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This is the second time I have worn my new skirt. This was my outfit to my sister’s graduation. I got quite a few compliments and was very happy when I was able to say that I made both the skirt AND the sweater. Hee hee, I am such a sucker for a compliment but too embarrassed and self conscious to fish for them. That is probably why I blog.

Fabric: Flat Folds from M&L
Inspiration: McCall’s M5053 Skirt
New Tech: This was my first time making a sewn article of clothing for a real person, so all tech was new tech
Cost: Approximately $10.00
Enjoyment Factor:
9

The Good:

  • This was my first skirt ever. It was one of the three projects I am doing for my sewing class. I think it came out pretty good construction wise
  • The fabric was extremely inexpensive since I got it from the flat folds at my favorite fabric store M&L. The flat folds are the lower quality fabric areas of the store. It does not mean bad quality, but just not the heirloom quality you use for quilting. There is an area for those fabrics and they are still less expensive than the quilt stores. If you are ever in So Cal and just want to get tons of fabric, go to M&L. It is not a pretty store, but you definitely get a HUGE selection.
  • This skirt cost me about $8 bucks in fabric, the rest was the zipper and thread
  • I put in my first zipper, which should allow me to use my zipper foot with confidence for a knitting bag I want to make
  • It matches my new Apricot Jacket!!!

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The Bad:

  • The fit on the skirt is a little big. I always second guess my body measurements, with knitting I only have the deal with the bust. With this skirt I had to measure my hips and waist for the first time. Dear God!! This is my womanly self conscious area so I normally deal with the lower body with the adage “ignorance is bliss”. Well, I made the right size but just thought it might be too big because I kinda wrapped it around my body with clothes on it class. So I opened the yoke a little more. I should have left it as it would have fit better.
  • My bottom hem is a little wonky because it was a huge curved surface with a “neat hem” meaning it was rolled twice. My teacher gave me a technique to make it easier, but even then it took forever.
  • I had to hand stitch the yoke facing. It looks good, but it took the entire viewing of “Blood Diamond” to finish it.

The Ugly:

  • Nothing on the outside, but man the inside finishing is not all that great. My zigzag stitches for the clean edges is quite a bit away from the edge, so it will fray a little with washing.

Sewing Time: 12 hours – Not hard, but I only did it in class and had to learn all sorts of new techiques.

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I am in love with this sweater. I think it will be getting a lot of use in it’s lifetime as the yarn is soft and the sweater fits pretty well. The sleeves…OH the SLEEVES! I love them. They definitely make the sweater. Rebecca does have good details added to their sweaters, even if the instructions are impossible to decipher.

 

Yarn: GGH Samoa
Inspiration: Rebecca 27 Apricot Jacket
Needles:
Size 7
Yardage: 11 balls
Modifications: Shortened sleeves and overall length of pieces by 5cm. No buttons, used hook and eye instead as the closure
Enjoyment Factor:8

 

  • The Good:
    • This project only cost $25 bucks and I knit from my Stash!! I bought this yarn from the Yarn Lady Sale this year so it hasn’t been in there long, but it was still stash
    • The details on this sweater are wonderful. I was petting myself the entire day on the first wear
    • I am in love with the sleeves. They are definitely my favorite part of the sweater, especially where it comes together at the seams, just lovely

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  • The Bad:
    • Oh my GOSH!!! this pattern sucks! If it had not been for those who came before me I would have surely given up on this stupid pattern a long time ago.
    • I hate pattern that tell you to mirror the other side when making a right or left side. I cannot envision what they are asking even if it is as clear as day. I messed up on a stupid ribbing section because it had a seaming side. It pissed me off to have to reknit that portion. Just tell me what you want from me damn it.
    • Beside the fact that I have never had any intention of wearing this sweater completely closed, as though that were possible to begin with (read: chub is taking over my body), I could not bring myself to do the crochet for the buttons. Instead I replaced the button closures with some hook and eyes which work well for me, I think.
    • The seaming on the sleeves was murder. I love raglan sleeves, set-in’s suck. My seam was a little bulky but after 3 tries I said to hell with it, this is as good as it gets.

