Knitting as distraction

In an effort not to think about the state of the world, and of the UK in particular, I have been trying to distract myself with some knitting.  I finished knitting the sleeves of the little silk blend cardigan I am making for Leah (for details see this post).  And I have seamed the shoulders and side seams.  I think that this yarn (Madelinetosh Pashmina) makes very nice, easy seams.


I sewed this up in no time using that old basic, the mattress stitch.  You can see here that the skeins are not perfectly matched.  I used one skein for the back of the sweater, another for both fronts, and a third for the sleeves.  The fronts don’t quite match with the back, but in real life it is not as apparent as in these photos.  I think the effect will be negligible in the finished garment.  One of the nice features of this sweater is the curved textured panels on the waistband and sleeve cuffs.  Below is a closer shot of the seam at the lower edge. (The curved textured panel looks even more striking on the sleeves; you’ll have to take my word for it right now.)


I now have to pick up and knit the button bands, knit the neckline edging, sew in the sleeves, sew on the buttons and back the button bands with ribbon.  Fiddly stuff.  The sweater was going very fast, but it has slowed down a bit while I dither over a couple of internal debates about the finishing.  In the pattern (Amy Herzog’s Squared Cardigan), the neckline is finished with a rolled edge, and then the button bands are picked up and knit. If you have read my grumbly post, Annoying things, than you would know that I dislike rolled edges.  So, I am thinking of picking up and knitting the button bands, and then using an I-cord bind-off around the entire neck edge (including the button bands).  I think this will be neater.  Opinions, anyone?  I also debated for a week about whether to wet block the pieces before seaming and finishing.  I finally got tired of the debate and forged ahead (sans blocking).

I have cast-on a new project, partly because fiddly stuff should be interspersed with non-fiddly stuff, and partly in order to cheer myself up.  I will write about this project in a separate post, but here is a peek at the yoke:


This sweater is also knit in Madelinetosh, this time in Vintage, and shows off two gorgeous colourways: Turquoise and Pecan Hull.  See how pretty they look together:


The animal world must be trying to cheer me up.  Though neither of us are bird watchers, this week Doug and I noticed a pretty bird in the garden that we had never seen before:


Does anyone recognize it?  It seems he’s decided to be a regular.  He’s outside again as I write this, chomping on worms.

I am flying to Johannesburg on the weekend (two very long flights make for some good knitting time!).  Both of these projects are kind of fiddly for airplane knitting, so I’m trying to come up with another project to take with me.  If I do cast on something else, I will have – gasp!- three WIPS on the go.  Monogamy (of the knitting variety, of course) be damned!

So, is this distracting me from the dismal news?  No, I am afraid it isn’t.  Nonetheless, I shall carry on knitting.  Maybe a change of scenery will help.

19 thoughts on “Knitting as distraction

  1. Love the turquoise and pecan color combo. I must come up with something using those two together. The bird looks like a flicker.

  2. It’s a green woodpecker:

    Sorry to hear about the Brexit vote. What a mess for the UK and the world! I hope the UK is able to chart a good path through this. We have our own political concerns in the US right now.

    I am not averse to a rolled edge, and I think it looks good with that squared neck; however, I think an I-cord edge would also look nice.

  3. The rolled edge resembles applied I-cord so I think it will look nice with the I-cord and you will have avoided the “sloppy/unfinished” edge. Everyone is happy!

    Good luck finding a travel project. I’m looking for one myself for a long flight but am hesitant to subject my needles to possible confiscation at TSA. I usually go with a crochet project but am at a loss for that too. I’ve done the ones I’ve wanted to do…

    • Hi Arlene, when I take knitting on the plane, I always use a cheap needle just in case it gets confiscated. I put an extra needle (of better quality) in my checked luggage, so even if I have to give up the needle for the flight, I can still knit when I get there. If you try this, don’t forget to have a landline in place when you get to the airport; it will save your stitches in the negative scenario. Also, have a good book with you so you can be happy in either case!

  4. Great knitting and beautiful yarn. Your bird is definitely a green woodpecker, by the way. They love to noodle around on the grass fishing out worms, especially after the rain 😀

  5. The bird is a Gröngöling here in Sweden 😀 Grön = green
    Rolled edge dosen’t seem to fit that yarn nor the modell – I vote for i-cord.
    Hope your trip and travellknitting all goes well.

    • See, everyone thinks it’s green, but it’s red! 🙂 I notice on your blog that you have started the lovely Houlland hap from Kate’s new book. That would make good airplane knitting! Such a lovely blue too!

      • Thank you, that blueyarn is my own dyeing. The knitting Houlland is really fun – recommended!
        Here in Sweden we have, as far as I know, four kinds of woodpeckers. The green one in your garden lives in my area too, here named Gröngöling, then from time to time we are visited by one who looks the same but in a black coat with the red barret a Spillkråka. The other two are black and white with red top as well named Stor hackspett = large woodpecker and Liten hackspett = small woo dpecker. End of bird talk 😀

  6. I don’t mind a rolled edge, but I think an icord looks very nice, too. And I love Madeleine Tosh yarns, how nice for you to make two projects in a row out of them. 🙂 and I love all the blues and turquoise colors – yummy.

    The political situation the world over is absolutely crazed. I think we should all be sure to vote, then put our heads down and knit. Madame de Farge comes to mind.

      • lol I don’t know why you didn’t – I think that soon all of England and perhaps the US will be filled with Madame de Farges as we try to ignore that which we can not change. I so hope that our election comes out properly, but I am not at all certain. I never thought we would be where we are today. And I do hope that the UK weathers this storm and figures out a good way to continue.

  7. I should have sent you my reverse cable rib wrap WIP (Kidsilk Haze in candy girl) for your flight! How long is your flight to Johannesburg? Diana’s was 16 hours from JFK.

    • I’ve already spent one flight to Johannesburg on that wrap; that’s enough! Can’t wait to see yours in Candy Girl! My flight won’t be quite as long, about 12 hours I think. And your Diana must be catching a second flight on to Madagascar; that’s quite a journey. You must be very proud of her – her time in the Peace Corps will impact many lives, including her own.

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