Tag Archives: knitting

Completed: My Central Park Hoodie

30 Nov

A funny thing happened last weekend – I celebrated (ok, I’m using that term very loosely here) my 1 year knitting anniversary! Crazy how it’s only been one year – I feel like I’ve been knitting an entire lifetime. And hey – I made 4 sweaters in the meantime (Agatha, Miette, Blagatha, and Chuck. Whew!), amongst other things. And here it is – my 5th sweater!

Central Park Hoodie
This is the Central Park Hoodie, which is kind of Ravelry-famous. I was really excited to knit this pattern; it’s been sitting in my queue for months. I put it off for so long because I thought it was be ~sooo hard~ with all those cables.

Spoiler: this was the most boring pattern I have ever knitted.

Central Park Hoodie
To be frank, I hated this sweater pretty much the entire time I was knitting it up. Isn’t that dumb? I don’t even know why I finished it; I knew it would be a UFO forever if I put it aside, and anyway, I guess I wanted to give it a fighting chance. I’m glad I finished it because – surprise! – I do actually like it, but we were definitely livin’ on a prayer there for a while.

Central Park Hoodie
I hesitate to blame the pattern for my h8 – although the pattern is not without it’s faults. First of all, it’s very dull. Apart from a few cables (which are easy as FUCK, don’t ever let someone tell you that it’s hard!), it’s all stockinette, all day. And since this hoodie is knit in pieces rather than the round, that’s a hell of a lot of boring purling! Speaking of which, I have learned that I do not like knitting in pieces. Seaming is lame. From now on, I’ll probably knit everything top-down in one piece. But I am glad I learned how to seam.

Central Park Hoodie
My real hate here focuses on this yarn. I used Ella Rae Classic Superwash – it was on sale, so the total ended up at around $35 (for wool yarn! UH HUH!). Hey guess what THIS YARN SUCKS ASS YOU GUYS. Sure, it’s soft and springy and it was cheap as shit – but it’s got some kind of weird agenda where it likes to grow the second it gets wet. I don’t know if that’s a quality of just the Ella Rae superwash (I hope so, because I found a heathered, non-superwash Ella Rae last night that was amazingly beautiful and now I want to buy large quantities of it), or all superwashes. Knitters, what’s the deal?

Central Park Hoodie
ANYWAY, the growing was an issue here. Thank god I properly blocked my swatch, so I knew the width would sort out (as each panel I knit originally looked child-sized. No lie, the ladies at my knitting group kept asking me if I was sure I was I knitting the right size haha), but length was an entirely different issue that I forgot. The sleeves, for example, should have blocked at 24″. Mine are 31″. I knit them to the correct size, I just didn’t account for them growing like teenage boys once they got in contact with water. Ugh.

Central Park Hoodie
I solved the sleeve problem by rolling back the cuffs. And look – sleeve cables! Whee! Oh, I knit the sleeves at the same time; partially because I wanted to try something new, and partially because they were boring as hell and I knew the second one would never get knit.

Central Park Hoodie
My other mistake (apart from the growing conundrum) was that I did not bind off the ribbing loosely enough. I tend to bind off very tightly – even using a larger needle doesn’t help much – so this is no surprise. But, oops, see how much longer the back is from the front? Even coaxing the fibers open with a blocking didn’t solve this issue. I ended up tacking down the bottom corners of the binding, to make the hemline look circular and what I hope appears intentional. Ha!

Central Park Hoodie
I mean, it’s sorta cute I guess.

Central Park Hoodie
Due to the ulta-tight binding, the hood doesn’t exactly sit comfortably. As you can see, I am very unhappy about this. OH WELL.

Central Park Hoodie
I would like to add (haha I just typed ass accidentally there, wtf) some closures to the button band. As much as I like the slouchy open look, I’m not an open cardigan kinda gal. I don’t know what to add, though! I think buttons are a no-go, since I can’t add buttonholes at this point (the stitching is very loose and open). I considered a zipper but I don’t think it will look right with the wide band. Snaps? Frogs? Toggles? What would you do?

