Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Caribbean Blue - Top of the top done

This is a project from the latest edition of Knitter's Magazine (K112), called Cables & saddles by Julie Gaddy.  It has a very interesting construction.  You knit the two saddles first, then pick up stitches along the edges of the saddles to shape the shoulders and neckline, then join the shoulders to knit the back and then the front, finally joining the front and the back to knit the body in the round.  The sleeves are picked up and knit out from the front and the back, and are sewn to the underarm to form a sort of gusset.  I was very intrigued by how all of this would work, so when I got to the end of a skein on the body I decided to go back and do the finish work on the top.  Besides which, there were a number of yarn tails and stitches on holders and the whole thing was just a little too chaotic and messy for me.

So, when I got to the end of a skein, I wound the rest of my skeins up and started on a sleeve.  The sleeves use live stitches on the saddle and picks up stitches from the body.  Then you knit back and forth, keeping the cable pattern going along the top of the sleeve until the sleeve measures 4 inches.  After you cast off you sew the sleeve to the underarm stitches to form a sort of gusset and sew the rest of the sleeve seam together.  Of course I had to modify things.  Once the sleeve was long enough to sew to the underarm I joined the sleeve and knit the rest in the round.  After I cast off the sleeve stitches I sewed the gusset.  Once I had finished the sleeves I tackled the neck band.

I was supposed to do a provisional cast on when I knit the saddles so I could use those stitches as part of the neck band.  Of course, if you do this, your stitches are off by half a stitch, but don't worry, the photo caption asserts, it is virtually undetectable.  Wrong!  I looked at the photo and all I could see was that mismatch.  So I didn't do a provisional cast on, instead I picked up stitches and it is barely detectable.  When I did the bind off on the neckband I did not bind off in pattern, I did a knitted bind off.  I just thought it would lay better.

The sample in the magazine was knit in Claudia Hand Painted Yarns Short Sport in Rubies Playing and Silk Lace in Chocolate Cherry, with the yarns held together.  The fact that they were two different colors didn't really register so when I ordered I looked for matching colors, which limited my selection somewhat.  Fortunately I found the Caribbean Blue in both yarn weights and I love the colors.  Once I got the yarn and started working the pattern I realized that the point was to create a subtle variegated effect.  Well, given the color that I had order I didn't need two different colors of yarn for that, so I just used the short sport, which means I have the same color in a lovely lace weight just waiting for the perfect shawl pattern.

Pattern:   Cables & saddles by Julie Gaddy, Knitter's Magazine K112
Yarn:  Claudia Hand Painted Yarns Short Sport in Caribbean Blue
Needle:  US 5 (3.75 mm)

1 comment:

  1. The first time I did a provisional cast on, the half-stitch jog bugged me. Of course, that's the weird vest I made last year that I intend to frog. Love the yarn colors (of course).

    Hope your knee is better. I sympathize with surgery for icky skin things.