A Knit A Long, sort of

While I was walking this last week, I had an idea. It just shows that walking can be hazardous to your blog.

I was strolling along, wondering what I would talk about on this blog post, well not really wondering, because it was going to be about cables, but there seems to be a problem. Cables aren’t the problem. The problem is I’m always going to rattle on about what I’m knitting at the moment. Since I’m designing and writing the pattern as I progress, that’s what you’re reading about.

That’s not going to stop. I almost always have some new idea on the needles in my hands. Right now it’s a drop shoulder, top down pullover with cables. This is my first prototype, for my son.

What I find frustrating is the delay between designing something and the pattern publication date. Maybe you find this too. I go on and on for months about a sweater I’m knitting. Then the pattern goes to test knitters and needs photographs and edits. Procrastination kicks in just about here, especially around photos. It won’t come out for several months after I’m done talking about it and definitely onto something new.

So, here goes. This is the idea. I will publish the pattern in stages. I’ll post the beginning of the pattern on ravelry for a small fee. We can call it a Knit-A-Long, sort of like a mystery sweater. I’ll talk about some aspect of it on the blog every week and send you an pattern update every week or so. We can knit the sweater together. This gives me the chance to write my blog as if I was teaching a class where I give you the instructions one page at a time over several weeks. I can tell you so much more about techniques and sizing in the blog than I can in a pattern.

The pattern is the Family Saddle Up pullover with cables. All sizes from 1 year old to large adult in any yarn (my suggestion would be for worsted, heavy worsted/aran weight or chunky weight yarn). The pullover will knit top down with saddle shoulders and drop sleeves. The saddle shoulders and the yoke will be knit flat to the bottom of the armholes, then joined in the round to the bottom. We’ll pick up the sleeves and knit down to the wrists.

I’ve cast on for a second sweater so I’m ready to go.

I’ll knit both the navy and white pullovers as we go along. While I’m at it, I’ll probably do a 2 year old size because I have a little guy to knit for.

I’m going to start next week. If you’ve got some sweater yarn and some free time, I hope you’ll join me. Stay tuned.

Cheers, Deb

Any Gauge and Gauge-Free patterns by Deb

Choosing Cables

How do you choose cables that go together on a sweater when the choice is yours? It’s not so hard. Here is how I get started. Maybe this will be helpful to you.

I am knitting a Top Down, drop shoulder sweater. Beware, any pattern in a stitch dictionary is meant to be knit bottom up. If knitting Top Down, turn the book upside down when you’re looking at the photos because that’s what they will look like when they are knit. If you do this on the subway you may get some interesting looks.

I chose two different centre patterns that were both 32 rows deep.

On the left is Tangled Ropes, pg.80 in Charted Knitting Designs, A Third Treasury of Knitting Patterns by Barbara G. Walker. On the right is #119 Crosshatch Bias from Knitted Cable Sourcebook by Norah Gaughan.

Now I chart them. This is swatching with a pencil. Even if they are charted in the stitch dictionary I do it again.

Is it hard to chart?

I love the Tangled Ropes but … I wore out an eraser charting this.

I found it hard to chart and I think it would be a little too complicated to knit for this project.

Look at this one, the Crosshatch Bias. Even though there are many cable crossings, they all cross the same way on each line. It doesn’t get any better than this.

OK, decision made. The centre pattern is settled. I’ve started knitting and it looks complicated even though it’s quite straight forward to knit. Gotta love that.

Then do the same for some side patterns. This time I need them to work with the 32 rows of the centre pattern, meaning that the repeats of the side patterns must add up to 32 rows.

I want one more wide pattern and found a couple I liked. One that was 8 rows deep and a second one that was 16 rows. I’m going with this one.

Then I need a small pattern to take up some space. A 4 stitch cable worked over 4 rows goes into 32 rows quite nicely.

Next, setting them up. Yes, still some work to do before the knitting can start.

Deb

Any Gauge and Gauge-Free patterns by Deb

Saddle Up for a new sweater

If you can’t think of anything else to do, start a new project. That’s a good motto, don’t you think?
I’m trying to convince myself to sew in the ends of the two V-Neck Cardigans I have finished. And that’s the trouble, right there. I think they’re finished. They are not. They require some after-knitting care and I struggle to do this with every single project I do. Every. Single. Project.

So of course, I started something new. A new sweater. It’s an idea I’ve been thinking about: a saddle shoulder, drop sleeve pullover with cables. Worked from the top down, of course.

So here we go. I started with a provisional cast on for an 8″ saddle which will be 4″deep on the front and 4″ deep on the back. I worked the shoulder in garter stitch to the width I wanted to the neck opening edge. Then I put the Front Stitches on hold and knit across the Back of Neck first.

Next I worked a small number of stitches for the bottom of the Front neck opening. This is going to give me a 3″ deep neck opening. I will pick up for the neckband later. Then I cast on for the other side of the neck opening and knit the other shoulder.

When it’s folded at the top of the shoulder it will work like this.

I hope this works because I’m quite captivated by this idea. Cables are coming up next.  What do you think?

Cheers,  Deb

Any Gauge and Gauge-Free patterns by Deb

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