Central Park Hoodie
I pinned it closed for the pictures. I do like the way it looks when it’s closed!

Central Park Hoodie
Overall, it’s a pretty cardigan. Not exactly what I had in mind, but I’m pleasantly surprised!

Central Park Hoodie
I’m just glad that it’s finally DONE and I can move on with my knitting life!

Central Park Hoodie
See how open the stitching is? Thank you, Ella Rae, for your shitty superwash yarn.

Central Park Hoodie
And here you can see my first attempts at seaming, to the right. It’s not perfect, but it’s not terribly bad either!

Central Park Hoodie
My whole outfit is handmade, btw! That’s my Plaid Clusterfuck top (see, it does look ace with a high-waisted skirt and a cardigan!) and my Denim Ginger (which is hands-down the me-made piece I wear the most – at least once a week!).

Ok, a couple more questions to wrap up an OBNOXIOUSLY long post!
My grandma asked me to knit her a scarf. Yay! She said she wanted something very simple, not too long and of an average width. And she wants it to be an actual scarf, not a cowl or anything like that.
Knitters: What stitch pattern would you suggest? Stockinette is sooo boring, and anyway, the yarn is acrylic (at her request), so I can’t block it into laying flat. I was thinking of a simple lace pattern or something with a lot of texture, like a seed stitch. Any suggestions? I know she said “simple,” but I’m also mostly certain that she said that because she thought anything more would be too much of a hassle. Which, as a knitter, I would rather be engaged and a little challenged!
Non-Knitters: If you asked for a simple scarf and were handed something with a little more design to it (like lace, ribbing, or texturized) – would you be totally butthurt that the person did not take your request into consideration? Or would you pleased to get something fancy and really only requested something simple because you didn’t want to be a bother?

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Completed: The Chuck Sweater

18 Oct

I may not have been sewing much lately, but I *have* been knitting up a storm! Allow me to introduce Chuck, my fourth sweater.

Chuck Sweater
Ok, this picture is actually kind of useless – I just like the way the light is shining all over my face like I’m some kind of Heavenly Being or something lol

But seriously:
Chuck Sweater

This is Chuck, by Andi Satterlund. Also, holy shit I need to stop knitting Andi patterns, or else she is going to think I’m some weird creepy pattern stalker. For real, though, I love her stuff – the shaping is perfect for my body, and I love how everything is knit in one piece. I actually don’t know how to seam up a sweater at this point!

Oh, the skirt is also me-made! It’s pretty old (like, pre-blog days), so I don’t remember what pattern I used. Maybe Vogue 8603? IDEK.
Chuck Sweater
This was knit with absolutely no alterations – although I did need to go down a couple of needle sizes, to a 6. The yarn is good ol’ Cascade 220 (another thing I need to branch away from), it’s a really lovely heathered red with bits of gold & bright blue floating around. I actually bought this yarn in Chicago; Tasha helped me pick it out. I love it, it’s such a nice shade of red!

Chuck Sweater
The pattern itself was super easy to follow, and it knit up SO FAST. Seriously – I started this on 9/20, and ended on Monday. Less than a month! It didn’t hurt that the pattern is almost entirely stockinette, except for the cables in the front. And since it’s knit in the round, that’s just row after row of knit stitches. Really mindless, the perfect kind of project to talk through :)

Chuck Sweater
I’ve had people ask me about how I get so much knitting done – I knit in little pieces every day :) Mostly on my lunch break at work (I get an hour!), and then I also meet up twice a week with other knitters for an hour or so. Which, by the way – if you’re a Nashville knitter (or crochet-er, I don’t judge) and want to join our meet-ups, shoot me an email & I’ll pass on the deets. I love meeting other knitters and talking about YARN. God, I’m such an old lady. Ha.

