Tuesday, March 29, 2011

(Almost) done: Un-Iced - a Jacket for early spring

I wanted a warm yet lightweight jacket to wear on those chilly mornings or evenings. In an écru shade, to go with everything.

I settled on a pattern for a cardigan, Iced, from the Knitty website; since I wanted to make a jacket/coat, I chose a thicker yarn and needles to get a sturdier fabric; and I made it longer. This means I added a few increase rows over the hips, and of course adapted the pattern to my larger gauge.
I'm really happy with this - it is exactly as I envisioned it. I've been wearing it all the time.
I was hesitant about buttons, and have been using a shawl pin to close the jacket; but I do feel buttons will be more practical, so I'll add a couple soon.
The (K)nitty Gritty:
The yarn is super soft and cosy, making it a favourite of P'tite Mignonne's. At one point she just sat on the project and plainly refused to let me pick it up and knit it. Though she doesn't look it, especially not in the above picture, she is able to throw quite the tantrum.

I have lots of projects for spring! I guess I should write a post on its own just to list and organize my ideas. :)

Saturday, March 12, 2011

P'tite Mignonne's Abalone (and a tee of my own)

As you friends know, P'tite Mignonne recently took up knitting.

She chose a soft, soft yarn in her very own colours; and picked a project with a pretty name, Abalone, because it rhymed with her name (*ETA yes, it rhymes in French!* and yes, she can be a bit self-centred that way...). She was very careful to knit a (couple of, actually) gauge swatch(es) before starting on her project...
With the help of online tutorials she managed to read her way through the pattern. She was quite diligent in blocking her finished creation, although also very tempted to take a nap on it.
(Am I still not allowed to sit on it?)

The best part, however, is that even though she (claims she) was the one wielding the needles, I get to wear the outcome.
The (K)nitty Gritty:
  • Pattern: Abalone, a freebie by Beata Jezek, directly printable here. 
  • Yarn: Malabrigo Silky Merino (a DK weight), one of the goodies I got in London last month; in Cape Cod Gray, a shade I indeed deliberately chose to match P'tite Mignonne's fur. You know, so her fluff doesn't show on the knitting! ;) And hey, it is truly gorgeous. Grey goes with lots of things, and light grey, albeit muted, is a soft and happy colour in my mind. I used 3.5 skeins (480m). 
  • Needles: US 8 - 5 mm.

The one part P'tite Mignonne cannot claim as her own, though, is the top. You see, P'tite Mignonne still hasn't mastered the sewing machine quite yet. I have decided to make myself some basic, fitted tops to layer under all the knits I (or should I say we) plan on making. :) This one is a great little number from Hot Patterns, the Plain and Simple Fitted T-Shirts, which are indeed exactly that.

I have to confess, however, that I still haven't mustered the courage to make my own jeans. ;)

As you can see, I have become quite enthusiastic about knitting. Well, the mere prospect of learning how to knit was hugely exhilarating from the start, and I am now super excited about this whole new creative world that has opened up for me. Tackling a cardigan as a second project may seem a little crazy, but if you've been reading this blog long enough - you know I am crazy that way!

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

The Framboise Pullover

English version: click here
Version française: cliquez ici (et décochez l'autre case)

This is Framboise, a crocheted sweater. The pattern is by Doris Chan - it comes from her Everyday Crochet book, from which I've also made a dress and a tank top. I love every single design in this book and certainly don't plan on stopping there ;)

     The (K)nitty-Gritty:
  • Pattern: Jewel, by Doris Chan, size 36
  • Hook size: 5.5 mm (I)
  • Yarn: Surnaturelle by La Droguerie: 6 50-g skeins = 1050 m (1148 yds), shade: Merlot. Total price = 27.6 €.
I didn't change a single thing to the design this time. I knit it a size larger than my own (36 instead of 33), as this top is rather fitted and I wanted to wear a cotton top underneath (I am wearing a cap-sleeved tee underneath in the pictures).

The yarn comes from the famous (and to me largely overrated) French brand, La Droguerie. While I do love the rainbow colourways that you find in their shops, I was underwhelmed by the quality when I got to see and especially fell their yarns in person - even more so as most of their yarn is not cheap. The only yarn of theirs that I do like, and that I find good value, is their Surnaturelle wool - 100% merino, warm, and very soft, even against my sensitive skin.
I started this back in November, at a time when the weather was very bleak and I was in great need of colour. This took me over 2 months to make, but I started it not long before Christmas, and devoted quite a bit of my spare time to those of the Christmas gifts I had chosen to make. We probably all agree anyway that the pleasure is at least as much in the making as in the wearing, right?

Especially when in good company...

Voici Framboise, un pull crocheté. Le modèle est de Doris Chan et vient de son livre Everyday Crochet, que j'ai déjà utilisé pour faire une robe et un haut en coton blanc. J'aime tous les modèles de ce livre et je n'ai pas l'intention de m'arrêter là ! ;)

     Résumé technique :
  • Modèle: Jewel, de Doris Chan; taille 36
  • Crochet: 5,5 mm (I)
  • Fil: Surnaturelle de La Droguerie, 100% mérinos : 6 pelotes de 50 g = 1050 m. Coloris: Merlot. Prix total = 27,6 €.
Je n'ai rien changé au modèle d'origine cette fois. J'ai pris la taille au-dessus de la mienne (36 au lieu de 33) parce que ce pull est ajusté, alors que moi je voulais pouvoir porter un haut en coton en-dessous (sur les photos, je porte un haut à petites manches sous le pull).

Le fil vient de La Droguerie, qu'on ne présente plus (boutique de Lille). Bien qu'en amoureuse de la couleur, j'apprécie beaucoup les arcs-en-ciel de coloris qu'ils proposent, j'ai été généralement déçue de leurs fils quand j'ai eu l'occasion de les découvrir et surtout de les toucher. Je trouve que le rapport qualité-prix est rarement intéressant... Sauf pour leur gamme Surnaturelle, dont le prix est plus raisonnable, qui est chaude, et bien douce, même contre ma peau très sensible.
J'ai commencé ce pull en novembre, à un moment où le temps lugubre me donnait grande envie de couleur. Il m'a pris un peu plus de 2 mois à terminer, mais c'était aussi à un moment où j'ai dû alterner son avancée avec la confection de mes cadeaux de Noël.
De toute façon, nous savons bien que le plaisir est au moins autant dans la création que dans le produit fini, n'est-ce pas ?

Surtout quand on est en bonne compagnie...