Leaves Sweater

Leaves Sweater

Well.... here it is... my crocheted Leaves Sweater.

It is not my favorite sweater that I have made but I think that it turned out okay. I could have picked a size smaller and gotten rid of some of the boxy look. But it could be worse.

This sweater was crocheted from the book Crochet Me. The design is by Annette Petavy. What I like about this sweater design is the construction. The waist shaping and set in sleeves are very uncommon in the crochet designs of previous decades. It makes the sweater fit much more like a knitted garment. The other nice thing about this design as well as the others in the book, is that the pattern calls for a larger hook size and a small yarn weight. This produces a lighter fabric and better drape. Crochet is usually so stiff!

This sweater has been heavily modified. If you will notice there are no leaves in this Leaves Sweater. The pattern calls for leaf like thingys hanging down from the hem. I liked them in the pictures but when I started crocheting them onto my sweater I decided that it looked entirely too "Peter Pan-ish" especially with this color green.

I also added 2-3 inches in length to the body and the sleeves, and didn't sew on any seed beads as the pattern called for.

Unfortunately this pattern really gave me trouble. It was riddled with errors. Hopefully there are corrections posted. Usually I am happy to post corrections to the patterns that I knit or, in this case crochet, but this had so many that I gave up trying to keep track. Also in my opinion the pattern was poorly written. Some parts were explained in perfect detail while other areas were vague. There are no stitch counts provided for you to check your work and that bothers me. I hate to complain so much because I know how difficult it is to write a pattern, but I feel that I should give fair warning to those who are interested in this design.

I am very comfortable with crochet so I was able to work out these issues. If you are experienced with crochet this is also a doable project for you. The design I think is very cute.

The other change that I made is on the sleeves. I mimicked the bottom border pattern so that it would match the sweater. I really like the edging pattern and I would use it again on a future crochet project. Whenever I get around to that.

"Never Not Knitting" is not knitting....

....I'm crocheting....

Ava can't believe it either so she leans in for a closer look.

The truth of the matter is... I next to never crochet. I of course teach my crochet classes but besides that, there is no crochet happening in our home. The last crochet project I did was over a year ago now. The interesting thing about this is that I learned how to crochet even before I learned how to knit and for a long time that's all I did. Even AFTER I learned to knit. Surprising? I'm not sure why I turned into more of a knitter than crocheter...but it probably has to do with the fact that I have produced more crocheted acrylic atrocities than any 90 year old Grandma could dream up.

But this project will be different.....I hope.

Yes, I finally drug out my half finished Leaves Sweater that has not been touched since November of last year. If the thought of a crocheted sweater gives you scratchy acrylic nightmares, you are not alone, and don't worry this isn't that type of sweater. I am knitting it in Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino, which by the way is so soft!

It has been fun doing a bit of crochet again, but truthfully I am feeling nervous (queasy) about the end product. (I, of course, did carefully explain to the Leaves Sweater that I have no problem disposing of sweaters that make me look fat, quoting the Klaralund sweater as an example.) It is just too soon to tell whether this project will be a cute sweater or make me look like a dated, crochet-clad super freak. We will just have to wait and see....

I do think that the crocheted edging is pretty though...

Too many projects! Too little time!

This week has been pretty good. I do finishing work for customers, and this week I got two things seamed up. I've also made some progress on my knitting projects but it is a little hard to tell because I have five going at once and I've been working on them equally. So they are growing slowly. I have decided that I am not liking this "five projects at once" thing. It is starting to feel overwhelming. I think I ended up starting so many because they are all sweaters, and none have a real deadline because they are all for me or for Ava. As we all know with sweaters, they can take a while and they get boring, so I just couldn't help but start more and more.

