This and that

This post is a bit of this and that.

The Paid in Full Tank, or “How I learned to stop worrying and love the fit”

Some of you will remember this post in which I worried that I had cast on the wrong size for my Paid in Full tank.  The tank, a lovely work-appropriate wool and silk blend with a pretty lace panel up the front and back, is a nice classic piece and one which will fill a gap in my wardrobe.  I was choosing between two sizes – a 38.5″ or a 44″.  I am somewhere in the middle, and chose to go with the larger size.  After I had knit about 8 inches, I tried it on and it really felt big to me.  It didn’t look too bad, but it definitely felt really big.  In that post I asked the question: add a few more waist decreases and keep going, or rip it out and start again with the smaller size?  What I actually did was something else altogether:

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I reasoned that I should just start again, WITHOUT RIPPING, in the smaller size, and then I would have two pieces which I could try on and compare.  In the photo, you can see both pieces, knit in the round, bottom-up.  The piece on the top is the new one, so you can see that I have knit farther along than I had on the first one.  In my previous post, I indicated that my choice had been between 3.5″ of negative ease or 2″ of positive ease.  As I was agonising over what to do, I re-measured myself and realised that my choice was actually between 3″ of negative ease or 2.5″ of positive ease.  I think had I been aware of this from the start, it might have pushed me more towards knitting the 38.5 and relying on blocking and the stretchiness of the lace panel to make it fit.

I did do something sneaky, however, which is that I added 8 stitches to the 38.5″. That is,  I put an extra two stitches into each side of front and back – added between the side marker and the decrease marker).  This should hopefully lead to a pretty nice fit.

Now, here is the stupid part: I recently tried on the new piece and found myself thinking “Maybe it is just a bit too tight.”  UGH!  So I asked Doug, “What do you think?  What should I do?”  And Doug responded “Why not finish them both and have two tanks in different sizes?”  DOUBLE UGH! (Note to self: this is like asking “Does my butt look big in this?  Don’t ask your husband these types of questions!)  I am pretty sure that I tried it on at a bad time and that my body image was set on negative that day (sort of like every day in which you go bra shopping)  and that everything is fine and I should just calm down and trust myself.  I have decided to take a page from Peter Sellers and learn to stop worrying and love the fit.

In any case while I was debating whether to continue with the smaller size or go back to the larger size, I realised that I needed to cast on something new.   (It is the knitting equivalent of retail therapy.)  And this leads us to:

Highland Rogue, or “How to Insert some Lovely Orange into a Grey and Hectic Week”

On February 21st, I received a newsletter from Kate Davies showing her new cowl pattern Highland Rogue:

highland rogue

© Kate Davies Designs

Within minutes of opening that newsletter, I ordered the six skeins of Buachaille in Highland Coo needed to make the cowl.  I very rarely impulse buy any more (just please don’t ask Doug to corroborate this statement).  This was a rare case of see it/buy it.  Nevertheless, it has been sitting in a bag for 7 months waiting for me to get around to it.  On Monday, I cast it on.

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I have mostly been knitting it in the evening when the light is dim, and in that light I wonder why I ordered this orange – it seems to have a lot of brown in it.  Yesterday, I photographed it in mid-day, and it practically glows.  In the sunlight, it is a fantastic orange: rich and earthy.

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I also adore the pattern and how it creates such lovely, squishy texture.  (The natural coloured yarn at the edge is temporary; it is a provisional cast on.)  I am considering not joining this in the round and instead making a scarf.  What do you think?

A friend comes to visit, or “How to get Six Pieces of Hand-knitted Goodness into One Photo”

Last weekend, our friend Julie came to visit from Geneva.  It turned out to be much colder here than anticipated and Julie asked if she could borrow some knitwear.  (“I am not sure, Julie; we have so few pieces of knitwear in this house….”)  As we left the house, I realised that between Julie and myself, we were wearing 6 items which I had hand-knit, so I asked Doug to snap a photo.  (This is not the best photo of either of us, but is by far the best of the few snaps Doug took, mostly because Julie and I couldn’t stop making stupid faces at each other.)

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This photo reinforces why I love hand-knitting and why slow fashion matters. These items will stick around and be worn for years. I am wearing my Form pullover, my Cool Boots Shawl, and my Skelter hat.  By the way, given the discussion above regarding fit, you may enjoy my first, completely ridiculous, attempt at the Skelter hat, which you can see here.  Julie is wearing my Ocean Waters pullover, Doug’s Business Class Cowl, and my Peerie Flooers Hat.  (That last linked post was written in 2011 which shows how long I have been writing this blog.)  Here is a shot of Julie where you can see the pullover better:

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What is better than wearing multiple hand-knits?  A gorgeous sunshine-filled autumn day to wear them in!  And that is what I have today.  So, I will say good-bye and grab my hiking boots!

15 thoughts on “This and that

  1. Slow Fashion Matters – I love that – never heard it before! And husbands …. I don’t think mine notices what I am knitting when I sit next to him, colourwise or stylewise – he would be rubbish at giving an opinion so I don’t ask, I might just rant and decide on things myself.

  2. This blog post started ghastly and ended on a happy note. I’m glad you found some orange yarn to play with to take your mind off the gray garment and its fit. Indecision is such a frustrating status to linger on. Far better to just knit something else for a while!

    • I would say more frustrating than ghastly. The only real problem was my indeciveness, and the fact that I didn’t try either piece on enough while knitting. On the other hand, I did something really stupid in real life last month (cringe!) and wished that I could just rip it out and start over, like in knitting. If it means more knitting, it can’t be all bad. But yes, some pretty orange yarn will fix what ails you!

  3. Still love the cool boots shawl. It comes into my mind every so often but I don’t have the right yarn and I’m not supposed to be buying any… and I have about five projects on the go at the moment. I’d never have the patience to start, let alone make, something in two sizes. Finally the highland coo looks great. It is my least favorite buachaille colour but you’ve made me think I need to look at it again.

    Helen

    ps I’ve been humming Carey all week.

    • Ha, for me it’s Free Man in Paris. I’ve been singing it all week. I would also say that Highland Coo is one of my least favorite Buachaille colours, but for some reason this pattern got to me and I’m enjoying it. (It may be the coat Kate is wearing in the pattern photos!)

  4. I have really enjoyed this canter through your past knits – some favourites in there, particularly the cool boots shawl. I have made a couple of things with Buachaille – what a lovely yarn it is. The cowl will be truly stunning. Have you tried Kate’s Milarrochy Tweed yet – that looks delicious too.

    • I have a sweater’s worth of Buchaille in dark grey (can’t remember the colour name – Squall??) just waiting for a project. It is so lovely. I haven’t tried the Milarrochy Tweed yet but I am hopeful it will fill the gap left by the discontinued Rowan Fine Tweed. I especially love the bright blue shade Kate has been using a lot lately.

  5. Thanks for joining my list of readers, as it has enabled me to discover your blog. I already laughed on this first post, so this is a great sign. I love your sense of humor and your great smile. And I totally sympathize, I am constantly debating between sizes too. And seem to err often on the side of too big (sigh). Looking forward to reading more.

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