Antler Cardigan for Baby F

I knit this a little while ago, but it’s just going in the mail this week, and it is so itsy-witsy and adorable that I couldn’t not share. This is a baby sweater (obviously), on its way to friends who recently (like, a few days ago) had their first child.

The pattern is the Antler cardigan, and I believe I knit the 6 month size (there is a large range of sizes newborn babies can be, and one never knows). I needed just over one skein of worsted, and I chose to buy a second skein in a contrasting colour rathe than two of the same. I used contrast colour for the bands and cuffs and then knit a tiny hat (Hunter, for the curious) out of the leftovers, to make a little outfit.

The yarn is Malabrigo Rios, which is definitely superwash, as that is definitely important. I have been very impressed with how this yarn wears in the mittens that I wear when I bicycle, so I’m hoping it will hold up nicely to repeated washings as a baby garment.

Antler Cardigan for Baby F

I knit this before baby was born, and so the sex was a mystery. I tried my best to choose ‘neutral’ colours, but that’s definitely something that’s a struggle for me. I just end up wanting to make little purple things for everyone, but then run up against expectations of what ‘masculine’ colours should be and worry that I’m choosing colours that won’t work well on a tiny boy. Now that the baby’s born, I know that it’s a girl, and I hope this set (with a little hat in the same colour as the trim, to balance it out) is alright. I know that I’d wear a sweater this colour, and I’m a girl, and I know that no matter what colour it is, it will be warm.


Handspun Sweater Project - singles


Handspun Sweater Project - singles

I think the last time I blogged about this project was a while ago – November 5, checking back. It feels like you guys should know all about it, since it’s been consuming my spinning time for what feels like millennia. (Actually: since August. But close enough.)

I hit a really really exciting milestone recently – on November 26, I finished the singles for this project. There is no more fluff. Only plying.

Now I have, of course, nine thousand hours of plying to do. I’ve finished a couple of skeins already (plying, naturally, goes a lot faster than knitting), and it feels like I’m finally in the homestretch. I’m trying not to get too fussy about whether I’ll get the yardage I expected out of this project (early prediction: I will end up with less of the 2-ply yarn than I’d planned, but will have some leftover singles of the darker colourway that I can 3-ply ont itself for more yarn), but it’s hard. I’ve put a lot of effort and heart into this spinning project, and I want it to turn into something knitted that I love.

Anyway, here is a first taste of the yarn I’ve made.

First Handspun Sweater Skeins

First Handspun Sweater Skeins

First Handspun Sweater Skeins

First Handspun Sweater Skeins

It’s a really nice heavy-worsted-bordering-on-bulky-weight yarn (between 9 and 11 wpi after washing). I am super proud of myself for spinning singles big enough to make a bulky worsted-weight 2-ply, especially after so many months of spinning for socks – it was a big adjustment in terms of my spinning, and took some practice to get right.

The dark indigo shade is absolutely popping against all of the other colours, which makes the barberpoling look pretty intense. I suspect it won’t be quite as loud once it’s knit up. The hand of the yarn is really lovely, and I’m very pleased with it. I succeeded in making a nice, firm 2-ply yarn that has good bounce to it – the skeins are very, very squishable.

I’ve plied 300g so far, which means another 500 to go, but then I’ll be done and ready to start swatching. I’m hoping to finish before 2015, but we’ll have to see how I do.


Empire!

I’ve finished my Empire sweater, which is still getting buttons (I’m being all fancy and reinforcing the button band. It’s going to be great), and I think will be much more photographable after it’s done.

In the meantime, I wanted to talk about my new sweater on the go, which is a different sort of Empire. Specifically, it’s made out of Empire yarn. This is that stuff you may have seen floating around the internet – it’s Jill Draper, it’s Rambouillet, it comes in epic, 750g mega-skeins.

Empire Sweater

So I cracked into my mine late last month, and it is super, super nice. The dyeing makes for some really pretty colour depth, and the base is, like. Tasty. I’ve never worked with Rambouillet before, but it’s got a really nice hand that’s springy and cuddly, and sheepy without being scratchy. I find myself periodically squishing my sweater as I work on it, it’s that kind of wool.

I had to split it into five balls on my winder, both for practicality of taking my knitting places, and also because my winder will only make a cake of a certain size before it hits capacity. It is a lot – a lot of yarn. So I am making, you know, a cute little one-skein sweater project.

Empire Sweater


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