Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A Slight Change of Plans

Remember the baby blanket I was making?
baby cardigan neck detail

Yeah, doesn't look much like a blanket, does it? Well, forget the baby blanket. I got about 3/4 inch into the blanket when I had two Devastating Realizations. Realization No. 1: I was bored. Did you know knitter boredom is a phenomenon that accounts for over ten million WIPs annually? (Actually, I made that up. I don't know how many WIPs it causes, but judging by the number some knitters seem to have, it must be a lot. I did consider linking to blogumentary evidence of this, then I decided that would be too mean. You know who you are.) Anyway, boredom in the last quarter, say, of a blanket is understandable. You've already spent a number of hours on the project, you know the pattern, you're struggling to come to terms with the rectangularity of it all.

That's where your determination, your stubbornness, the fact that you don't have another pair of needles in this size, and the knowledge that a ten-year old is not going to be impressed by a 40" square blanket, all come to your aid in summoning up the willpower to finish. (Or possibly fails you and results in the whole project being buried under the Christmas decorations until you need a gift for the originally planned recipient's fourth sibling...but I digress.)

So- bored. Bored at the very beginning of a project means that This Is Not Really What I Want to Knit. Now, there are times to do projects that you don't want to do, and tying yourself to the tracks in front of an approaching deadline is one strategy. But at this stage of the project, I had very little invested, and no good reason not to do something different. And that brings me to Realization No. 2- I was totally going to run out of yarn. Yep. I have no idea why, when I've used ~1500 yards for the last two blankets I've done, I thought that 1000 would do it this time, but clearly I should have bought all the yarn available in this color when it was on sale.

But, given that this project was not filling me with glee, I started thinking about what I *really* wanted to knit. And what popped into my head was this cute little raglan pattern from Carole Barenys, which I saw highly recommended a couple of weeks ago by Suburbancorrespondent. At this point, it seems pretty obvious that this is what I want to knit.
baby cardigan

I made some changes, of course. Based on sibling data, I figured this child was probably going to be a little larger than your garden variety newborn, so I sized it up some. After my experience with the top-down raglan for my dad, I knew that could be done fairly easily. So I cast on extra stitches at the neck, and then used online size charts to get the proportions right. It's a zippy little pattern- I'm blown away all over again with how fast stockinette-based patterns knit up. And a child has a lot less surface area than an adult too, so even the sport weight yarn didn't slow this down much. So that will take care of the February baby.

Now to come up with something for the January baby whose deadline got away from me!


  1. Very cute kidlet cardigan. I like to see little little kids in non-pastels.

    And I love knitting top-down raglans. I just started one for myself in a bulky tweed. Guess I should actually blog it.

  2. I must find that pattern. I've been wanting to knit a little raglan for some time now...Time to be a brave little knitter!

  3. Forget the blanket, that is too cute. lol. (Once I gave my b/f's started project to my pregnant Sister, since a baby blanket was so much smaller than an adult size for someone 6'2". lol)

  4. Amazing how any activity often ends up being a lesson in flexibility. Sometimes when a song isn't working I'll scrap the words, adjust the melody, and then suddenly it's a new tune.

    Still, it's hard to let go...