FO: Another Little Dress

Let’s start this Monday off right with one of last week’s finished objects I didn’t share. I made another little dress with the Summer into Fall dress.
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You can see my first one for my goddaughter Paige in a bright pink! This time I used Knit Picks Comfy Worsted (it’s currently got a lot of colors on sale right now if you’re interested in trying it out) in the Orchid colorway. It’s more lavender with pink undertones to it than just the standard baby girl pink. I really liked this color. This yarn was also super soft to the touch and is machine washable and dryer friendly. YAY!
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I’m telling you this dress is such a super cute and super quick knit. I finished this one in just two days in the 6 months size. It flies off the needles.
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And hopefully at the six month size little Evelyn will get a few months of wear out of this and can even put on some tights when it gets a bit cold in the fall. I’ve got a few little girls I want to make these for in warmer material for fall into winter but my list of knits for fall is growing insanely long. We shall see how much I’m able to accomplish. But speaking of accomplish, I finished my Pink Professor cardigan (I had a few sneak peeks on Instagram in my stories) and can’t wait to share the finished object with you this week! I’m really happy with the finished object and now I’m just waiting for fall to come so I can stop wearing it in my living room.
Getting cozy on my sweater
And when I’m not wearing it, Cher decides it’s her newest and softest blanket. Multiple purpose knitting at its finest.

Sweater Knitting: The Process

In July of 2015 I bought this sweater quantity (1400 yards) of Madelinetosh Vintage in the colorway Kilim on sale. It is gorgeous. Pictures don’t do it justice to all the flecks of color in this dusty pink yarn. I love it.
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But the yarn was so gorgeous that I kept trying to find the perfect sweater to make with it but couldn’t find anything good enough for it. I was at the beginning of my sweater knitting craze in 2015 so my skills weren’t where they are currently so I just kept looking lovingly at that yarn in it’s drawer. And this summer I’ve been trying to dig through my stash (and actually document it on Ravelry) and really use up a lot of what I have in order to move on and buy more yarn. Plus I know I love how good Madelinetosh feels and I wanted to knit with it. So I decided it was time to pull out the insanely gorgeous yarn and just make something as part of my Summer of Basics Makealong projects.
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On Friday night while my husband and I have pizza and watch a movie I finished off another little dress for a baby girl and then decided to swatch the yarn for the next project.
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I decided to use size 9 needles, they’re my favorite. They’re not too small and not too big. Pre-blocking my swatch was 5 stitches per inch and post-blocking and drying it worked it’s way down to 4 stitches per inch. The magic of blocking folks. It truly changes your yarn.
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Saturday morning I got up and looked at my blocked swatch and decided to go ahead and make myself a very basic raglan sweater. I’m going for simple stockinette stitch because the yarn really does speak for itself, garter stitch bands and a shawl collar. I did add a little faux side seam because why not? And I’m considering picking up stitches and doing some patch pockets and perhaps adding elbow patches. I’m calling this one the Pink Professor because it seams like it would be a scholarly kind of knit plus I’m a professor. Although my classroom is always so hot I never wear my knits to lecture.
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As of Tuesday night I’ve gotten 9 inches of body from the point of separating from the sleeves. My hope is that by Wednesday night I can finish the body and by Saturday finish the sleeves. So far it fits really nicely and I’m hoping once it’s blocked there will be a bit more ease to it. I want it to be like a nice boyfriend cardigan but I added in waist shaping because I didn’t want it to just be a big box on me. I thought I’d document this one via my Instagram stories because so many people say they don’t think I sleep and I just knit. And I thought it would be a good one for my Sweater Knitting Series on how I actually go through a sweater from swatching to blocking. And I promise and I sleep and don’t knit in my sleep. I’m in bed passed out every night by 10:30/11pm. I promise.
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But Jellybean is also a tiny drill sergeant and makes me knit faster and faster so she has more warm yarn to burrow under. Perhaps that’s the secret to my success? So when it comes to really awesome yarn, how do you decide what to make with it?

A Reason to Knit

People are always fascinated by my knitting. But typically non-knitters who engage me in conversation about it inevitably get around to asking me if I can a. make them something or b. can they buy something from me? Sigh…but it’s always people who knit or know someone who knits that ask me why I knit. I got caught up in a long conversation about it the other day and thought I’d share my thoughts and would love to hear your reasons why as well.
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Usually the first reason I give for why I knit is joy. I named this blog Yards of Happiness for a reason, when I knit it makes me happy. It destresses me when work and life are a bit too hectic. I’m elated when I figure out a pattern, a new stitch or give someone a gift and you can see they truly love it. My girlfriend Rachel got the box with the two doggies in it for her kids on Tuesday and when I was packing them up I text her this pic and told her I was a little sad to see them go after spending time with them. I mean I made them, sometimes it’s hard to let a finished object go.
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She wrote back, “They will join a well-cared-for bunch of rotating visitors in Jacob’s bed. They will also learn to play ‘school’ and get books read to them. Leah will put them over her shoulder and say ‘pat,pat’ (which she did in a video she sent me). They will go on car trips and subway rides. Watch Disney movies. We will give them a good home.”

Well damn that made me almost cry. And that’s why I knit. I get to make something for someone I love to share with someone she loves the most in the world. She even sent me videos of them opening the box and her 4 year old read the card out loud. It was the best.
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My secondary reason to knit is for myself. I’m not a person who talks about the whole slow fashion movement because I don’t exactly know where I fit in it and I never feel like I’m slow. LOL But I have started to buy less when I know I can make myself something instead. I said about 2 years ago that my goal was that all the sweaters in my closet would eventually be hand knit. I’m slowly getting there. Last year I focused more on knitting things for myself and less on others. Despite my extended family that asks me all the time for hats, scarves, ties and sweaters I don’t feel bad putting their requests to the side when I’m working on something for myself to add to my wardrobe. I’m trying my best to build a thoughtful collection of things in quality yarn that will last me for a while and will be timeless but still match my style and personality. And in between all of that I’ll knit a gift or two but for now my focus is really on me and what I want and need to add to my wardrobe.

So now I’m asking you, why do you knit?