Oh right, this is a knitting blog

Believe it or not, I have been knitting, though it seems I don’t have much to show for it.

I’ve made it past the ribbing on my Summertime Tunic, finally, and am now onto what many have lovingly described as “miles of stockinette.” It’s true that this is a good activity while reading or watching TV, but I do get a little tired of it.

The ribbing looks different from most 1×1 ribbing I’ve done, and I suspect this is to do with knitting in the round. It looks better when stretched, so I’m not worried.

As for the baby sweater (see how the “baby set” has been temporarily downgraded?), I regret to say that no progress has been made.

This is what I was greeted with when I attempted to extract it from my knitting pile. That is parts of the top-down raglan mingled with a very sad, frustrating attempt to unravel the first sweater I knit with this yarn (also, the nicely-matched button thread I found back in May).

Upon dissection, it reveals two separate entities: yarn spaghetti and the sweater. The yarn spaghetti took an inordinate amount of time and blue language, and as it turns out the yarn is all frazzled and strangely textured anyway. I’m not sure I’d want to knit with it again, as I can’t imagine it having adequate stitch definition or a nice appearance.

The sweater itself suffers a major problem. Can you see where I picked the stitches back up for the sleeve? Not a pretty join.

I thought that maybe I could cover that with some embroidery, but I realize the underarm is a disaster as well. It’s possible to rectify it somewhat from the inside, but I worry that I won’t have enough yarn to finish this and the second sleeve anyway.

Mostly, since I will probably have to buy still more yarn for this project anyway, I’m tempted to knit a blanket instead, even though its intended recipient is well past the swaddling stage. Toddlers use blankets, right? An additional concern is that if I don’t get this sweater to them almost immediately, baby Gabriel will never have a chance to wear it before he outgrows it – it may be too small already.

So, quite a pickle, and not one that I’m looking forward to sorting out. Add to this the fact that I can’t find my fifth DPN, and this is one aggravated knitter.

Cast On: Summertime Tunic

Though I can’t imagine I’ll have time to finish this anytime soon, I was happy to finally cast on for the Summertime Tunic.

At this point I’ve got about an inch done. I’m still in love with the yarn and I really like the way the stitches are coming out. I’m stricken by how closely the yarn color resembles my light blue stitch markers.

I also like the way it looks against my brown dress, which is giving me ideas for the ribbons…

I got gauge

Because I really am trying to improve myself as a knitter, I did something fairly out of character: I knit a gauge swatch for the Summertime Tunic. Further, I checked both the stitch count and the row count.

I wanted to make sure that the yarn actually held up to the gauge it claimed to be (yes indeed – you’ll have to take my word for it), and I also wanted to see what it felt like to knit with.

It is a dream. I love the color, which is called Sky Blue. I can just imagine how it will look against a nice Mediterranean tan. I’m happy with the stitch definition, and the feel of the squishy, cuddly yarn in my hands is fantastic.

The best part? It’s Red Heart Soft Baby. Each skein is 575 yards and costs $4.19. This means I will be able to knit the body of my Summertime Tunic for $8.38 (and I got free shipping). I can’t really argue with that.

A Diversion: the Lippitt Halter

Since I am a notorious project starter and chronic unfinisher, it is probably problematic to have allowed myself to cast on for another project already.

However, I had a couple hundred yards of a rather lovely green yarn which I’d purchased as an alternate for the Cabled Baby Set, and I was itching for a cute summer knit. (Color is of course way off in these photos)

Enter the Lippitt halter, a pretty sexy Y-neck tank from Berroco.

This is totally out of character for me in every conceivable way, since I almost never wear sleeveless shirts, let alone ones that reveal all of my shoulders and arms. I guess this is a bit of a carrot for my upper-arm workouts and motivation for continued vigilance in dieting.

At this point I am 9-1/2 inches up on the back, and it seems to be moving steadily along.

I’m intrigued by the structure and I sincerely hope it will fit well without too much alteration. I think it will look really lovely with a dark wood ring at the neck, giving it a kind of earthy flavor. I’m also debating using a slightly larger ring to show more of it, though I worry what kind of structural effect that may have.

My only question is to do with the name. Some internet research revealed a family of senators from Rhode Island and the Lippitt Morgan breed of horses, neither of which scream halter top to me.