Monday, March 16, 2015

Transeasonal boy's cabled jumper, Sirdar Baby Bamboo 346

Knitting for the conservative Australian male is not for the faint hearted knitter. This venture can also be complicated by certain people who complain vigorously that most things itch.
Despite these challenges, I claim success. This has been worn quite a few times already.
The pattern is (mostly) from Sirdar's Baby Bamboo too, book 346, which despite the title and the beautiful infant on the front ,includes patterns up to a generous size 7 years.
The sizes are in fact so generous, that for my (admittedly slim) 12 year old son, I needed only to change the length of the jumper (body and sleeves) from the size 7 to have a jumper that is a relaxed fit in all directions.

 I did intend to make the sleeves to fit when the cuff was folded back, in an attempt to gain some longevity from the jumper, but the yarn relaxed a little with wear, so I am hoping some growth comes along to correct this minor fitting issue.

For a boy's jumper, this was fun to knit. The cable is only on the front as written, but by adapting the pattern to knit in the round from the bottom up, this cable is enough to keep things interesting up to the armscye, and I added a bit of cable to the upper back for additional knitting pleasure. I tried to introduce a little cable to the sleeve to prevent knitting doldrums, but this was "too fancy" according to the recipient.


I used the Baby Bamboo yarn for the jumper, this being rated completely non itchy by the boy, and coming in a wide variety of colours. This one is 150, Denim Dungaree, which sounds suitably boyish. The last colour I used for him was called "Coo", which is not something I mentioned to him when we were discussing colour options.
The yarn is tried and true at our house, being just warm enough for Queensland Spring and Autumn evenings, and machine washable (on delicate wool wash).

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Bolero from Knit 2 in Jo Sharp Lumina

A pattern that works in several yarns, and in several styles is my favourite sort of pattern. I like to make up the exact garment planned by a designer as much as the next person, but adding my own variations is very satisfying.
This looks like a Summer garment.

Here is the same pattern, and same yarn, as an Autumn garment.


Last weekend, we went to a friend's house for dinner, and ate outside. It was a lovely evening, but the breeze became a bit chilly for the strappy dress I was wearing.
I could have done with this bolero.

Unfortunately, I don't have one yet, I actually knit this for a friend, to wear to her son's year 12 formal. It is modeled here by my daughter. It's a little big for her, but I think you can see the appeal of the garment better on a person than on a hanger, this yarn makes a beautifully drapey fabric.

The yarn is Jo Sharp 814 Halo Lumina, which is a gorgeous shimmering gold with integrated (soft) sequins. It's a perfect weight for spring and autumn evenings in our part of the world,.

Using Lumina for this pattern, rather than the Soho Summer cotton suggested in the starting pattern (Bolero from Jo Sharp Knit 2), makes the garment a little more dressy. Lumina requires some care in knitting, using bamboo needles and attention to detail when sewing up. I have written about working with Lumina in an earlier post

I adapted the pattern by knitting the backs and fronts in one piece to the armholes, by knitting the sleeves in the round, and by finishing the knitted on border and starting the sleeve cuffs with a stocking stitch edge, allowing it to roll over the ribbed binding for a softer look, with more textural interest.


I am impressed with the versatility of this pattern. After I'd completed the body, the sleeveless version looked rather smart as a waistcoat.
 There are 3 lengths of an A-line waistcoat in this yarn in Jo Sharp's Knit 4 book, which I admire, but this bolero version is equally as suitable.

The garment is fastened with a decorative kilt pin.