Sunday, January 28, 2007

My first FO of the year!

Well Menja is finally done and wearable! I do love it, even though the collar still succumbs to gravity, and it's toasty warm too. Good thing too, because we got hit by a cold spell this week, and I really need the wool sweater. Here's a couple of pics:
Pattern: Menja by Elsebeth Lavold, fron the Viking Knits Collection Volume One.
Yarn: Knitpicks Merino Style color Storm
Mods: none, but I checked the errata at the last minute and I'm glad I did. There was an error in the book about the hemline needle size.
If I could do it again what would I do different?
Well, I didn't like the way the pattern said to do the raglan decreases: decrease 2 sts every 4 rows. I thought it looked bulky and sloppy, but luckily it's all hidden by the enormous collar. I would have decreased 1 st every second row, which I believe is the 'standard' way to do it.
I also would have swatched the collar on needles 1 and 2 sizes smaller, because my collar was much longer than the space around the neckline. I also would have bought an extra ball of yarn, because I ran out while working on the collar, and Thrace totally bailed me out with leftovers from a baby sweater made in the same yarn, same color. I am deeply grateful. So if anyone out there wants to make this one, GET FIBER INSURANCE!!!
Comments about the yarn:
I like it very much. Extremely soft, excellent price, great color, and it shows texture beautifully.
Comments about the garment:
I'm not a big fan of pullovers, but I can live with this one, because of the open neck i.e. I don't feel like I'm being choked by the sweater. But the neckline is extremely open, which means it's harder to get a shirt under there to protect the garment from the dreaded white antiperspirant
stains. I bought a black ballet-style neck extremely tight shirt from H&M in anticipation of this problem, and it's ok... but it's not great. Still, I am not a fashionista, and I care more about preserving the sweater then about some black shirt peeking out around the neckline. I love the drape and waist shaping, and the way the hemline and sleeves are slightly flared. The most important feature: it's warm!

Now for the WIPs:
Here's the blue cabled tweed sweater. I think I should name it, how bout Eva? From now on, it's Eva. This is the left front, and I think I could finish it today. Then the plan is to do the right front, and while finishing the right sleeve, block and seam the back and fronts. then while the sleeves are blocking, finish the button bands and shawl collar. I think I may be able to finish it in a month or so, now that I've finished the back it's a pretty fast knit. Now I have to decide which of the buttons I've aquired over the Christmas break will look best with this sweater. Tudor rose metal buttons or really old-looking bone buttons with knotwork-style carved in detail. More on that later, when it's time to work the buttonholes. Maybe I'll hold a vote, to try
to lure some of you out of lurking.

Now for a flash of some stash:
These are what I aquired from virtual yarns, the hank at the back is Alice Starmore Hebridean 3ply (DK weight) color Erica from the Moor and Mountain collection. This hank is my fiber insurance for Shedir, and the color is fabulous. Slightly tweedy, with flecks of grey and fuschia with some cream halo. I love this yarn, it is a complete pleasure to work with. The next two hanks from the back to the front are Hebridean 2 ply (fingering weight), colors Mara and Pebble Beach from the Sea and Shoreline collection. Mara is not tweedy, and Pebble Beach has fabulous flecks of bluish and reddish tones. They are destined to become Eunny's Endpaper Mitts some time in the next year.

That purple tweed cabled number I made last year that I gave to my mom, and was stolen by my grandmother (nobody minds because she loves it), is causing quite the stir at the post-retirement facility she is settling into. People are noticing the unusual design and interesting cable patterns!



thraceknits said...

Menja looks great! Glad I could help with the yarn supply.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the tips - I've been wanting to make this one for a while now.