Finish Work

I have decided that not only must I weave in all loose ends, but I must stitch down the steek crocheted edges down the front and armholes.  I am learning that ‘couture detailing’ really does matter. In mere minutes I will block out a second and last time, and tomorrow I will sew on buttons.

These vests have taken a huge amount of time relative to their wearing span ( knit to fit rapidly growing kids, who will likely not be able to wear next spring ). I think pullovers will be the choice in future, as sweaters and vests which are buttoned up front really do take a considerably more amount of time as well as complexity.  I am learning perspective about these things~ kid’s seasonal garments vs. adult’s seasonal garments ~ I must say, this is quite the ‘aha!’ moment.

I am learning about seasonal gauge, and how to look ahead at what I want the garment to be, not only what It Wants To Be, which has been for decades my personal motto in creating.  For instance, these vests which are the Vernal Equinox project for my nieces, (missed that deadline by nearly 3 weeks, not really acceptable, but fortunately our cold spring is lingering) should have been knit in a much, much looser gauge than I knit them. As I didn’t fuss over a lot of swatching the unfamiliar yarn, I ended up knitting the vests rather too tightly, and so they are more as very winter weather-tight type of fabric, not loose and airy as a Spring garment would be desired.  Lesson learned ~ seasonal gauge is very important !

Still Steeking

Crocheting the edges, cutting open:  I am beginning to evolve into opinions about when steeking is worth the extra work of all the crocheting, and more importantly, the hassle and lack of ‘couture’ from the bulk and sometimes flapping cut edge on the inside/backside.

Rule : Steek most definitely for patterned knits (both textured relief motifs and stranded color.. yes!), but, for solid backgrounds, especially of anything worsted weight and heavier…um.. I”ll leave it as a very reserved ‘maybe not’ . My preference only. For these  vests, I think maybe would have been better to not steek, as the bulkier worsted weight yarn is quite cumbersome on the backside of the front and armhole openings. Of course, I could have used a different and finer yarn to crochet the steeks, but I didn’t have any around.  Rule reconsidered :  Use finer yarn to crochet steeks !

And who said it had to be the same yarn?  Also,  why not crochet before washing and blocking, then after all that, cut steeks ?

Rule : Use finer yarn for steeking.  When purchasing heavier yarns as worsted or bulky weight, purchase also a lighter weight yarn in similar fiber, and matching color, for crocheting and stitching down the steeks. Oh, and for sewing on the buttons !

Spring Vests Progress

Nearing the finish of the two bodies of vests for nieces. Can you see the steeked front and sleeve holes? (For those of you who are wondering, steeks are extra stitches made into the round of stitches, to be cut open later, allowing the body to be knit uninterrupted in knit or patterned stitches). So far , this is my 3rd project involving steeks, and I am only now *just* getting the hang of it.

Note: After this project for the nieces, I think I will be quite unlikely to knit self-striping yarn for a while, it’s just so ‘been there-done that’ kind of experience. Vivid, cute, in their favorite colors, but I won’t be in a hurry to knit another self-striping yarn project.

Meanwhile, this just showed up, a box full of one-hundred-percent wool yarn for my next project !

Fussing About

I am working on a kind of signature edging. A hybrid sort of rib with ‘moss’ stitch in between the ribs. (I realize there is probably an official name for this exact rib, but for now I’m thinking it up for myself).

In fact, this whole designing concept is quite a new thing for me. I’ve been browsing and reading knitters’ blogs lately, knitting designers’ blogs in particular.  I don’t know, but maybe one day I’d like to see myself among this vast tribe, selling a pdf pattern or two of my own, and I think that I will make that a goal for this year, or next.  I’m one of those people in life who always wilts in the heat of competition, but I ask myself “Why not me too?” ~ and I honestly can’t think of a reason not to. This is good for a change, a big growing up step for me.