crafts · Crochet · knitting

Back and forth

Last night the puff sleeved cardigan and I got into a bit of a fight.  I was  bit worried going into the raglan section, because while my stitch gauge swatched fine, my row gauge was off.  I wasn’t sure that it was all going to work out without improvisation.  I separated the sleeves and tried it on; too big.  I measured, and my 32″ cardigan (with mods) was coming out 34″.  So I checked my gauge again.  Yup – it had changed.  Now keep in mind that I had been occasionally checking, as I’m incredibly paranoid about changing gauge after Ms. Marigold.  Of course, it may have been a sort of hopeful gauge checking, like… “Hmm, that doesn’t look quite right, but if I squish the fabric this way it’s perfect!”  Don’t laugh, I’m sure I’m not the only one!

Anyway, I ripped back about 10 rows and did math for my new and improved gauge.  Instead of having 176 stitches after the sleeves I now have 152.  And it fits very well, measuring 31.5 inches.  With the button band it will work out just right.  So anyway, at this point I’m following the pattern in only a very theoretical sense, as I’m going to have to make up all my own numbers from here on out.  I’m going to try and get the lace pattern to work for my numbers, but we’ll see… I may be laceless, but that’s ok.

In the meantime, my ripple has grown a black stripe.

You can see my fancy schmancy new crochet hook there, and I’m glad to report that it does indeed make a differenceto my elbow pain.  As does no longer being on the part where I crochet, rip, and re-crochet the chain and first row 5 times.   I’ve decided these are going to be the only 4 colors in the afghan.  I read in some decorating book sometime that one should always have a bit of black in order to make the other colors “pop,” so I guess yay me.  Complicated color schemes aren’t really “me” anyway.  You will note a complete lack of colorwork in this blog, mostly because I don’t own any multicolored sweaters, why would I knit them?  And while it is true that I love color, and every room in my house is painted a different bold shade, it’s also true that most everything else is neutral or a similar tone.  I do admire the multicolored ripples, which I think are so lovely!

Last night I did order the Berocco books I was looking at, as well as one of the Jaeger books from WEBs.  I also ordered some Bonsai yarn (enough to make any of several designs, and isn’t it surprisingly inexpensive for bamboo?) ultra silk (on sale!), Jaeger Siena (for the cute purple sleeveless top in the last post) and some Valley yarns longmeadow (love my cotton/microfiber blends!)  Based on my track record with WEBs, they should arrive in approximately three weeks.  I kid (sort of) but it really does sometimes take forever for my orders to arrive.

I must be off to work now, to teach the singing.

10 thoughts on “Back and forth

  1. Gauge – it’s an evil and deceptive hoax! I just happen to be working on some swatches for a SWTC Oasis tank that I was completely and totally unable to get gauge on last summer. It’s and SWTC pattern and I’m using their suggested yarn and I’m telling you the suggested gauge is simply not possible! Well, it’s been sitting in a drawer for almost a year so I decided to give it another shot since summer is coming. We’ll see…

  2. Gauge is exactly why I am so scared to make a sweater! I am glad that you were able to work out how to remedy your ‘problem’ though. Your ripple afghan is going to be so pretty. I really like the colors you have chosen. I like the multi-colors but the ones with just a couple of colors are really nice too. They look very understated.

  3. Raglans are really hard, too, especially if you’re following the generic “increase 1 st each side of the marker every other row” formula. That only works for certain sizes, and for worsted weight yarn. If you’re working with a different weight yarn, or you’re finding that it’s getting too wide too fast, try increasing every other row just to your shoulder tips (first few inches), then switch to every FOURTH row to your actual underarms, then every other again to where you want the garment underarm to be. It may end up a little too NARROW this way, but then you can just cast on a few extra stitches at the underarms. I find raglans fit WAY better this way. Not that this advice helps for this project, but keep it in mind in the future.

    And I’m not claiming credit for it – only passing on the advice of Maggie Righetti.

  4. I love your ripple blanket. I’ve been considering dabbling a little in crochet, though I haven’t done much since I learned as a child. The only thing holding me back is that I’m terrified it will be one more thing that I’ll become addicted to. But then again, I do have lots of stash . . .

    Great advice from Contadine. Will have to drag out that book and reread it.

    As for top down raglans, that is the best part of them, is that you can make sure they fit before you continue on. I love this and can’t wait to see it all knit up. Best of luck!

  5. ugh! I can barely talk about gauge, at least I know I’m not the only one who continually has weird problems with it 😉

    the ripple afghan is coming along nicely!

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