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Tuesday, 29 April 2008
new sweater plans
Topic: cables

I am winding down in teaching at my retreats for this spring, and my mind is opening up to all sorts of new possibilities. Once the Rip Van Winkle Sock Spinning Retreat is over in mid May, I am free to work on new projects.

 I am so ready.

My hopeless addiction to stranded knitting continues, but the Peace Fleece solid colored sweaters for this year's Reversible Retreats have been totally enjoyable to design and knit. It's such great yarn from such a great company. I will be working on a new STRANDED mitten pattern with Peace Fleece this Fall for the Twelve Knits Of Christmas Retreat in December. 

In the meantime, my mind is wandering towards cables again. Rich, thick, warm cables. The thermostat will be lower next winter and I plan to have a complete wardrobe of cabled things to keep warm in. So, I will start now.

 First on deck is a cabled, or maybe even Gansey patterned, tunic. 1/2 or 3/4 sleeves. Maybe a button front (or a psedo button placket!). I am a turtleneck/leggings wearer, and it is SO SIMPLE to throw a tunic over the first layer to get a great (and warm) look. I have a couple of near-miss garments that I live in on cold days that need tweaking and streamlining, so I think 2008 is the year for this work. I think I will start with my Meandering Cable Vest shape as I like the crew neck/side slits, and go from there.

 Stay tuned. As I find the right looks, I'll post the inspiration.  I am hosting a CIRCULAR SWEATER WORKSHOP on 2nd Thursday evenings at Countrywool starting June 12, and I think this will be MY project for the class.

Posted by countrywool at 11:36 AM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, 29 April 2008 11:39 AM EDT
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Saturday, 1 September 2007
Cabled Braids Hat
Topic: cables



The pattern editing for this great hat is almost done. The applied I-cord edging was WAY COOL, and I opted to keep the braid ends flatter by tacking them together, instead of tying, as was done in the first hat.  Many heads have tried this on, and we are finding that the bigger this hat is, the better it looks, so one of the sizes is 26" finished.

It became a religious experience to get all three braid ends to emerge seamlessly from the applied edging on the INSIDE. I have spared the pattern followers this in the pattern, but would be glad to chat at length about this issue in any correspondence.

As mentioned before, this pattern will be available in September's COUNTRYWOOL NEWS free of charge, so be sure to sign up at countrywool.

Posted by countrywool at 5:49 AM EDT
Updated: Sunday, 2 September 2007 11:21 AM EDT
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Friday, 27 July 2007
Knitting creativity in the heat of summer
Topic: cables

The Neighborhood Knitters, who have met not once, but TWICE a week this summer, have been knitting up a storm. Despite my intention to take a knitting break, I have been Sucked In. 

What did it?

This hat in an ad on the back of a magazine in June:

Lisbet had tried and tried to research the booklet this pattern was sold in to no avail. She had her mother (in Denmark) search online for DAYS about what the other designs in the book looked like before she plunked down her money to order it sight unseen. No luck.

Lisbet has the most incredible whine, EXCELLENT attention to knitting detail, and a short attention span, so in June we decided to attempt recreating this hat. 

It has been a journey. I see the light at the end of the tunnel, though the backtracking has been legendary.

 It's a really great hat. We are knitting it with 2 skeins silk/wool chunky VENEZIA. The I-cord edging/braids is way cool. I haven't had this much fun knitting in a LONG time. Ours' has short row ear shapings and blipless I-cord. (Be still my beating heart).

 Mine is lime and hers' is red. More pictures to follow in the next week.

Posted by countrywool at 7:36 AM EDT
Updated: Friday, 27 July 2007 7:38 AM EDT
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Sunday, 10 September 2006
You're never too old to floss...or swatch
Topic: cables

I think I am so smart that I can judge a new-to-me yarn and can guess what it'll do after knitting and blocking. 


Here is the first swatch I knit on #8 Brittany walnut needles (my last full unbroken pair, so I like to use them when I can). The Brittanies are single point straight needles, and dragging the stitches along did not allow for a tighter gauge. It appears a little loose after being knit, but not out of line:











 Then I washed it, and had QUITE the revelation about what this yarn does, so I quickly got another set of needles and reswatched. I used Flex Needles this time, which allow the majority of the stitches to relax when they are not being worked. The new swatch was washed and behaved much better. Both are shown side by side: (new on the left and original one on the right):








So, after all this, it looks like my knitting gauge is 4.75 sts=1" in cabled pattern. Curiously, the row gauge is almost square: 4.8 rows =1".

 Now I start thinking about mapping where cables might go, and how to create a fold line down the front pieces to allow for the double breasted closure Betsi wants. 

Stay tuned.

Posted by countrywool at 1:10 PM EDT
Updated: Sunday, 10 September 2006 2:18 PM EDT
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Saturday, 9 September 2006
Betsi's cables
Topic: cables

We have searched and searched through books and magazines, and the important word for Betsi and her new sweater is BIG. Her cables need to be big and bold. She doesn't want an all-over cabled look, either, rather showcasing the one or two that are in the sweater, with lots of plain knitting surrounding them. 

I am thinking a lacey cable will help somewhat with the weight of this thing.

 So, armed with a few ideas and possibilities we found these past weeks, I am going to knit a few swatches for her perusal. 

The current issue of VOGUE KNITTING has an interesting BIG cable:

But, of course, it is not exactly what she is looking for. I spent some time this morning tweaking it, and will swatch this evening if all goes well. Here is the chart I will use (sorry about no symbol key..pressed for time):

I am using VENEZIA from Cascade Yarns; merino wool and silk. I suspect I'll get about 3 sts=1" in stocking stitch, but we'll see what the cabling does to the gauge.

Posted by countrywool at 7:57 AM EDT
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Tuesday, 26 July 2005
New cable vest cardigan pattern in the works
Topic: cables

FINALLY...I have the week clear to work on another pattern. It seems that as soon as I arrange time for pattern work, all sorts of family/rabbit stuff pops up. I am already behind schedule on my pattern editing!

This Sailor's Rib Cable pattern has been a long time favorite of mine. Worked in ECCO merino superwash wool from Zitron, I like the stitch definition and softness of the fabric it is making. I started this vest last Fall when my Dad underwent knee surgery, and it was my faithful companion while I sat through the hours waiting. I used a similar pattern years ago for my first Aran sweater and have never lost my fondness for it.

This vest will have a reverse stockinette stitch roll edge. I have becomed attached to this "no edge edge" finish after seeing it in Deborah Newton's book
DESIGNING KNITWEAR which is THE hands down classic, in my opinion.

Posted by countrywool at 11:54 AM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, 26 July 2005 12:02 PM EDT
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Saturday, 23 April 2005
A New Blog and Vest of the Month
Topic: cables
I give up. The best way to post info about patterns I am knitting, with all the picture details is take the plunge and start a blog.

I will join the thousands of knit bloggers who have created an ENORMOUS amount of inspiration on-line for all of us.

I had a hankering to make myself a black vest. And simply cabled. The trick was working the straight line (which the cables create) into a curve that would work around my body parts (which are not a straight line). Elsbeth Lavold has made an entire career out of doing this by shaping vertical rib patterns. The pattern is in the works. I hope to have all the details ironed out by the summer.

The neck:

You'll notice that the cables are soft and subtle. That required DRASTIC altered spacing of the cable twist rounds. In fact, once blocked, the cables are hard to really see, rather giving the illusion of something going on.

This is, in fact, quite fine with me. I am, after all, a double Pisces, and we don't quite work in the real world.

Posted by countrywool at 7:25 AM EDT
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