Tag Archives: Love Note sweater

Rhapsody in pink

I love my Aquarius/Beach Glass Love Note so much. It’s a teaching wardrobe staple. I have a skirt that pairs well with it.

It was such a quick knit and perfect fit, so I decided to knit one more.

This time the colors are Cherry Blossom and Ticklish, which has tiny flecks of pink and green.

Since I’m using the same yarn, hazel Knits Lively DK, and I have good notes on Ravelry, it’s a pretty mindless knit. I’m going to use all of the MC on the body, and work the sleeves in Ticklish. Thank you, past self!

I started this on Monday night. It’s Saturday afternoon and I’m zooming along down the body. But now it’s time to put my knitting down and prep for my next Virtual VK Live class. I’m teaching Minerva Entrelac this afternoon. Two more classes tomorrow, both brioche, and that will be the wrap up! I’m so glad knitters can still get together, even while knitting apart.

My Facebook Live with Wool and Fiber Arts and Bead Biz was fun. We had five designers instead of four; Alasdair Post-Quinn was able to join us after all, yay! So it’s me (in my Love Note sweater above), Alasdair, Anna Dalvi, Laurinda Reddig, and Linda Dean. Here’s a link to it on YouTube if you want to watch.

And my Facebook Live with Knit Picks was postponed a week, so that should be happening this coming Thursday, June 18, 8:30 am PDT, link here. .

It’s Worldwide Knit in Public Day. I may knit for a moment on my porch! So different this year. Are you knitting in public?

Lockdown Love Note finished again and again

It’s been modified yarn chicken all the way with my current Love Note sweater. I knit until I had just enough Aquarius to finish the body with 4 rows of ribbing plus bind off. It felt a tiny bit short.

Love Note DK sweater and cat

I frogged the ribbing, and knit the stockinette body until the Aquarius ran out. Then I knit 4 rounds of ribbing in Beach Glass.

I didn’t really want a contrast color ribbing at the waist (yoo hoo look over here!), but that was all the Aquarius I had.

That also meant that the sleeves would have to be in the lighter color, too.

I had plenty of Sea Glass, so I first made the sleeves at 20 rounds. But this made the sweater look too color blocky on me, so I eventually made the sleeves really short, just 4 rounds of stockinette before ending with 3 rounds of ribbing. (Yes, I tried it on at 20, 16, 12, 8 rounds as I ripped back the first sleeve. Because why not?)

In a perfect world, I would have ended the lighter color at the end of the lace, and then the body and lower sleeves would have been in the darker color. I was pretty sure I wouldn’t have enough of the darker color to make that happen, so I waited until after the split for the sleeves to go back to the darker color. This was my way of avoiding an awkward dark stripe on the sleeve before having to finish with the light color. Winning!

Love Note contrast ribbing

The contrasting waistband looked fine, but I didn’t like the way it looked on ME.

Love Note sweater FO and cat

So I took it off and re-finished with the darker color again, this time with one more round of stockinette, and 3 rounds of ribbing. Now that there are sleeves, it looks better. I think blocking will help a bit, too.

So that’s Love Note, knit in a week and a day, and finished several times. I think it’s time to move on! After blocking, of course. It’s drying now. This has been a fun knit, twice, with this pattern by Tin Can Knits.

Mood ring

Mood? Pretty good! The mood ring agrees. How about you?

Love Note in the time of Coronavirus

After finishing my fuzzy purple Love Note Memoir, I wanted a spring-ier version to wear sooner. I had this Hazel Knits Lively DK in my stash. I only have one skein of Aquarius and one skein of Beach Glass because they were going to go into a brioche shawl or scarf design, but it wasn’t quite right for the project. This yarn has patiently waited for its time in the spotlight, and now it’s time to shine. I love how crisp and clear the lace is with this yarn.

It’s Love (Note) in the Time of Coronavirus! Love Note is a perfect knit for these strange times; it goes quickly and I don’t have to pay too much attention.

The pattern calls for 600 yards of yarn; I have 550. Because of the limited amount of yarn, this will be short/cropped/normal on me. And it will have short sleeves for spring/summer wear.

How can I use the two colors together and make it look right? I don’t think it would look good striped into a fade, that would look too stripey/sporty for the pretty lace. I could have made the entire top portion in the lighter color, but I don’t know how long the bottom portion will end up being. I don’t want it to look like I chopped the sweater (and me) in half. The color blocks would have to be in the right proportion to each other, and I don’t think I have enough control (or yarn) to make sure that works out.

