I wanted something comfortable, so I went out on a limb and picked a pattern called Comfort! That sentence could probably be this whole blog post (though clearly I am incapable of leaving it at that), because this piece is absolutely As Described. Ok, maybe it should have been called Extreme Comfort, to really nail it.
I always struggle photographing a Kim Hargreaves piece, her photo shoots are a lot to live up to. Comfort is a "coatigan" from the book Still.
If you look at the shoulders, you'll see the beautiful aura that the unique combo of Rowan Kid Classic and Rowan Kidsilk Haze make together. In person it is rather astonishing how the colors mix, as well.
Rowan Kid Classic is my all-around favorite yarn (yes, OF THEM ALL), but I had never thought to hold it together with a fuzzy laceweight. I mean, there's already mohair inside of it, did I really need more? But WOW, whatever it is, the silk from the Kidsillk Haze, the extra fuz, this piece turned out to have one of the most luxurious fabrics in my knitted wardrobe.
I would say, "you have to try it NOW" except this combo is very expensive. Ravelry has conveniently calculated that 3,920 yards of yarn were used for this cardigan (oh my)! Even using my go-to site for the best yarn prices (Jannette's Rare Yarns) 12 balls of Kid Classic and 10 balls of Kidsilk Haze comes out to a pretty $235. Is it worth it for this garment, in the end? Yes, a resounding yes, if you can budget it. I am sure I will be using it non-stop at work because it is gorgeous, classic and best, freakishly warm.
The original garment is held open.
But I'm not a fan of cardigans with no closures. Yes, there is a belt -- but a note of warning, there are no instructions for belt loops to hold them on! (Visit my Ravelry page for a pattern for those.) A belt without buttons is too finicky for me, too much adjusting all day. I decided to add buttonholes.
The plastic buttons are vintage and fab, and I found them at a wonderful button vendor at the Fiber Frolic in Windsor, Maine. I can't believe how close the color matched! Two were faded, so I alternated them down the front.
Now, if you're like me, you change all your knitting patterns. Well, I got into some serious trouble changing this one. One thing I love about Kim Hargreaves -- she really thinks ahead. Where she starts her stitch patterns in the series is important. How it will match up once you get to the multitude of raglans?! IMPORTANT. Oops. I had to make one sleeve THREE times and ended up fudging it.
Also, this is a moss stitch ribbing which makes deep grooves in the fabric. Take note that where you make the seam in the pattern because it will make a difference in the way it drapes.
The other great thing about this pattern is the shawl collar. Conveniently, it is made while knitting the fronts, by continuing to knit a strip at the end that gets eased in around the neck.
For those of you making this, don't worry if the strip seems short. It's important that you match the excess fabric in the shoulders so that they hold nice and firm without droop.
And let's not forget about the fun part... pockets!
While the pattern is so well put together, I must admit, it was seriously tedious. It took months in front of the TV, as it wasn't really fun enough to do without watching something. The result is a dream to wear, though, so it you'd like to jump in -- just keep thinking of the blissful moment when you can finally wear it. Oh, and WORD TO THE WISE: use rubbing alcohol to remove pine sap from rocks, ugh!!
See my Extreme Comfort on Ravelry
And now for a lot of house updates (scroll to see the best for last)!!
First, we had our first set of guests for the summer's end, with my in-laws visiting from Geneva, Switzerland. Thank you, Yvette and Claudio for coming to our little Utopia, we loved having you here!
Second, our kitchen island was finally installed. As in moored, as in no more tabletop moving while I leaned on it, oh that was annoying.
|Before the island, and also before the gas stove.|
This extravaganza started in February and was delayed because of the butcher block. Our third iteration of it still has a significant damaged spot, but I just couldn't go through another round. It has transformed our kitchen and best of all -- it passes the yarn winding test!!
Third, the garden is on its last legs! We put a hummingbird feeder out late, but it was a big success. Within an hour we had a full out war going on between a red one and a green one. Most of them are gone now (the leaves are turning already!), but yesterday a runt that wasn't looking so good took a nice long drink. Hope you make it little guy.
The hydrangeas look so healthy and tall, but never made blooms. What should I do for next year?
The russian sage is tall and a lovely blue, and I have a few holly berries.
Finally, our screen porch is being built! I was a bit scared today because they had to cut a big hole in the wall to insert the door. It was a huuuuge WOW moment when I walked in, there is so much more light in the living room! That sliding door faces west.
|After painting the wood paneling.|
We are extending the deck to have access from the outside as well.
|From the inside.|
And why do we have stairs down to the meadow? For our future sauna, of course! I can't wait till I can give you THAT update.