Wednesday, February 26, 2014

FO: Mitered Detail Cardigan


Success!  At least one of last week's WIPs is complete!
Originally meant for the Ravellenics (Ravelry Olympics-watching related activities), the "Mitered Detail Cardigan" project really pushed me to learn how to better use my knitting machine.  Originally, this yarn was going to be Mary Anarella's lovely "Simplicity" cardigan, but as my belly kept growing, I thought, "that look's just not going to work on me." So, I set about designing this cardigan while keeping "Simplicity" as a visual inspiration, but sharpening it up a bit for pregnancy and after-pregnancy use.  Here's the result...


The front diagonal details were done using short rows.  So fast!


Back diagonal details done by transferring stitches.  Not so fast.


The folded over border was knit in two halves on the machine and then stitched together at the back of the neck.  

That turning purl row, which is so simple to do by hand, was kind of a nightmare to do by KM (knitting machine).  See, I didn't know that there was a difference between stitch transfer tools and garter bars.  There is a difference.  A big difference.  These large transfer tools are simply giant combs that hold stitches and help you move them over, and they have a tiny hole like a small transfer tool.  

Garter bars on the other hand, allow you to, not just move the stitches, but also flip them over and efficiently create a garter stitch.  I did the first side's turning row by hand-manipulating each stitch individually with a tappet tool.  It took me over an hour.  I did the other side by attempting to use the transfer tool as a garter bar, and failed.  I ended up holding the transfer comb horizontally directly under the hooks of the machine and individually lifting the back of each stitch onto its respective hook.  Faster than tappet tool, but not very much fun.  ((insert hysterical laughter here))


The back mitered square detail was not done with short rows which were fast and lovely by KM.  Each of those centered double decreases was done using the stitch transfer combs I mentioned previously.  All the stitches on each side were moved over by one toward the center where they met in the middle.  It took me 3 hours to do each side.  My friends at the local SnB laughed at me and said it would have been faster by hand.  True.  But, I learned how to use my machine with confidence!  That was worth it, right?  How else was I going to learn other than by challenging myself to do ridiculous things under an unrealistic artificial deadline?  What's that you say?  Was that reasonable advice you just gave me? Pshaw.  Reason-schmeason.



Project Title: Mitered Detail Cardigan
Designer: Me  (using Simplicity by Mary Anarella & 128-14 Jacket in ”Fabel” by DROPS design as inspiration)
Yarn: Wollmeise Lace in "Nobody's Perfect - Spice Market"
Amount Used: 281g of 300g skein
Machine Tension Settings: T6.75 for main knitting, T6 for edging
Main Gauge: 26 sts x 40 rows = 4"
Border Gauge: @T6, 24 sts x 50 rows = 4" (blocked to emphasize horizontal stretch)

Updated to add:  the refined Machine Knitting pattern can now be found here on Ravelry.

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