Tag Archives: SweetGeorgia

A change is as good as a rest


No, I did not cast on for a sweater, despite all your encouragement (what a bunch of enablers!). Instead, with the holidays in mind, I cast on for another gift, this one in a worsted weight yarn for guaranteed speedy progress and a little break for my hands.

I really love this super-dense ribbing.

I really love this super-dense ribbing.

And you know what? It totally worked. This is Riverbank by Melissa Thomson, which is fun and textural and knitting up super fast. It actually feels a bit like knitting a sweater since I’m using the same yarn as I used for my Woodstove Season cardigan (though in a different colour) and there are a about as many stitches per round. It’s actually the perfect compromise, with the added bonus of meaning I’ll be finished one gift by the end of the week.

SweetGeorgia SW Worsted in China Doll (which guarantees I get  the David Bowie song stuck in my head every time I pick this up.)

SweetGeorgia SW Worsted in China Doll (which guarantees I get the David Bowie song stuck in my head every time I pick this up.)

Of course, it’ll be my speediest gift knit, which means I should probably have saved it until the end, but oh well. It kept me busy and entertained during a very grey and rainy Saturday while L was away, and even though I don’t really wear cowls I’m kind of thinking I’d like one of these for myself! There’s no risk of my stealing this one though, since it’s the exact colour of my winter coat, and that’s just a little too matchy for my taste. Maybe in grey…?

Cheerful toes


It’s a grey, wet, rainy day here in Toronto, so let’s look at some colour.


I actually finished my Monkeys last week, on a day rather like this one, and it was a perfect pairing. I know the wisdom is that during the winter you should avoid knitting grey and white things so your entire world doesn’t become one monochromatic colour, but frankly I find grey spring days far worse than grey winter ones, and the bright colours of these socks were an excellent antidote to all the rain (and friggin’ cold weather) we’ve been getting.


Monkey, of course, is a hugely popular pattern, but I wasn’t a knitter when it was published in 2006, so this is sort of catch-up for me. I will undoubtedly knit another pair – there are books I try to read every year and I suspect that, when it comes to knitting, spring will be greeted by a pair of Monkeys.


Pattern: Monkey by Cookie A. (I used the original pattern, published in Knitty’s Winter 2006 issue, but she rereleased the pattern in her book and offers more sizes, etc. there)
Yarn: SweetGeorgia Tough Love Sock in Honey Fig (I know this yarn has Tough in its name, but honestly, it was wonderful to knit with. It feels strong and like it will last, but it’s still soft on your hands as you knit. I loved it.)
Needles: 2.75 mm
Mods: None. I used a larger needle so the pattern would fit my 9-inch feet, and I used my normal slip-stitch heel instead of the stockinette heel in the pattern, but otherwise, I worked it exactly as written. Details, such as they are, are ravelled here.


I’m including this so you can see what the yarn did in stockinette. I love the way the swoops of the pattern broke up the flashing.

Still in season

So windy.

So windy. Also, it was brighter than it looks, hence the sun glasses. Sorry.

On Thursday it was 20C, this morning it snowed. What I’m saying is, I have been wearing my Woodstove Season cardigan quite a bit and it has been lovely. I’m so used to knitting small things and accessories that to knit an actual garment and then get to wear it around is a whole thing. It took me two months to wear the first socks I knit (I thought it was weird, but I was a fool) but it only took me a week (during which I thought I was going to knit pockets) from finishing to first public wear. I could get used to this whole sweater thing.


It has taken us a while to coordinate, so when L had a minute this afternoon we went for a walk to finally take some proper finished photos. Of course, it was freezing, and insanely windy, but you have to take what you can get. I swear, my hair is usually less wild than this.

It typically flaps less when worn open, but you get the idea.

It typically flaps less when worn open, but you get the idea.

I am really happy with the way this turned out. The sleeves have enough ease to be comfortable with a long-sleeved shirt under them, but they aren’t loose, so they don’t add bulk under a jacket, and the buttons are spaced properly so there isn’t any gaping. I do wish I’d knit the collar a little longer and the body a little shorter, but honestly, those are such minor details that they’re pretty much inconsequential. This is designed to be a long cardigan, and it is, which is something I’m sure I’ll appreciate during the winter (no lower back draft!).

And buttoning the million buttons back up.

And buttoning the million buttons back up.

It hasn’t been long, but so far the yarn seems to be holding up well too. It’s a superwash, so it doesn’t have quite as much structure as an untreated yarn, but there haven’t been any signs of pilling yet and it’s holding its shape just fine.


Crispy crispy chevrons.

Pattern: Woodstove Season by Alicia Plummer
Yarn: SweetGeorgia Superwash Worsted in Cyprus
Needles: 5.5mm for the body, 5mm for the collar and 4.5mm for the cuffs and bottom ribbing
Modifications: The biggest change was really the gauge. I knit this at 4.5 stitches to the inch instead of 4 stitches to the inch because, honestly, I just didn’t like the fabric when it was looser. This led to a false-start because I chose the wrong size initially. What I ended up with was something between the medium and the large, which was perfect. I made my buttonholes every 14th row (every 7th right-side row) instead of every 12th row, in part because my gauge was tighter so I could get away with it and in part because I wasn’t paying attention at the beginning and didn’t want to tink back two rows when it wasn’t going to make a difference anyway. To make my buttonholes work out I added two pattern rows to the body (after the end of the hip shaping and before the ribbing). I also picked up way more stitches in the armpit and decreased quickly and then slowly. All the details are Ravelled here.



