2013, Cardigan, Flat knitting, New Design, New Pattern, seamless, Sweaters

New Pattern: Grown-up Hira

Hira is light and breezy and is great for layering on a cold summer evening. It can be worn over a pretty evening dress or make it casual by pairing with jeans and a tee. The beads on the collar and the sleeves jazz up the cardigan turning the simple cardigan into a special-occasion-wear. I just love the beads on the sleeves, if I say so myself.

Hira is knit from the top-down with raglan sleeves. After the body-sleeves split, the body is worked flat with waist shaping. Sleeves are knit in the round. Stitches for the collar are picked and worked flat, knit to the double the width with a garter ridge, over which the collar gets folded and sewn in place. Don’t worry, the sewing is on the wrong side, so not publicly visible at all.

Grown-up Hira is women’s version of Hira, so you can make a mother-daughter cardigan if you like.

Ravelry Pattern: Grown-up Hira by Anjali M.
Yarn Suggested: Madelinetosh Pashmina
Needle Size: US #6 4 mm for the body

2011, Baby, Finished Object, Flat knitting, Gifts, Girls, Lace, Sweaters, Test Knitting

Yellow, yellow…

Looks like test knitting is the only kind of knitting I am involved in. I recently finished test knitting the Wheatspikes Vest for Sole and before I knew it, I had signed up for another test knit. I am expecting a few additions in my cousins’ families, so want to knit something warm for the expected babies. I love knitting things for infants because they knit up so fast that they are done before you realize it and kid knits are so cute, aren’t they?

Inge Sandholt’s cardigan is a cute, little cardigan, knit flat, bottom-up using sock weight yarn. I had bought some 2-ply acrylic yarn from Surya Emporium intending to use it for an intarsia-cum-fair isle pullover for my husband, but that never worked out. I started off with the main color but had a fear that I might run out of  yarn, so added a few stripes of a contrast color. It turned out to be a wise decision because I did run out of yarn and I had to knit the sleeves in contrast color.

The pattern is well written and is sized from 0-3 to 24 months. It is ideal for someone who is a newbie knitter and wants to try simple lace which involves slipped stitches and yarn overs. The back was the most boring part to knit. The front parts keep you engaged with the 4-row mock cable pattern. Sleeves, of course, get done in a jiffy. It helped that I made them in stripes so I looked forward to the next color change.

The cardigan is generously sized – even though I knit this one in 0-3 months size, it should easily fit a 6 months old baby. I think it will look great on a baby girl. It does have a feminine look to it.

Pattern: Frank & Mathilda by Inge Sandholt
Yarn: 100 gms. of main color and ~50 gms of contrast color
Needles: US 2 2.75mm straights
Ravelry Project Page

Child, Finished Object, Flat knitting, Gifts, Girls, Knitting, RAK, Sweaters

In Threes

In Threes is a simple, yet elegant cardigan for a little girl.  The male version of this is Wyatt, which I test knit for Kelly and it is equally cute. I had added In Threes to my wishlist and when Kelly saw that, she generously sent me the pattern as a gift.

I had always wanted to knit this for a girl, but didn’t have any recipient handy. After Kelly’s generous gesture, I had to find a recipient to knit for! The victim was my niece, but sizing was a problem. My niece is almost 8 years old and this cardigan runs upto 6T. After some swatching and gauge checking, I chose a yarn and a needle which would give me the size I want with the numbers from the pattern.

Ever since I had a boy, I have been buying yarn in boys colors and the only neutral yarn I had was this red one. It’s a 4-ply acrylic yarn from Surya Emporium. I held it double and with 4mm needles, I got a gauge of 17 sts to 4″. The pattern calls for 19 sts to 4″, which was fine by me because the cardigan will turn out bigger.

 

I initially planned to do the yoke in colorful stripes, but blame my choice of colors, the yoke turned out messy, so I decided to stick to one color.  I did make some modifications – got rid of the garter ridges on the sides and added sleeves. I guesstimated the sleeve length hoping that I get it right. All the details are on my Ravelry project page. It’s a good thing that I kept notes as I went along because I wouldn’t have remembered anything now – the cardigan was knit last September! I am not too happy with the buttons, but that’s the best I had in my stash.

The cardigan was gifted to the girl during Diwali which she promptly modeled for me. Turns out the sleeves are quite short, they come upto just 3/4th of her arms – so my guestimates are not that good after all. Apart from that, the cardigan fits well – good length and a comfort fit. The girl was happy. I am guessing she would have been happier if I had added a crocheted flower to it to make it more girly.

Pattern: In Threes by Kelly Herdrich
Yarn: 4-ply Acrylic in Red bought at Surya Emporium
Needles: US 6 4mm. Straights for the body and DPNs for sleeves
Buttons: 5 numbers from my stash
Ravelry Project Page

 

 

Child, Finished Object, Flat knitting, Knitting, Knitting for Boys, Sweaters, Test Knitting

Wyatt

I had been planning to knit a pullover for Ninad since ages. I knit Wonderful Wallaby for him, but that turned out too big. Serves me right for not swatching before starting the project. Now that I had a pullover which wouldn’t fit him for alteast another 6 months, I had to make one which fit him now. Right around the same time, Kelly was looking for test knitters for her latest design, Wyatt, and I jumped at the occasion.

