Sweater Blocking Conundrum: Grey Tweed Pullover, Episode 2

Last March I started knitting my dark grey Donegal tweed yarn into a simple pullover, and then the weather got pretty warm, so I put it away. Then during the hottest part of July, I ran into a decision-requiring situation with my attempt at the February Lady Sweater (don’t ask why I thought worsted weight wool-mohair was cooler than worsted weight tweed, I don’t know), so I put that sweater aside while I mulled. But I wanted to knit on a sweater. So, even though it was July, I took up the tweed again. Now I finally have all the pieces knit. But how to block to rolled edges?
Grey Tweed Pullover-body
The front and back are already joined at the shoulder seam with a 3-needle bind-off. I did that so I could figure out how long to make the sleeves. Anyway the bottom edge of the sleeves and body are rolled. So do I pin the rolls out while blocking? Or do I just pin down to the roll (the bottom-most garter ridge) and let it roll up as it drys? What to do? Suggestions welcome!

The neckband is supposed to be rolled too, but I don’t think that’s what I want to do. I think a few rounds of garter stitch will be better. My thinking is that with the purled ridge details above the rolled edges will keep a garter neckband from looking out of place. Any thoughts?

The sweater, which I want to wear primarily as outerwear, is going to be too big.  I measured my bust in March and it was 40.5 inches, so I thought a 44 inch outerwear sweater would be fine.  When I realized this summer that certain of my undergarments were unacceptably roomy, I measured again: 38 inches.  This sweater is going to be HUGE.  sigh.

I will have 3.5 skeins of yarn left over, so I can make some tweed accessories that will fit!

FO: Nelosys

First, a heartfelt thank you to everyone who left a comment about Rippy.  My family was very touched; many comments brought tears to their eyes.  My brother was glad to see that so many other people had had cats live so long and that became such good friends with their people.  I used a random number generator and it chose comments 3 and 19, so I have emailed Bridget and Lynn, asking for their mailing addresses to send them yarn.  Maybe next year my blogiversary, or Blog Day, which sounds even better to me, will be more cheerful.  Let’s hope.

I finished Nelosys (Never-ending Left-over Sock Yarn Shawl) way back in June, and just didn’t get around to blogging about it. I kept thinking I could get in a modeled photo shoot. However, that hasn’t worked out, and the blocked shawl lying neatly folder on my work counter finally shouted, “Just take my &*%#%@* photo and blog me!” All-righty then.
Those of you who don’t remember my posts of last April (if you do, you need help), Nelosys is a shoulder shawl of my own design, which I knit using left over sock yarn. I chose my cool-colored leftovers, transitioning to a new color through 3 rows of garter stitch so that purl ridges formed on the right side (row 1 in old color, rows 2-3 in the new color). Each new new colorway has at least one color in common with the old. This caused a shift from blue-purples to blue-greens and back ending with purple-greys on the outside edge (the shawl is knit top down from the center with 4 increases every right side row).
From the top:
1. Claudia Hand-Painted, Walk in the Woods: stockinette
2. Shibui sock yarn, Midnight: seed stitch
3. Fleece Artist Merino, Midnight: crossed stockinette
4. Cherry Tree Hill Supersock, Peacock: rice stitch
5. Fleece Artist Merino, Nova Scotia: fleck stitch
6. Fleece Artist Merino, Hercules: moss stitch
7. Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock, Black Pearl: garter

I knit the shawl with size 5 needles, but bound off using size 7 needles. I didn’t pin for blocking, just laid it out nicely after a nice bath in my shampoo for color-treated (cough! cough!) hair. It is 54 inches along the top hypotenuse, and 27.5 inches from the bottom tip to the top edge. I was out of cool-colored sock yarn at this point, so I’m glad I got a shawl of a usable size. All in all, I’m quite pleased with how it turned out. We keep our house very cool, and I wanted something to keep my neck and shoulders warm when knitting or reading. This should fit the bill!

