Hot weather and hot bargains

The hot weather went and then came back again. We’ve had a bit of a cool change this afternoon and there’s some lovely steady rain falling now. Love that smell!

My gorgeous daughters picked up these gems for me at the trash and treasure stall at their school fair last weekend. They said there were heaps more, but weren’t sure whether I’d want them or not. It was at the end of the day, when they were getting rid of books at $1 per bag.

They’re “Get Knitting” packs from Marshall Cavendish. One of them actually mentions 1987 on the cover, so I know what vintage they are. They contain pattern leaflets for about a dozen garments and a knitting guide with tips for particular techniques. So I’ve now got issues 9 and 26. I probably won’t knit any of the patterns, but they’re great as reference material. Items like this, that are now 22 years old, have historical value as well.
The back of my Trellis Rib Vest is finished now. I love it. As for the front, due to the weather, all I’ve done is cast on and knit one row. I’ll be doing more every day that weather and circumstances allow.

Too hot to knit

Well, that’s not strictly true. There has been a little knitting, but not enough to report on. Five of the last six days have been over 32 degrees. When it’s very hot, yarn doesn’t run smoothly through my fingers, so it’s time to put the knitting away for some other pursuits. In this case cross stitch.

This is the project I work on when I’m between knitting projects, or when it’s too hot for me to knit. It’s not for any purpose, other than it’s something I enjoy doing. I’m not in a hurry to finish it, so I just do a bit when I want to. I’m certainly not aiming for perfection.

Here’s to some knitting conducive weather over the next week.

First Vest Design Under Way

I’m now working on my first vest design. It’s in a lace rib pattern called Trellis Rib. The garment will have no ease, and no shaping, apart from a shallow rectangular neck line.

I had thoughts of shaping armholes and a v neck, but doing this in a lace pattern seemed a bit daunting. The fact that each knitter has their own row gauge has been troubling me. It’s one thing to achieve the correct stitch gauge, but achieving both stitch gauge and row gauge can be difficult. How will I know that the knitter will reach the shoulders at the same row that I do? I’ve since been looking at more patterns, with lace and without. I’m learning so much. In a lot of patterns the piece is knit until it measures ‘x’, the armhole shaping is done, and then knit even until piece measures ‘y’. Even with a v neck shaping, which I had always thought continued until the shoulders, there seems to be the instruction, and then knit even until piece measures ‘x’. So although the schematic often doesn’t show it, there is some knitting without shaping at the top.

I want my designs to be useful to all knitters, whether they can acheive row gauge or not.

I’ve just now gone Googling on row gauge, and the consensus seems to be that for v necks and raglan sleeves, getting row gauge right is mandatory. I’m not much for raglan sleeves, so that’s not going to bother me. V necks don’t have to slope all the way to the top.

The time where I can see it will be an issue for me is where a high row number pattern is used, and needs to finish at a certain point in the pattern. The pattern I have in mind is the Boxy Tops pullover designed by Lily M. Chin and published in Knitters Magazine Fall 2001 K64, which I have not been able to find a link to. The pattern repeat in this design is 40 rows, and part of the pattern forms the v in the v neck when it gets to that point. It’s a bit hard, in this case, to say knit until work measures around ‘x’ cm ending with row 6. I suppose there aren’t many designs which would have this kind of issue.

In the mean time, I’ve seen a number of vest patterns which are simply two rectangles, and they look lovely. I’ve decided that for my first vest adventure, discretion may be the better part of valour, and I’ll go with simple, rather than my normal habit of biting off more than I can chew.