Baby booties

Whenever a new baby is born in our family or circle of friends, my mom knits something for the new arrival. Sometimes it’s a tiny sweater or a hat, but usually it’s a pair of baby booties.

A couple of my friends had a baby boy earlier this summer, so I thought I would continue the tradition.

Little boy booties

(Christine’s stay-on baby booties, with a few modifications: a few extra stitches and rows since it won’t be cold enough for the recipient to need these for a few months yet, and I want them to still fit by then, and 2×2 twisted rib cuffs instead of rolled ones because I like them better; here are mine on ravelry.)

Little boy booties closer

Baby things make wonderful projects because they’re so small that they seem to fly right off the needles. Especially in the summer, when you really don’t want a half-finished sweater or blanket sitting on your lap as you knit, working on a pair of booties is great. Plus, they’re just so cute!

Little boy booties closest

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Another sweater on the needles

Way back in March, I happened across the pattern for Halliard, by Kate Gilbert, in the pages of the Twist Collective (an on-line knitting magazine/cooperative that I love). As soon as I saw it I knew I had to knit it. It’s really just a very lovely sweater.

But the pattern calls for an Aran-weight yarn, which would result in a very thick and warm sweater. I prefer my sweaters to be a bit lighter than what I would get from an Aran-weight yarn, so I decided to try knitting it in a sport-weight instead:

Spring Sage

That’s Imperial Stock Ranch Tracie, in Spring Sage. The pattern calls for US size 9 needles, but of course with a different weight yarn, I had to use different needles – US size 2s! Quite a change. In order to get the sizing and proportions right, I’ve been following the instructions for size 39″ (the size I actually want the sweater to be), and the instructions for size 51″ (the size I’d have to knit, given my gauge, to get a 39″ sweater), as well as improvising, measuring, and trying-on (those last two items being the only fool-proof way to knit a sweater that actually fits). So far it’s going surprisingly well!

Halliard-in-progress

Hopefully I’ll have a finished sweater before it’s cold enough to need one again next fall.

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Green sweater – done!

The green sweater is finally finished! It only took two years and two months from start to finish, but it was worth it. Sometimes my projects seem to need a break (or two, or three…) before I can get them done.

Green sweater front

I ended up modifying this pattern (Jennifer Lang’s Victoria Yoke Pullover) a bit; the original has sleeves that end just above the elbow, but I wanted long sleeves on this one (to date, most of my knitted sweaters have featured 3/4 length sleeves – mostly due to impatience on my part, but sometimes 3/4 sleeves just aren’t warm enough).

Green sweater back

Overall, this was an enjoyable sweater to knit; that’s an especially good thing, because due to measuring error(s), I knit the body at least 2.5 times, and the right sleeve twice (luckily the sleeves are the same, so the left sleeve worked out on the first try). But all’s well that ends well, right?

Green sweater shoulder detail

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February lady sweater – done!

Feb lady sweater front

I love how this sweater came out! Blocking it really added a lot of length (about 6 inches, in fact), and evened out the lace pattern nicely.

Feb lady sweater back

Finished just in time for spring (if not for February).

Feb lady sweater side

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February lady sweater

My parents gave me some lovely Fleece Artist Blue Face Leicester DK for Christmas:

Mahogany

(That’s in the colorway “Mahogany” in case you’re curious.)

So I decided to jumped on the band-wagon and knit pamela wynne’s February Lady Sweater. (Rav link to my version!) This is a very popular pattern, much knitted and loved. And I can see why: in addition to being free (always a plus), it’s well-written and results in a beautiful, wearable sweater. As with all of my favorite patterns, there was enough variation in the knitting to keep me interested, but not so much that I got frustrated and put it down. The main pattern is a simple lace repeat,

Gull lace pattern

the Gull Lace Pattern, that’s somewhat addicting to work. Once you finish one row, you want to work the next one just to see the lace continue.

My sweater is blocking as I type; the last step is to go find some buttons and sew them on. With any luck I’ll be wearing it next week!

Feb lady sweater blocking

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Green sweater

Lately, when I reach for a knitting project, I inevitably pick up a sweater-in-progress. I have lots of works-in-progress, of course, because starting a new project is much more exciting than finishing an old one, and those projects represent a wide variety of objects-to-be. Some are mittens, some are hats, some are blankets, some are loch ness monsters (it’s true!), and some are sweaters.

Green sweater in progress

This is Jennifer Lang’s Victoria Yoke Pullover (here’s my version on ravelry). This one’s been on the needles for a while now… in fact, I couldn’t remember off the top of my head when exactly I started it, but according to my records: January 2009! Yikes. And, just as when I knitted Liesl, apparently I had some gauge issues because the first time around, this sweater was huge. Really big. So I ripped it back and, as you can see, the size issue has been remedied. Now I’ve just got to finish the sleeves and give it a good blocking. Piece of cake, right?

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Christmas mittens – done

Here they are! (Here they are on ravelry.) I hope the recipient enjoys them.

Spiced poppy mittens done

Spiced poppy mittens palm

Happy holidays and happy knitting, everyone!

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