What I’ve learned from knitting this year!

I haven’t really got round to finishing an awful lot of knitting this year, mainly because I’m a bit of a slow knitter and I tend to knit when watching telly which is probably not a good thing to do because I lose stitches and then have to start again. I decided to use this year as more of learning year when it came to knitting, pushing the boundaries and learning new techniques etc but here is what I learnt so far from what I made so far. Now just to note I used mainly Untangling Knot patterns because a) I like them and b) there relatively easy makes which are just right for beginners and not because I was asked or anything.

Picking the Right Wool

Land of Sunshine Cardigan

You know when you knit a cardigan and it’s pretty much perfect and the tension is great and it looks pretty and then you realise it’s a size too big and it doesn’t look right? Yeah that.

Now the reason I knitted it that size was I had knitted it that size on a previous cardigan which shrunk slightly after the first wash and fit. What I didn’t take into account was wool/acrylic blends don’t have much shrinkage so I ended up frogging and reknitting it and of course it didn’t come out anywhere near as nice and I ended up redoing the sleeve because I picked up the wrong size number of stitches but knitted it to the correct size of stitches was interesting (annoying)! At this stage I’m still learning about yarn weights and blends. I’ll talk about gauge later but I’m reluctant to spend a lot of money on really nice wool at this point until my knitting is a little better. 

But I finished it and I now have a lovelyish cardigan for my wardrobe and despite knitting it in a smaller size it fits but there is still no negative ease like there should, which is weird because all other yarn I’ve bought in this brand has. Who knows?? Anway I finished it!

I found these buttons in my stash I bought a few months ago, not sure for what but the black contrasts nicely with the yellow.
Pattern – Mryna by Andi Satterlun
Material – Aran with Wool
Style – Modern
Size – 37 Bust
Notes – Knitted without keyhole in the back
Post Title – Land of Sunshine by Faith No More

Tension/Gauge

Green Hornet Cardigan

So after I knit my Land of Sunshine cardigan and decided it was too big and needed a reknit, I decided to knock out another Hetty cardigan first. I picked this nice shade of apple green but this time opted for a size smaller this time and knit a 37.5 (medium) as this wool doesn’t shrink easy (it’s a poly/wool blend).

Second time round was much easier and I actually enjoyed knitting this cardigan. I decided to modify this pattern slightly and knitted short sleeves to make it more summer friendly however, it appears my gauge was a little off and this cardigan ended up being a little on the small side. So now I have learned the importance of a test swatch before commencing a project!
Pattern – Hetty by Andi Satterlund
Material – Aran
Style – Modern
Size – 37.5 Bust
Outfit Name – Green Hornet by Al Hirt

Blocking

Beneath The Sea Cardigan

I’ve already blogged about this cardigan but my main lesson in this one was blocking properly. For those who don’t know blocking is when you wash the garment and then pin it in the desired shape before letting it to dry. This will remove any rolled edges like on scarves or with lace patterns, stretch the garment out to the pattern can be seen as intended. I never used to block because I was lazy but now I do. I tend to soak and then spin on a gentle cycle before pinning.

I didn’t really pay attention to the middle back enough when blocking and so as you can see the it’s a little warped at the bottom. I tried a second blocking which sort of corrected but I’ve started another Vianne and will definitely pinning this section better second time round. I’m also looking into investing in a blocking board.

Lesson in Button Bands

(The nameless cardigan) Hetty in Teal

I’m not sure what the lesson in this cardigan is because I was quite happy with the way it turned out. The fit, the colour and the blocking. My only problem was I didn’t sew the button on tight enough and had to rescue half of them from the washing machine!

I’ve seen some knitters stabilise the button bands with ribbons, it’s a little more work but the results seem with and you don’t get the extra stretch on the button bands which can cause the buttons to sit weirdly on the button hole! So I will definitely be adding those to future cardigan knits.
Pattern – Hetty by Andi Satterlund
Material – Aran (acrylic with wool)
Style – Modern
Size -?
Outfit Name – Still unnamed
It kind of feels weird after years on knitting but mainly for other people to have a steady supply of items going into my wardrobe and I’m definitely getting more confident in my knitting and next year want to add a little more variety of knitting items to my wardrobe instead of just cardigans and scarves! And as they say practice makes perfect!

2 thoughts on “What I’ve learned from knitting this year!

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