As much as I might like to fantasize about knitting an allover fair isle sweater, it’s probably more of a never than a someday. I have no doubt that if I practiced my stranded colorwork more and got more comfortable with it, I’d also get faster, and a sweater like Windermere wouldn’t seem quite so far fetched. So what better to practice on than lovely little hats like Schuyler by Jennifer Burke (free pattern) and Fjordland by Dianna Walla?
PREVIOUSLY in Someday vs. Right Away: Small-scale Amanda alternatives
So the Brooklyn Tweed Fall ’14 Collection is out, and it’s a doozy. I don’t think there’s a single piece that won’t factor into some future post of mine, and a least a couple I can see myself knitting. (The one I most want in my closet right this minute is Docklight.) There’s nothing that quite meets the Amanda parameters, construction-wise, but if you just want to knit a cable sweater along with us, there are lots of lovely choices there. However, it’s possible you’ve been wishing to participate in the Amanda knitalong (aka #fringeandfriendsknitalong) but feel like a densely cabled cardigan sweater is beyond your skill set and/or your availability. If that’s true, and you’d like to join in by knitting a smaller-scale piece with all the cable goodness, the BT collection contains two good Amanda alternatives:
LEFT: the Shackleton scarf by Michele Wang has a lot in common with Amanda, combining honeycomb and (softened) diamond cables
RIGHT: on an even smaller scale, there’s Jared Flood’s Skiff hat, which, like Amanda, has moss-filled diamonds as its main motif
Both would be great if you’re a cable addict itching to knit some lush cables, or if you’re newer to cables and up for the challenge of expanding those cabling skills and knitting from a moderately complex cable chart. All of which will factor into the knitalong discussion. Something for everyone!
PREVIOUSLY in Someday vs. Right Away: Cables and lace
You guys, I’m stuck in the most boring knitting season of my entire knitting life. For months it’s been nothing but stockinette and ribbing and — hold onto your seats! — a little garter stitch in the round. I am in favor of all of the future finished objects I have in progress, but working dropped stitches every few rows doesn’t really make the stockinette any more thrilling to knit. The only bit of fun I’ve had were those precious few rows of nupps on my Trillium yoke, and that was two months ago. It’s starting to make me think knitting is boring. Aiieeeee! I’ve given myself permission to cast on a Channel Cardigan sleeve if I want, and to intersperse it with all the stockinette going on, but I’m not convinced those knits and purls (however luscious) are enough to really break up the monotony. I want all the fun right now. I want cables, and I want lace. Specifically: Anne Hanson’s Wheaten, which I will knit one day, in wrap proportions. But to satisfy this particular craving in quicker/smaller fashion, I’m thinking a hat would suffice. Maybe Amy Christoffers’ Manhattan or Robin Ulrich’s Bosc.
When I finish my Tag Team sweater, I know I’m supposed to get back to my Slade shawl-collar cardigan, but I’m having so much fun with the simple knits-purls-and-nupps combos in the Trillium yoke that I can’t stop wishing I was knitting something really complex next — namely Jared Flood’s Channel Cardigan. It would be super slow going for me, so it may be someday or it may be never, we’ll see. But I could certainly satisfy that knits+purls craving more readily with Jared’s beloved Guernsey Triangle or with the new Keirnan scarf by Shannon Cook.
PREVIOUSLY in Someday vs. Right Away: Bobbles (Hey, that last Someday is today!)
It might seem like I blog about Trillium every week, but c’mon — it’s really only every other week. I do, however, think about this sweater pretty much every day. Unlike some of the others, this one isn’t a pie-eyed sort of maybe someday Someday; it’s a someday soon. You know, as soon as I finish the other half-knit sweaters I’ve got going. But one of the things I’m looking forward to is the bobbles! (I’ll really be looking forward to them once I’m working my way up through all that stockinette.) I find them strangely appealing, as decorative doodads go, and have never knitted one. But there are snack-sized opportunities to rectify that in the near term: Jenny Gordy’s Snöflinga hat takes a similar judicious-geometric approach to the bobbles, and I love Grace Anna Farrow’s subtle Bump Scarf kerchief. (And that yarn: swoon.) Unfortunately, Grace’s pattern is not available for individual download, but Mary Lawson’s Covert Operation could be easily modified to kerchief proportions.
p.s. The great answers to my last Q for You keep on coming. If you haven’t read all the comments, don’t miss What’s your peak knitting experience. I love these stories!
p.p.s. Knitters Graph Paper Journal is back in stock!
PREVIOUSLY in Someday vs Right Away: Nordic delights
If you’re among the millions of people who were doing something other than reading this blog on the day before Thanksgiving, you may have missed the first installment of Someday vs Right Away, wherein I distract myself (and you!) from all the amazing sweaters we don’t have time to knit by offering up smaller-scale substitutes. Today: the Nordic sweater. Specifically the lopapeysa, national sweater of Iceland. As utterly transfixed as I am by the geometric colorwork on this perfectly unisex gem of a lopi, I won’t be knitting Jón anytime soon. But there are mittens that hold some of the same attraction, despite being very, very different. I’m looking at Pamela Wynne’s geometric, fair-isle Vera Marguerite Mittens (lower left) and Veronik Avery’s Pinion mittens (lower right), which have a lot of the same graphic appeal as Jón, but aren’t stranded knitting. They’re knit sideways in garter-stitch intarsia, so there’s the added bonus of an interesting little construction project.
SIDE NOTE: For anyone in the Bay Area interested in shopping the Fringe Supply Co shelves in person, I’m planning an impromptu Open House for this Saturday afternoon, here in Berkeley. I’ll post full details tomorrow but wanted to give you a quick heads-up!
PREVIOUSLY in Someday vs Right Away: Complex mixed cables
As you may have noticed, my appetite for amazing sweaters is vast — cables, colorwork, clever construction … yes, please. Sadly, my actual allotment of knitting time (not to mention my yarn budget) is scant. I keep pointing out to myself that it’s not like I need all of those sweaters anyway, and besides, where would I put them? And if what I want is to knit them, there are smaller-scale ways of scratching that itch. So I thought this might make a good little occasional series — useful for me and others similarly afflicted. I’m calling it Someday vs Right Away.
At the very top of my list of not-gonna-happen-anytime-soons is Stonecutter, Michele Wang’s remarkable take on the fisherman sweater. If it’s complex mixed cables we’re longing to knit, there are hats galore that might appease us — including two great options from Wool People 6, the most recent Brooklyn Tweed collection: Gentian by Irina Dmitrieva (bottom left) and Bough by Leila Raabe (bottom right). I can only imagine the tremendous sense of accomplishment that would come with a finished Stonecutter, but either of these might provide a rewarding little dose of that. Right?
QUICK NOTE: I’m happy to announce three new Fringe Supply Co. stockists: Apple Yarns in Bellingham WA, Seaside Yarns in Juneau AK and my first international store, Sunspun in Canterbury, Victoria, Australia! Hit ’em up for some Fringe goods, will ya?