Wyatt has a very interesting construct. You knit the front bottom-up, and once you are done, you cast on for sleeves on either end. Knit the sleeves for a few inches. Cast off some stitches at the center for neck opening, cast on the same stitches on the next row so that you get a nice, wide, neck opening. Once you are done with sleeves, cast off sleeve stitches and knit the back and voila, you are done. There are seams, but since this construct technique is so incredibly clever, I don’t mind seaming. I slipped stitched along the edges using a crochet hook which I prefer over the traditional sewing using the tapestry needle. Ravelry Project details are here.

Sanhita-di had picked up some yarn for me when Gia visited us. Though I have never met Gia, her lovely yarn was passed on to me. The yarn is soft and squishy, in a lovely pastel green shade. Lucky me, I got the exact gauge with 4mm needles on the first attempt itself. I took 4-5 days to knit this but that’s only because I don’t knit for more than half an hour a day. With a very demanding toddler, I am lucky I get atleast this much knitting time!

Kelly gave me the final version of the pattern, which is usual in test knitting deals. But, Kelly went a step ahead and gave me her popular cardigan pattern in threes baby cardigan because I was looking for a top-down seamless cardigan for girls. Thanks Kelly. That was very sweet of you. No prizes for guessing what I am knitting next.

Finished Object, Flat knitting, Gifts, Knitting, Sweaters

Childhood

My youngest nephew (or should I say nephew-in-law) and I share a very special bond. When my sister-in-law was expecting this little guy, I wanted to make something handmade for him. I had seen my aunts knit sweaters and booties for infants, so I planned to do the same. Our landlady of the house where we lived at that time was an expert knitter and agreed to teach me knitting. Off I went to Surya Emporium, Commercial Street and bought my first pair of knitting needles and a ball of Wendy’s baby yarn. She taught me the basic knits and purls and helped me knit my first pair of booties. Thus began my knitting saga and I have not looked back since.

The little baby who was the recipient of my first knitted object ever is a handsome 4-year old now. I made my first big project, a baby cardigan, for him when he was around a year old. When I met him last, I saw him wearing the same cardigan which he had clearly outgrown. My sister-in-law and mother-in-law refuse to let go of this hand-knit sweater. (Didn’t I say my in-laws are extremely supportive?) I was touched by their appreciation and decided to knit another sweater for my nephew, which he can comfortably wear.

Childhood (ravelry link) by Natalie Wilson catches your attention at the first glance. The striped sleeves and hood, the striped button bands – these add life to an otherwise plain cardigan. The pattern has instructions for a non-hooded option too. My biggest problem with this pattern is that it is not seamless. I know, I don’t have any rights to complain because I knew it was seamed before I began the project, but still, I want to rant that this cardigan wants you to seam at every possible place – sleeves, underarms, left and right joins, button bands (can you believe it?). I did modify the pattern a wee bit to attaching the button bands as I went to avoid two seams. I don’t exaggerate when I say I spent more time on seaming than knitting. If I make this cardigan every again, I will convert it to seamless first.

These yarns are few of the very first I added to my stash. I bought this with a plan of making a ruffled top for my niece, but that never materialized. I was skeptical of using these colors for a boy, but I think they look ok. Yarns are from Patel’s store, Jayanagar – the standard, Vardhaman 4-ply acrylic yarn. Buttons are from Pydal’s.

The sweater turned out ok. There are quite a few mistakes in there, but not visible, thankfully. I can’t wait to give this to my little nephew who is the very reason why I knit today. Every year on his birthday, when he turns a year older, I realize I am growing as a knitter too. You see, I am a 4-year old knitter now!

cable projects, circular knitting, Finished Object, Flat knitting, Knitting, Sweaters

The Lazy Syndrome Pullover

Scene: Surya Emporium, Commercial Street
Date: 3rd December 2008

After going through hundreds and thousands of men’s pullover patterns, I pick some patterns which I like. I finalize one pattern which is liked by me and my hubby. With a tummy which looks more like an overgrown watermelon, I and hubby go to Surya Emporium to buy yarn. I have 8-ply yarn in mind so that the knitting will go faster and have one particular shade in mind. The store guy gives us the sad news that all the newly arrived yarn is tucked away in their storeroom which happens to be on the fourth floor. ‘Can Madam manage?’ he asks eying my tummy sideways. ‘Oh yes’ I declare and off we go for a trip up the stairs which go on endlessly. I pant and heave and finally reach the storeroom. I buy the yarn I want and head back home.

Scene: My Living Room
Date: 4th December 2008

I have the pattern printed out, yarn wound and the needles ready. I decide to make a swatch, the very first time in my life. After going up and down some needle sizes, I finally get the desired gauge. With this big achievement, I cast on for the sweater and knit a few rows.