Chuck Sweater
This is the best picture you get of the back. Sorry, but backs are boring.

Chuck Sweater
I did have a bit of a misstep with the cables – I turned a couple the wrong way and didn’t realize it under several rows later. Ugh!! I knew the messed-up cables would bother me to no end, so I took a deep breath and googled a solution…

That will teach me not to miss-cross my cables
… which involved ripping WAY THE FUCK DOWN and then knitting everything back up. I’m not going to lie, it was pretty terrifying. I was able to fix everything, as you can see, but the end result had some weird loose yarn pulling in the back, and giant gaps in the front. This is pretty common when fixing cables, the only thing you can really do is pull the yarn around and hope it blocks out. Spoiler: most of it did. I did end up stitching a couple of holes closed with yarn – and the inside has a spot where there is still loose yarn – but it looks ok from the outside. You can hardly tell that any cable surgery happened!

Chuck Sweater
The finished sweater is pretty short (at least an inch above my belly button), but it looks great over dresses & high-waisted pants :)

Chuck Sweater
This picture shows the color best. It has so much depth, love it!

So what’s next? I like to always have a project on my needles (it gives me something to look forward to in the middle of the day :D), so I’ve already cast on my next sweater – this will be the Central Park Hoodie.
Never enough sweaters
This yarn is Ella Rae superwash. You should be proud of me, for breaking free of the chains that bind.

Here is my Ravelry page for Chuck, if you’re interested!

Chuck Sweater
I’m so glad it’s finally sweater weather!!

Completed: The Blagatha

4 Sep

Hey look, I finished another sweater! That makes 3 sweaters now – not bad for someone who’s only been knitting 9 months, eh? Instead of a baby, I made sweaters trolololol


I still don’t think I look nearly as gorgeous as Andi + her sweater in the Agatha pattern photos, but hey, I’ll take this!

For those of you who are new, this is my second Agatha sweater – I loved it so much, I wanted a second version. I am calling this one the “Blagatha” because, well, it’s black & saying Blagatha is kind of fun (another word I really enjoy saying is “goo.” I’m sure you are just fascinated with this). Anywhoodoo, this is pretty much the same as my first one – I knit the size small, using heathered black Cascade 220 & size 5 needles. My gauge must have loosened quite a bit since the first sweater because this one barely needed any blocking to get it to fit – I mostly just blocked to even out the stitches. On the mustard sweater, I really had to stretch the sleeves because they were soooo tight. Not with this one! With that in mind, it is also a bit longer than the mustard one. The sleeves are super long. Oh well, you win some, you lose some.

I’m sorry these pictures are so crappy. It’s rainy, grey, overcast, and black just does NOT like being photographed! Meh!

This is my back/side porch, by the way. I promise my entire backyard isn’t a mud pit – just that section. Fine with me! I hate mowing haha.


These are really awful. Here are some flash-photos, so you can see the lacy details!






I just love all the side & waist shaping – it really makes the sweater extra-awesome.

Oh, and of course – it looks good unbuttoned too :)



Blagatha - buttons
Aren’t the buttons cute? I actually found them at Joann’s, although they definitely have a sweet vintage vibe to them

Blagatha - Buttons & Petersham
The button bands are backed with petersham ribbon for stability. I used my sewing machine to sew the button holes on first, then hand stitched everything to the sweater. It took 3 episodes of Arrested Development, whoop.

And for those of you who want to know how I get all this knitting done – I knit on my lunch break at work :) I get a full hour, so it’s perfect for squeezing in some tv or music & just chilling out for a bit. I don’t really knit much at home, home time is sewing time! Unfortunately for me, my sewing time right now is completely wrapped up in draperies. BORING. At least now I can *see* the light at the end of the tunnel!

Oh, I also embroidered this:
Peacock Embroidery
It’s old-ish – I was working on it during that hellish week when everything was packed but we hadn’t actually moved yet. I’m not sure what I want to do with it, though. Maybe a pillow? Eh.

