Thursday, December 30, 2004

Now that Christmas is over, it is sooo nice to be able to work on other projects. This has re-energized my knitting a bit. Even going back to the unfinished Christmas gift is no longer a drag.

Ragna sweater for brother
I've been giving more thought to what yarn I could use for this sweater. I'm leaning towards a rich red/burgundy/wine kind of colour. I think he'd really like that. And I want to use a yarn with a significant percentage of natural fibre. So far, I've thought of two possibilities. One is that I have a two-pound cone of sportweight burgundy wool that I'm currently using to do my Elizabeth of York vest. If doubling or tripling the yarn would give me the right gauge, and if I have enough left over after the vest is done, it would work well. The wool is coarse, but I'm sure Mark would wear the sweater over a T-shirt, so that's not such a big deal. Plus, the wool might really soften up after a good dip in Eucalan. Another possibility is to go back to the eBay seller that I got my 2.2lb cone of alpaca from and see if I can pick up another cone in the colour I'm looking for. Of course, I'd have to first see if I can get gauge from the alpaca. Tripling or quadrupling the strands should work. Either way, though, lots of swatching is in order first.
United Way cardigan
Rob got back to me today after talking with his wife. His wife has very specific requirements for this project! :) Which I don't mind in the slightest, of course. She wants an argyle cardigan in navy, white and red, in a 12-month size. So now it's time for research! I've never done anything argyle - I know it's a diamond pattern with criss-crossed lines overtop (or something like that, anyway), but that's about it. I'll have to look up what traditional adult argyle sweaters look like and then design a pattern for a baby size. I even get to choose what gauge of yarn I want! This will be neat.
Secret Garden for niece
I think I've changed my mind. I don't think I'm going to finish this project right now. We'll get her a bunch of cool books instead and I will set this aside, perhaps for her next birthday. I just really don't think it's going to fit her well, and what with so many other projects I want to get to, it seems silly to complete it when I know I'm going to have to re-do it. But I definitely want to do this eventually - the yarn suits the pattern bee-yew-tifully and the finished product will be gorgeous.
Stornaway sweater for BIL (cream)
I started getting back to this one last night - work continues on sleeve #2. I've only got about 10 more rows to go before the underarm gusset is done and the sleeve tapering can begin.
Henry VII sweater for DH
I've been minorly fretting about this for a while. I'm currently making this sweater out of acrylic. And since I've started to work more and more with natural fibres, I've been thinking that using acrylic for such an incredible sweater is a dumb idea. Am I becoming a yarn snob? Perhaps. At least for better-than-casual adult pieces - I'm still very gung-ho on acrylic for baby things and afghans. But for this sweater, I've been thinking that the acrylic will end up looking cheap. The thought also occurred to me yesterday that I would really like to use the heavenly alpaca that my MIL gave me for something more interesting and stunning than the Stacy's Sweater pattern my MIL suggested. So last night I thought, why not kill two birds with one stone and see if the alpaca yarn will work with the Henry VII pattern? The problem with that idea is that the alpaca is sportweight, and the Henry VII pattern calls for worsted weight. So last night I started a swatch with the alpaca doubled. Six rows in I realised the swatch was going to be way too huge. So now, just for the heck of it, I'm doing a swatch with the alpaca in single strands. It will probably end up too small but hey, you never know until you try.

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