Anni’s BOGUK badgework blog

March 27, 2008

BOGUK GETS CRAFTY – part 1 – finished

Filed under: Uncategorized — tbird @ 10:41 pm

Complete Clauses 1 and 2 and a further three of your choice. Throughout, you should know how to use, store and clean the equipment and tools you use in your crafts.

1. Using existing craft skills, undertake a major project that extends your skills in some way. You may wish to try a new technique, a larger project or producing a gift for somebody.

top down hooded cardi

Hooded cardi for Aprilia. I have drafted this pattern from scratch so that it fulfilled several criteria that I couldn’t find in any pattern I looked at on the web. it needed to be seam free (seams bother her) which meant really it needed to be top down and it needed to be in Aran yarn as she had picked the yarn out so I was commited to it. I’ve never drafted like this before and I was surprised how easy it was really.

Pattern drafting- using the principles in “A Knitter’s Almanac” by E. Zimmerman and the information gained from a tension square (my tension was way different from the ball band so I’m glad I did it!) I worked out how many stitches to cast on for the neck. From the same book and tnesion squrea, I worked out how many sts to place between the increases to make a fake raglan shaping for the shoulders and give the right number of stitches for chest, sleeves and back ( 15%, 20%, 30%, 20%, 15% ) and how many increases I needed to do to get there. I used an increase of 8 sts each knit row (in pairs basically at the beginning and end of each sleeve section)

From the tension square I worked out how many rows long to make the garment to save me from the habit of stretching it a bit when i measure (I get bored with the plain knitting part sometimes and without realising stretch out the work to reach the required lenght!) Likeswise I measured her arms and wrist and worked out how many rows long the sleeves needed to be and also how many sts I needed to decrease to make a shapely arm not a baggy tube. It turned out to work out perfectly at dec 2 every 4 rows. These were done on the “2 circ” method of circular knitting again to make it seam free, the decreases make it look like it’s seamed from teh outside but it’s smooth inside.

For the hood I measured a hoodie that fits her and used the tension square to work out how many stitches wide I’d need to make it. It was significantly different from what I cast on for the neck but as most necks aren’t the same width as the head they hold up that was fine. I worked on the principle of making 8 sts every knit row (following the same increase scheme as the yoke) and noted how many rows I needed to do to get to the right number of sts. It wasn’t many so taht was fine, if it had needed a lot I would hve done it differently to be sure it would fit right. Then I measured her from shoulder to the top of her head (but not over the top, just the top edge IYSWIM) , added a bit for wearing and worked out the number of rows I needed to get there. the top of the hood is to be done by dividing the sts into 1/3s and doing a “Dutch heel” type affair to make a squared off hood again with no noticable seaming.

Finishing – I messed about for ages with this, I wanted a fancy bottom edge but she decided against it so waved bye bye to all my fancy edge plans (altough they will return for the edge of a baby item some time soon!) and she wanted a zip which I’ve never sewn into knitting before. I edges the entire thing with crochet to give it a good solid edge to support the zip and to coax it into not curling at the bottom, this has given me a place to maybe thread a draw chord through at the bottom too if she wants. I’d not done ribbing at the bottom as I’d planned on a fancy edge hence it was all curled up – yuck!

Final result – fits well, although the rate she’s growing I’m not sure how long for! Hood hangs nicely but with the shaped neck it doesn’t gape open so I’m quite pleased with that. Zip is awful, I am hoping it will free up with use but it’s too stiff for her to use and not easy for me to do. Naturally, it’s not going to gt zipped up much anyway but it does seem irritating really!

My thoughts – I’ve really enjoyed this one, working from the top down, and doing fronts and backs together has made the whole thing really much better. It takes away the temptation to give the work an accidental tug when measureing which has made for some utterly awful lopsided products in the past where a front has turned out noticably shorter than the back it’s being sewn into! Top down also made the neck shaping a doddle, I used to hate raglan shaping and really hate sewing it together but this way works!

The yarn was nice to work with, it’s Sirdar and I could only afford it becuase it was at a discount place, it’s noticably better than cheaper yarns but I never get the same tension as them and their yarns are thinner than my other fave which is James C Brett.

Next time I would ignore requests for zips and do a nice deep button band extending round the bottom to make a waist band and over the top of the hood too.

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