Saturday, January 20, 2018

Interesct Cardigan by Norah Gaughan in Geilsk

I recently finished knitting a sweater that was a VERY long time coming.  It was almost two years ago that I gave up on my first project with this yarn, Geilsk cotton/wool, and started working on this project.

The pattern is Intersect, a Brooklyn Tweed pattern by Norah Gaughan.  When I first saw this pattern, I was immediately drawn to the shape and the select use of cables.  All of the project notes said how fun and unique the construction was, so that also drew me in.  I made a modification to the shape at the hem to make it more of a streamlined silhouette from the original design.  I love how this turned out.  It doesn't add bulk at my bulkiest area.

This was a LOT of knitting!  I'm lucky that I got so much of this yarn when I purchased it with no pattern in mind.  It is fingering-weight, and  there were MANY cable crosses in this design.  I think it turned out beautifully, though, especially the back!  

The construction lived up to the hype as well.  It was constructed top-down with very clear steps that made sure I never got bored.  Well, maybe not bored, but definitely discouraged at the slow progress at times.  I'm so glad that I stuck with it, though, in fits and starts until I realized all I needed was to knit the stockinette sleeves and attach them.  After the drama of the cables, they seemed to fly off the needles this January!  

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Butterick 5794 Sweaterdress

Well, I just realized that this pattern is out of print, which is so sad!  This is a great pattern, and it's kind of unique, not the kind of thing you can easily engineer from another dress pattern.  It has a lot of great details.

The pattern is Butterick 5794.

I made basically the black version with pink's sleeves, but I raised the neckline a couple inches (for warmth!) and added long cuffs to the sleeves instead of finishing them with elastic.

I raised the neckline a bit, because I have a store-bought sweaterdress with a low cowl neckline, and I am always cold when I wear it.  I like the higher neckline for a dress that is supposed to be warm.

I am really happy with the sleeves and the gathers.  They are both such fun details that make this dress so interesting.  

The fabric is from the recently-closed Gorgeous Fabrics website.  It is a different color of the same fabric I used for my green Arenal sweater top.

The only thing I would do differently if I make this again is lower the waistline one inch.  It's in a strange place that's lower than empire-waist but higher than my natural waist.  

Let's end on one more shot of those pretty gathers!

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Powdersnow Shawl by Lisa Hannes in Shibui Staccato

 This gorgeous little bit of knitting delight is the Powdersnow Shawl by Lisa Hannes.  I don't knit as many shawls as I used to a few years ago (because how many little shawls does a girl really need?) but this one has been calling to me for a couple of years.

The yarn I used for this design is Shibui Staccato, the same yarn I used for my Knitty Design Recital.  I love the softness and drape of this merino/silk yarn.  It also blocks beautifully.  My color of choice this time was "suit."

Here you can see the three distinct textured sections - a knit/purl textured stitch, some cables, and a simple ribbed edge.  Gorgeous simplicity.

The photo below is a pretty good representation of the color - a little lighter than a true navy.
   This has been my take-with-me knitting for a few months now.  I am excited to pick out another small project for that purpose.  Maybe some socks!  I have definitely come around to the call of sock knitting since I have discovered my love of wearing them.

I attempted to take some style shots, but my timer always makes for blurry photos, and the dark color was causing the same problem as black - no detail visible.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

2018 Sewing Plans

Everyone's doing a post like this, and I always want to be one of the cool kids, so... here are some patterns I really want to sew up this year.  This list doesn't include oldies but goodies I'll probably make again like the Arenal or Simplicity 1696.  Also, there are 9 because that's what fits nicely into Instagram!  :-)

#1 is the Closet Case Patterns Mid-Rise Ginger Jeans.  One of my goals last year was to make some jeans, and I think I checked that off with Vogue 1573, but I've had these on my list for at least two years now, and it really must be done.

#2 is the Closet Case Files Sasha Trousers.  These could replace my beloved Simplicity 1696 since these look perfect without any modifications.

#3 is Vogue 9281.  I bought one of those off-the-shoulder cotton tops last spring that were EVERYWHERE, and my husband really liked the look. so I'd like to try a knit one.  I think the flare portion of this fit and flare top is a little too much, though.  I'll likely just modify it to be a standard top shape because I'm boring like that.

#4 is s straight-up 90s slip dress.  This is Vogue 9278, but I know I have something similar in my pattern collection.

#5 is a flowy top with lace accents a la Butterick 6518.  I'm not 100% sure about the sleeves, but I could always take them off in a year or two when the crazy sleeve look it out.

#6 is the totally impractical McCalls 7685.  I kind of want it in a beautiful summer floral, but I do have a wedding coming up in February in Florida if I could just decide on the perfect color...

#7, McCalls 7695 is a more everyday-wearable option.  I have a store-bought puffer jacket in white which I love.  A fun color for spring would be great!
#8 is McCalls 7714.  I have the perfect fabric for this dress!  It is a gorgeous textured, drapey floral.  I had it earmarked for another pattern, but this one would be great, too.  I'm thinking Easter dress.  The pleated skirt is so pretty!

#9 is Simplicity 8019, which I have made once before, but I love the shape and fit of it so much that I'm going to eliminate the button front and add a zipper in the back and just make a simple black wool version.  I have to fabric ready to go.

Sunday, January 7, 2018

2017 Recap

Hello there!  I thought I would do a recap of 2017 since I so enjoyed the sewing and knitting ones I did last year.  I haven't been as productive in 2017, though (moving is a lot of work!), so I figure I'll just squish it all in one post this time.

I have a few projects I have finished since my last blog post, but for posterity, they will be considered 2018 projects (even the red velvet top!) since they're not yet on the blog.

Let's start with sewing, least to most favorite:

Vogue 1439
These pants are fine, and I do wear them, but I would wear them even more if they were a couple inches longer to make them just like standard chinos.

