No rush or How to approach your knitting project wisely

After lots of projects for other people, I have really been focussing on my needs this week.

Not only did I try to sew something for myself (well, apparently I am not clever enough to understand the instructions of a supereasy pattern, but that is a totally different story) but I have also officially started a new project on ravelry. And as it is a rather big (and expensive) project for once, I really want to get it right rather than the usual impatient rush. And so far (on day 2 of this project) I am rather enjoying how it slowly unfolds.

I have downloaded the 3in1 pattern by atelier al-fa a while ago, then I did some yarn research and decided to go for the recommended Wollmeise as I had already often come across the name but never bought any of it. According to various online comments it sells out fast so you have to be on the computer when the shop gets updated. So in that case I felt a bit rushed and I am actually not sure if it really is that bad.

Anyway, at the time of my order there really was only a certain selection available  but I still wanted to finalise it. I chose the yarn for a certain colour combination for the sweater but also bought one or two other skeins just because they looked so beautiful (unfortunately I am unable to only buy what I need – so this step clearly does not file under “wisely”)

IMG_1696 IMG_1700

The colours are gorgeous, the texture is great, it is certainly worth the money. But then I do wonder if it makes sense to use such a nice yarn for a very casual looking design. Considering that I will then wear it in my everyday life as a mother it will soon get ruined as all my clothes. But it would also not make sense to save it for special occasions.

Back to the project approach.

I took the skeins out of the box on Thursday and started to wind them into balls, yesterday evening, I made my gauge swatches. Now, this was interesting. Even though I tried with size 4mm, 3.75 and 3.5, I was unable to get the exact gauge that I would need and the differences where actually significant. So this crucial step hasn’t entirely made me happy. With the size 4mm I am just slightly too loose, in fact the number of stitches was spot on, just not the rows, so I am hoping it will be fine once I start knitting in the round. I have decided that my knit stitches are slightly tighter than the purls…. because then it will be fine 🙂

On the other hand, I find the stitches slightly too loose and therefore not as even as the ones knitted with the smaller needle. Hmm. Might reconsider.

Whilst knitting the swatches and looking at all the beautiful colours I was suddenly unsure about my first idea so I have started to knit striped swatches to see how the colours would actually work together.

I will need two colours for the main section, two for the bottom and one for the middle (which could be the same as for one of the bottom ones, I guess.

IMG_1695IMG_1693Unfortunately, I didn’t get the colours completely right on the pictures, the dark purple is really dark and greyish. It is relatively neutral compared to all the other colours and is sort of a good contrast for all the other colours. I like all combinations apart from orange-pink. In this case they really don’t go together although I usually love the combination.

I have now lots of options and I think the design really asks for a colour combination which is not an obvious choice. But to kind of make if open for many occasions I should maybe go for a gentle combination in the main part and keep a loud one in the bottom section with a contrasting middle? Or maybe not?

So, without revealing my favourites at the moment, what do you think? Which colour combinations would look best? I am looking forward for suggestions…. and then I will reconsider everything (including needle size) and hopefully cast on soon 🙂

Colours everywhere

I don’t know about you but I really like strong and bright colours. Especially as it is all grey when I look out of the window. It is may though, isn’t it?

Maybe I suffer from some kind of parrot syndrome or lets call it rainbow syndrome, that sounds slightly better…. Anyway, I really love these few tops that I have knitted using the “Versa” pattern by Shannon Passmore. She has a great blog too:

There is also more info on this pattern with even more pictures on my projects – page.

This blue-purple-red one, I made  for my niece last year and I have been told that she has been wearing it a lot. And as it is a tunic, it fitted her for ages. In fact I think it still does:

bold colours with pockets

bold colours with contrasting pockets

For the next two, I have used rather sunny colours, they remind me a bit of a sunset:

sunset colours, pockets and bow

sunset colours, pockets and bow

I also really like the details. The bow is fully stitched on, I guess it would look nicer if it wasn’t so securely stitched on but I made it in a under 2 size so I wanted to be on the safe side.  The pockets are really small as it is a small garment but my daughter always managed to get at least a tissue in hers and she just loved them.

I have used Lana Grossa Elastico Big for these. It really comes in great shades. It is a cotton yarn with 4% Polyester. I guess I can live with such a tiny amount, it still has all the good sides of cotton and is just more stretchy, which is very good for this type of garment that should sit closely to the body.

On the other end of the intensity scale there is this set of cardigans for newborns for hopefully soon to be born twins (and they better are the announced girl and boy 🙂 ) And even if I am normally a fan of bright and bold colours, I do like this yarn a lot. It is just right for tiny new babies. It is a discontinued yarn (Rowan purelife organic cotton DK)  so I will only be able to make a few very precious little things out of my last stock anyway.

softness for newborn twins

softness for newborn twins

I guess this project deserves its own post, hopefully with better pictures…. I just need time to catch up with everything I have done….