My FO – I mean UD – that’s Unmitigated Disaster, folks

Yeah, I have made a monumental mistake such as I scarcely dare to confess. I made this. Honestly. I’m 5 foot tall with a bust bigger than – Texas? Something really big, anyway. And that’s what I got a hankering to make. To say I failed an IQ test would be way understating the situation.

It’s a great pattern. I thoroughly recommend it to anybody appropriately built who wants a quick fix. Actually, I’m not normally a quick fix person. Knitting with fat yarn on oversized needles doesn’t appeal to me. Why do something if you don’t enjoy the process? And if you do enjoy the process what’s the rush? That sort of bulky knitting is uncomfortable and hard on the hands.

The whole experience has sent me running for my favourite yarn and a pattern source which never fails. Yes, Karabella Aurora 8 and Garnstudio, in this case:

Drops cable long cardigan
Drops cable long cardigan

The link is here.

Enough cabling to make it interesting to knit, not too much cabling to stop it being rather elegant. Well, that’s what I’m thinking at the moment. Every stitch a pleasure.

Wherein my chicken nature is overcome

I’ve been a bit scared to actually knit an Ilga Leja pattern. I buy them by the bucketful but then I get somebody else to knit them for me.

It’s the lace I’m apprehensive about, so when Ilga brought out this one a few months ago I realised that I could no longer procrastinate.

In the Piazza by Ilga Leja
In the Piazza by Ilga Leja

Obviously this had been specially designed for lace incompetents. My moment had come.

In the Piazza
In the Piazza

The yarn is from Wired for Fibre, a Melbourne girl who is hand-dying yarn. I am not a fan of variagated yarn but it seems to be such a feature of Ilga’s patterns that I’m not prepared to alter that sense of them. Unfortunately the utterly gorgeous Handmaiden and Fleece Artist yarns she uses are expensive now that our Aussie dollar has taken a tumble, so I’m hoping home grown will be a good substitute.

Wherein Liesl and my bacon are saved.

I was griping about my second Liesl on New Year’s Eve. I’d just started the first sleeve, a couple of rows in, when I discovered I had dropped two stitches. It wasn’t the most complicated pattern in the world, but still, it was sort of lacy and I was in the dark watching TV and well, the whole operation went pear-shaped with a capital P. Before you knew it those dropped stitches were unravelling and I had a horrible looking mess.

Little did I know I was talking to a mathematician-come-champeen knitter. ‘I’m away for a week, but I’ll fix it for you next Thursday’. Wow. That was last night and now I’m back on track. My second Liesl will be finished in a few days’ time. I’m so happy. Thanks, Marjorie!

In progress

Right now I’m struggling with stuff.

Firstly this Jo Sharp:

Jo Sharp jumper in progress
Jo Sharp jumper in progress

Originally designed for her DK wool, I wanted a spring version. Every stitch is a nightmare. The main body is knitted in RYC Luxury Cotton which is a horrible loose collection of bits of string. Some of it is cotton, some viscose… It doesn’t feel nice. It doesn’t knit nice. Is it possible that the final product will be nice??? Every day I think about ending its life. I’m telling you if it steps out of line one inch it could be the hacksaw.

Jo Sharp jumper in progress
Jo Sharp jumper in progress

Hmmm. What else? Oh yes:

Lacy summer top in progress
Lacy summer top in progress

You can’t tell, but there is some pink and some orange in amongst all that red:

Lacy summer top in progress
Lacy summer top in progress

I’m at the waist now and changing to solid stocking stitch for the rest. I’ve been told that it looks like a Samoan belly dancer’s tablecloth – perhaps I’m paraphrasing. Thing is, it wasn’t meant as a compliment…in case that isn’t obvious. But I LIKE this one. Even if it does turn out to be total disaster I feel like I have learnt lots from the process.

Kim Hargreaves’ Nectar summer collection

One of the disadvantages of living on the other side of the world – other than having to walk upside down – is that the pattern seasons are all out of synch. The Nectar collection arrived mid-winter and has languished on the shelf every since.

I’ve been wanting to knit this for a while:

Tender by Kim Hargreaves
Tender by Kim Hargreaves

A feather-light cardigan with just the merest hint of a flounced edging. So when Janette’s Rare Yarns put the required yarn on sale in a colour I have on the brain at the moment, how could I resist?

Daffodil Kid Silk Haze

$10/ball and world-wide free shipping!

Janette’s Rare Yarns also stocks specially developed Kim Hargreaves colours in Rowan yarns, which you can see here and here.

Now it’s a race against time for me. Parcels from Jannette take only a few days to arrive once I’ve paid for them. Can I finish my Jo Sharp Lace Panel sweater before then? Pardon me if I sign off and get my knitting out….

Good intentions for my end of winter knitting.

It’s time to clean up my winter knitting. No more new projects, only the finishing of started ones, oh yes, including the ones started last winter.

So, what does that leave me doing?

  • 1 Digit Shawl by Jane Slicer Smith

    What fun this is! I’m ambitiously hoping to have this finished in a week’s time. 2009 update: finished!

  • 2 Anny Blatt Super Angora simple drop shoulder jumper in red. I’m taking this away week after next, hoping to finish it while away. 2009 update: finished and a disaster. Way too small and drop shoulders only work if they are oversized. I look like a round fuzzy furry ball. Yuck!
  • 3 Josephine

    I’m knitting this in black cashmere, planning to use some Cleckheaton Silky Faux Fur as the trim. This was one I started last winter….I’ve knitted the front and back, so it’s half way done.

  • 4 Striped Jacket

    A Garnstudio pattern, fun to knit until I discovered at some point the WS becomes the RS. My wrong side was a complete shambles, and I put this away, depressed. However, I’m come around to the view that I can ignore that instruction, make the RS the right side and just get on with it. 2009 update: finished!

  • 5 Oh, and finally, a Cleckheaton jumper

    I’m knitting this in black RYC Cashsoft. Very nice to knit with and an interesting pattern: the construction is to knit a lace shrug from side to side and then pick up stitches to knit the body in the round. I’m not even a ball of yarn into this one, so a lot of work to do. I’m using a yarn which scarcely even in the same ball park as the one which is supposed to be used, which is a mohair…hoping I can get away with that. 2009 update: finished!