Currently on My Needles

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Since we started Stranded, I haven’t had as much time to work on designs for Untangling Knots, but I’ve been slowly working on a few in between other projects. This particular one feels really satisfying to knit because it’s a worsted-weight cropped cardigan, so I can see I’m making progress on it, even when I just knit a few rows here and there.

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Initially I was planning on this being the Fall KAL pattern, but as you can see, that’s not going to happen! The Fall KAL is right around the corner, and I haven’t even decided what to do with the button bands on this cardigan. But have no fear! I have another pattern for the Fall KAL that’s ready and waiting for September.

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I still have a chunk of the second sleeve left to knit, and then I need to make up my mind about the button bands. I’m debating between twisted rib to match the bottom band and garter stitch to coordinate with the garter ridges that break up the stockinette and lace stripes on the body. Garter stitch would certainly be the easier choice, but I’m not sure if it will look as neat as I’d like. I think the only solution is to give them a try and make up my mind when I can really see them in context. What do you think?

New Pattern Salal in Stranded Magazine

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It feels like it’s been forever since I last released a cropped cardigan with seamless set-in sleeves, so I’m really happy to be able to share my new pattern with you. It’s called Salal, and it’s in the Mild Weather 2016 issue of Stranded Magazine that came out yesterday. The construction is my favorite style. It’s knit from the top down, starting with the upper back. The fronts are picked up from the CO edge of the back, and then the body is joined in once piece at the underarms. Sleeves are picked up from the body and shaped using short rows.

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I originally came up with this stitch pattern for a panel on a mini sweater to teach a class on working with sweater patterns, and I fell in love with it. I was looking for any excuse to use it, and I realized it would fit well around the neckline and shoulders of a cardigan. My initial swatch was in red, but after switching it out for green, I had a nice, leafy, evergreen look to fit the issue’s Pacific Northwest theme. I was lucky enough to get to use yarn from a PNW dyer, Cedar House Yarns, based out of Bellingham, WA. The colorway is called Moss, and I think it perfectly suits the texture of the lace pattern.

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In addition to my pattern, the issue has patterns from Tin Can Knits, Lee Meredith, Cory Ellen Boberg, Ruth Garcia-Alcantud, and Erin Birnel. It also has some great articles and tutorials. I interviewed Spincycle Yarns; Caitlin Ffrench wrote about finding dyestuffs locally; Lee Meredith created tutorials for three-needle techniques; Jeanne Sauvage wrote a blackberry cake recipe that can be made with or without gluten; and Bonnijo Chervenock designed a cross stitch pattern based on an Elizabeth Zimmermann quote. The issue is available for $16, and you can find it on Ravelry or Stranded’s website. Each issue is only available for one year, so get yours while you can.

My 2016 OAL Outfit

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Yesterday was the last day of the Outfit Along, and this is what my outfit looked like at the end of the day. Pre-shrinking my fabric and cutting out the pattern pieces was as far as I got with my Hollyburn skirt. Sewing is unfortunately not as portable as knitting, so I couldn’t take my skirt out and about with me like I did my Zinone, and most of my time at home was spent working on the finishing touches of the amazing new issue of Stranded Magazine that’s coming out soon. I should have deliberately scheduled sewing time instead of expecting to have free time to fit it in. Oh, well! Now I know better for next year.

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I did finish my Zinone without any trouble. I used Quince & Co. Sparrow once again, and I knit the full length option with a partial lace back, so I could wear it to my part-time office job. It’s not blocked in these photos, so it’s pretty stiff and crinkly and shorter in length than it will be after I send it through the wash and lay it out to dry.

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So that’s it for the OAL 2016! Be sure to visit the Untangling Knots group on Ravelry and admire all of the completed outfits in the OAL FO thread.

Not Done Yet

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There are less than two weeks left of the Outfit Along, and I’m starting to feel the pressure! I’m on the hip shaping of my Zinone, so that’s on track even if it’s not done yet, but my skirt is currently just a big wrinkly piece of uncut fabric. This is the first year where I haven’t finished either of my pieces this late in the game. I still think I can get my whole outfit done by the deadline, but it’s going to be a challenge!

Black Simplicity 1426

It’s probably not a huge surprise that of the Vintage Pledge patterns I picked out, the first one I sewed was the one I said I’d only make after doing some more practical ones. I just couldn’t resist this fun little top, particularly after I made plans to go to the Viva Las Vegas Rockabilly Weekend.

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Marie from A Stitching Odyssey, who co-hosts The Vintage Pledge, invited me to share one of my projects on her blog as part of the Vintage Pledge July extravaganza, and I wrote about my Simplicity 1426. I chose view C and only made a few minor modifications when I sewed up my top. I swapped out the buttons for hooks and eyes with a decorative frog closure over them, and I added a some elastic to the band at the front. You can read more about it and see more pictures in my guest post on A Stitching Odyssey.