Vintage Pledge Project #1

After finishing my circle skirt, I was feeling very confident and enthusiastic about my sewing, so I decided to join A Stitching Odyssey’s Vintage Pledge. This year I’m going to try to sew at least two of my vintage and vintage reproduction sewing patterns. It’s a small number, but as you probably have noticed, I don’t sew too often, and it fits well with my goal to sew at least two dresses this year.

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For my first vintage pledge project, I decided to go with Butterick 5748, a repro pattern from the 60s. My mom has made me this dress before, and it surprisingly fit me with no alterations. Sadly, however, it’s a bit on the snug side after all of the holidays treats I enjoyed in December, so I’m sewing one size larger for my version. I’m using some quilting cotton and thinking of this as a wearable muslin because there’s a slight chance that I need to do a more complex alteration than simply bumping up a size. I’m also going to have to change up the skirt. I started with three yards of fabric, and the pattern calls for more than four. Last weekend I cut and marked the bodice and I’m waiting until I’ve sewn up the bodice before I decide what to do with the skirt. With those pieces cut out, I have more than 2 yards of fabric which is plenty for a full gathered skirt, but I might also try to find a way to make a shorter circle skirt work.

Sleeve #1 and KAL News

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I got my first sleeve off the needles! My pink Chuck is coming along nicely, although now it’s on hold while I quickly knit up a hat. I need my 5mm needles with a 16 inch cable for my hat projects, and I don’t own very many duplicate needles. Not having duplicates means that I have extra motivation to finish a project before I cast on a new one, but it also can force me to do some awkward project-juggling. I’m hoping to have my hat done and Chuck back on my needles later this week.

Speaking of later this week, on Wenesday in the Untangling Knots group on Ravelry I’m hosting hour long online Knit Nights in the chat room to talk about the KAL, works in progress, future projects, and anything else that comes up! There will be two because I couldn’t decide on one timezone to cater to. The first will be 12-1 pm PT (8-9 pm GMT), and the second will be 6-7 pm PT (9-10 pm ET). You can find out more in the announcement post.

Plaid Wool Circle Skirt

I’ve got one more old project to share with you, and this one happens to also be inspired by Call the Midwife. Around the same time that I decided I needed a burgundy cardigan, I realized that a plaid, wool, circle skirt would fit well into my wardrobe. One of the characters on that show wears one when she’s off work, and I fell in love with it and wanted to make my own. I told my mom that I was on the lookout for the right fabric for it, and she bought me this plaid wool for my birthday in 2013.

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The wool sat around in my stash until September or October of 2014 when I dug the fabric out to finally sew it into a skirt. I got most of it assembled, but then I put it aside to work on my Halloween costume. And then I didn’t sew for months. I finally got it back out last Saturday to finish it up. It just needed me to insert a zipper, fold over the waistband, and add a hem. I did a simple hem using bias tape, and the skirt was done in only a few hours. It’s silly how long it took me to finish it when there was so little left to do, but at least it’s done now. I suspect that it will get worn quite a bit.

My Finished Giant Granny Square

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This week is going to be full of old projects that I finally finished! I started this blanket a really long time ago in late April of 2013. I was working at a magazine at the time, and things at work had gotten pretty stressful so I was usually too fried to want to work on something that required thinking. This blanket was the perfect project because I just had to crochet around and around without ever doing any math, counting anything, or worrying about fit.

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After I started designing full time, I didn’t work on this blanket very often because I was always busy with other projects. In 2014, I think I only crocheted five or six rounds, although it’s worth pointing out that five or six rounds towards the end took a very long time. The last two rounds of the blanket which I did recently took up almost an entire skein of yarn. I had been hoping to get a full repeat of the white stripe and a full repeat of a yellow stripe, but I ran out of white yarn before I could do the third round of the stripe, and I knew then that I didn’t have enough yellow yarn to squeeze out two rounds.

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It truly is just a giant granny square. Here in the center, you can see that I started out the way you would for a normal sized granny square, and I just kept going until I ran out of yarn. If I remember correctly, I used two skeins each of the three colors, and then I believe I used seven skeins of the white. I didn’t buy enough white in the beginning, and I had to run out and get more. I really underestimated how much yarn I needed. The yarn is Cascade 128, and I did the whole thing with a 8mm hook. I think my gauge did change a little because when I hang the blanket, the center does bubble out a bit, but when the blanket is laid flat, you can’t really tell. The whole thing ended up being a few inches over four feet square. It’s just the right size for curling up on my love seat.

A Burgundy Cardigan

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I’m so happy to finally have this cardigan done! It took me over a year, but here it is! The sweater is super cozy and a delight to wear. I just need to add buttons and take proper pattern photos before I can add it into my wardrobe.

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After watching a bunch of Call the Midwife, I got it into my head that I needed a burgundy, v-neck cardigan in my wardrobe. I can’t remember when I bought the yarn, but I picked out this beautiful Ultra Alpaca Light, and I started playing with swatches in October 2013. I knit the body in November and December of that year in between other work projects, but I realized that I wouldn’t get this sweater done before spring showed up, so I put it away and moved on to other projects.

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When the weather started cooling down last fall, I knew it was time to get back to work on this project, so I dug it back out and managed to finish it. I was hoping to get it done before 2014 ended, and I got so close! I was working on the button band at my New Year’s Eve party, but I ended up setting it aside and working on a more simple project before I finished it. After that, I took my time finishing the band and weaving in the ends and waited for a dry day to block it. But it’s my first sweater of 2015 and a great start for the year!

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The pattern is still in the editing stages and needs to be test knit, but it should be out sometime next month!