This is just a quick post to say that I smashed through my weekend goal on the sweater. Despite a nice day of running around in a beautiful weather on Saturday, I was only a couple of rows shy of being done the body when I went to bed. That was easily taken care of Sunday morning, at which point the interminable bind-off began. Honestly, I think it took me four hours to bind off (probably not, but that is also not as exaggerated as it sounds).

This was the best I could come up with for photos. Sorry. I'm just going to buckle down and finish it and then wear it, which will make it look more like a cardigan and less like squiggly wool.

This was the best I could come up with for photos. Sorry. I’m just going to buckle down and finish it and then wear it, which will make it look more like a cardigan and less like squiggly wool.


The pattern recommends EZ’s sewn bind off and, since I hadn’t tried it before, I figured I’d give it a go (thank you Knitty for the clear instructions). It’s very clever, but holy moly does it take forever. It also eats a lot of yarn and I was briefly worried that I was going to have to join another ball of yarn just to finish the bind off. I made it through though, and the body took almost exactly four skeins of SweetGeorgia Superwash Worsted (there was less than a yard left). Assuming the arms use a skein or so each, this sweater will come in at six skeins, exactly as I first thought. (After finishing the body, I went back and wove in all my ends. For some reason, this is making me feel like a genius.)

And, speaking of arms, although my goal was just to finish the body, I decided to keep trucking and start the arms. I was going to trade in this heavy yarn and return to either Shaelyn or my current socks-in-progress, but dammit, I want this sweater. I’m two thirds finished arm number one, so I would consider this a seriously fruitful knitting weekend.

Looking ahead to 2013


It never really feels like a new year has begun until I have a new day planner. It probably sounds really quaint that I still use paper, but I have tried iCal and Google Calendar and the calendar on my phone and, frankly, I hate them all. I like writing things down and being able to map things out and add Post-It lists, and I really like having them as a record of my year. I don’t keep a diary anymore, so instead I use my day planner to keep track of things and while most of it is boring work stuff, it’s also a record of plans with friends, holidays, and all the fun stuff in my life.

Anyway, now that the organizational side of my brain has the whole year laid out in paper-form, I thought maybe my creative side should try to do a little goal-setting too. I’m not big on resolutions (it seems the point is more to make them than to work toward them), but I like goals (they’re more active and less lofty, it seems to me), so here are a few of mine, in no particular order:

1. Complete a sweater. I came so close with Buckwheat, but the endless stockinette killed me. This year, I want to get past that. I wear a lot of sweaters (pullovers and cardigans) in the winter, fall, and spring, so besides being a milestone in knitting, they’re a super practical addition to my wardrobe.

2. Learn to knit toe-up socks. I knit a lot of socks and generally don’t feel limited by my top-down style. Still, I learned a bunch of skills last year, and I don’t want to stagnate (as if that’s even possible with knitting.)

3. Consider the stash first. Deciding to go on a yarn diet would be pointless, because as soon as I said it I’d itch to buy something. Instead, when starting something new or eyeing a new pattern, I will look to my stash first. I have a lot of awesome yarn there, and it’s easy to forget that when the lure of a new project is dangling in front of me; however, I am running out of space, and want to use the yarn I bought, so it gets first priority. If, though, I don’t have what I need, or there’s a good reason to buy more yarn (I’m on a trip, it’s crazy on sale, whatever) I give myself permission to do so.

4. Be a more creative cook. Our New Year’s Eve dinner party went really well, and I want to have more of them (although maybe with fewer people – cooking for 11 is a lot of work). I don’t cook as much as I used to, and when I do I often make the same things. This year I want to try and branch out, both in terms of what I cook and who I cook for.

5. Publish a couple of patterns. I have a few designs kicking around that I’ve been too lazy to publish, and that’s dumb. This isn’t so much a pride thing as it is about creativity and being part of the larger community, and I want to dive in there.

Alright, that out of the way, here’s what’s on my needles to start 2012:

First up, my Woodstove Season cardigan. This may well be what accomplishes Goal 1, and I really hope it is because I love the design and the wool, and I really want to wear it.

The chevrons are just starting to be visible. (I'm knitting this in SweetGeorgia Superwash Worsted in Cyprus)

The chevrons are just starting to be visible. (I’m knitting this in SweetGeorgia Superwash Worsted in Cyprus)

I picked up some Tosh Sock at Gaspereau Valley Fibres when I was at home over the holidays (I did a bit of yarn shopping, actually, but we can talk about that later) and after I finished my Cranberry Biscotti Socks, I cast on for new ones. I hemmed and hawed about the pattern, but after casting on for three different ones, I settled on Hermione’s Everyday Socks since they were simple and pretty. I like them a lot.

Tosh Sock in Jade.

Tosh Sock in Jade.

Lastly, this clearly isn’t quite on my needles yet, but this yarn will become the Moose Gloves you see in the photo (no one on Ravelry has made this pattern, so there’s no link).

This is more yarn purchased at Gaspereau – this time New England Shetland in Red and Charcoal. The gloves will be grey with red moose.

This is more yarn purchased at Gaspereau – this time New England Shetland in Red and Charcoal. The gloves will be grey with red moose and patterning. (The red is only slightly less vibrant in person.)

L has wanted these gloves since before he bought me Norwegian Mittens and Gloves (they are why he bought it) and his birthday is coming up, so I’m going to buckle down and knit them up. The pattern calls for sport-weight, but since they all run a little small, I’m going to hold this fingering weight Shetland double. In my head, this is a perfect solution – what do you think?

So, that’s three projects on the go, plus five goals – not a bad start to the year. How’s your 2013 outlook?