflection!  Hello, shiny canisters!!)

The thing is, usually I do short rows, which would make it sit a bit better.  I didn’t on this because 1) where I would do them, there is lace and shaping 2) top down short rows hurt my brain and, most importantly 3) I started doing them, right after neck split bit, but they were really really obvious in this yarn.

I probably should have investigated side dart, but it’s in the round, and I’ve never done it before and, well… it’s HARD.  I think it will be ok, although not perfect.  You can’t really see it that well here:

Sahara5 by you.

Or maybe you can.  It’s a good half an inch shorter at the front than at the back.

I am thinking that what I will do is knit it an extra inch longer at the waist, and an inch longer at the bottom.  That should account for any undergarment peeping, which is the worst result of my usual hemline dilemma.

Does anyone know any different, or have better advice?  I wait with baited breath…

(Can you see my camera in this?  Never knew apples could make such a good tripod, now did you?)

Maths is hard…

So, I still have that half-finished write up about my holiday.  But halfway through Sunday I came down with a  horrible lurgy.  I was sitting there, perfectly fine one minute.  The next minute I was thinking ‘hmmm.  I don’t feel so good.  My throat is scratchy and my ears hurt’ two hours later and I was full of snot.  I spent Monday in bed, literally groaning.  So, by the evidence of my sookiness I declare that I have the dreaded manflu!!!  Because usually it is only the mans who are so astonished by being sick.

I have spent most of the week convincing myself I am well – really!  And that I can totally go back to work and keep up my social engagements and do maths re gauge.

Ahahahahahaaha.  Lies, all lies.  I have been barely capable of feeding myself.  Come to think of it, I have had no appetitite whatsoever (I know, right?  I must REALLY be sick) so I haven’t even really done that.

What’s that you say?  What does maths have to do with sickness?  What are you… oh.  The post title.  Right.  Sorry, my attention span is a little bit dodgy at the moment.

I scored some Elisabeth lavold Silky Wool from Mel’s stash sale.  It is yum.  It’s a beautiful periwinkle blue that is a little bit light for it to be perfect for me now, but I think it will be absolutely perfect for me come summer.  And since it is a light and lofty yarn, a summer top it will be.

I had a few things in mind for it that might be nice.  But when I was looking at them again the other day, none of them seemed right, not in that ‘omg I must cast on NOOOOOOOW’ type way.  Which was disappointing, because I had just got some new pattern books (more about that later) and was full of startitis urges.

So I hopped onto Ravelry to see what other people had done with their silky wool.  A whole lot of branching out’s, apparently.  And then I saw Sahara.  And I Knew.  That was what I wanted.

I’ve wanted one of these for ever – since before there was ravelry, even! (soooo long ago) I remember it was one of the first things I looked up on said social network, because I wasn’t sure it would be flattering/advisable on someone so unlike the model in every way (that would be me.  Because, you know.  I have boobs.  And other lumps)

And then I thought ‘oh.  I can’t cast on right away.  because I don’t have the pattern, and it’s the day before pay day, and while I do have $7, it’s not in my bank account.’

And then I realised I had already bought the pattern.  Yessssssssssssss!

It was Meant, people.  Meant.

Except.

That I can’t figure out what size to make.

Because it’s supposed to have a tonne of negative ease.  The two sizes I am thinking about are the 41″ and the 45″.  Now.  I am a 44″ bust (TMI?  Maybe)  Three inches of negative ease seems a lot.  But one inch of positive ease in a garment that should have negative ease seems like a lot, too.

Add to that the fact that I don’t quite have gauge – I’m one stitch off, over four inches.  And that I am using a dk weight instead of a worsted, so the fabric is a bit looser than I would really like.

Since I started writing this post, I have come to a decision (I’m at work, ok.  It’s only taken me all morning.  There has been time for several back-and-forths on this).  I have had help.  Yesterday I messaged Pug mama (ravelry link) who has made three (!) of these in that yarn.  After to-ing and fro-ing, and her doing some maths, and me inflicting my back-to-front maths on her (I always have to do it the long way, for some reason) I have decided.  I will go down a needle size, and up a pattern size.  This ought to give me a firmer fabric, and a better fit.  I’ll swatch, though.  I swatched!  I even washed my swatch!  It was so exciting – usually I do a lame-o swatch of about 5 rows, get close enough, and then rip the swatch and use that to start the project – since I never sever it from the ball, anyways.  I know.  Recipe for disaster.  But Gauge LIES, anyway. 

And since writing that, I posted to the stitchdiva group on ravelry to ask for advice, and Wendy (the designer, people!) like, totally agreed with me!  Like, omg!  I’m awesome.

 

Turns out I don’t need you after all.  My social networks have beaten my introspection.  So there.