Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Strokkur

I didn't have time to blog about my Olympics knitting project before I left for Las Vegas. I did manage to finish it two days before I drove to Spokane, but I wanted to wash and block it before I took pictures. I had originally planned to use some souvenir stash yarn from Scotland to knit a cabled sweater for my Olympic project. That plan got shelved the minute I saw this blog post by Ella Gordon.

I was still determined to use stash yarn, and remembered I had some Beaverslide I had purchased some time ago to knit Blaithin. (After hearing about the amount of finishing required for this sweater from a friend who knit the child's version, I had abandoned that project before it even got started.) I dug and dug and dug but could not find the yarn. It was sort of making me crazy. I knew I had it. My stash is fairly well organized. Yes, there are four tubs of yarn, but how hard could it be to locate multiple skeins of a distinctively coloured worsted weight yarn? When I finally did find it, a full three stash dives and a few bad words later, I realized why it had been so difficult to spot. Hint: when you reuse oversize Ziplock plastic bags to store your yarn, scratch out the permanent marker with the name of the previous contents on it.

Once I found the yarn I checked and double checked the yardage requirements. According to my calculations I had about 100 more yards than I needed. I cast on with confidence. That confidence held until about halfway through the second sleeve. Suddenly it was looking like I had a lot more knitting to do, as in the whole yoke and the neck, and not very much yarn to do it with. I fretted. I tried to tell myself all would be well. Then I fretted some more. I'm not very good at playing yarn chicken.

Finally, after another day and a lot more yarn had been consumed, I caved. I knew I had just barely enough time to order one extra skein (thankfully, Beaverslide still had the same dye lot available), and have it shipped to my mom's. I could finish the sweater the day I got down and still get my self-awarded Olympic Gold Medal. I breathed a knitter's sigh of relief and knit on. Then something strange happened. For the first, and probably only time in my life, I was annoyed to find out I really had had enough yarn to finish the sweater. Just barely. But there had been enough. This meant I had spent money on a skein of yarn I didn't need, and the Express Post fee to go along with it.

So here, sandwiched between the Sochi Olympics and Paralympics, is my Strokkur, a design by Ysolda Teague.


The sweater turned out to be a perfect fit. I count this more as luck than skill. No matter what needle size I tried I simply couldn't get gauge. In the end I went with the gauge I was actually getting and going down a size in the pattern to compensate.


This was my first time knitting a Ysolda Teague pattern, but it won't be the last. She is a brilliant designer, and the pattern was well-written. Here's a close-up of the colourwork in the yoke.


I am so happy with this sweater I'm willing to let go of my annoyance over ordering that extra yarn. I have a skein of cranberry Beaverslide too, and I'm sure with the extra blue skein and the leftover green and white there must be something I can make for Lucy. I would love to hear your suggestions!

25 comments:

  1. A lovely jumper....you deserve to be happy. Maybe the leftover yarn would make a pinafore dress for Lucy. We used to love putting our daughter in dresses for special occasions.

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  2. Gorgeous sweater! Unfortunately I ran right over to look at the Beaverslide site and now I want to order every one of their delicious colours... - Ruth

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  3. It's beautiful. The colors are gorgeous and it fits you perfectly. Well done, Kristie.

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  4. Lovely sweater and such a good fit. Why not a matching sweater for Lucy. I know the frustration of ordering extra yarn then not needing it. I did the same thing with the yarn for the cot blanket. Needless to say I have more than enough to knit at least another.......

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  5. Oh, bother! That is a situation. Hahaha. Maybe you can make a hat to coordinate with your sweater, now that you have an extra skein of yarn. :-D

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  6. Oh, I love it! The color is beautiful, the fit is perfect ... nice job! I totally know what you mean, though, about the annoyance of the extra yarn. Been there, done that ...

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  7. The sweater is really lovely. Great colours! Amazing feat to use the yarn you had on hand so perfectly.
    I think those colours would be beautiful in a cardigan for Lucy as well.
    LisaRR

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  8. Oh my gosh, it's gorgeous. What a beautiful colour! Definitely gold-medal-worthy.

    I too vote for a little cardigan for Lucy, with some fun colourwork at yoke and hem. :)

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  9. It looks great Kristie, I really like the colour combination. Hope that you find something to make with the additional yarn! xx

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  10. What a pretty sweater Kristie; I love that shade of blue. While I don't knit, I have been known to go out and buy extra DMC cross-stitch threads only to find they were not needed! You are a very fast knitter, so I'm sure you'll use up the extra wool - maybe something small like mittens for Lucy :)

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  11. A lovely design on a great sweater. I think I'd use the extra yarn for a scarf!

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  12. Ysolda just came out with a lovely baby-kids cardigan called Wee Liesl, I will be making one for my 2 1/2 year old granddaughter and her new little sister due in July.
    Love your sweater.
    Ann

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  13. The sweater is lovely--and you did the right thing. Playing chicken is never a good idea. Gauge???

    Thank you, Kristie! I think I might be having a harder time recovering than my wife is. :)

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  14. This is a gorgeous sweater Kristie. I just love the tiny specks of colour in the blue yarn. Maybe you could make a matching hat and scarf for yourself? It look cold enough on your photos. Cx

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  15. A nice jumper. Well done.

    Thank you. Love love, Andrew. Bye.

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  16. Great sweater. it is nice to see you with your hair down :) !

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  17. Beautiful sweater! And I love your hair--the shorter length suits you.
    I vote for a baby Strokkur for Lucy, to match her grandmother : ).
    Erin in PA

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  18. your sweater turned out fabulous ~ love the colourwork in the yolk ! maybe you can knit a pair of fingerless gloves or a tam with the extra wool ♥
    have a great weekend kristie.

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  19. I LOVE this sweater! And I'm making the same suggestion for the rest of your yarn as above ... a baby one like her grandmother's for Lucy :)

    Looks like you had a fun time in Vegas!

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  20. Oh my goodness! The sweater is amazing, it fits you perfectly! I love the color work, you did a fantastic job.
    Hugs,
    Meredith

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  21. Your sweater is beautiful. It's just the sort I would enjoy wearing.

    Karen

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  22. Beautiful! And the colors you chose are brilliant!

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  23. This is gorgeous! a perfect sweater!

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  24. Ugh, this is the thing that plagues me the most about knitting. That feeling that there isn't enough and see-sawing back and forth on getting more. It's like you can't enjoy the knitting anymore when you are constantly analyzing how much there is left to knit with! Once I tried for leftovers from Ravelers, contacted a bunch of people, paid more than a skein probably in shipping small amounts from various people and in the end I don't think I needed any of it. Frustrating.

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