Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Little Distractions

I'm supposed to be working on my WiPs. Right? Get something finished before I start something else. The queue is backing up. So many things I want to work on. So many things I want to finish. So I'm supposed to getting through the ones on my needles before I start something else. It makes sense. Right? Only...

Some things are out of my control. As I was slowly making my way through my two work projects, finishing up my second go at Rose Red (and preparing to make a Gretel for the Cheerleader, who is rightly fed up with waiting for her Endpaper Mitts) a friend of mine goes ahead and has a baby. I had no choice. I had to cast on for a sweet little something!

Once again, I'm using an Elizabeth Zimmermann pattern. EZ was a genius. Pure and simple. She's one of those people that I would have liked to have met. And one day I hope to do so, if only by watching her DVDs. Thanks to a recent 40% sale over at Knit Picks, I managed to pick up the books I was missing from my collection and look forward to reading my way through EZ's wit and wisdom. To have that much more understanding and control that I can really start to think about designing a little. And hopefully come out the other side a better knitter.

EZ's Baby Sweater on Two Needles, better known as the February Baby Sweater, comes from the slim little volume called Knitter's Almanac. Here EZ gives us patterns to take us through the year. I may be a month off, but this sweater has been calling to me for a while. And I've been waiting for the right opportunity to make it.

So back to my newest project. After 3 boys, my friend gave birth last week to a little girl. I originally thought to go with pink, but quickly abandoned that for something with a bit more personality. I've had some Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sport in the stash for a while now. I'm not even sure when or why I bought it but it seemed just the thing for this sweater.

The sweater is pretty straight forward, though EZ's "Pithy Instructions" are pithy indeed. So I did the best thing any knitter can do. I went straight to Ravelry and found the Zimmermania Group, where the February Baby Sweater thread was full of fabulous tips and information. For instance. EZ says to knit the garter section then start the Gull Lace section.

Close up of Gull Lace pattern

When you reach 4.5" it's time to separate for the sleeves. Ummm, is that 4.5" from the cast on or from the lace pattern? Common sense states that it must be from the cast on, after all this is a wee little baby sweater, but it isn't written out and many people have scratched their heads with the same question. The answer, BTW, is yes, from the cast on.

The only modification I'm making is to knit the sleeves in the round. Knowing what we do about Elizabeth Zimmermann it is a little funny that pattern was worked with the sleeves flat. Perhaps she was writing for an audience that wasn't quite yet ready to work in the round? Regardless, I puzzled out what to do and I think it is working out well.

Of course, I haven't gotten that far along yet but this is tiny sized and I hope to have it finished by the weekend. I should have enough yarn left over to whip up a pair of booties to match.

I've got a couple more friends waiting in the wings, so to speak. Perhaps for one of them I'll make a Tomtem Jacket. Then I'll have hit the EZ Trifecta.


Anonymous said...

I did the same thing when KnitPicks had the EZ books on sale. I got the last three I was missing and am delighted with them! A cup of tea and EZ, I always say. I'm glad you decided on the beautiful not-pink yarn for the sweater. My little granddaugher had far too much pink and pastels in her wardrobe when she was little. The purple will go with most things the new baby will be given, and will look smashing with her complexion. Great choice!!! samm

lunaticraft said...

How very cute! And such a great, but sadly not frequently used color for a baby sweater!