Sweater Surgery – and embroidery on knits

I’ll show the pretty pictures first

Sweater Surgery

 

I  finished this cardigan, my version of Peggy Sue in June 2013, and only wore it twice.

The neckline was dreadful on me, far to high and unflattering on me, and because I have narrow shoulders and there were no no short rows at the back, I couldn’t wear it open without the wretched thing falling off. When I finished it I put a little yarn aside so that I could steek it, my Ravelry notes talk about doing so, but I didn’t, the cardigan was relegated to the back of the wardrobe and I moved on. About a year ago I snipped the front neckline out (after first reinforcing it with some machine stitching) and popped it into my works in progress box where it’s sat until the recent news reports of a super cold winter and my desire to stock up a woolies now yesterday

This is how it was when I pulled it out of the wips box. (well it was rather more crumpled and sorry looking, but you get the idea)

The first thing that I did was that I removed the ribbing at  the back neckline and picked up stitched all way around.

I worked short rows across the back neckline from the front raglan line back wards (I did 6 w+t each side)

Then I worked a border of twisted rib.

I covered the cut edges at the front neckline with bias tape.

And for a bit of fun embroidered some flowers

I’m very pleased to say that this cardigan has already seen more wear since it’s been refashioned, than it did in the previous two years.

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Knitting kits in the etsy shop and a look back at the evolution of a pattern

As I mentioned yesterday in my works in progress round up, there are now kits in the etsy shop.

Badger wrister knitting kitFoxy wrister knitting kit

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The first batch are variants of my Foxy Friends Writers pattern. This is one of my favourite patterns, it’s certainly the one that I’ve knitted the most and offer the most variations of.

It was first published in Issue 30 of the Knit Now magazine. as the Foxy Wristies (the name was changed to wristers due to wristies being a trademarked name – who knew!!) That was just the fox pattern with the reverse stocking stitch wrist.

As I was designing the foxy wrister I knew that I wanted to give him some friends, so when the rights reverted to me, I reworked the charts to give him a Badger and a Raccoon companion (yes I know raccoons are not indigenous to the UK but my little people were very keen!) I was also keen to reduce the amount of purl stitches needed and came up with the idea of the *No Purl (almost) version. Although there is purling involved, there is significantly less and it has a stocking stitch wrist, as shown here by the Badger and Raccoon.

Foxy Friends Wristers

I knew when I opened my etsy shop and began hand dying yarn that I wanted to offer kits, and that the first pattern that I wanted to offer in kit form was the Foxy Wristers pattern. So I began looking for a suitable yarn base, I knew that I wanted it to be

  • spun from British wool in Britain
  • robust and hard wearing.
  • while retaining some rustic qualities not coarse and scratchy
  • not superwash treated

Sport weight yarn(which the pattern is written for) isn’t that common in Britain and for a while I came up stumps. Then following a rabbit hole one day I came across Gansey type yarns, these are usually 5ply which is technically a sport weight, and is usually made to be robust and while not very common is available if you look closely. I was very happy to finally find what has now become my Rumbustious base. It is spun is Devon from British fleeces, it’s a lovely wooly yarn and while it may not suit someone with a wool sensitivity it isn’t scratchy or coarse but still robust and strong. I began experimenting, I was pleased to see that it took the dye well and knit up beautifully. It’s slightly different in texture than the orignal yarns called for, it’s less ‘fluffy’ and ‘fuzzy’ this is a smoother yarn and is ever so slightly heavier; I found that to achieve gauge I needed a smaller size needle but was happy to note that the fabric produced was lovely, and perfect for mittens.

I then began reformatting the pattern to print with the kits, the kits are available at present as Badgers or Foxes and the pattern that comes with the kit is just for that motif, and is the stocking stitch wrist version. There are kits available with project bags and without project bags. If there is demand in time I may start offering just the yarn, but that will be further down the road.

I had great fun finding a suitable fabric to make up the project bags, working out the right size, making up the cute little balls of yarn to go in the kit. All in all I’ve had a lovely time, and now I hope that other like these little kits as much as I do.

 

And here are the final samples

Foxy Friends Wristers by Theresa Shingler

There will be more kits, I have a new design and yarn waiting it’s turn to be let loose into the world, hopefully by next weekend all being well. I’m also making project bags to go into the shop as an optional add on or separate purchase.

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