Serger/Coverstitch Tee
This project also is just a smidge "off."  The neckline sticks up strangely.  I'll chalk it up to this being my first coverstitch project.  There was a small learning curve.

Helene Cardigan
This cardigan is surprisingly warm, and I love the pockets and style.  The only downside is it would benefit from a small bust adjustment.  It hangs a little funny along the opening edge.

My goofy Halloween top
This top turned out great!  I just wish I could wear it more than one month out of the year without looking batty!  Hehehe

Vogue 1517 faux suede pants
These pants are great, and I wear them a lot.  I'm so pleased with how the hems worked out.  They are the perfect length to cuff or half-cuff or not cuff at all, so they look perfect with any shoes.

McCalls 7429
I just feel awesome whenever I wear this dress.  I kind of wish the fabric was less t-shirt-like, but it doesn't bother me that much.  I could always make another one, but it works fine.

Simplicity 2473
It's kind of ridiculous to include this in 2017's projects since I made it years ago.  This is the year I blogged it, though, so this is where it will stay.

I'm very proud of this dress.  I just wish I had finished up the coordinating jacket in time to wear during the very short Florida spring season.  However, I will get plenty of wear time out of it this spring, as long as I hem those sleeves!

Vogue 1573 jeans
These jeans are amazing!  Such a hidden gem of a pattern since the pattern photo is in black, so it's impossible to see all the interesting seaming.  I love these in this of-the-moment color.

BurdaStyle 08/2017 Faux Suede Jacket
Aaaand, my magnum opus of 2017 sewing.  I searched out this magazine solely for this pattern, ordered it from Great Britain, and then graded down the pattern 3 sizes to fit me.  It turned out better than I could have hoped.  Love this!!

And now on to knitting, roughly least to most favorite:

Estonia in Ewe2Yarn
It's not that I don't like this.  I'm very happy with the fit and style.  I just don't reach for it that often.  Maybe because of the 3/4 sleeves.  They were very practical in Florida, but here in PA, cold-blooded me needs more long sleeves.

Cable and Seed Socks
These are so cozy.  I plan to knit myself many more pairs of socks this year.  It turns out they are pretty quick to knit and I LOVE wearing them.

Wayworn Hat
This is a great hat in a wear-with-everything shade.  What's not to love?

Cascade Falls Cardigan
This is the perfect thrown-on cardigan as far as I'm concerned.  I had a vision in my mind, and this pattern delivered!

My most recent post, Brickyard using Brooklyn Tweed Loft
This sweater is all I hoped it could be.  I agonized over a pattern for this gorgeous yarn, and in the end, this was my second attempt at doing it justice.  Mission accomplished.  I love this sweater!

And in a category of its own, my favorite design of the year - from the spring issue of Knitty.  :-)  So proud of this!

2017 wasn't very productive in terms of quantity, but this things I made, I wear and love.  It was a well-edited year, projectwise.  For 2018, I hope to continue picking projects I will wear and love.  Beyond that, we'll see where the year takes me.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Brickyard by Elizabeth Doherty in Brooklyn Tweed Loft

I don't know if you remember way back in September when I said I was going to knit a Brooklyn Tweed sweater.  At the time, I decided to knit Keaton, and I even bought the appropriate amount of Loft yarn in a similar color.  Mine is the color Birdbook.  I knit up the front and back and half of one sleeve before deciding I didn't like it and went searching for another pattern.

I ended up knitting Brickyard by Elizabeth Doherty, and even though this isn't a pattern from Brooklyn Tweed, it turned out beautifully!  I was a bit concerned because the pattern suggests a yarn with drape to accentuate the A-line shaping.  Loft ended up being just fine.  The gauge is a bit loose, and I made my A-line shaping less dramatic than the pattern's.

I am pretty shocked to find this is comfortable for me to wear next to skin.  I wear a t-shirt underneath, but it doesn't bother my neck or wrists.  I have a ball of yarn left over, and I am thinking of knitting a matching cowl that I can wear when it is really cold.

This sweater is so easy to wear, and it is so warm, even though the yarn is fingering weight.

This was really fun to knit.  The instructions are super detailed, and all the shaping comes together perfectly.  I love this braid detail between the textured and stockinette sections.

The big reason I didn't go with Keaton was that I felt it didn't show off the tweedy yarn to its best advantage.  It wanted to just be a big expanse of stockinette stitch, and this pattern was perfect!

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Vogue 1573 Jeans in burgundy Diesel denim

You guys, I am so discouraged with my photos lately.  I probably knocked some dial on my camera out of whack or something that is making everything waaaay over-exposed.  I look like the undead in these photos.  Why is my skin WHITE?  I took these on an overcast day.  Argh!!  Ok moving on. 

These are the jeans from the very recent pattern Vogue 1573.  I didn't even notice the jeans in the pattern at first.  All I saw was the top.  I am glad my attention was eventually drawn to this part, though, because these are great jeans!  They are made of lots of parts pieced together, and the fit turned out very good with minimal fitting. 

Here is the line drawing to give you a better idea of the piecing.

 The fabric is a burgundy denim from Diesel that I bought from Sawyer Brook.  It is sold out, but there are a few other colors in stock right now..

The only change I needed to make for fitting was taking in the waist about an inch.  I also lowered the waist an inch for personal preference.  I can't stand high-rise jeans.  After lowering, these sit maybe two inches below my waist.

There are definitely wrinkles on the legs, but I don't think you can avoid that in skinny jeans, especially when the fabric has no stretch. 

I think the back pocket placement was good.

Overall, I am very happy with how these turned out.  I love the denim in this of-the-moment color.  I could see myself making another pair in gray, but we will see.  Definitely no time soon.  They were quite a bit of work!