Knitstant Gratification

The crafting adventures of a knitter, music lover, and hockey fan.

Archive for December, 2017

It Can Now Be Revealed

Posted by Andi on December 31, 2017

I only knit one Christmas present this year. Most years I knit more than one gift, but this one was a biggie so I knew I couldn’t get more Christmas knitting in. If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram you would have seen me post about it, but I didn’t blog about it out of fear the recipient would see it. But now that the gift has been received, I can finally post about it.

Here is the afghan I made for Tim’s mom.

It's done!!!! #knittersofinstagram #knitting #HueShiftAfghan

It is the Hue Shift Afghan from Knit Picks. I purchased a kit because my color sense isn’t good enough for me to choose 11 colors on my own and make it look good. I chose this particular set of colors (the Decor version) because I thought it matched the decor (no pun intended) in Tim’s parents’ living room the best.

I’m not going to go into an exaustive list of the yarns used and their yardages. You can check out my Ravelry Project Page for that. I can say that I used a total of 3,059 yards of sport weight yarn (Knit Picks Brava Sport), which at time I finished the project, wasn’t enough to put my yards out/yards in ratio in the black. Close, but not cigar.

Because of the size of the project, I started early and tried to pace myself. When I started in April, my goal was to make 3 squares a week. That way, I would have finished the squares about three weeks before Christmas, enough time to sew the pieces together and make the border. That worked for a while. Even when there were weeks where I didn’t have time to make three squares, I was usually able to make up for it in the following week. However, there was a span of a few weeks where I was focusing on making baby gifts and didn’t knit any squares. Once that was over I started knitting on this blanket exclusively for the reason below.

There was only one hiccup with this project. After I purchased the kit, I saw some comments on Ravelry from people who said they ran out of yarn. I purposely went down a needle size in the hopes it would save some yarn, but I was always conscious that I could run out. Once I finished the baby gifts above, I got worried that I might run out of yarn too close to Christmas to finish the blanket. I started knitting more quickly.

I got through most of the colors with more than enough yarn left, and ended up playing yarn chicken with a few colors. There were two colors where I maybe had 2-3 yards of yarn left. I ran out of one color, and had to order a new one. Thankfully the dye lots were really close so it’s not obvious where I switched skeins. I paid for expedited shipping to make sure I got it in time to finish.

I finished knitting the squares on Thanksgiving, and was able to seam the pieces together that day. It had been many years since I used mattress stitch with garter stitch, so I had to relearn that, but it worked out just fine. The border was easy and I finished the blanket in plenty of time.

I have been considering how I could use the leftovers, since there are only small amounts of any given color. I started making a pair of fingerless mitts with the extra skein I had to purchase (I only used 6 grams of it in the blanket). I might make a striped cowl or hat with the rest.


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To the Frog Pond with You

Posted by Andi on December 26, 2017

In my last post I discussed one of my WIPs at the time, the Humboldt Raglan. Well, I finished knitting it a couple of weeks ago. Here it is in its current form.

Humboldt Raglan

Why aren’t the ends woven in? Because they never will be. This sweater didn’t work out. I will be frogging it and using the yarn to make a new sweater.

What happened?

I set this sweater down for a long time as I was working on a long-term gift knit. I had just started the raglan decreases before I set the sweater aside. My gauge must have changed after I picked it back up, because the sleeves and body below the underarms fit fine, but the top was way too big.

It was just unwearable. When I had the shoulders right up against my shoulders, the body came down way too far, the sleeves looked too short, and the underarms came down so far that it looked like the sweater version of Hammer pants.

When I pulled up the underarms so they came right up against my armpits, the body fit appropriately. The sleeves hit my arms in the perfect three-quarter length place. However, the top above the underarms was really baggy. Ugly baggy.

I briefly considered ripping back and adjusting the raglan decreases so it would fit. But honestly, I was disgusted. I still am. I don’t want to do it. I’m done. Perhaps another knitter, or even myself at another time, would consider doing that. I just don’t want to make the adjustment. I would rather make something else.

So, this created a problem, albeit an artificial one that shouldn’t mean anything, but does to me. The yardage from this sweater (1375.5 yards) was going to put the yards out/yards in ratio in the black. It was also going to get me closer to finishing three adult sized garments this year. However, I typically don’t count something as knit until it is done and I know it won’t be frogged. If the yarn is going right back into my stash, why count it as used?

However, my boyfriend talked me out of that notion. He said I spent a lot of time on the sweater, I should count the yardage and the sweater goal, and let the yardage going back into my stash be 2018’s problem. So that’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to frog the sweater after the new year. I’m going to let the yardage count this year, and I will start 2018 in the hole. That’s okay, though, because I’m going to reknit the yarn right away, so I won’t be in a big hole long.

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All the Green

Posted by Andi on December 3, 2017

I have to works in progress I can discuss at this point. The others are gifts, so I’m still keeping those close to the vest. Here they are, in the order in which I started them.

I started the Humboldt Raglan back in April. I had a sweater quantity of Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Sport that I had originally purchased to make a jacket style cardigan, but when I went to start the knitting that sweater I realized I had no wiggle room – I had just over the yardage required by the pattern. Given that I’d played yarn chicken and lost on a couple of Tim’s sweaters, I didn’t want to take the risk. So I started going through patterns I already owned, and came across the Humboldt Raglan.

This project has been on the sidelines for a couple of months as I spent most of my knitting time making gifts on a schedule. But I did make a bit of progress over Thanksgiving weekend, and will pick it back up as my primary project soon when I finish the last of my gifts.

It’s not very photogenic at this point, but here is a picture of the lace panel down the front – unblocked of course.

Sweater knitting today. #knitting #knittersofinstagram

This is a bottom-up sweater, and I’m decreasing the yoke, so I should be done with this before the end of the year. I’m hoping to finish it in time for Christmas. It’s green, so it will be festive.

My other WIP is Viajante. Interestingly, I’m making this project out of a similar shade of green yarn: Wollmeise Lacegarn.

I started this as an easy, portable travel project. With the exception of some increases, it’s all stockenette stitch, so there’s not much to memorize. I cast on in time to work on it at the Blackhawks Convention. I’ve worked on it on and off, setting it aside for long portions of time. Much of the work has been done on airplanes, as this most recent picture of it shows.

The places where I knit, MSP -> MDW edition # knitting

It’s starting to get a bit bigger, so I don’t know how much longer this will be portable. As such, I have no idea when I will finish it. I am hoping to finish it by the end of the year, but I’m not sure that’s realistic.

The pattern offers two options for the bottom of the shawl/poncho – a lace edge and a ruffled edge. Most of the projects on Ravelry have the lace edge, but there are a few with the ruffled edge. I thought I would wear this on business trips, so I’m leaning toward the ruffled edge because I think it looks more polished. If you have seen both (or feel like looking at both on Ravelry), what do you think?

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