Sunday, December 30, 2007

gansey, part 1

About a week before Christmas, I started working on a gansey for my three-year-old. I'm mostly following Knitting Ganseys by Beth Brown-Reinsel, with patterns out of Cornish Guernseys and Knit-Frocks by Mary Wright. I'm using the Northcott pattern for the main body, and a seed stitch variation for the upper parts of the sleeves. The yarn is a wonderful, silky soft BFL/merino/kid mohair blend that's a natural brown.

I first heard of ganseys when my husband bought one on our honeymoon. His is very plain, with some decorative stitches at the shoulder and armhole only. Like his, my kiddo's gansey is reversible (the neckline is unshaped, so there is no front or back side, so it will be easier for him to dress himself) and has triangular neck gussets. And of course, it has my favorite feature, the diamond-shaped underarm gusset.

I've made the body and started one sleeve, but somehow I strained my arm on Christmas Day and haven't been able to knit since. My shoulder hurts and I've got a bad case of tendonitis--it's not just near the elbow, but along the whole length of my forearm. I'm going to lay off the knitting for another week and see if it improves. I've been icing the tendon and doing stretches, but I think time is going to be the real healer here.

Monday, December 17, 2007

to shrug or not to shrug

I think I'm giving up on the aran cabled shrug. My yarn (silk/wool/cashmere Noro Kabuto in a rich claret color) is gorgeous, but it's got that thick/thin thing going, and also has some color variegation so the finer details like the double seed stitch just aren't showing up. In addition, it occurred to me that maybe a petite person shouldn't wear something that has an 8" wide cable section going across her shoulders. I think I might get overwhelmed by it.

I do have some natural bulky BFL that I could dye, if I really wanted to knit the shrug. The patterning would show up so much better with a smooth-textured yarn. But the thought of dyeing 2.5 lbs of yarn and then spending 30 hours knitting it up, only to find that it looked terrible on me ... well, that thought definitely gives me pause. I'm going to knit a little more of it, stretch it across my shoulder, and see if that gives me a better sense of how it might look.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

the mysteries of postal delivery

It would actually cost me less to ship this little cozy to Australia than to someplace in the U.S. How strange is that?