Here is what I have going right now:

Project #1 The Klaralund Sweater from Cornelia Tuttle Hamilton Book 2: made with Noro Silk Garden

I like this sweater because there is hardly any shaping so it is really easy to knit. I hate this sweater because it has hardly any shaping so it will probably be entirely unflattering. Obviously I didn't think that one through. To add insult to injury I am stupidly making a size too small. I've thought about frogging the whole thing but I just can't bear to see all that work gone to waste. I'm going to finish it, stretch and block the heck out of it, and hope for the best.

Project #2: Leaves Sweater from Crochet Me: made with Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino

I've changed the pattern a bit for this sweater. The pattern calls for leaves hanging down on the bottom. I chose to go leaf less because in this color I thought it would make me look like Peter Pan. I think the bottom border looks just as good without. When I saw the book I just had to start this project right away. Before seeing it, I could never remember seeing a crocheted adult sweater that I actually would wear! It was also so much fun to do a little crochet. I started on crochet years back and haven't done much since I began knitting. This sweater has made me remember what I like about crochet. It is so easy to fix mistakes! No such thing as a dropped stitch! This pattern is also nice because it is always changing and it hasn't gotten boring. Oh Leaves Sweater how I love you!

Project #3: Seedling Sweater from the book Minnies: made out of Filatura Di Crosa Zara Plus

I started this project out of necessity sort of. You see, The Scarlet Skein had a huge 75% off sale and I just had to buy 60+ balls of Zara Plus. So I ended up with only 4 of this color and that is just enough to make the 12 month size that will fit my daughter for not much longer. So that's how this one got on the needles. It's going pretty quickly. The strange this is that the pattern called for a size 8 needle and I had to go up to a size 10.5 to get gauge. And I'm using the same weight of yarn the pattern calls for. Go figure!

Project #4: Smock Coat from Simply Baby: made with Debbie Bliss Cotton Cashmere

I also have a love/hate relationship with this project. I love the pattern. I cannot wait to see little Ava running around in a cute little red coat. I love the yarn. I have used this one in the past and I love the drape of the fabric. I HATE knitting it. It is miles and miles of seed stitch on size 4 needles. It is really boring me to tears. The problem is that I have to finish it this season so Ava can wear it while it fits her. So I'm going to have to set up knitting incentives for myself to finish this one up.

Project #5: Tilted Duster out of Interweave Knits: made out of Filatura Di Crosa Zara Plus

More uses for my Zara Plus! I really really really love this pattern. It's just the kind of sweater I would wear all winter long. The Zara is 100% merino so it will be so warm. Zara is also machine wash and dry. I did up a swatch and through it in the washer and dryer and the fabric softened and held up great! So I think I am going to be more than happy with the finished result!

I think what I am going to have to do to make some serious headway here, is pick just two projects for awhile to rotate. Hopefully that will make me actually finish something. I think one of those projects is going to have to be the Smock Coat and the second will either be Leaves Sweater or Tilted Duster because I enjoy those so much.

On top of all that knitting is the knitting I do for the shop. So I just purchased the Felt Clog pattern by Fiber Trends and the Children's Felt Clogs too. Over the past few days I knit up a pair of the children's clogs in Ava's size. Im going to do a pair for me next. My plan is to get that done quickly so I can put them on display at The Scarlet Skein. In January I'd like to offer a class on the pattern and also a fun extra class on embellishing the clogs with needle felting. I'm going to bring all my roving and just let those who sign up come and play with the colors and design.

And as if I needed any more yarn or any more projects, I also bought this:

This is Lorna's Laces Lion and Lamb in the Gold Rush colorway. I have big plans to make the Clapotis Shawl. I think that too would make an awesome class for January. It is such a popular pattern right now!

I have no clue how I'm going to get all this done. The good news is that tomorrow my husband and I are leaving for an overnight stay in the Santa Barbara area. That means some extra knitting time for me. I'm planning on bringing the Smock Coat and the materials for the Felted Clogs. I really really want to start the Clapotis but I am trying to be responsible and hold off.
It should be a fun trip, and my very sweet husband recommended that tomorrow will be reserved for yarn stores. I can't wait.