Monday, May 10, 2010

Isabella: a tangy tank for summer

When I first saw the images of the Stroll Tonal yarns from Knit Picks I knew that I had to have some.  Yet, I don't knit socks (yet!) so what would I do with beautiful yarn like that?  A quick search on ravelry yielded the lovely Isabella pattern that was in Knitty a few summers ago, I remember admiring it last year but felt it was beyond my abilities.  Well, no more!  I decided to further the difficulty by knitting this in the round, and not just in the round but using the magic loop method.  It took about 5 tries to get it cast on right, but now that I am about 7 rows into the project it is getting much easier.

Casting on was fine, it was the whole dividing the cast on stitches in half and pulling the cable into position while ensuring the stitches didn't twist or get super tight that was a total bitch.  I had actually given up after my first try, thinking maybe I should just stick to the pattern as written and not make things too hard on myself; but after another failed start I thought that if Granola-Mama can do the magic loop for two at a time socks, than by gawd I can do it for one bloody shirt!  Destructo-boy assisted a little in this decision, I had foolishly left my knitting on the couch where he could reach and he pulled all the stitches off one needle after I had started to knit the back piece back and forth rather than both front and back together in the round.  After that I decided to try the magic loop method once again (did I mention that I am also much slower at purling than knitting?).  I waited until the ankle biters were in bed and was able to get it started with a little bit of patience and a lot of luck.

Since the hem will be a picot edge I realized that is okay for the first few rows to look hideous as they will be folded under to be hemmed in place, which really allowed me to relax as I started working through my fear of this project/technique.  I don't know why, but whenever I attempt anything new it seems I have to work my way up to it, giving myself little pep talks just to get over the hump of getting it started.  For the record this is my first time working with fingering weight yarn and my first time using US 3 needles, and using the magic loop method of knitting, a lot of firsts for one project.  It will take forever (maybe I'll get to wear it by next summer!), but I am loving how the colors of the hand dyed yarn are flowing from one to the other so far. Maybe with a lot of luck and patience I'll even get it done in time to wear it by the end of this summer!


  1. Isabella will be gorgeous in that color!

  2. Seems the self-pep-talk and sneaking up on a tough project runs in the family. I'm still sneaking around the edges of the camera project. Need to get some progress on it just to keep up with you.

  3. Very pretty color! I love that owls vest a few posts down too!


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