So….I’m knitting the lace yoke in the lighter color and as much as I can of the body in the darker color. I don’t know what color the sleeves will be, below the lace yoke, until I see how far I get with the dark color on the body. Will I have to have a stripe of the lighter color at the hem? We’ll find out!

I don’t want a neckline as snug as my first Love Note, so I skipped the provisional cast on and just began with long tail cast on with the larger needle at the neck, then knit the ribbing on the smaller needle. Back to larger needle to work down towards the body.

I finished the lace, and continued in the lighter color until just *after* the split for the sleeves. I suspect that I won’t have enough of the dark color for sleeves, so I’m hedging my bets. I don’t want a line of dark at the underarm if I end up having to use the light color for the sleeves. That would be WRONG.

Now I’m on autopilot, cruising down the body. We’ll see how far this single skein of Aquarius will take me.

Oh! My classes sold out at Vogue’s Virtual Knitting Live, so it’s clear that knitters want to get together to knit and learn, even if we have to do it from a distance. There are still a few classes and lectures available at the event, but you should hurry if you want to snag a spot. Here’s the website again.

Away we go!

Sweet Love Note success

I finished knitting my Love Note sweater the other night. I would have finished sooner, but I couldn’t decide how long I wanted my sleeves. I finished them several times.

Magic loop

I didn’t enjoy knitting the sleeves using magic loop; I’m not sure why not. Maybe because I had a 40” cable, and it might have been more comfortable with a longer cable or 2 circulars? With coronavirus lockdowns, it would have taken longer than I wanted to get more needles, so I just slogged on.

The pattern has the sleeves ending just below the elbow, but that made everything congregate visually around my waist. No thank you! I tried 3/4 length (mid-forearm) but DH said it just looked like my sleeves were too short. I eventually settled on bracelet length, ending above my wristbone, not quite full length. Short sleeves might have worked, too, but I wasn’t going to rip them all the way back; those sleeves were hard earned.

Love Note sweater

I finished at 1 a.m. Then I put it on, and ended up reading ‘til 2 a.m. because I didn’t want to take it off to go to bed. I think that’s a win!

Love Note sweater with helpful knitting cat

Calvin and I took careful measurements because I wanted to wet block it and still have it be exactly the same size when it was done. Superwash yarn is notoriously stretchy when wet, but in my experience it generally bounces back to the same size when dry. You just have to not freak out when you see how big it grows when wet!

I didn’t make a real swatch for this sweater, but I started it 3 times, which means I really made two huge swatches before knitting this sweater. I didn’t wash and block a swatch though, so I didn’t really know how it would turn out, although I could make an educated guess. Do as I say, not as I do! As long as you’re willing to live with the consequences, it’s knitter’s choice.

I definitely got familiar with the fabric on different sized needles! I used a US 9 for the upper body and lace, a US 10 for the stockinette body and sleeves, a US 8 for the bottom ribbing and sleeve ribbing, and a US 7 for the neck because it was above the US 9 lace. A US 8 probably would have been fine for the neck; I just didn’t think of it.

Love note sweater blocking outdoors

It was nice enough to block outdoors, so I took full advantage. And it did stretch when wet. I patted it carefully into approximately the right size. It was about an inch longer than I wanted, but it did bounce back perfectly when dry. Whew!

Finished sweater is 40” around for 3” of ease; I was knitting the 41.5” size. No hi-low hem, just cropped. I love the way it fits; the recommended 7” of ease would have been ridiculous on me. I take patterns as a general suggestion, a starting point for negotiation. This is a great pattern by Tin Can Knits.

Love Note lace detail

The mohair makes the lace a bit fuzzy, but it’s pretty anyway. Now I have to find something to wear it with. I’m glad I found a project for these two retreat souvenir yarns!

I’m almost finished with Minerva; soon I’ll have nothing on the needles again. But I have a couple ideas…

Are you feeling more productive with social/physical distancing, or less? I was feeling pretty scattered for a few weeks. I could manage tasks that were already planned out, like knitting something designed by someone else, or even designed by me that was already on the needles, or making videos for Minerva, or sewing face masks, or baking from recipes. But I couldn’t wrap my head around something that requires a big burst of creativity, like designing something new.

I hope that finishing these projects will give me enough head space to spark creativity. If not, I could always knit…another Love Note. In DK. Yes, I love it that much.

