MY Picard version

It is finished, and I have to say it turned out better than I expected.
Here she is, my Odilon, at long last! Ok. I know it really hasn’t been all that long, a just short of 2 months that you have all been ‘listening’ to me whinge, but when you frog a project as much as I did this one it can last FOREVER mentally.  (Also I got the first bit done so quickly that if there hadn’t been so many annoying problems with the pattern I would have had it done in a month!)

I redid the body without the shaping and am much happier with the fit. It still looks like it comes in at the waist, but it is actually dead square!
This is the batch of Rowan Purelife Organic DK that I ‘tub’ dyed for this project and LOVE the yarn. A slight crunch and actually quite a bit more of a dense strand than I would have thought. The stitch definition is just divine for all those crossed stitches…
…and I love the way I ran the chevron right down into the ribbing on this attempt (if I do say so myself!). That said, I feel the yarn is actually better suited for stitch patterns that aren’t reverse stockinette, as it doesn’t bloom quite enough to give an even fabric in that stitch – see all the little stripes of unevenness in the shot above? (Especially on the sleeve right above the chevron). Likely just me and tension problems, but the stockinette side looks much better:
There are a few other little things that still bother me – the front neck is still a titch high. I should have taken it back a bit lower when I took the fecking high collar off.  And there is a little jog in the raglan where the increases turn to decreases from where I redid the neck. Neither of these things are noticeable unless you are really scrutinising, though.
Final negative – and this is nothing new – the bloody buttonbands gave me the usual runaround.

I wasn’t able to get the holes stitched professionally in the end as I had already knit holes into the fabric, which sucked. Apparently you knit the bands without holes and then they machine stitch them in and cut them open. Will try it one day.

So to make a long story excruciatingly longer,  I had to do them by hand. Cursing most the way. They are ok, but my hand stitching truly leaves something to be desired. AND I balls-ed up the other side (too embarrassed to show you) so had to cut the ribbon between already stitched buttonholes and make them shorter. It was hateful. (I still want to open a can of whoop-ass on them.)
Positives – Love the way it fits, those graphic CHEVRONS (heh), the i-cord edging I did on the buttonband…and…I finally got to use my favourite ceramic buttons, which I made months ago and have been hoarding for the right project:
Another positive – I think I am becoming slightly less stressed when things don’t work out, and a bit calmer about frogging. That is a huge plus…as I have to do it so much. Finally starting to accept it as a normal part of my process (!).

So there she is. Thanks for all the support and advice on this one girls!


Why oh why?

I am just confused. I am telling myself there must be a reason for this, but can’t figure it out. Those of you that are more experienced might be able to answer this for me:

Why would you go from M1 increases and halfway through a pattern change to LL1 increases at the hip increases? (AND not say what they are – but that is just my catty-ness resurfacing with a meow). Does LL1 create a less ‘gappy’ increase or something?

This is something I pinned ages ago from Twist Collective – examples of increase types:

I can’t see much of a diff. Can you?

This project has me continuously confused (more than normal).

Also…I have reached the vague wording for the joining of the chevrons on the sides and subsequent hip increases and am now thinking of frogging again…
I am just not sure I want another form fitting jumper. It isn’t too tight, but I am more into loose/schlumpy things at the moment. Eek! What have I done.

WTF is up with it riding up at the front with that little bulge after all those convoluted short rows? It had better come out with blocking.

No really.

Odilon continued

I have finally managed to sort out the short rows and increases for my Odilon and have joined under the arms. I did add an extra inch for this size in the arm circumference and am hoping that will be enough, though it might feel a bit snug (do I have bingo-wings or am I just paranoid??)Pardon the blurry photos. Here is the status quo:



I am really loving how the twisted stitches pop out and the stitch definition with the Rowan Purelife is perfect – nice and crisp (though it looks super wobbly before blocking in these shots, it evens out beautifully with steam).

The one thing I am not really feeling is the collar. I am reserving judgment until the end, but have a feeling it might have to go in favour of a wide round collar. We’ll see.

Looks like the formatting has gone all squirrelly on WordPress again. Does anyone else have this problem…where it won’t even let you fix it in the html no matter what you do? Frustrating.


Mirroring differences

I’d been squirrelling along on my Odilon for days, struggling myopically on the confusing, convoluted and somewhat unclear short row instructions when it struck me that the increases looked odd.
As my first time doing M1P increases, and maybe 4th time doing increases at all, it didn’t occur to me until I was well past the image above and almost at the armpit that one side of the increase looked different than the other. Can you see it below on the left?
I contacted the designer to make sure that the pattern hadn’t been updated to show mirroring increases since my version was purchased, but she said the pucker ‘should even out with blocking’.

Um. The image above is blocked.

Those of you following this blog will already know that I am a little obsessive (ok. maybe a LOT obsessive) about ridiculously small details…so…

Frogging commenced.

Back down to the collar and through the fecking short rows again – which no matter how many times I execute (3), or draw them out (2), can’t seem to get a matching number stitches on the arms and end up having to fudge – and then MIRRORING the damn increases this time – cursing all the while. Deep breath.

(Feeling my irk?)

Here is the difference:
See how the stitch on the left now goes UNDER, mirroring the right side? Yeah. That is why mirrored increases/decreases were created!

This is the first purchased pattern that I have had gotten seriously irritated with and have to remind myself that different people/designers have differing levels of things that they are willing to live with whilst knitting. That said, I guess I expected that a long running publication like Twist Collective to have better tech editing.

Overly critical for a Tues morning?


The big reveal for those of you that haven’t already guessed…the new project I started is Picard by Marnie MacLean!

My partner gave me the pattern for xmas and I couldn’t wait to get started on it. As mentioned in a previous post I purchased a motherload of Rowan Purelife Organic for peanuts at the Knitting and Stitching Show in October, so had my DK yarn – just needed to dye it.

This was a bit of a problem as I still haven’t found a cheap replacement stainless steel dyeing pot after my toxic mercury spill. In a fit of inspiration I decided I would try dyeing some other lovely yarn I received as a gift (thank you again!!) in a large a plastic tub, adding hot water from the kettle until it was hot enough. Figured trying it with 2 skeins would be easier than 10!

I wasn’t sure if I would be able to get the yarn hot enough and keep it high enough to exhaust the dye, but thankfully it worked! I am now able to dye yarn once again! Hooray for me! What a relief. I was going into withdrawal.  😉

So on to the Rowan – here it is soaking in a vinegar/soap bath below.
And here it is after dyeing, drying in the loo:
Initially I planned to dye the yarn a deeper peacock colour like this photoshop mock up,
photoshop mock up
But along the way I hit this beautiful French looking grey/blue and just couldn’t go any further.
It makes me think of faded French chateaus and a particular painted panel I saw by Odilon Redon the first time I went to the Musée d’Orsay.