Scene: My Living Room
Date: 6th December 2008

My tummy realizes that it can’t get any more bigger and decides to spit the little one out. The little boy arrives and the sweater is long forgotten.

Scene: Home
Date: December 2008 – September 2009

The hubster’s attempts at reminding me of the pullover I was planning to make for him were met with ‘Sweater? What sweater?’ Sometimes it was , ‘Hubby? Who hubby?’ He gave up after a few futile attempts.

Scene: Home
Date: October 2009

Bangalore is getting colder by the day. Hubby decides enough is enough. He fishes out the abandoned sweater, prints out the pattern and handing over the yarn, gives me a stern warning, ‘Make this for me… or else’. I knit on endlessly. I modified the pattern to knit the sweater in round. Who likes seaming, right? The cables, twists and turns are very beautiful and keeps my interest piqued for the entire duration. I complete the body in a month. It was an achievement, considering I have a 10-month old baby coming in the way. I looked at the pullover without the sleeves in awe and imagine how it would look like with sleeves.

Scene: New Home
Date: November 2009

20th is hubby’s birthday. I promise myself that I will finish the sweater for him and gift it to him on his birthday. I procrastinate over how to make the sleeves. Should I pick up stitches at the armhole and knit in round? Should I knit the sleeves in round separately and then sew them on? How about just following the pattern and knit them flat? Days were lost in making this decision. Birthday came and went and not a single stitch was added to the sweater.

Scene: New Home
Date:  December 2009

Another stern warning from hubby and I say ‘Let’s get it done with’. I finally decide to follow the pattern and knit the first sleeve flat. The sleeve is done and is admired. I mock attach the sleeves to the sweater and imagine how the second sleeve would look like. Another few days of laziness and another request from hubby ‘It’s really cold now. Can I have my sweater now?’ I sit down and knit like crazy and finish the second sleeve. Lest I lose the steam, I sew the seams, finish the neck band, wash and block. Phew. The pullover, ladies and gentlemen, is finished.

This is a beautiful pattern. Kathy Zimmerman loves cables and it shows. The main cable panel in the middle looks complicated, but is so easy to knit. The smaller, running cables at the sides add a border like look to the main panel. The sweater has the same cable pattern on the back too. The K1,P3 ribbing adds texture to the body and the sleeves. On the whole, one awesome pattern to knit and wear.  I personally don’t like wearing cables, but that’s a different story. My husband, on the other hand, loooooves cables, so he is happy and so am I.

Baby, Finished Object, Flat knitting, Gifts, Hobby, Intarsia, Knitting, Sweaters

Itsy Bitsy – Knitting baby stuff

It’s been ages since I have talked about any FO. That does not mean that I haven’t done any knitting, but just didn’t have the time to write about it. Well, what have I done during the hiatus? Lots of things actually.

It’s difficult to choose a pattern when it comes to baby sweaters. All the patterns look so cute. One pattern that stands out is Baby Sophisticate. It is cute, no doubt, but it also has a distinguished look to it which gives babies that grown-up look. I personally think kids look cute when they act all grown-up. I almost made this for Anya, Rima’s little princess, but when Rima knit the same one for her, I decided to knit something else. I am keeping this one for a baby to come along and claim it. The yarn is 3-ply yarn from Pydal. Really soft and has a nice sheen to it. The only problem is the yarn is so thin that I used 3 strands held together for this cardigan.

I decided to make this Pebble vest for Anya. Just when I was about to sew the buttons on and mail it to Rima, she too made the same vest for Anya. I didn’t want to send this vest, but since the day of Anya’s arrival was nearing, I decided to send it anyway, consoling myself that the one Rima made is bigger and mine is smaller, so can be used immediately. The DK yarn is from Pydal and is soft and squishy.

The vest looked so adorable, I made another one for Ninad. I modified the pattern to make it a bit bigger and knit the body in round. This vest looked great too, but I realized that this yarn was not the best choice only after I started using it. The yarn is so squishy that it doesn’t hold any shape at all. Anya’s vest can be easily used by a 2 year old, that’s how stretchy the yarn is. Now I am feeling guilty for using this yarn for Anya’s vest. I should have used a tried and tested yarn. Sorry Anya and Rima if the vest turns out to be unusable.

The moment I saw this pattern on Knitty, I knew I would knit it some day. Kids and ice-cream go well together, don’t they? I was waiting for an opportunity to knit it and I got it when my mom asked me to knit a sweater for my brother’s kid. I finished the front part in just 3 hours. Intarsia was addictive. It’s another matter that I took 2 days to finish the back and 2 weeks to finish the sleeves. One cute sweater and a great pattern. The only drawback is it is not knit in round, but intarsia can’t be knit in round, so that’s how it is. The 8-ply yarn is leftover yarn from Ninad’s blanket. I love this yarn. It’s strong and has good stitch definition. It’s thick, so knits up fast.

So, this is what I had been upto. I also made a adult size sweater for my husband, but that’s for another blog post, when I get to write it.