For my next project, I’m taking it easy with a hat. Well, it has cables.
First attempt at knitting cables!
How exciting! I’ve never worked with cables before :D

I’ll be starting another sweater as soon as I can afford the yarn :) Buying all that yarn at once is such a debbie downer, btw – yarn stores should have some kind of yarn layaway where you can set aside all the yarn you want in your preferred dye lot, but you can pick it up a ball at a time. Actually, I’m not really sure how that would work. Someone make it happen!!

Now let’s see some cold fronts so I can start parading this new wool baby around!

Next Knitting Project – Another Sweater!

20 Jul

A few months ago, I mentioned that I was working on a second Agatha sweater – this time in black yarn. After about 2 weeks of knitting, I put it aside to work on something new & fresh, i.e., the Miette. Welp, that’s all done now & I’ve learned that I am unable to chill between knitting projects, so we’re back at the black Agatha. And, wow, is it knitting up WAY faster than the first one!

This is essentially just a dupe of the first Agatha – same yarn, different color. Same gauge, same size, etc etc. I am using Cascade 220 in a heathered black (although it looks super jet black in these pictures, there are subtle streaks of grey irl) with my trusty size 5 needles. I picked it up about 3 weeks ago & I’ve already finished the body. Magical!

This post also explains a little of my absence this past week – I’ve been housesitting since Tuesday, and while I did drag both my machine *and* my serger to the house (!!!), I haven’t gotten much sewing done because the commute is stupid long (I am staying in Hendersonville for those who know Tennessee… and I work in Midtown. Ughh!) and by the time I get back, I really just want to sleep. Ha! At any rate, I’ve been working on a pair of shorts that I’m REALLY excited about, so hopefully those will be finished soon!

Agatha v2.0 - body finished
My friend Amanda took these pictures of me. The background is where I’m housesitting – isn’t it gorgeous?! I made her crop my face out because I wasn’t feeling well & it totally shows.
Also, I had to lighten the pictures a bit since the black did not want to photograph at all.

Agatha v2.0 - body finished

Agatha v2.0 - body finished

Agatha v2.0 - body finished

Ok, this next picture is a really terrible picture of me, but look at the view!
Agatha v2.0 - body finished

I have also just decided that this sweater will be formally named the “blagatha.” That is all.

Completed: the Miette Cardigan

10 Jul

I have a confession to make: this cardigan has actually been finished for about a week now. All I had left to do was to sew on the buttons. It is pretty uncharacteristic of me to put off the final touches of a project – I want it to be finished so I can actually wear it! – but this sweater stumped me for about a week.

I tried a regular ol’ wet block the day I finished it, and let it sit on the back porch so the sun could do it’s thang. Of course, that day had a 20% chance of rain and OF COURSE it decided to rain while I was at work (while we’re in the middle of a drought, no less). GR. When I got home, it was obviously still wet & that’s when I realized that it was quickly growing several sizes too large. I knew that cotton yarn has a tendency to grow, but I figured the wool blend would stop it… nope. So I tried to throw it in the dryer. It was at that point that I learned our (new-to-us) dryer has a busted heating element. That is also when I decided to let Amelia use the sweater as a cat bed while I went over my remaining options.

I’m happy to report that I did manage to fix it, though!


So now let’s talk about the pattern, and my issues with cotton yarn.

This is the Miette pattern by Andi Satterlund. Can I just say that I wish Andi had more sweater patterns, because I would totally knit every single one of them. I love how she lays out her instructions & I think her designs are just so pretty. The sizing is always perfect for my body, too. Anyway, this pattern was pretty awesome – simple, fairly quick (the actual knitting of this sweater only took about a month!), and mostly mindless. I used Cascade Sierra, which is a cotton/wool blend yard (80/20), and I barely pulled into my 4th skein. It feels so soft against my skin! These pictures are kind of deceiving; the navy is much more rich in real life.