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  • The Ugly:
    • Cotton yarn is so unforgiving. I points out every flaw in your knitting. I couldn’t get away with even the slightest tension difference. And you think you can block that out?? Forget it.
    • I am not that in love with the meeting of the edges on the collar portion of the sweater. I had every intention of grafting these together but after my frustration with the sleeve, the amount of yarn tails, and wanting to get it done with the minimum of fuss, I got lazy, bound off the stitches and mattress stitched it together. Not horrible, but definitely not what it could have been.
    • It is not ugly now, but the back had this HUGE glaring ugly stitch that kept gnawing at me as I continued on with the sleeves and fronts. I ended up ripping it out for a variety of reason, but that was one of the major ones.
  • Knit Time: January 20 – March 26

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“What’s this?”, Keegan asks himself sniffing eagerly at the new found toy

 

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Whatever it is, it sure is fun..

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“Hey Keegan stop playing with that”, I say. He looks at me with a sideways glance

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And this is the response I get.

MAN! I love this kitty but he sure is a pain in the ass sometimes 🙂

BTW, I finished the seaming of the Apricot sweater but it needs some closures and some other finishing touches. In the meantime, I have been so tired of looking at it that I started and finished another project. Will share some pictures of that project with you tomorrow.

 

THANK GOODNESS IT’S THURSDAY!!! One….more….day…..

What I did on Wednesday night…

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What I did Friday night…

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What I hope to be doing on Saturday…

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Wish me Luck!

Apricot Jacket: The jacket is making lot of progress both forward and backward this week. I finished the back and one sleeve so far. I love the sleeve as I was pretty consistent with the stitches and it went pretty quickly as I was truly in tune with the pattern.

I learned a few things on this sleeve:

  1. Learned a new increase as I wanted them to be a little more discrete then the M1 and Bar increases. So I executed the Lifted or Raised increase. I think it looks pretty darn good. Actually it looks so good I can’t really see it so that is even better
  2. I have hated the stepped bind offs that occur with just binding off stitches so I took the suggestion made on the Rebecca site for a smoother edging on shoulder shaping and this is what I got:
Me likey!!

However, with all the progress made on the sleeve, I made none on the back. In fact I reverted back to the ribbing! I figured I would frog to the neck since the neck shaping was all wonkey. Then I realized I did the arm hole shaping wrong, so I would have to frog back to that point. And, since I was doing all this frogging, I thought I would take it one step further as I didn’t like the length of the ribbing since it was too long and accentuating the not so positive…my posterior. So I now have about 15cm of ribbing on the back instead of the finished 60cm back panel. Oh well, I am not feeling that bad about it since this was pretty darn quick for me to knit up the first time. It can only look better the second time.

Doctor’s Bag: The Doctor is out this week since I am still waiting for the 2 extra skeins I needed from WEBS. I still need to frog the bottom and reknit it so I am not too excited about that. Maybe more news next week on this one.

This weeks knitting was extensive. This whole two project things is kinda stressful because I guess I am very obsessive about the finished product of knitting even more than the process so I am speeding like a demon to get to the end of both of these. Hopefully next week I will mellow out a bit….breathe…

Doctor’s Bag: My hands hurt. This project is giving me carpal tunnel. Big needles, double stranded, heavy knitting = yuck. The I see this:

One of these things is not like the other :O(

Well, it seems that the pattern may have some errata going on and since I have seen very little blogging on this bag, it may be that I am the first to find it.

Now I am no knitting expert but umm…that base sure is big. I have gotten measurements elsewhere that matched up pretty dang close, if not exact. This one is just HUGE. The pattern for this piece says to case on 78 sts but reading further in the pattern it tells me to pick up 60 stitches to attach it to the front. Well folks, where do the other 18 sts go????!!! ERRRRR!!! Did I mention my hands hurt? AND since this is knit lengthwise I have to do the whole thing over again. To top it off, I think I am going to run out of yarn! Me sad.

Apricot Jacket: I thank all those who came before me on this one because I am completely dependent on them. I even had to print out the pictures as my tool to follow more than the pattern itself. I am now at the shoulder decreases and need a minute to decipher the Engrish. So far I like the pattern but not a lover of cotton or cotton blends cause it shows so much stitch irregularity. I hope blocking and the slight blooming of the yarn that I experienced with the swatch will help with this.

Hee hee.. you can see my piggy banks booty in this pic

So I am not very good with knitalongs but I think I will try to get the hang of reporting on my WIP. I really love looking at others progress during the creation process so I imagine that sooner or later someone will benefit from me showing mine. So one of my many resolutions will be to try and do this every (read: sometimes) weekend.

