Proof that Dr. G’s Memory Vest Makes People Happy

Dr G's Memory Vest

Mission accomplished!

Dr G's Memory Vest

Being a goal-oriented person, I am pleased to have not only finished my husband’s Dr G’s Memory Vest (pattern by Kirsten Kapur of Through the Loops), but also to have accomplished my goal of knitting a sweater for each person in my immediate family this season.

Except myself.  I am not neglecting myself.  I do not buy into the Martyr Mother role!  And winter is not over yet.  I will cast on for my new sweater any day now.  I just have to make a decision on which pattern…  Isn’t sifting Ravelry for a pattern the best part anyway?

Back to the vest.  On a friend’s suggestion, I went with Aslan Trends Del Cerro yarn.  It was one of those yarns that seemed like it would work, but so did not – at first.  I wanted to make a medium, which would have given Matt some negative ease in the fit, but after casting on and knitting for a few inches, it was clear that it was coming out way too small.  So I threw my naughty knitting into the corner for a few days ripped it out and knit the vest in the extra-large size.

close up of Dr G's Memory vest

 

Well hallelujah and all that jazz because it ended being a great fit!  It’s approximately 43” around the chest, which is about what size the medium was supposed to be.  I’d like to claim awesome knitting ninja powers, but I suspect I just got lucky.  The false start made for a good gauge swatch as well.  The one tricky spot was the v-neck; I had to rewrite the decreases because of the difference in my row gauge.  Row gauge didn’t give me a problem in the other parts of the sweater.

Don’t get me wrong about the Del Cerro, either.  It’s a great yarn.  It is comprised of many small plies and it is very bouncy and squishy.  It was just a bit splitty in the knitting up, but not so much that I am put off using it in the future.  The important feature of this yarn: It has GREAT stitch definition for all those cables.  I hope down the road that it doesn’t fuzz over so much that the cables become blurred, but if it does, oh well – there are more vests to be knit and there is a life-cycle to all these knitted goods.

Coincidentally, Matt’s first opportunity to wear this was on his birthday last week.  We had to go out and get a new white button down and everything.

 

Happy Birthday, Matt!
Donut Mondae at Zingerman’s Roadhouse ~ what more could a person ask for?!

Dah-ling, you look mah-velous!  Happy Birthday!

Gauge, you cruel mistress

Chickami is not working out.  The yarn I got specifically for this project, Elann Coto Canapone, is not knitting up at the advertised gauge for me, 19-20 sts/4 inches on US 5.  Instead I am getting 23 sts/4 inches on US 5 – and it is a good fabric that is not too firm or too loose so I don’t want to mess with that.  I thought I had taken into account my smaller gauge but, noooo… I apparently lied to myself about what 23/4*40=.

I’m spinning my wheels on what to do.  I might be able to scrounge up replacement yarn from my stash but… probably not.  I have a top’s worth of Dalegarn Svale to rip and reuse but that gauge is also probably too small.  The gauge of Classic Elite Flash is a bit too large but I also don’t think I have enough of that (and it’s discontinued).  And around and around my unhappy brain goes!

I’ve also spent an unreasonable amount of time searching for a tank pattern to replace this one and no go.  It’s just not a very popular gauge for patterns despite how nice and lightweight sport/DK yarns are.

Really, what I need to do is take the lovely simplicity of Chickami and rewrite it to fit this yarn.  But I am too mad at my failed project to take this step right now.  So I am going back to work on the Equinox Yoke Pullover and Chickami will have a time out.

Sadly, this means that there will be no new green cotton/hemp tank top for my birthday without a Christmas-in-July miracle.  I’ll survive somehow.  It will probably involve Woodchuck 802 and Season 3 of the Tudors.

Looking on the brighter side, omg, I love the Ultra Alpaca I’m using in the Equinox Pullover.  The color!  The softness!  The strength!  Berroco, you are genius.

Has anyone else been bitch slapped by the technical details lately?

Now Dreaming…

Darlings, it has been a mad, mad summer.  I desperately await the day, a month from now, when my little-big boy will leave the bosom of our family and begin his first day of preschool.  I will probably cry because I am sentimental that way but it will be relief all around because he’s smart and social and needs the stimulation.

Me, I wouldn’t mind a break from being his personal entertainment committee.  The charm of the magic trick of producing a sibling from my own body has worn off for him.  Not that he doesn’t adore her but she’s still pretty boring for him 80% of the time.

The baby is starting to get around.  Not crawling but somehow she manages to get from one place to another in her efforts to explore her world.

This has not been the summer – or year – of knitting I usually hope for, plan for.  Something went funky with my neck and arm a month ago and now I am barely knitting.  I probably have a swollen disk.  Is that TMI?  I hope not.  Blech.  That said, I wouldn’t be here writing if I didn’t believe I was on the mend.  I have mostly laid on the couch for three days and had a big improvement.  Now for the chiropractor and the physical therapist so this never ever ever happens again (because of course this is not the first time; I just didn’t understand what it was before).

Today I was struck with the bug to cast on!  You know how it goes, the dreaming up of projects, leaping about Ravelry like a young gazelle…. Weeeeee!  Right now I would like to make an entrelac scarf from Noro Silk Garden or a similar yarn; Clapotis from Lornas Laces Shepherd Sport (lighter weight than the original); and a Katie Beret, probably with a colorful Blue Moon Fiber Arts yarn.  This of course completely disregards all my other knitting plans that have lain in wait all year like the Ribby Cardi for myself and socks for me, my friend, and my husband. Etc ad infinitum.  I make lists as a hobby, I think.  No harm in a list.

Luckily for my knitting plans, I have a pocketful of bday gift certificates.  Sadly I have very little personal time.  Luckily this must change so I don’t become a giant knot of pain again.  So I am thinking maybe I can have an afternoon or two while the boy’s at preschool wherein I sit in a cafe downtown, drinking a silly hot drink, knitting, and being chatted up by my delightfully verbose daughter.  It’s an idea.  Want to join me?

Squeaky Is as Squeaky Does

Squeaky baby in her Squeaky blanket

Elinor’s modular baby blanket has occupied much of my knitting time this winter past.  It was an awesome take-anywhere project although that came back to kick me in the butt when all the blocks finally needed to be put together.  But once I decided on the crochet seaming, it took only 1-2 evenings with Masterpiece Theatre (Oliver Twist, I believe).

Squeaky blanket designed for my daughter

I ended up naming this blanket pattern Squeaky because, well, this baby is.  She makes a lot of noise!  From day one when she grunted and squeaked and moaned throughout her first 7-hour postpartum nap up to today (2 weeks old), she is a noisy little squeaker.  We don’t recall any other baby being this noisy, including our firstborn.  We speculate that maybe she makes noise because that’s what we sound like to her.  Maybe she will be an early talker.  We’ll see!

The pattern for Squeaky can be found on its own static page here at Entangled but don’t forget to add it to your Ravelry notebook when you cast on!

FREE PATTERN: Squeaky

Ravel it!

Squeaky baby in a new blanket

C’mon baby…

Squeaky Blanket

Baby #2’s Patchwork Blanket is done.

Blanket for Squeaky

Lion Brand Wool-Ease in 13 colors, held doubled.  Squares are crocheted together and the whole thing is finished off with a simple crochet border.  See the project’s Ravelry page for more details.

What are you waiting for?

We have a bed for you, a dresser full of clothes, and an enthusiastic big brother.  What more could a girl ask for?

Okay, I will go look for the booties again.  I understand the need for stylish footwear.