Thursday, July 22, 2010

The august Augusta

What a miracle - I'm no longer working on the Handstrikket. It's like trudging through 12 long years of school and finally getting to go to college. Graduation is sweet!

Now on to a new beginning: the Augusta Cardigan from New England Knits. I started one of the sleeves last night based on an excellent tip from Kathy Zimmerman: start with the sleeve because if your gauge is wrong, you won't have as much to rip out if you have to start over. This is exactly what happened. My first go at the sweater was on the size 10 needles that worked perfectly for my swatch. But after knitting a bit, I noticed the cuff was 15 inches wide rather than the 10 that I'd planned. So I scrapped the whole effort and started over with sixes. The gauge is perfect now.

The yarn is gorgeous, btw - this photo doesn't do it justice. I'm using Berroco Peruvia in Sea Turtle, a 100% wool aran yarn. And from my vast and ever-expanding stash no less!

 I'll have more tips from Kathy in the next day or two. Can't think of a better use of a knitting blog than sharing educational wealth.


  1. Oh how I heart that green! I can't wait to see more!! But I have to ask ... how on gods green earth are you working with hot sweater in this heat in ROCKVILLE MD?!?!?!? I'm dying here working on lace and socks! lol Although I vaguely remember everything down there having central air. Scranton not so much! :)

  2. Miss Katie, I have to admit that it was tough at the end there with that giant pile of an alpaca and wool sweater in my lap... plus my pug likes to park there, too. HOT. But yes, it's DC and EVERYTHING is air conditioned. We wouldn't survive otherwise. Congress started taking a summer break way back in the day because DC is literally ungodly in July and August. It's really awful. BTW, this great would look beautiful on you, little Miss Shamrock. :-)

  3. Katie, I meant: this GREEN would look beautiful on you, little Miss Shamrock :-)

  4. Ya know, I really am looking at that pattern. So, inquisitive gal that I am I looked in the library catalog and there are only 5 copies in the network and 30 people waiting to borrow!
    That would be 2 weeks per person, and I can't wait 12 weeks to borrow a I sent for it via Amazon with my free shipping.
    What is your take on the Peruvia? Does it fly? Is it shed-y and tickly? If fibers fly free and (invisible though they may be)hit my face or arms or nose, I go into an itching fit. Alpaca does that a lot to me.
    Right now I am knitting with Knitpicks City Tweed HW. It's a nice yarn for the price but the colors are not deep and true. Ever have a garment that catches the sun at the same angle every time you wear it while driving? After a while that one shoulder or sleeve looks faded. The colors in the City Tweed remind me of has a faded look.
    It tends to tickle a bit too from those invisible fibers flying about.
    The tweed is rather strange in that it sits on top of the strand rather than lying flat..the Red Heart Fleck is just like that..but only acrylic. Some people have complained that the yarn is pilling, but actually it is the tweed flecks popping to the surface.
    Would I buy it again? No.
    I would really like your review of the Peruvia as far as fiber and gauge.
    I guess I have been using Cascade 220 too long, and think I will go back to the Cascade line of yarns.

    You blog about gauge being off(sleeve).
    I have a horrible time with gauge , but now have just about figured out my hand/tension.
    I always start with 1 needle size smaller than the recommended needle in the pattern.
    Then I do a huge swatch and get gauge.
    THEN...I knit the project in 1 needle size down from the swatch!
    It never fails..I get gauge in a swatch and when I measure in the middle of the sweater's back I need to go down another size because of loose tension.
    STRANGE! I guess knitting relaxes me when I get into the project....LOL.

    BTW I enjoyed Berroco's Knitting Video this week. I know you knit Continental, Julie, and it is so neat and uniform..are there any good videos around like the berroco which explain the Continental purl stitch?

  5. That is exactly what I do ... use a sleeve as a gauge swatch. Why knit a stupid little square that I can't do anything with? I'm not going to save it for future reference. Why would I do that? Besides, if I knit one sleeve, I've got to knit the other one. Then I am sure to finish the sweater because what else can one do with two sleeves?

  6. Great thinking, Anne! I concur completely. I've only finished one sleeve now and I feel compelled to complete the sweater. In fact, it's wonderful inspiration to do so.

    Teresa, I searched around for a Continental purl video from Berroco but they don't appear to have one. However, I did find a video that talks about several different Continental purl methods:

    After watching this video, I apparently purl in the Eastern or combined method. It's much faster imho. You do have to watch when you're knitting not to cross the knit stitches, but it comes automatically for me now.

    Continental is faster. It just is. At least for me.