Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Crystal Vest

Two posts in two days?  Wow, I think that’s a record for me.  And I'm not even posting at 4am.  Bonus!

So, despite my attachment to my new spinning wheel, I did find time in the last few weeks to finish a knitting project.

Pattern:  Crystal
Needles: 7 US

This project had a slow start.  First there was the website problem when I tried to buy the pattern.  Then the ten knots in the first skein of yarn I wound (thankfully, the second skein only had one).  Next I got stuck on the lace pattern instructions.  When that was finally worked out, I swatched.  Swatch was big to begin with and blocked even larger.  Being too impatient to swatch again, I simply went down two needle sizes and cast on.  I knit up to the v-neck divide and got stuck again on pattern instructions.  This one required designer-consultation, but the designer got back to me super quickly and cleared up the mistake.  The vest was pretty smooth sailing from there.  The knitting went quickly, the lace pattern was easy to memorize, and I didn’t run into any lace shaping problems.  I ended up needing to knit the neckline twice, but that was the only stumbling spot.  

When I finished and tried it on, I was pretty happy with the fit, except it was a little shorter than I wanted. I knew it would stretch when blocked, and oh, did it stretch.  I pulled a dress out of the water instead of a vest! I was initially rather frustrated and swore off using yarn with silk for anymore garments, but once it dried and I tried it on, the loose style and waist tie made it all okay.  I happily wore it all day Monday. 

I’m still totally over silk though.

My modifications were pretty minor:  three-needle bind off at the shoulders, reduced the armhole depth and took out a few short rows on the armhole edging, and I did an i-cord for the waist tie instead of a crochet chain.  

Even though it might be a tad bigger than intended, I’m loving the loose fit.  The relaxed style is a nice change after years of knitting super-fitted sweaters. 

So a finished project (yay!) and one more stash project down.  This brings me up to four.  I’m a little behind the goal of twelve, and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to decrease the stash when I’m constantly adding to it with handspun. Might need to start working on a better storage solution rather than trying to just knit faster.


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