So I’m making stuff here as usual, but let’s take a break from all that. Let’s take a trip to the Toronto islands on the Sam McBride.
And eccentrically built houses
fun things mailboxes are sitting on,
and a tiny mailtruck.
Also, a farm, of sorts. Ahhhh, it’s good to get away.
Next time, back to crafts.
Double bump dishcloth, from My JewelThief Knits.
Knitted in Rowan Denim in Nashville
Like the garter-stitch scarf, dishcloths are usually one of the first projects a knitter tackles. At 16 or so, with my typical level of ambition and recklessness, I skipped these steps and instead started with a sweater. A big blue cardigan with a shawl collar. There were lots of mistakes that I fixed intuitively rather than expertly. I had someone block it for me and sew in a zipper since once the knitting and seaming was done I’d lost interest. I don’t think I wore it much. Maybe over my pyjamas on cool mornings, but not outside. The imperfections of hand-knits hadn’t yet become charming to me. I’m not even sure what became of that first sweater in the end.
Anyways, lately I’m in a mood to step back, slow down, and cool my ambitions. How fitting, then, to make some dishcloths? I used a lone ball of Rowan Denim that had been stored in my sock drawer of all places. It pleases me to think that the colour will gradually fade as the cloths are used, but after I machine washed them the bleed shouldn’t be problematic.
I’m working on more washcloths now using a different pattern. This could become a thing.
Frilled edge crossover jacket, designed by Debbie Bliss, published in Baby Style.
Knitted in mystery Swedish wool
The tiny knits are getting bigger! My little niece is turning two in August, and I am ready! Debbie Bliss is an ace at knitting patterns for kids, and this one’s no exception.
The ruffle trim turned out to be less ruffly for me, but I think I know why. I was worried about running out of yarn so I shortened the torso by 20 rows, but then forgot and stretched it vertically while blocking. I did re-wash it, but it didn’t quite go back to the original length. I think little Jane can live with this, though!
The yarn I used has been in my stash for 3 years now. I bought it on our honeymoon in Stockholm, from a fantastic shop on Gamla Stan called Garn & Hantverk, or Yarn & Handcrafts. Unfortunately I don’t have their address or know if they’ve got a website but it was a fantastic shop, and the woman who owns it is also a designer (her designs reminded me a lot of Hanne Falkenberg).
She didn’t speak much English and I REALLY didn’t speak much Swedish, but the international language of knitting was enough to get me a few skeins of gorgeous, gorgeous wool. I still have some variegated wool in my stash from there as well.
We don’t really need to talk about how long it’s been since I’ve posted a finished project or the reason why, do we? No, we don’t.
In the meantime, I have been working on a few bits and pieces, like this Tova top from the Wiksten pattern. I made it in some Liberty fabric I picked up a couple of months ago in my travels.
I found the placket mighty tricky, but I put it down to lack of expertise on my part rather than any lack of clarity in the pattern (which was amazing). I will probably make another of these in the fall.
I also made another Wiksten tank, this time in dress length, and with an elastic waist. I’ve worn this out a few times already. It’s pretty perfect for a hot summer day.
Currently, I’m back to knitting, and I’ve got three unfinished projects on the go. This here is an older Debbie Bliss pattern for a frilled collar wrap sweater. My little niece Jane’s second birthday is coming up in a couple of months, and this is destined for her. All these unfinished projects are weighing on me a little. Time to finish them up.
Winterwoods sampler, by Alicia Paulson
I’ve been feeling off lately. It’s like the darkness of winter has followed me into the spring. Making thousands of tiny stitches helps me break it down and get through it, though, and for that I’m thankful.
To hell with groundhogs, I know it’s spring when my urge to knit weakens and I bring the sewing machine out of it’s winter resting place (a tupperware bin). Pip gave me both Wiksten patterns for Christmas, and that heat wave we had was all the encouragement I needed to get going, finally.
This fabric is fantastic. If you close your eyes and feel it you’d swear it was Liberty fabric, assuming you know what Liberty fabric feels like. It was on sale at The Workroom, but I’d had my eye on it since it’s regular priced days.
The pocket is nicely camouflaged, if I do say so myself, but for some reason it ended up further to the side than I think it should be. Not sure now that happened. Despite that, I found the instructions to be as fantastic as everyone says they are. Along the way, I managed to waste a load of time making stupid mistakes while distracted. I forgot how fast sewing is and how slow and annoying it is to fix mistakes. Ah well, it’s about the process!
Marinière, designed by me!
Knitted in SandesGarn Alpakka in shade 1088 (dark grey)
I’ve been wanting to do it for a while and I finally have – I’ve designed a sweater! I wanted something as easy as a sweatshirt, and thought a play on a stripey mariniere would be suitable. I wear a lot of stripes – when I organize my closet it’s pretty obvious how I feel about them.
It’s knitted in a lovely alpaca from SandnesGarn in DK weight. It has a gorgeous drape, this yarn, and I’d hoped to capitalize on this by choosing an a-line shape. I found that in order to have the garter stitch stripes firm enough and the stockinette intervals drapey enough I had to use two different needle sizes.
I really enjoyed the process of designing – sketching, swatching, knitting, frogging, modifying. It was lots of fun! Aside from a couple of really small things I won’t bore you with, I’m extremely happy with it.
I’ve got a lot of notes written up from while I was knitting the sweater. If there’s any demand, I’d be happy to write the pattern up.
If you’re looking for any stripey inspiration, this tumblr should keep you going for a while…