Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Cosy Cable Cardi

I am so proud of this cardigan!  It was both a joy and a challenge to knit.

Every step of the way it was interesting and I always had a sense of accomplishment as I watched the cables intertwine.

This is such a beautiful pattern.  It is called "Rowe" and was written by Michele Wang when she worked with Brooklyn Tweed.

Here is the story of how I chose my yarn and colour.

I had read a number of reviews on the specified Brooklyn Tweed yarn called Shelter.  Many praised it heavily for the sumptuous colour range (40 colours) and of course it has a "coolness" factor because of the minimalist style of photography and the company is headed by a male knitter.  But it also has many negative reviews that say the yarn breaks easily under normal tensioning whilst knitting.  But my main reason for not using the specified yarn was the inhibiting price.  £12.50 for 50g.  For my size I would have needed 19 of these = £237 for the jumper!!!!  Yikes!
So instead I found Knit Picks Wool of the Andes.  It is also a worsted weight yarn but is only £1.79 for a 50g ball.  Which means the total price of the jumper would be £34 !!! (plus free postage to the UK) Plus there were only positive reviews on the yarn strength and the best part was 101 colour choices.
So I spent hours pouring over the sample colours and decided to order a few of my favourite colours.  I needed to see them up close and swatch them.
My top 8 favourite colours

In the end I narrowed it down to these two - Dove Heather and Mineral Heather.  So I knit up a sample swatch and carried them around with me for a few days, looking at them in different lights.
Mineral Heather was the winner!

My guage matched the pattern and so I started on the sleeves, then the fronts and finally the intricate back piece.  

The collar took a very long time but I stuck with it and enjoyed a few TV box sets whilst knitting the ribbed collar.
I am really impressed by the yarn and the pattern. I would even go so far as to say that I would happily knit this up again.

Sunday, 25 June 2017

Evening dress

A niece was getting married and as soon as the invitation arrived I knew exactly what fabric I wanted to use!
Her theme colours were navy blue and hot pink.
I had purchased this floaty, diaphanous fabric from a small shop on Sydney Road in Melbourne for under AU$5 a metre.
I was planning to combine two different patterns, one for the bodice and one for the skirt until I saw this pattern on McCall's instagram account: M7537.  Of course the model photo is very difficult to make out the pattern lines but at least the illustrated dresses explain what the final dress will look like.

I was going to lengthen the skirt but instead ended up using a different skirt pattern: the maxi skirt from B5987.

A few other reviews of this McCall's pattern have commented that the bodice is very low.  IT IS. I really wasn't comfortable exposing cleavage at a wedding so I attempted to cut the fabric out with the curve of the neckline a bit higher and I raised the stitch line higher but I do feel that it is still a bit too low.  I will be making this dress again and I think I will redraft the curve of the neckline and facing to join one another much higher, at least 4".

Due to the floatiness of the fabric, the waistband that is supposed to rouche naturally just flopped down. So once the dress was finished I stitched lines across the middle to allow the folds to fall in smaller strands.  This definitely worked.

I did have to wear a slip under this dress but it was only a knee-length slip.  I plan to make a full length slip that also wraps around each boob so that I am completely covered.  But that's a plan for the future.  All in all, I did love wearing this dress and the floatiness was a dream to swan about in!

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Bonnie's Quilt

I feel this sewing project has been my nemesis these past few years but at last I have defeated it and completed it. May I introduce "Bonnie's Quilt."

I began thinking about this quilt in 2013 and then started working on it in 2014.  At last it is finished and gifted in 2016!

I wrote about my original plans for this quilt in March 2014 here.  That post includes her answers to my questions that provided the inspiration and direction for this quilt. It is mostly done using a fabric line called "Color Me Happy" by V&Co.

The hardest part for me was to keep the work random.  I struggled a lot with fitting blocks together and there was A LOT of unpicking involved!  I took lots of photos during the process, thinking that I would want to write a "how to" blog post, but now that it is finally finished I would rather just leave it as it is.  An entire random quilt.

AND NOW my brother has requested a quilt !!!!

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