I did make a couple of changes to the pattern – I left out a few rows on the sleeves, because I liked the length (and I actually think they are a smidge too long still, eh). I also knitted the sleeves with DPNs instead of my circular needles, since I didn’t want the cotton to stretch out. The ribbing is supposed to be knitted with a smaller needle size, but I didn’t have a smaller size DPN on hand so I just used my regular 8s (same size I used for the rest of the sweater).

I love that it is all knit in one piece! Yay for not having to sew it together!

Sorry that these pictures are so bad – I caught a break in the rain & had to rush! The dress I am wearing is actually lavender, but it looks white here!

Of course, now I notice that the ribbing doesn’t match up at the bottom band. Huh. I guess I didn’t block it enough the first go-round.

The button band is stabilized with petersham ribbon, so it doesn’t gape over curves. I really like this method, although it is a bit time-consuming to sew all that ribbon on. This time around, I tried machine-stitching my button holes on the petersham before sewing it to my sweater – it was MUCH easier than handworking button holes. Me gusta!


So how did I get it to fit, if it apparently stretched all out of shape?


Ha! It was sooo easy (and soooo much better than going to the laundromat lolol)! I just laid it on my table, scrunched up the sides & steamed the shit out of it with my iron. While it was hot, I molded the sweater to be smaller. Then I left it to dry. Easy easy! And it actually worked – yay!

Miette - neckline
The next thing I did was thread some thin elastic (like the kind you use for shirring) through the neckband. I sewed 2 rows of elastic, all the way around, and pulled it very slightly. Hopefully this will keep the neckline from stretching out again.

Miette - detail
The buttons aren’t my favorite but they were the only thing I had on hand that even remotely matched (and that I had enough of!)

Miette - button band

At this point, I got really pissy at how bad my pictures turned out, so I started playing around with effects haha



Anyway, that’s 2 sweaters completed at this point! I feel so proud of myself :)

Completed: A Totally Tubular Simplicity 1803

27 Jun

“Tubular” is such a weird word. I mean in the sense when people use it as a synonym for awesome or rad. I mean… it’s literal definition is something that is tube-shaped. What is so rad about a tube? English language, you mystify me.

You know what is pretty radtubular, though? This Simplicity 1803 pattern, yeah! Now that we have set aside our differences, a beautiful relationship can be allowed to bloom. With this in mind, I would like to introduce you to my latest incarnation of Simplicity 1803, heading straight up Awesomeville.

Simplicity 1803, v2
This print is pretty loud in comparison to what I normally wear, but I like it!

Simplicity 1803, v2
There’s not much to say about the construction here – it’s pretty much the exact same as my Disaster dress, although a bit more simple (no underlining, machine-stitched hems, etc). I did discover that the fabric has a very subtle stretch, which made the dress a bit too big… so I ended up with some pretty giant seam allowances at the zipper. We’re talking 1.5″ seam allowances. Yeesh! On the fip side, the stretch makes the dress quite comfortable.

Simplicity 1803, v2
I remembered to put the pockets in the correct place this time! No princess-seam pockets for this girl!

Simplicity 1803, v2
This fabric is just fabulous… a nice, drapey rayon with a hint of stretch, and a really busy pattern that hides sweat – which is quite important these days, considering we are gearing up for a high of 108* later this week. I KNOW.

Simplicity 1803, v2
I did make the waist tie this go-round, although it blends in pretty well with the busy print. Oh well, I guess it provides a bit of texture?

It was difficult to get pictures of this dress – most of them ended up totally blown out with light. I kept moving around to different areas of shade.

Simplicity 1803, v2
Then I noticed the awesome neighborhood stray cat in my back yard!

Yay kitty!
This cat is so cool! He’s super friendly and VERY vocal, and he loves having his belly rubbed. I know he’s skinny as shit, but I’ve actually tried feeding him before & he refuses it. He looks pretty healthy and is definitely quite social, which gives me reason to believe he’s probably someone’s pet prowling around the neighborhood. I see him about once a week and we are best friends. I have named him Bobby, fyi.

