Cruise control knitting

I worked on six designs this past summer, and now it’s time for a little (almost) mindless knitting. I had a sweater quantity of Malabrigo Merino Worsted in my stash.

Malabrigo Merino Worsted Contintental Blue

It wasn’t meant to be stashed; I was going to make Lempster when I saw it in Knitty last year. But it never happened. This is why I try not buy yarn until I’m absolutely ready to cast on. The road, the good intentions…you know.

But at knit nite earlier this week I was talking about my Honey Cardigan that I just can’t get the enthusiasm to finish.

honey cardi wip

I don’t know; is it the bell shaped sleeve that I already know I don’t like? I’m almost done with the first one, and it’s meh. I need to rip the sleeve out and start that part over as something more fitted. But you know how exciting an old project is.

I didn’t want to have to keep my eyes glued to a chart for Lempster, so I went hunting on Ravelry for a sweater at 18 sts/4inches. I’ve cast on for Bonne Marie Burns’ (ChicKnits) Edin. This is a raglan that starts with a provisional cast on at the center neckband. After the neckband is set, stitches are picked up and the raglan shaping begins. I got that far on Tuesday night so I could take this to jury duty on Wednesday morning. This is perfect knitting for me; a little bit of (easily memorized) lace to hold my interest, and lots of stockinette between markers so I can read while I knit.

Edin raglan shaping

There’s a lot of hanging out and waiting in the jury pool room, a perfect place to knit. Last night I made it to the point where the sleeves are separated out. What’s your go to cast on for the underarm portion on a raglan? I’ve used the simple backwards loop cast on before, but I hate how it stretches out when you go to work it on the next round. I remembered that I learned a different cast on in a sweater shaping class with Faina Goberstein last winter at Madrona. I was so captivated by it that I did a little video on my iPhone, and it was still there. I’ve uploaded it to YouTube so you can use it, too. You can hear class going on in the background. Sorry, no pretty manicure in this video!

It makes a firmer edge, which I like. It still stretches a bit as you work the first row, but it’s much better.

raglan cast on

Edin wip

After separating out the sleeves, it feels like this is going much quicker, and it was already quick! Wish me luck in keeping up this pace. I really want to wear this. I know that this soft single spun yarn will get pilly with wear, but I’ll put up with that because I love it, and I can always use one of those sweater shavers to tidy things up. Do you have a recommendation on those? I have an ancient Sweater Stone, but I’ve never liked it…

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9 responses to “Cruise control knitting

  1. Sue Nell Horlander

    I love the sweater. Stay with it so ou can have it for this winter. I’m tempted to try it.
    What you said about not buying yarn until your ready to cast on, I totally agree. I’ve got so many projects lined up, who knows if I’ll ever get to them all.

    • Almost done with the body. Then it’s the eternity of sleeves! There’s a reason my projects are usually one or two skeins…but I’m determined to be wearing this soon.

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  2. So pretty! For the pill problem I recommend the Save Our Sweaters brush from Lily Brush. We have them at the store or you can probably find one in Portland. It’s a soft brush specifically for getting rid of pills in natural fibers and it works! It also,works as a lint brush.

  3. Wow! You have been busy! They all look great. I’m not crazy about a bell-shaped sleeve either, but the sweater looks awesome and I like the color you chose. Maybe you can gift it. It’s that season. ☺️

    • I’ll probably rip back the sleeve and make them more fitted. And if I do the work, I’m keeping it for me, me, me! Hmmm, I can’t even imagine having TWO new sweaters in one season. Let’s see if I can make it happen.

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  4. Wow, I love your choice in sweaters. If there were a “like” button I would press it.

  5. Do you prefer that cast-on over either knitted cast-on or cable cast-on? Can I ask why?

    • Hi, Eleanor! The knitted cast on and the cable cast on would both work here, too. The one advantage to this one is that it is definitely knit side out. If I used cable cast on or knitted cast on here, I would have to turn and work from the back of the fabric, and that would put my purl bumps on the RS of the fabric. The bumps would probably be hidden in the underarm pickup, though, so not a big deal? I could also purl cast on, or do the cable cast on purlwise, if I were really that fussy. But the real reason I used this method is that I wanted to try this newish-to-me cast on in real life, and get it off my phone (I need the space) by uploading it to YouTube. Isn’t it cool that there are so many ways in knitting to get something done? As long as you get the result you want, you’re doing it right!

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