knitting

penny for your thoughts.

For my birthday this year, Mom and Dad gave me yarn. They are awesome. And know me!

I chose Berroco Blackstone Tweed in 2601 (cream/natural). I have lots to say about the yarn but I am too excited to tell you about Old Penny [Forestry #11] – so, I will do that first. Veronik Avery’s patterns have always caught my attention – I love her attention to detail and fibre choices for her garments. Her St Denis collections are beautiful. I am so looking forward to knitting some of those patterns soon.

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Back to Old Penny (or Forestry #11 from Vogue Knitting Fall 2008). I made some major modifications to the construction of the sweater. To get gauge, I used 4.00mm needles.

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First, I knit the sweater seamless from the bottom so I cast on the stated number of stitches for the back, right and left fronts. I liked some of the modifications people had made to the back of the sweater, so I added 5 penny cables to the center back. The twist that some people added to the middle of the center back to create 2 pennies on either side looked really good but I liked the sweaters best that had only pennies across the back. I like the effect and the added ribbing effect that the cables give creates great shaping.

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I knit the sleeves in the round to the armholes and then worked the yoke in the round. I decreased every RS row 21 times. The yoke measures 7.5” in length along the raglan seam.

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I ripped back to the beginning of the yoke to add another 2 inches to the body as I didn’t like the length and knew I wouldn’t wear it if it wasn’t longer. I am so so so glad I did this – although I was annoyed at the time and put it down for a couple of weeks for a break from it, the satisfaction of knowing that it is exactly what I want for length.

I encountered a hic-up when I reached the collar, which proved to be quite annoying. I didn’t like the look of the increases at the “corner” of the R & L fronts before the shaping at the neck (see the photo below, where the twist along the button band ends).  After working and re-working the collar, I decided to go back to what I know and love: Short Rows. Japanese short rows to be exact.

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Leaving the markers as specified by the pattern on either side, I worked to 12 stitches past the second marker, turned, worked back to the first marker and 12 stitches past, turned. I continued this to create 3 short rows on either side of the markers on each side – 4 stitches apart. I then just followed the pattern for Veronik’s spacing of short rows. I ended up with a total of 11 row markers on each side before working each short row across. I then knit another 6 rows back and forth before casting off loosely. Confused? Yup, me too. I just wrote down what I was doing as I was doing it but I am not sure I would be able to do it again.

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Now, the yarn before this post gets too much longer! I thought the price point on this tweed was a bit high, however the yarn was beautiful to work with – absolutely beautiful. The mohair and angora in the yarn creates a beautiful halo that I don’t usually like but in this yarn, it works. It’s quite even which is sometimes not common in tweeds. I washed the swatch in eucalan and the finished sweater, I washed also in eucalan then spun it in the washer to get all the extra water out. The sweater looks as if I never did anything – the yarn’s sheen is gorgeous. I have to say, as well, the yardage isn’t bad either for a 50g ball.

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This is hands down my favourite handknit. Oh, other than my Selbu Modern.

Before I sign off, I would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a wonderful holiday. See you in the New Year!

-r.

p.s. Christmas came early this year for me since the dressmaking models came on sale at my local sewing shop, so yes, she is new & I love her! It’s great that even though it’s raining like crazy outside, I could still take photos and share with you. Any ideas for names for her?

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4 thoughts on “penny for your thoughts.

  1. First off tell your mum and dad they have now adopted me for all future birthdays :)I really like how you changed the neck for this one. I don't have enough yarn to frig about with mine, I'm just trying to get the full neck out of what I have left :( How about Purl for your new bust, or maybe something french… for some reason I always associate busts with having a french name.

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