Told you he was friendly ;)

Although he never sits still long enough to get a good picture!

Simplicity 1803, v2
This is the dress front. Again, I went with soft pleats instead of thread gathers on the skirt. I’m a big convert of the soft pleat!

Simplicity 1803, v2
Dress back, lapped zipper.

Simplicity 1803, v2
Orange zipper! Also, check out my massive seam allowances lol

Simplicity 1803, v2
I’m trying it with a belt for work today, I think I like it better than the tie… it breaks up the pattern a bit.

As a side note – I’ve got one sleeve on my Miette sweater now!

Miette Progress
My sleeves is a little shorter than the pattern calls for (I skipped a few rows of stockinette), but I still think it’s a little long for my preferences. I guess that means I have T-Rex arms hahaha.

Miette Progress
This sweater has been really fun to knit, but I’m looking forward to finishing it so I can work on something a little less mindless :)

Simplicity 1803, v2

Also, don’t forget to enter my Shabby Apple Giveaway if you haven’t done so already – it closes this Friday :D

One last thing – I just looked up tubular, and according to dictionary.com: excellent. (Surfing and later general youth slang. Having to do with a tube [wave] that is good to surf in.) : That pizza was totally tubular!

Pointless Knitting Projects

23 May

Hey! We haven’t discussed knitting in a while, huh? I must admit, after spending 3 months knitting up my Agatha sweater, I thought it was time to take it easy for a few weeks. Also, my yarn budget was shot. Boo! I have been knitting in the time since – just easy projects, with yarn lifted straight from my tiny stash.

Let’s take a little lurk, shall we?

Knitted U-Lock Cozy
First was the Bicycle U-Lock Cozy. WHY. I DON’T KNOW. It was really easy & mindless – just very short rows of garter stitch, yeah! And it matches my bike :)

coordinated cozy
Then I knitted another coffee cozy, because apparently I just get off from coordinating everything.

THEN the Cozy Madness really reared it’s ugly head and I found myself knitting this…
Poodle Toilet Paper Cozy
That would be a Poodle Toilet Paper Cozy, knitted in Harvest Gold (acrylic, of course). What? Too much?

I think it’s safe to say that I should probably stop knitting cozies, for the love of everything that is pure & holy (and non-knitted)in the world.

In all seriousness, though, I did start two projects that are actual sweaters, knitted up in lovely yarns.

agatha - version 2
The first is my second Agatha cardigan – sorry for the Instagram. Also this picture was taken like 2 weeks ago & I’m much farther along at this point. But see my little sheeeeeep stitch markers! Ack so cute! Anyway, this is getting knitted up in another Cascade 220 – a beautiful jet black smudged with a soft gray. I think it will look really great with all the lacework. I’m not really pushing this one to get knitted up too fast, since it’s wool which is kind of deadly to wear during a Tennessee summer.

I also started my Miette last night, in a much more wearable cotton/wool blend:
Miette Gauge Swatch
I had to lighten the picture a lot to get anything to show (the yarn is a deep navy), but look! I got gauge on the first swatch woohoo!

Miette Gauge Swatch
And the other way!

I am really excited to knit up this sweater :D The mindless stockinette will be a nice change from all that crazy Agatha lace. I’m going on vacation this weekend – starting with a very long car ride – and I am looking forward to working on this.

Do any of y’all ever knit (or crochet!) totally pointless projects like cozies? Or am I alone in my cozy fascination? What is the ugliest thing you have ever made with yarn?

In the meantime, I’ve dedicated all my sewing time this week to endless piles of mending & refitting. I’ve actually accomplished quite a bit, and feeling very good about myself! Oh, and I’m also sewing up Landon’s Christmas present. You know, the one from Christmas that was like 6 months ago. I’m a shitty girlfriend.

Me Made May – Count Me In!

23 Apr

So… Me Made May.