Knit Two Together Doctor’s Bag

Here is the completed front panel of the Doctor’s Bag. I have been wanting to knit this for ever since I got the book. This project, in fact, was the REASON for buying the book. Now I tried to knit this with Elann Peruvian Highland Chunky but the plied texture of the yarn detracted from the herringbone stitch pattern…plus I didn’t like the color. Then I stumble upon Valley Yarn Berkshire from WEBS. This is really a great yarn that I will be using again. It is a 85% Wool, 15% Alpaca blend that just feels luscious AND it is inexpensive which is what I wanted in a yarn intended to be a bag. Below you can see a close up of the fiber. It does have the tendency to little white fibers come out but nothing to detract from its quality.

Rebecca 27 Apricot Jacket (a.k.a. Apricot Jacke in German)

You might remember this yarn as the recently retired Marnie sweater. I just couldn’t deal with all the gaping holes created with the pattern on size 7 needles. So when I started thinking of the Apricot Jacket as a substitute (since GGH Java and GGH Samoa are very similar in gauge) I knew I would have a problem with the requested size 8 needles called for in the pattern. So I swatched..


Size 8 on left, size 7 on right

Here are the swatches that were made to test out the pattern gauge. Now I got gauge using the requested size 8 needles but to me it looked horrible! I couldn’t be consistent with the 8 and cotton is very unforgiving when it comes to poor stitch tension.


Look at all those visible rows..yucky yucky yucky

So I swatched on 7’s which gave me a better look but not exact gauge.

It was slightly under the 4″ mark but bigger than the 3.75″ mark. Now I am not shaped like the wonderful model for this jacket so messing with gauge may be my downfall, but for this I will take the chance..famous last words. I think it suits the yarn, suits my desire of difficulty, and gives me incentive to diet…All bases covered.

So here is my progress so far


Back Panel: past the ribbing and on to the eyelets

I am heavily dependent on those who came before me as the pattern for this jacket is harder than deciphering the Di Vinci Code! This also marks my divide from the knitting monogamy I normally have. TWO PROJECTS…blasphemy for me, normality for true knitters. I am one with the multi-knitters.


So I am not very good with knitalongs but I think I will try to get the hang of reporting on my WIP. I really love looking at others progress during the creation process so I imagine that sooner or later someone will benefit from me showing mine. So one of my many resolutions will be to try and do this every (read: sometimes) weekend.

Knit Two Together Doctor’s Bag

Here is the completed front panel of the Doctor’s Bag. I have been wanting to knit this for ever since I got the book. This project, in fact, was the REASON for buying the book. Now I tried to knit this with Elann Peruvian Highland Chunky but the plied texture of the yarn detracted from the herringbone stitch pattern…plus I didn’t like the color. Then I stumble upon Valley Yarn Berkshire from WEBS. This is really a great yarn that I will be using again. It is a 85% Wool, 15% Alpaca blend that just feels luscious AND it is inexpensive which is what I wanted in a yarn intended to be a bag. Below you can see a close up of the fiber. It does have the tendency to little white fibers come out but nothing to detract from its quality.

Rebecca 27 Apricot Jacket (a.k.a. Apricot Jacke in German)

You might remember this yarn as the recently retired Marnie sweater. I just couldn’t deal with all the gaping holes created with the pattern on size 7 needles. So when I started thinking of the Apricot Jacket as a substitute (since GGH Java and GGH Samoa are very similar in gauge) I knew I would have a problem with the requested size 8 needles called for in the pattern. So I swatched..


Size 8 on left, size 7 on right

Here are the swatches that were made to test out the pattern gauge. Now I got gauge using the requested size 8 needles but to me it looked horrible! I couldn’t be consistent with the 8 and cotton is very unforgiving when it comes to poor stitch tension.

Look at all those visible rows..yucky yucky yucky

So I swatched on 7’s which gave me a better look but not exact gauge.

It was slightly under the 4″ mark but bigger than the 3.75″ mark. Now I am not shaped like the wonderful model for this jacket so messing with gauge may be my downfall, but for this I will take the chance..famous last words. I think it suits the yarn, suits my desire of difficulty, and gives me incentive to diet…All bases covered.

So here is my progress so far

Back Panel: past the ribbing and on to the eyelets

I am heavily dependent on those who came before me as the pattern for this jacket is harder than deciphering the Di Vinci Code! This also marks my divide from the knitting monogamy I normally have. TWO PROJECTS…blasphemy for me, normality for true knitters. I am one with the multi-knitters.

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On the Needles


Kusha Kusha Scarf CO: 8/22
Turtleneck Tube Vest CO: 9/30
Knitty Shimmer CO: 9/8
Cable Down Raglan CO: 10/26

Under the Needle

McCall's M5478 Jacket
Started 8/07, 45% Complete

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