Wednesday, August 20, 2014

WIP Wednesday: Biting Off More Than I Can Chew

It's been a fun week full of planning and beginning new projects :) To start with ...
I finished the knitting on my Myrna cardigan! It was an exciting Friday night :) I had several doctor's appointments and whatnot during the day that enabled me to knit the final sleeve while waiting, so I finished the button band that night et voilĂ ! Now I just have to weave in the ends, block, and stabilize the button bands. I'm not in a crazy hurry to do that though since it's still 95 degrees out everyday. It's going to be a while before I can wear even a short sleeve cropped wool sweater. Finishing the knitting was kind of awesome yet bittersweet - this was my "travel" knitting project! What would I work on while I was out and about? And I was going on a long car ride the next day! I quickly got to work setting up my next project, which is ...
The Emelie Cardigan by Elin Berglund :) I picked up the yarn (Valley Yarns Charlemont) during the 40th anniversary sale at WEBS a few months ago, and I loved it so much that this project jumped my queue. Guys, this yarn is like heaven. It's 60% merino wool, 20% nylon, and 20% mulberry silk - I've decided this is the trifecta of wonderful yarn. It is so incredibly soft and drapes beautifully. I keep the swatch in my project bag with the project for no reason other than for me to be able to stroke it whenever I want, lol. I also really love the design of this cardigan and I know I will wear the daylight out of it. This project is a lot of firsts for me: my first fingering weight cardigan, my first bottom-up cardigan, my first large lace panelled front, and my first yarn with any silk content. I had to do quite a bit of measuring and math to make sure I get this fitting great since this will take A LOT of time to make. I've worked on it for several hours this weekend and I only have just over an inch of the ribbing done. Fingering weight is small! I know that it will be worth it in the end. I've heard that fingering weight is perfect for warmer areas, plus the design is one that I can dress up or down, plus it's black - it will go with everything. Anyway, I know this will take quite a while, so I'm sure other projects will come and go while this gets temporarily set aside from time to time. At least I know I will have a great take along project whenever I need :)
Over the weekend, Andi Satterlund announced her Marion Cardigan Knit Along due to start on September 10th. I've always loved this design and been so close to purchasing the pattern many times. She offered a discount on the pattern for the KAL, so I couldn't resist :) I'm going to use this KAL as an opportunity to stash bust some of my lesser loved yarn. Back when I first started knitting, I went a little crazy with buying acrylic yarn. Case and point - my local Walmart clearanced almost their whole yarn section about 22 months after I started knitting and I bought something like 30 skeins of Caron Simply Soft in various colors over the course of a few weeks. Yeah. In my defense, they were marked down to $1.00 - $1.50 per skein, which is still the cheapest I have ever seen this yarn, and I have used it here and there for other projects. I just have so much! So even though this cardigan is designed to be made in wool yarn, I wanted to be frugal and put some of my Simply Soft to use. Sin of knitting sins, I know!
In the yarn's defense it is a lovely color :) This is the Blue Mist colorway and I bought ELEVEN SKEINS OF IT! What was I smoking?! So, this yarn will become a Marion Cardigan come September. I was so excited about this project that I already swatched to make sure the yarn would work (and it was spot on!). I also devoted some time to customizing the pattern - I've knitted 2 of Andi's patterns before, the Miette and the Myrna, but I've never altered the fit before. I've learned that my waist doesn't nip in as much as her patterns are written for so they tend to be a bit more snug than I like in the tummy area. My others are still perfectly wearable, but now that I know a bit more about fitting my body I wanted to give it more attention on this next make. I spent my lunch break yesterday marking up my pattern and I think I have it worked out so I that will use the size Large pattern until the waist decreases, then switch to the XLarge instructions for the waist, going back to the Large for the sleeves. Hopefully it works out - I'm not a big fan of math, so I've kind of got my fingers crossed, lol.
Until the KAL starts on September 10th, I have all my components waiting patiently in one of my WIP baskets. I love these things - they are so handy for keeping everything together but being cuter than just a plastic bag or something.
I also am working on a custom design for a commission! A friend of mine wanted me to make a Hulk amigurumi for her son's birthday in September. I couldn't find any patterns that I loved, but since he will have a body shape that I have made countless times I felt confident in making my own pattern. At the moment I am trying to give him bobble muscles and maybe a six pack - I'm just trying to play with it so they don't look like a row of boobs down his chest, lol. I'm excited to show him off when I'm done and if he works out well I may put up the pattern on Ravelry, we will see :)
And to top off all these other projects, I am all geared up to participate in the Ashton Mystery Crochet-Along with FreshStitches! I love these mystery group projects, so I always sign up when they come around :) This will be the 3rd one I've done with the FreshStitches crowd and I am really looking forward to it. I've already got my pattern purchased, but I still have to pick out my colors. I like going with crazy colors since you have no idea what you're making anyway - last time I ended up with a mint green kangaroo and joey :) The clues begin on September 1st, so I will update you when I get the first set of pieces made!
So, that's what's on my plate this week. Funny how I went from worried I had nothing to work on to having all this lined up now, lol. Feast or famine, I tell ya! If you'd like to see what others around the web are up to, head over to Tami's Amis' Blog.

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