I didn’t originally intend on signing up for this endeavor, mostly because it’s not really a huge challenge for me – I wear everything I make, very regularly. I’m not saying this to make anyone feel bad who does find this sort of thing a challenge, but rather to point out that it seemed kind of sneaky to sign up for something that I can coast along on and call it a “challenge,” you know?

At any rate, regardless of how much I do wear my handmade clothing – I wear them the same way, every time. No mixing up! How boring is that? Plus, I love lurking everyone’s handmade creations long after the “big reveal” – seeing how they are worn on a day-to-day basis. So, with that in mind…

‘I, Lauren of LLADYBIRD, sign up as a participant of Me-Made-May ’12. I endeavour to wear at least one (preferably two!) handmade item each day for the duration of May 2012.’

I would love to force myself to wear 2 handmade items every day, but most of my summer (that would be May) clothes are dresses… so the majority of my outfits will consist of one item anyway (other than shoes, but I’m not awesome enough to make my own shoes… yet.). So let’s just put that little “preferably” in there and call it a day, ok?

Yay! I’m so excited! Also, it’s not too late to join in, if you haven’t done so already :)

Now let’s talk about the Bombshell.

I have done a LOT of work on this dress over the past week, and I’m feeling pretty good about it! Here are some photogs of my current progress:

Bombshell dress progress
I cut out my pattern pieces, and underlined the bodice with muslin. That took FOREVER! I actually watched an entire episode of LOST during this part, heehee

Bombshell dress progress
Pieced the entire bodice together – complete with stay stitching, clipping, notching, and lots and lots of pressing. Oh, and twill tape at the top of the cups, for a nice body-hugging curve.

Bombshell dress progress
I made molded cups to give the bust some shape – mine are made with cotton batting, but man I wish I had needlepunch, because it just looks so nice & shapely. Anyway, I know this picture doesn’t look too different from the one above, but there is actually a lot of hand stitching here.

Bombshell dress progress
So then we have a bodice!

Bombshell dress progress
And then I got all excited & started putting the skirt together. I haven’t attached the bodice yet – I have a few more seam finishes I need to complete – so this is just pinned, but doesn’t it look nice?

I just found out that I have a wedding to attend in a little less than 2 weeks, so I’m going to try to bust ass & get this dress done so I can wear it! New deadline, yeah!

In other news, I got my hair did last Thursday!
new hair! :D
They re-dyed my hair a lighter brown (which, fuck yeah, now I don’t have to Photoshop my roots anymore) and gave me these sweet highlights around my face. I love it and I feel like a total babe with babe hair.

next knitting project - u-lock cozy
And here’s my next knitting project – a U-lock Cozy (told you, I can never have enough cozies!). Totally easy & mindless, which is just what I need after frying my brain on that sweater.

Speaking of my sweater, I have worn it every day since finishing last Tuesday – we are going through a bit of a cold snap, which is great for me! :) But now I’m all worried about it getting stinky- so knitters, how frequently do you wash your hand knit wool garments? And do you wash in cold or lukewarm water? Also, do I need to reblock every time I wash? (please say no, I hate blocking haha) Inquiring minds need to know!

Complete: My First Sweater!

18 Apr

Fair warning: There are a lot of pictures in this post. Can you blame me? I’m so proud of my little wool baby!


I guess there’s not much more to say, since I’ve documented most of the progress here on the ol’ blog. So just a recap, for anyone who is new -
The pattern is the Agatha Cardigan by Andi Satterlund. I knit a size Small with no alterations – for the record, my bust/waist is 36/26.5 and the negative ease in this sweater fits perfectly. I did have to size down my needles to a 5 to get gauge. The yarn is Cascade 220, a worsted weight, and I used about 3 1/2 skeins.



