The Moment of Truth

The sweater is done, but not blocked. I worried at first that I did not get the measurements right for the armpits because, as you’ll see in the photos, the cabling goes down further under the arms in the new sweater than in the old one. This may be because I guessed at the wrong row for where the cabling started, or that I counted incorrectly for the shoulder of the sleeve. The sleeves are also a little longer than they should be, but that is easily fixed by turning the cuffs.

For the entire project, I measured the yarn gauge and tried to copy stitch counts. The only place it feels off is at the armpits, the trickiest spot of any shirt, but at least it’s not tight there. The good thing about my version, aesthetically speaking, is that the cabling meets nicely under the armpit.

The other thing I have to keep in mind is that the original has been loved over the years to a nice relaxed state and I haven’t even blocked the new one yet. Once that is done, the yarn will relax a little.

sweater front 1

sweater front 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

sweater arm 1

sweater arm 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

sweater back 1

sweater back 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

sweater 2nd arm 1

sweater 2nd arm 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Cat tummy photo-bomb.

Inner arm seaming.

Inner arm seaming.

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The Purple Purse

The purse is mostly finished and I can say it was definitely another learning experience.

Not the greatest purse.

I’ve already taken it for a couple of test-drives and it serves the purpose I made it for, so I would call it a success. It holds my wallet, keys, cellphone and is just deep enough for pens (or certain feminine products).

I ended up making the strap a little too long. The problem with measuring a strap is that you have to take into account the fact that it will stretch depending on how much you put in the purse.  At this stage of knitting, I should have known that, which is why I shouldn’t knit when I’m tired! It should be pretty simple to fix. All I need to do is fold it over and take it in either at the center or on each side.

I did not end up working the beaded part onto the front because the beads that I bought were too small. I’m working with some other ideas, like making a beaded embellishment with a thinner yarn and sewing it on or sewing on a patch.

This is not a pattern, but more of a general idea of what I did to make it:

Worked in stockinette stitch.

  • Cast 30 stitches on size 6 needles (enough to equal 5 inches) with Caron Country yarn. Worked 48 rows (enough to equal 6 inches).
  • Switched and picked up knitting with 2-ply fine acrylic yarn and size 4 needles, adding 1 stitch to each side to make up for the gauge difference. Worked 45 rows. I used the thinner yarn for the center because I didn’t want the purse to be super thick.
  • On the 46th row, I worked 3 stitches, bound off 26, worked 3 (for zipper hole).
  • Row 47, work 3, cast on 26, work 3. Then worked another 64 rows.
  • Switched to size 6 again and picked up to knit with the Caron Country yarn again for 48 rows. For this back section, I added 2 stitches to each side for it to be wider when I seamed the front and the back. That should equal 36 stitches (because of the 2 already added when working the thinner yarn).
  • On the 48th row, bound off 3 stitches on each side (back to 30 total).
  • I worked the next 48 rows with a 3 stitch garter-stitch border on each side, plus 6 rows of garter stitch at the end. I realized the closing flap was not going to lay flat, so I picked up with the thin yarn again and worked enough rows to have a lining for the inside of the flap, then bound off.
  • Now for the finishing. I started by sewing the 4 inch zipper in place. Next, I accordion-folded the purse and pinned the seams. First, I seamed the bottom of the middle pocket, then I mattress-stitched the sides of the middle pocket.

The zipper pocket.

  • I seamed the middle pocket to the inside/back of the purse by seaming the sides of the middle pocket to a vertical row of purl bumps on each side (hopefully that makes sense).

This is how the bottom ended up looking. I suppose it would be better to use the same color yarn or seam it differently.

  • Last, I mattress-stitched the front and back sides of the purse and seamed the lining onto the closing flap.

Side view.

  • I added snaps to keep the front closed, then made a handle out of the thinner yarn (I ran out of the Caron Country) and seamed it to the inner sides of the purse. My handle was about 17 stitches across worked in ribbing.

Inside flap and snaps.

I know it’s not the greatest description, but I’m not exactly thrilled with it, either. Feel free to ask if you have any questions.

Another purse endeavour

Before the Doctor Who purse, I had already been mulling over a design for a purse for myself. Not being a very girly-girl in general, I lack… well… any purses in my house. Back in college I quickly found that I would forget my purse under cafeteria tables or in the library and decided I shouldn’t be allowed to carry one. Now that I am not so forgetful and like to wear skirts, I realized I should have something small to hold my things when I have no pockets (not to mention they don’t really make girl-pockets big enough to hold anything).

I will eventually make another Scarf Purse for me (the first one being bound for Desert Bus), but this week I decided to work on a simple, small, purple purse. I’m not claiming this pattern to be particularly original, since the design is real simple. Any beginning knitter who knows stockinette stitch and seaming could make one.

I figured I could make a small strip, like a scarf, and fold it over so that it had front, inner pocket, back, and closing flap – all in one piece. Next, you can either seam up all the edges and make a handle, or knit a long, inch-wide strip to seam to the sides and continue as a handle. At this point, I am almost finished with the body and haven’t decided on the handle design yet. I used a nice worsted-weight yarn, switching to a thinner yarn for the inside pocket so that the purse would not end up being super thick, then back to the worsted.

Photos to come, but here’s the basic idea in a poorly-drawn Paint sketch:

Behold, the amazingly complex purse design!

Once done, it will be just large enough to hold a cell phone, wallet, keys, etc, with a (most likely frivolous) zipper pocket in the middle. I’m also going to try my hand at beading and work the VNV Nation logo into the closing flap.