Updated: Nov 29, 2021
Cast Off, Cast On
As if you didn't already know not to knit black yarn in a dark room, let me remind you.
I learned a hard lesson this week. It was late evening a couple nights ago and I was able to power my way through binding off the first sleeve. Riding that cathartic wave of achievement I decided to start the second sleeve.
Everything was going well, but I still had that little voice in the back of my head telling me that it was a little too high-risk to be knitting in a dim room with black yarn. I got about an inch into the colorwork on the sleeve and upon turning to start another round, I noticed a GIGANTIC inch and a half-wide hole right in the underarm. It looked like a messy, disheveled spiderweb.
For a moment I naively let myself believe that perhaps it was just because I hadn’t pulled my working yarn tight enough on the first few rounds—but then I had no choice but to face facts and decide whether it would be a problem for future-me or not.
At first I thought I’d simpy fix it later with a few strategic whip stitches to cinch it closed, but the more I looked at it, the more I realized it really looked like somehow I simply hadn’t picked up all the necessary stitches in that area before knitting.
Either way, it needed to be fixed, and I really didn’t want to put the time into finishing this second sleeve and being excited to finally bind off, only to be disappointed by an unusually large and unruly hole in the underarm.
In frustration I slowly tinked my way back to the first round, and once I got to where the hole had originated, I put the sweater down and picked up a simple stockiette poncho WIP I have stashed for moments just like this. Lesson learned! When something is telling you it’s too dark and too late to knit—listen to that voice and turn the lights up, or put the project down.
The next day I sat down with a cuppa coffee and got to work, making sure to count and pick up exactly how many stitches I needed, where they needed to be. Now I’m well on my way to having a fully enclosed sweater, with no risk of chilly underarm drafts!
With all the time and love we put into our makes, it's only fair to ourselves to take the time to backtrack when something goes wrong. Of course there are small mistakes that don't affect the wearability of a project, but you are the only person who knows whether you've made a mistake, or simply had a happy accident.
Because this pattern involves three separate colors for the colorwork, doing the Magic Loop Method was out of the question for me, since it would have involved wrangling 6 different balls of yarn at once.
For projects like this, my absolute favorite needles are skacel by addi® FlexiFlips. They’re double points, but there are only 3 in a set because the middle of the needle is a flexible cord, so 2 needles acts like 4. Making this project extremely easy to stuff into a project bag, and there’s half as many points poking into everything.
And how adorable is that little sheepy clothes hanger? I’ve been coveting them for a few years, and finally picked one up from Makers’ Mercantile. They seem to be sold out online, but they still had a few in store.
The KAL is nearly over, and it's been such a pleasure to see all of the WIPs popping up on Ravelry and Instagram! If you're on Ravelry, check out the KAL Thread and say hello! Next week I suspect I'll have a finished sweater, and will talk a bit about my preferred blocking method for this project (psst, it's steaming!) and perhaps will even have some finished object photos!
Thanks for following along, see you then!
Did you know there's a Winter Roses notions bag? It's an exclusive bag only available at Makers’ Mercantile. Designed, printed, and sewn in their shop, so cool! They took a photo of the Winter Roses colorwork, kaleidoscop-ed it, and created this adorable bag.
Below is an affiliate link, and I do get a commission for every bag purchased.
Looking for a Local Yarn Store that is participating in this KAL?
Local Yarn Store
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Don't have the pattern yet?
You can either download it directly from my shop, or on Ravelry, links below...
Plus! There is also a companion hat pattern to help you use up any remaining partial balls!
Sizes range from Baby to Adult Large, and the pattern includes detailed yarn information you can cast on with confidence.
I love to see your WIPs! Please feel free to tag me on social media @dearingenue with #dearingenue and use #WinterRosesKAL so we can all celebrate your sweater with you! And if you're on Ravelry, pop into the Ravelry thread and say hello!
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