This sweater is knit top-down, so there wasn’t any seaming to deal with when I finished. I did have to knit the sleeves in the round, which was an interesting learning experience (just don’t look at all the little mistakes I made hahaha). I blocked the shit out of it (especially the sleeves) and it definitely made a huge difference in the fit. As far as I’m concerned, the fit is perfect! Yay!


The only change I made was to stabilize the back of the button bands with petersham ribbon. This wasn’t called for in the pattern, but those bands are stretchy as hell & I didn’t want them to get all stretched out over time (especially since I rarely wear my cardigans un-buttoned). I didn’t follow any specific instructions for this, just hand-sewed the petersham down with teeny tiny stitches & sewed around the button holes to keep it from unraveling. I also used much smaller buttons – the pattern calls for 3/4″, but I could only squeeze 1/2″ buttons in those things.



I learned a LOT making this sweater! Short rows, fairly intricate lace work, knitting in the round with double-pointed needles, reading a pattern, picking up stitches, different ways to cast on… I can’t even remember all of it ahah. One thing I should mention is that this sweater doesn’t have any cables – it kind of looks like it does, but that’s just lace work & ribbing. I do want to learn how to do cables, though! They look like fun!



Extra extra special thanks to both Mika (for knitting along with me & answering all my frantic questions!) and Sarah (for teaching me how to knit in the first place!). I couldn’t have done it without these two fine ladies!


You know what’s really neat? According to my Ravelry notes (psst! Add me if you wanna!), I started this sweater on 1/17… and ended on 4/17. So it took me exactly 3 months! I don’t think that’s too bad, considering I mostly knitted for an hour a day on my lunch break :)




Agatha - front

Agatha - button band
Here’s the petersham! I got a pretty good match, color-wise :) I know traditionally, the ribbon goes on top of the button band, but I liked the way the ribbing looked so I sewed it to the back.

Agatha -  button band

Agatha - button holes
The button holes are kind of terrible looking, sorry, but I did the best I could. They look good from the front, though!

Agatha - buttons!

Agatha - back

Agatha - side decreases
Side decreases

Agatha - lower arm shaping
Lower arm shaping

Whew! I think that’s enough knitting excitement for one day! I wish I could tell y’all that I was gearing up to tackle another big knitting project, but unfortunately I had to spend my knitting budget at the pharmacy this month (that stupid cough! ARGH.) :( So maybe next month! I really want to knit the Miette. Andi has the best patterns, srsly. Love her stuff.

Thanks for letting me indulge, you guys!




9 Apr

Ladies (and gentlemen?), we have two sleeves!

Yeah sleeves!
I am so pleased with myself, you have no idea.

Agatha sleeves

Agatha - Second sleeve!
I had to crop my head out of this one because I was making a total derp face, but check out those neat decreases at the bust!

Agatha sleeves
What do we think? Excited?

Agatha sleeves

Now all that’s left is the ribbing around the neckline & the button bands. Also, I need to find some buttons… I want wooden buttons, but that would involve driving to the fabric store. We’ll see.

The second sleeves went in a LOT faster than the first one! I guess I had plenty of practice :) It is still a little tight, so my next sweater will probably need to go up a needle size with those DPNs. In the meantime, I plan to block this thing very aggressively & hopefully that’ll help!

In the meantime, I’ve been working on the muslin for my Bombshell/birthday dress… an experience which totally sucks, by the way.

Bombshell muslin
The cup on the right is the pattern with no modifications… the cup on the left is the size it should be – and that’s still a little skimpy, as it barely covers my bra. I don’t plan on wearing a bra with this dress but I wanted to at least get demi-bra-coverage, you know?
Anyway, the muslin totally sucks and I will need to work on it some more… the coverage is great, but as you can see the center bust line skews up & the top piece is way too high. Also, my grainlines are off. Oh, boobs. Anyone else have full bust modifications they have made to this pattern that they would like to share?

In other news, I seem to have lost my voice over the weekend. I am currently alternating between sounding like a man & just sounding straight-up pathetic. If anyone finds where I may have misplaced it, do let me know.


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