Welp, I had two sweater projects going at once, all while my knitting supplies are a complete mess because of this project at the bottom of the post. I have misplaced some needles and I’m big mad about it. But anyway, about the sweaters…
I started this Petite Knit No Frills Sweater in December – using the most expensive yarn I’ve purchased to date – and then signed up for a 4 week workshop at Ritual Dyes for the Ozetta Lakes Pullover. Before starting the Lakes, I got all the way to the hem on the body and then didn’t feel like tackling the sewn tubular cast off. I’m glad I didn’t, because I learned about some set up rows while knitting the Lakes that really helped with sewing the super fine to almost bulky yarn during the cast off.
I still have to visualize short row instructions with diagrams and notes. The BOR marker being at the center back really tripped me up.
I got a head start on the Lakes Pullover before the workshop began and I tried something out that I’m still not sure was the best idea. The construction on this sweater is so interesting – you start with the saddle shoulders and then build the sweater down from there. Because I’d need to pick up the same number of stitches for the neckline as the short ends of the saddles, I decided to use a provisional cast on instead of a long tail cast on.
The pros of this approach are that it made picking up those stitches super fast. Prior to this workshop, I didn’t really understand how to read the stitches and pick up in the “correct” spots. Thanks to the numerous tips from the instructor, I feel pretty good about that task now.
The cons of this approach are that it made picking up the first few stitches along the long edges of the saddles a little challenging/hard to see and it required more ends needing to be woven in. But hey, I can crochet a chain now.
In this workshop I learned how to knit a swatch in the round, how to calculate gauge, a neat trick for keeping track of sleeve rows, and so much more. In-person knitting workshop are so valuable.
The instructor recommended twisting stitches on the 1×1 rib by wrapping the yarn clockwise on the purls, which I tried but it felt so awkward I tinked back and did regular purls. I want to try this again on my next sweater since I want really tight hems and collars but don’t want to stress out my hands.
GAH! Look at this sweater! I’m so proud of it. Such a cool pattern and I feel like my skills are really improving. Just look at my first folded collar on the Towns Sweater. I think I might actually redo the neckline since I don’t wear it very much because it’s so… rustic.
After being so pleased with the yarn on my Popcorn sweater, I used it again for the Lakes. It’s De Rerum Natura Gilliatt in the color “Creme Anglaise” that I purchased from La Mercerie.
I accidentally used a size US 6 needle for the body (remember my previously mentioned supplies mess?) when I meant to use a US 7. The recommended US 8 produced a pretty loose fabric that I didn’t like the look of on my swatch, so I sized down. After realizing I’d accidentally knit a lot with the US 6, I figured it would be fine since that’s the size I had used for my popcorn sweater and the fabric was looking nice.
The only changes I made to the pattern was to crop the body by an inch and half and I created selvage edges on the parts that were knit flat. I’ve worn this a ton and I’m just the tiniest bit bummed that we’re approaching warmer weather here in Portland.
Once my Lakes was blocked and on my body, I could work on the No Frills sweater again. This was the project I finally understood how to read my sleeve stitches and use those locking markers. This method meant I could knit anywhere without dragging around a row counter and obsessively taking notes on a piece of paper.
For the XL, you’re supposed to repeat the sleeve rows 21 times, but I had to stop after 16 for my short arms. The sleeves have a slight balloon to them because of that. I had 65 stitches and needed 52, so I *K2tog, K3, K2tog, K3* before starting the 1×1 rib. I was pretty pleased that made all the decreases perfectly spaced.
I like this yarn a lot but holy hell, I overbought. Like I could almost make an entire identical sweater overbought. The pattern only gives the amount in grams so I estimated 6-7 skeins. Under the guidance of a LYS, I purchased 8. I used 4.25. 💸💸💸💸💸 Guess I’m making a matching shawl?
I sewed some black elastic thread into the neckline before blocking because it was definitely a lot wider than I wanted and knew it would only get bigger once wet. I think if I make this pattern again, I will do a folded collar following the instructions in the Ozetta Seasons Pullover.
On to the next sweater!