Love Note update: Neckline, and Sleeve Island

I finished the body of my Love Note, guessing on length based on my Soldotna Crop. I wanted it to be one inch longer than that. (I love my Soldotna Crop, but wasn’t willing to buy a whole skein of yarn just to knit one more inch.) I am opting to not do the short row shaping at the hem; I just want the sweater to be the same length all the way around.

I decided to finish the neckline before moving on to the sleeves, for two reasons. The first reason: I want to know just how much yarn I have left for the sleeves, in case I have to make them shorter than the pattern suggests. Yarn chicken is a common game around here.

The other reason: I wanted to know exactly how long my sweater is, and I couldn’t know that without finishing the neck, because everything hangs from there.

The first time I finished, I realized I hated the round crew neckline around my neck! It made me feel claustrophobic. No thank you! I don’t even have a picture; I frogged that back in the middle of the night.

I thought about how comfortable the provisional cast on was when I tried it on for length. The instructions have a round of decreases, and then on to the ribbed neck.

Waiting with provisional cast on

I ripped back to the neckline decreases, so it’s still not as wide as it was with just the provisional cast on, but a reasonable width. Then I worked 7 rounds of stockinette on the smaller needle. This rolls *away* from my neck, and is a little wider than the ribbed neck (ribbing pulls in more), which makes me very happy. This is basically the same treatment I gave my Stopover sweaters. Winning!

Purple Love Note sweater

I weighed my remaining yarn, and now I’m knitting down the first sleeve.

Purple Love Note in progress

I’m at the point where it reminds me of “The Wild Swans” by Hans Christian Andersen. Do you remember that story, where the last sweater isn’t quite finished, and the last brother has one wing and one arm?

What are you knitting right now?

Lovenote Sweater update

While you’re busy choosing yarn for the MinervaKAL2020, I thought I’d show you where I am with my Love Note sweater. I had put it on hold while I finished my Noro Minerva sample, but now I have time to get back to it.

I love the better lace definition on US 9 needles, and I’ve gone back to US 10 for the body because I like the floaty quality of the stockinette that way. Yes, I did knit stockinette on the 9 for an inch or so, and didn’t like the way it felt, so there was a little more frogging.

I still don’t really know what my gauge is, but I put it on 2 circulars and tried it on, and it is a much better size than the first one! I know, do as I say, not as I do as far as gauge swatching for sweaters goes. As long as you’re willing to live with the consequences, you can do whatever you want! You could say that my first two attempts at this sweater were giant gauge swatches, themselves.

The first time I tried to get an update picture, Calvin wanted to help. There’s not enough contrast between rug and sweater, but I love this picture anyway. It was his one year anniversary with us, and he has been very charming since day one.

It’s a rainy day here, after a stretch of glorious sunshine. Today’s to do list:

  • Learn how to use Instagram Stories (don’t laugh; I’ve been resisting
  • Learn how to use Zoom on my laptop (for singing and knitting?)
  • Try sewing some masks using this tutorial (haven’t used my sewing machine in a long time, hope it’s in good form!)

What are you doing during this time of social distancing? Let’s flatten that curve!

What was I thinking?

Seven-and-a-half inches of ease? That’s an awful lot on a short person, especially a short-waisted short person knitting a cropped sweater. The very short, very wide rectangle was not destined to be flattering.

I had knit down past the armholes so I could try it on, and I wasn’t happy with where this was heading. Also, there was so much fabric in the lace section that blocking it out to show it off would only make this more of an oversized sack on me.

My favorite sweaters to wear are my Stopover sweaters, designed by Mary Jane Mucklestone. I love how they fit. They are about 40 inches around (3 inches of ease). There’s a more vertical look to these. Proportion is everything!

My choices with this Love Note pattern are 38.5, 41.5, and 44.5 inches. 41.5 inches would give me 4.5 inches of ease. That seems to be a good place to land. Still slightly floaty, but not ridiculous.

I decided to cast on a second yoke and knit to see how things went before frogging everything. This second yoke is one day’s knitting. Including time for a walk on the beach, and some other work knitting! (More on Crafty Moms Weekend later.)

Interestingly, I used my Hiya Hiya sharp needle for the lace pattern this time, instead of switching to the regular tips. The lace pattern is a bit tighter, and a bit better defined (on the right). I like it, so I waited until the lace was finished before switching to my preferred blunter points. The lace can be blocked out to show off the holes, and the body will still be the size I want it to be.

I love how the purple mohair halo blends all the colors of the Rogue into a soft melange.

Now I have two yokes, and I’m ready to frog the first one. Hope it cooperates! I think it will be fine, as long as I don’t try to separate the two strands. If it doesn’t cooperate, I’ll resort to the freezer method, after I cook more things from the freezer and have some space!