I’m not ready to start a second Nelosys, but I’m getting a good collection of leftovers in bright colorways…
Bright Leftovers for Nelosys II

Happy Autumn!

A Tribute to Rip

I intended this post to be a belated 2nd Blogiversary post and to have a contest in order to give away a couple of skeins of sock yarn.
Blogiversary Yarn-multi detailsemi-solid detail
And I’m still giving away the yarn. I’ll randomly pick two commenters to this post to win the yarn, but I have a more serious purpose. My brother requested that I tell you about my family’s cat, Rip, who lives with my brother and my parents, because as my brother, Thomas, put it, “Knitters are nice people, and they like cats.”

Here is Rip, named after Rip van Winkle, in the prime of his life, a very proud Burmese “with papers.”
Regal Rip
Rip (aka Rippy, The Ripster, and Rippity-Wippity) turned 20 last May. Sadly, now Rippy is dying. He has had a wonderful life, and he has truly been a Great Cat. He has always been playful, friendly and loving. He has been a champion lap cat.
lounging Rip
He has liked hanging with my mom (he sleeps on her side of the bed every night), and he liked to “help” her garden.
Rippy gardens
He even taught my dad, who grew up with dogs, to like cats. It may have helped that he was good at playing fetch. But his closest relationship has been with my brother. They have been best buds for 20 years. This photo captures their comradery so well.
Rip and Thomas
Rip often seemed an extension of Thomas’ arm, and they both seemed quite content with that relationship. Now Tom’s and my parent’s hearts are breaking as they watch Rip slip farther and farther away. He doesn’t seem in much pain yet, but his decline has really accelerated, and my mom won’t let him suffer in pain. So they watch and wait, knowing that time is rapidly running out.

If you could leave a comment of condolence, it would mean a lot to them. I know I don’t have to give away yarn to get knitters to do a nice thing, but I would like to. We are so seldom rewarded in this world for doing something kind and generous, and I would like to change that here just a little bit. Thank you.

Sucked into LibraryThing, but still a FO

Last weekend my barcode scanner for entering books into LibraryThing arrived, and I got sucked in.  The scary part is that I spent most of Saturday and a good part of Sunday putting our books into my account, and at 822 books, I’m maybe 2/3 through.  If you have a lot of books, LibraryThing is a handy place and way to get them all cataloged.  It allows you to see what others who read the books you read also read that you might not know about.  Plus, if the house burns down, there is your whole library catalog on the web to show the insurance (this is how I rationalized it to myself–but I’m really a closet librarian).  My moniker there is shinycolors.

But even with all the book craziness, I do have a FO: the Stansfield 27 socks are done! These are for my friend Nancy, who takes exquisite care of her hand knit socks, but also wears them regularly. She also notices fancy toes, stitch patterns, heel architecture, etc. So, she is definitely a good person to knit socks for.
Stansfield 27 socks
Stansfield 27 socks on feet
The photo of the socks on my feet show the Raspberry color of the Fearless Fibers Superwash Merino the best. Charlene Schurch in More Sensational Knitted Socks includes this 10-stitch repeat pattern from Lesley Stanfield’s stitch dictionary. The only thing I changed was to change needle sizes from 2 to 1 part way down the leg for some pseudo-shaping, and I used the Star Toe of Three Points from any one of Nancy Bush’s sock books. That toe is a little longer than a standard toe, so I was able to end the pattern where I wanted, so it starts at the top and ends at the bottom of the sock at the same place, but I was still able to get a sock the right size for Nancy.

It is a nice stitch pattern to knit. Every other round is just knit, and it’s easy to count the garter ridges of the basketweave pattern. Here’s the pattern stitch up close.

So, now after a wash, I’ll be able to give them to Nancy for her birthday which was July 31st, and she’ll tuck them into a drawer until the end of October when it might get cool enough for her to wear them.

Well, August 27th was my second Blogiversary, and I plan to have a belated contest to celebrate, but I’m still working out the details. I the meantime, while I dither, knit on!