Wednesday, 2 December 2020

Cozy Boxy Structures

I moved on Friday but I didn't really move in unless you count a completely stuffed garage. All of my studio and most of the household stuff, including at least half of my furniture, are stacked in there because on Monday the work crew showed up to start renovations. December is not the month I'd have chosen only renovations before unpacking are far better than after.

With renovating, I need to be available to answer questions and give direction but I can't really do much except sit in the middle of the room, stay out of the way, and try not to talk too much while paying by the hour. Only, as my oldest grandson once said, I talk a lot so I absolutely need keep busy work like knitting. 

In terms of creative outlets, sewing was first. And then, in my early twenties, I learned how to knit from my co-workers at a hair salon. We'd sit side-by-side in the narrow back room and knit between customers. After I left that job, there was a long break between projects until I started knitting again about ten years ago as a way to get out, be with other creatives, and socialize. And to keep busy.

Although my knitting skills are quite developed, my preference is for simple pieces and my favourite stitches are ribbing and seed stitch. When I say that, most knitters cringe. Those are typically their least favourite stitches. I think the difference is that my knitting style is continental with a twist which is not only a quick method but one that makes the purl stitch so much easier. 





Lately, I've been drawn toward cozy boxy structures like the Sugar On Top pullover. The pattern sample is knit with three different colours and it's lovely however...




... another Ravelry member, Cat Reading, knit her version in one colour and that seemed more me plus I had enough Cascade 220 in stash to make it work. YES YES!




My style of knitting makes it near to impossible to achieve the required gauge on most projects so rather than stress out, I tend to take the more organic approach of knitting a swatch in the chosen yarn, using various needle sizes, until I achieve the hand I like and then I recalculate the math to work with the shape of the garment. In this case, I also widened the front and back to match the measurements of a similar pullover I already had in my closet so, in the end, my piece is more inspired by then knit from the pattern. Cozy, boxy, with the same stitch pattern. 




This detail image gives you a better idea of how the stitches look. The ribbed band is 3" on the front as shown and 4 1/2" on the back for a softer hemline. The board I'm using is unfortunately no longer available. I got it twenty-eight years ago at the International Quilt Festival in Boston as a sample from a supplier when writing my out-of-print book Setting Up Your Sewing Space. I loved the surface so much that I bought another this size for the studio and a smaller one for travelling. Designed for sewing, they are also perfect for blocking. I'm holding on tightly to the ones I have. 




My too large and more suitable for plants spray bottle is somewhere in a box in the garage as yet to be unpacked so I went to the drug store, looked through the beauty and cleaning supplies, and chose a bottle the right size without even looking at the contents. This one was perfect especially as that shade of green is one of my favourites. It turned out to be a product for eliminating smoke odors which I didn't need and to have a fine mister which I do. With the label pealed off, it's now my blocking bottle, also useful for damp pressing.

Only one side of the pullover fit on the board at a time so I have the other side and two very short sleeves to block before sewing the parts together, adding the neckband, and finishing the pullover. I'll post that picture when it's done. 

Do you knit? What are your favourite stitches?

Talk soon - Myrna

Grateful - out of the box thinking

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