Sunday, April 29, 2012

New Knitting - My Teal Lace-Trim Jumper

My new cotton jumper
 This is a jumper I finished in time for the Immrama Launch in Lismore Castle so you've seen it being modelled if you read the blogpost on that event - and it's also on my Facebook profile pic, as it was taken by the pro photographer on the night and the quality is great. Better than my Panasonic Lumix point'n'shoot or my iPhone pix!

I thought to share this project with the various knitaholics among my blog readership, apologies to the rest of you who find knitting up there on a par with watching paint dry, but that's the joys of blogging - anything goes.

I got the pattern from the March 2012 edition of Let's Knit, a UK knitting mag, which was new to me, but has lovely patterns in it. I get a lot of American crochet and knitting mags, and find the crochet ones easier if they're American as I use the American stitches in crochet, which means the UK crochet mags wreck  my head. I have to do a translation of the pattern as I go along, and often mess up, and even though I am totally baffled  by pattern charts in crochet, which the Americans favour, I am getting used to reading knitting charts for lacy projects, as in the cast of this jumper.
Bathroom mirror modelling - to show neck detail!

It was designed by Anniken Allis (her Ravelry link) and it was a first for me, working from a lace chart. Also the shoulders were not cast off, just  left on a stitch holder and they involved the Wrap and Turn technique to slope them, and then they were joined by the 3-needle cast-off (bind-off for my American readers). This is a technique I was used to from my sock knitting, as I always use it for the toes, and my iPhone cosy too. It leaves a lovely neat finish, and I will use it ad infinitum!

Another first for me was knitting the three-quarter length sleeves in the round, which meant they were seamless. I was chuffed with that as it wasn't on the pattern, and I managed to incorporate the sleeve shaping with no problems. I also blocked the pieces, which was  a step I've never done before - all those knitting books are paying off - and it really gave it a neat finish.

Detail of neck back
My favourite part of the jumper was the lace detail, especially on the neck back. It is a little triangle, and it was easy enough to do once I could concentrate on the counting. The same trim was in the pattern for the sleeves, and I adapted the pattern to include the same trim on the front and back hem. I think that enhanced it and it turned out lovely. What do you think?
Note seamless sleeve: pre-blocking, a bit too blue.
Swanky launch at Lismore Castle - with hubby Jan

The yarn was adapted too - as long as it was cotton 4-ply (sportweight for American knitters) I was happy to go along with it. I had lovely teal cotton yarn from Lidl, called Lima - but I only had 250gm. That should have been enough, but that wasn't applicable to this yarn, and I ran out before the front was done! Disaster loomed as Lidl only bring out wool about twice a year and don't always run the same ranges from year to year, so I thought I'd  have to park the project. Then an angel of mercy appeared, in the person of Annie, one of the Tuesday Knitters at Angela's Design Workshop. She heard of my dilemma and offered me a pack of the same colour yarn she had bought last year! It was called Spring, and it was a 5-ply yarn with a slightly larger gauge, however, I decided to continue on the 3.5mm needles and it wasn't discernible. So unless you look with a gimlet eye for flaws, and spot a tiny discrepancy at the neck, it's totally fine by me.
Border detail - colour very hard to capture but this is it!

I wore the jumper for the launch of the Immrama Festival in Lismore Castle, and it got many compliments. The photos from the launch have been in the local papers so everyone can see my lovely jumper. I hope you like it too.


darlin said...

Fantastic job! I love your sweater, or jumper as you call them here in Australia, and it looks fantastic on you! I think that knitting is a dying art, one I only wish I had learned in my youth.


Joyful said...

Your new jumper is very pretty and fits you perfectly. I was interested in your group on Biafra. I was a very young child when I first heard about Biafra but never quite remembered where it was. I just recently read the fictional account of the Biafran struggle. The book is "Half of a Yellow Sun". I'd be interested in hearing more about the group if you have time.

Catherine said...

Thanks Darlin - sorry I didn't reply sooner! Yes, there's a bit of a language barrier with jumpers, sweaters etc. We had an aussie joke - what do you get when you cross a sheep and a kangaroo? A woolly jumper!

Joy - thanks so much - glad you liked Half a Yellow Sun, I read it some years ago and loved it. Our aid agency in Ireland Concern Worldwide (google it!) was founded in Biafra by Missionaries from the Catholic and Anglican and other Protestant missions in that part of Nigeria - so it was a truly multidenominational NGO in the days when there wasn't much ecumenism. It went on to Bangladesh in the wake of the need there when they had the famine and cyclone and then independence war. So it is now 44 yrs old. The priest has since died and our walk in Clare (I blogged on it ) was in his memory. Thanks for your interest. Good luck to you too!
Catherine xxx

Joyful said...

Thank you Catherine for the follow. I'm not following you too. Also thank you for the historical information about the NGO.