I’ve had a couple of productive weeks lately. Oh maybe that’s because I broke my leg and so I have to sit more than I usually do. So I finished my Fibershed sweater. I finished fixing the cormo hat that was too short. And so yesterday I started this. It’s a mitten pattern. It is a kit that I bought from Riihivilla. The yarn is made from their finn sheep. And she uses natural dyes. What has fascinated me about her dyeing is that she uses lichens and mushrooms, things that are hard to find here in my area. I love reading her blog as well. She of course writes in Finnish but then has a really good English translation too.
I use Highlighter tape to keep my place in the pattern. The deal that I’ve made with myself it to leave the tape on the row I’ve just finished if it is time to quit for the day. So when I pick this up later today, I know I will change the tape to the next row. I have 4 more rows to go and then I will turn the hem up and knit the two rows together.
This is my Fibershed sweater. I’m working on the sleeves. And it’s almost done. I’m beyond the elbows. What’s taking so long you ask? Well I’m doing the sleeves two at a time. I’m doing a series of blips which is a 12 row repeat on one sleeve then switching to the other sleeve and repeating that and so forth. That way the gauge is even. And I pattern is even. And the decreases are in the same place without really having to count.
What have I learned? well I’ve learned a few things:
Your future self will thank you if you weave in your ends as you are knitting. Do not wait until the end of your project. This sweater has a lot of yarn changes and so lots of weaving in the ends. But I’m staying on top of it.
Knit some every day. Even if you can only manage a row or two. Soon your project will grow and you will be near the end.
So I planned to do this blog on Wednesday, but you know….It was full of drama and pomp and circumstance, a few tears and a little nail biting. So here is my current, well one of them, project. This is my “Fibershed” sweater. It is all yarn made from my animals or those of partner farms within 100 miles, really within 20 miles. The dark is naturally colored wool, mohair and alpaca fleeces. The bright colors are all natural dyes on my mohair yarn.
The pattern is Shifty. I changed just about all of it. It’s supposed to be a pullover, but I wanted a cardigan. I added a steek and I’ll cut it apart after it’s blocked. It supposed to be sport weight and this yarn is closer to worsted. So I had to go up a couple of needle sizes and down a couple of sweater sizes. But it fits just fine. Thank you Kyle for suggesting this fix!!
I’m currently working on the sleeves. I’m doing these two at a time, in a way. I’m doing a group of blips and then moving to the opposite sleeve and doing the same blips on that side. That way I’m keeping better track of the decreases and I’m using the same color rotation.
I’m hoping to finish this within 3 weeks. Maybe sooner? I have to finish the sleeves, stabilize the steek with crochet, block, cut, figure out buttons and make button holes. I think I’m not going to do a button band but rather crochet loops. Then it will be done!!
That’s my motto. I always have a pair of socks on the needles at my house. Oh did I tell you that I knit them 2 at a time on one circular needle? Well I do. I learned to do this many years ago. I prefer this for so many reasons. First, I hate DPN’s. I have a hard time managing stitches on them and typically lose stitches off the back side of the needles. Secondly, I never have to worry about the second sock syndrome. I will always have a matching or someone matching pair of socks. They will be the same length and the same width. The gauge will be the same for both socks.
This is the pair on my needles right now. Truth be told, I haven’t knit on these for a month or so, since I’m focusing all my knitting time to my Shifty sweater. These socks are made with our Chinook Sock Base which is a blend of superwash merino, cashmere and nylon. And they are so soft and great. Because there’s nylon in there, they should were well too.
Want to learn how to knit socks 2 at a time? I have a class for that. Click here to find out about it. I have EARLY BIRD pricing on that until Sunday at midnight. The class is totally self study. There are 4 parts from cast on to bind off. And you have access for 60 days which should be plenty of time to knit your socks. You just need a skein of yarn (or a sock blank), a stitch marker and a circular needle of 32-40″ in length. I prefer to use size 1 US needles for fingering weight yarn. But pick the needles that work with the yarn you are using.
Okay people. I’m on the second cuff. I’ll be finished with that this afternoon, I think.
The next step will be to finish the bottom of the sweater. As a recap, I was worried about having enough yarn. So I put the sweater body on a cable and I decided to complete the sleeves. I knew I wanted a sweater and not a vest. And happily, yes, I have enough yarn… I may have enough for a hat too…
And now I’m thinking about buttons. I raided my button box…I have a good one. And here are my top choices.
I want you to help me, so reply to this blog and on my social media and pick your favorite!! I have 3 weeks to finish. I think I will. I’m pretty excited to be done with this handspun lamb’s fleece sweater from my own Gina.
I’ve finished the colorwork yoke. I’ve gotten to the sleeve/body split. Now it is just knitting, knitting, knitting!
I kinda wonder and worry if I have enough handspun. So I’m thinking about alternatives in that case. I know I want to have more colorwork at the hem and the cuffs. And so maybe that is where I add in other yarns.
I really love knitting socks, but I don’t spend a lot of time knitting. I always think I will spend the time. I’m at the lightning speed of 1 pair a year. I know, I know….most people do 1 pair per month. Still I love my hand knit socks!
I have 2 pairs going now. One, the bright pink and orange from a sock blank and the other from our chinook yarn…a luscious blend of SW Merino, Cashmere and Nylon in my Nautical colorway.
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