How was your weekend?

Love Note playdate

I stopped in to see Bonne Marie Burns, and we happen to be knitting the same sweater: Love Note by Tin Can Knits. It’s a super speedy knit on US 10 needles, but the most interesting thing is that you carry two yarns together as you knit. If your colors are very similar (my wheelhouse), you know what to expect, but when your colors are wildly different, the results can be surprising!

You know mine will be purple, because purple + purple = purple. But notice how the cool purple fingering weight yarn is warmed up by that warmer purple mohair.

Bonne Marie’s screaming yellow is toned down to a rather gorgeous ochre by the gray mohair. I never would have thought to combine gray and yellow into a single yarn, but it works. Grellow for the win! That’s the power of having stash to play with, too. I only had purple and purple for my adventure.

Bonne Marie pulled open her buffet drawer and I had to laugh. Of course it’s full of yarn. What’s in your buffet? Mine has china, table linens, and flatware. But I did empty out one cupboard to use as a pie safe so Calvin can’t eat our baked goods!

I’ve split for the sleeves on my Love Note, and now I’m knitting a few rounds so I can try it on. I’ll frog it if I need to change the size. I noticed that Bonne Marie had an orange version in her buffet drawer, and she had frogged it back after swatching. She just wound the two yarns up together around the ball because she was going to re-knit them together anyway. Brilliant.

That solves my frogging problem. I was afraid to swatch too far because I have a limited amount of the purple mohair, and I was having a hard time separating the two yarns after frogging. But I’m committed to this color combination, so there’s no reason to try to separate the yarns if I’m just going to re-knit them together anyway. Perfect!

What color is your knitting this week?

On the needles: Love Note

The week before Red Alder, I went to St. Louis to visit DH’s mom. She moved to assisted living in January, and we wanted to do a check-in. I’m pleased that it’s been a fairly smooth transition, and that things are going well.

I finished my Chroma Worsted Aspen Leaf scarf on the plane home (FO pix soon). I’ve been working on sample knitting in the new year because I needed mindless knitting during a lot of travel: St. Louis, VKLive NYC, New Orleans, St. Louis again.

When I finished Aspen Leaf, I had a bit of a dilemma. I’m a fairly monogamous knitter, and I had nothing else on the needles.

I couldn’t go to Red Alder without knitting. And I didn’t have the mental bandwidth to design something to work on at that very moment.

I’ve been inspired by Instagram pictures of Love Note sweaters. It’s always fun to knit someone else’s design; it’s like a knitting vacation when I don’t have to dream up every detail. The pattern calls for two yarns held together, so I poked around in my limited stash, and came up with two purple yarns. One is this Lion Brand Silk Mohair that I won as a door prize at the one and only History Unwound Retreat in Colonial Williamsburg in 2015.

The other is Hazel Knits Artisan Sock in the Rogue colorway; I think that means that it’s a one off. I have 2 skeins from my gift basket from the Lantern Moon Retreat that I taught at in 2018. (Click the links for blog posts about these two retreats; they were stellar.)

Would these two yarns play well for a Love Note sweater? The pattern requests a single ply fingering weight paired with a laceweight mohair. The Artisan Sock is a plied yarn, but it’s what I have. I looked at projects in Ravelry, and others have used plied yarns, so why not? And I’m kind of tickled that both these yarns are retreat souvenirs. It would be great to use stash yarn for this project!

I did a half, um, hearted gauge swatch, figured it was close enough, and cast on so I’d have something to knit at Red Alder. I didn’t want to use too much mohair in my swatching, because it’s really hard to frog, especially when held with another yarn! And my yardage is *just* enough to make this sweater.

So we’ll see if I like the fabric; the jury is still out. So fuzzy! And we’ll see if the gauge I’m knitting results in a reasonable sweater. Did I wash and block my swatch? No; do as I say, not as I do! But the pattern recommends anywhere from 4 to 12 inches of positive ease, and I’m pretty sure my knitting will result in ease somewhere in that very wide range. It’s modeled with 7 inches of ease in my size.

I’ve finished another lace repeat since the picture above, and I’m almost to the sleeve division. But I’m not going to work on it for a few days.

I cut my thumb on broken glass, and it was deep! No stitches needed, though. We added a splint on top of all of this to keep me from bumping/using it. I’m hoping I can unsplint to teach classes all weekend. I’m trying to write instructions and knit a swatch for a new class for my Syncopation shawl/scarf. Wish me luck!