Saturday, February 10, 2007

I Don't Believe I Just Did That

I'm totally jumping the gun here, as I have a post edited & 90% written, just waiting to be posted, and I finished a Knitted Object yesterday (started & finished!) and have pictures of that to show you too, but first I apparently must post about what I just did.

I got the new Interweave Knits mag (Spring) in the mail yesterday and looked through it last night between the hours of 12:30 and 4 AM during which I was up with my son as he played in our living room. (UGH!)
And today, while at work, I went online and bought yarn for two sweaters I saw in there yesterday. TWO.

I just hopped online, did some comparison shopping, and then hit "Add To Cart" and bought a grand total of 18 skeins of yarn.

Man. O Man. I never EVER do stuff like that!

(should I blame it on the lack of sleep and cold that is slowly but surely overtaking my body?)

I bought 5 skeins of SouthWest Trading Company's Bamboo in Plum - the most amazing colour that will just be so much fun to wear. Plus the yarn should be incredible - all of the raving reviews really sold me on this stuff - plus 5 skeins of it (and 5 is buying one too many, but better to have one extra than be one short, right?) at only $12/skein is MUCH better than buying the pattern-required Classic Elite Bam Boo - at $7.50/skein but having to buy a whopping THIRTEEN skeins! (Classic Elite comes at only 77 yds/skein, but SWT Bamboo comes at an amazing 250yds/skein!!!) A grand total savings of over $30.

The Bamboo in Plum is for the Green Tea Raglan by Cathy Payson that is on page 56 of IK.

Which I will present to you here & now:

I've been dying to knit (myself) a raglan for AGES now - and I adore adore adore the way that the designer contrasted the smooth knit of the sleeves with the seed stitch of the body - and the way that there is a teeny slight break between the body & the shaping stitch before you hit the sleeves.......well I could go on & on. Simple as anything yet stunning, I think - and while I know that someone of my hourglass-type shape needs to wear v-necks to help keep me even more shape-focused and defined I think this boat-ish neckline will still look nice on me - and the knitted belt (if indeed I decide to go ahead with it) will help to add definition to my waist even more.

So, that's sweater #1 - I can HARDLY wait to get cracking on it!!!
Sweater number two lept out at me almost as quickly. I sat and stared at the sleeves a bit until I suddenly realized that I could ignore the extra cable on the sleeve that was so distracting to me and that would make an already-incredible sweater all that much more incredible (although bearing in mind Emily's advice about designers throwing in extra stitches to compensate for the amazing way that cables pull in a knitted fabric I might need to swatch a bit and cut back on my number of sleeve stitches correspondingly!) and with that realization I was a goner again for a second time.

(Now just think about this - how many times have you seen a sweater in a magazine that you just loved and how many times have you gone out and bought the yarn for it RIGHT AWAY? I've never done it - never! - and today I did it not once but twice!!!
Sweater number two calls for 8 skeins of Gems Worsted at $14.50 a skein - a grand total of $116. NO WAY. I know it's a cheap hobby when you break it down by time spent and total cost per minute/hour/etc. but still. I couldn't bring myself to do that. So instead I went looking for worsted weight substitutes and remembering a favorite blogger's passion for elann I went looking there and found myself just drooling over their Peruvian Pure Alpaca - but what colour? The price was certainly VERY right - and I needed 13 skeins due to slightly shorter yardage per ball but still - at $3.98 per ball you do the math and realize how much I was saving on this sweater by again switching yarns! I looked at all of the colours and then looked at the top of the page where they had some already-knit items and saw this picture below which is apparently the 'Lift & Separate Cardigan' from Amy Singer's Big Girl Knits. Also knit in Peruvian Pure Alpaca and the colour just LEPT out at me........

But which colour was it? Was it in a now-discontinued colour, or was it in a currently available colour and due to monitor differences I just couldn't really tell which colour it was? I thought I knew - but a look at the colour card that Elann offers made me doubt myself. So I spent about 45 minutes looking all around all over trying to find out WHAT colour this sweater was knit in and then simply decided "oh the hell with it!" and went ahead and bought myself enough yarn in their 'Celery' dyelot and figured that probably no matter what I'd be happy with any shade between what seems to be the two that I keep finding in my searches.

But which sweater is it ultimately for, you ask?

Why, the Cable-Down Raglan by Stefanie Japel, of course!

The part that I don't like on the sleeve is the simpler of the two cables - the ones that appear to be on the 'sides' of the arm - both front and back. Makes it far too busy to my eye and really detracts from that most incredible cable that runs down over the to of the shoulder straight down to the back of the wearer's wrist. So I'll take those cables out and it will - I think - make the sweater look all that much more incredible because of it. And the way that the simple cables on the back of the sweater pull it in like a corset? For a curvy girl like me that's how you spell love love love in wool!!!

So - that's what I did and that's how I spent the last four hours..............between answering reference questions and putting more paper in the printer, of course!


Sandy said...

I marked the Green Tea Raglan as something I'd like to make for myself, too. I really like it. Overall, I was a little disappointed in this issue of Interweave, but that sweater and the Entrelac Socks jumped out at me. With the alterations you mentioned for the Cable-Down Raglan, I think that second sweater will look awesome. Have fun with your new yarn--I'm jealous!!

Emily said...

ooooOOOOooo You bought the bamboo! Tell us how it feels when it gets there-I am so curious. Good sweater choice, the neckline on the Green Tea Raglan will look great on you. I'm besotted with the cable down thingy too - I lovelovelove the back!

Anonymous said...

Good for you! The Cable-Down Raglan is awesome. I agree about the sleeves--too busy and distracting. I agree with emily--the back is gorgeous; I can picture it as the front!

Can't wait to see pics!


jessie said...

Good call on both counts. I think I'd hyperventilate if I ever bought yarn for 2 sweaters at the same time. I'm impressed.

I love the first sweater in color and style (I have only seen the teeny thumbnails online and had ho idea about the seed stitch body).

The second sweater is just beautiful, and I think you're right about taking out the extra cable. I'm a bit concerned about the way it fits the model in the photo of her back; seems to gap above the cable section. But then she probably weighs about 80 pounds, so that is probably a factor.

So, have you started knitting yet?

Mel said...

I would pay insane amounts of money for that cable-knit sweater. It's beautiful! If you want to start a college fund for your son, please make me one. :) - M

The Sanguine Gryphon said...

I'm pretty wild about that cable sweater too, but now that I've gone and become a professional knitter I never get to make anything for myself! But if commenter Mel is serious in wanting one made for her and you don't want to do it.... email me, Mel! gryphon AT sanguinegryphon DOT com