Friday, 31 January 2014

Porridge And Honey


Porridge and honey, better than money. 
Everything is funny, with porridge and honey.

Above is a quote from one of my favourite fantasy novels, The Blade Itself by Joe Abercrombie. In terms of story it's the opposite of soft, fluffy yarn: it's grim, harsh and bloody. In fact, the quote is a song from the childhood of a specifically notorious torturer. And yet, the colours of porridge and honey make such a nice combination that I've decided to make a comfy cardigan of it. It's funny how something like a gritty fantasy novel can inspire something as cutesy as a handknitted cardigan, but there you have it!

I started this cardigan in September, but due to my commitment to making the sweater for my dad and joining in the Stephen West Mystery KAL the project was on a hold for a bit. When I did finish it I was snowed under exams and papers so I'm very excited that I'm now able to let it make its first appearence on the blog!


Pattern: Voussoir
Designer: Melissa Wehrle
Yarn: Drops Karisma
Soundtrack: Eric Clapton - Back home

Even though I use Drops yarns pretty often, it was a first time I used the Drops Karisma quality. Drops is currently in my top five go-to yarn brands (if you're curious: the others are Istex, Holst, Malabrigo and Jamieson&Smith's) and here in mainland Europe there is pretty much no brand to match it price/quality wise. Especially when I had just gotten into knitting I used Drops a lot. It think it the ideal brand for beginners to dabble into knitting with natural fibres without paying the world. Anyway, the karisma quality is no exception. I'm curious to see whether it will hold up just as good as their qualities with alpaca.


I'm a undecided about the pattern. Melissa created a beautiful design and the end result is one of my favourite makes as of yet. On the other hand I felt that some parts in the pattern were unnecessarily complicated the way they were written down, often confusing. Especially the part for the yoke and the joining of the sleeves were done extremely confusing. You're working with four different charts (one for the back, the left front, the right front and the sleeves) while the cardigan itself is worked in the round (so the pattern includes steeking). So while working on one row, you have 4 pages in front of you. I really do wonder if this couldn't be done in a more practical way. I didn't like how most of the decreases were done, they were sometimes really obvious, especially when you had to knit or purl 3 stitches together. So I changed the decreases and I did the yoke construction in a different way. However the end result is more than worth some frustration. All in all this design is not for the faint harted and I would not recommend it to beginners,  but I feel that more expirienced sweater and colourwork knitters certainly will be able to make it work.



Ultimately though, I am really happy with the end result of the cardigan. It wears very easily, has colourwork (♥) and pockets(♥♥)!  and it's nice to add a bright cardigan to my collection. Did you ever had a lot of problems with a pattern, but ended up loving the end result anyway? (those are the best cases of unclear patterns!)


xxx
Nisse




Saturday, 25 January 2014

“Swish and flick.”

“Nitwit! Blubber! Oddment! Tweak!”

I thought I would show you my latest project to make it to the needles.
It is the cardigan worn by  Hermione Granger in “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1”, She wears it in the forest scenes.


Once upon a time I was a ten year old girl. I was ill and had to stay home for a while. I can remember the exact moment when my mother handed me Harry Potter and the Philosopher Stone. I remember how she sat next to me on the couch. I remember the cardboard box the book was wrapped in ( possibly one of the first things my parents ordered via post). I remember I started reading right away. I have been enchanted ever since. As a child I read the books countless times, I re-enacted the stories with my dolls and made up new stories in the world of Hogwarts.


I am a lot older now. Harry Potter is no longer "the best book I've ever read", though certainly the most influential on my childhood, and I think I've almost gotten over the fact that I didn't get a letter from Hogwarts. These books had a pretty important role in my childhood and whenever I think about them they still feel special. I hope that will always be the case.

That's why I'm so happy to be knitting this cardigan, though it doesn't hurt that it's super cute as well. Let it be a homage to my childhood friends!