Friday, May 30, 2008

Humptygumpgar and Prenvickie

Some time ago my 2 1/2 year old nephew started talking about 'Humptygumpgar', 'Prenvoke' and 'Prenvickie'. He might have just been playing around with words. I even think he might be over all that by now, but the rest of our family adopted these names and ran with them. They became stand-in names for "your little brother and your little sister". That's how he talks about the twins, due any day now, because he is still a bit confused about the whole my/your concept.

prenvickie cardie
A few months ago I treated myself to some beautiful sock wool from Live2knit. The price seemed like a real steal, until I realised that I had bought only one 50g skein of each colour - not enough for a pair of socks. Heh.

As soon as I held the red-pink colourway (I think it is 'Vivid') against that orange baby wool (yes, years ago I bought a lot of it), I knew what I had to make. The pattern is the Baby's Bolero from Patons book 1078, and the motif is taken from Neiman by Weaverknits.

The pattern called for the edging, which goes continuously around all the edges of the cardie, to be knit separately and then sewn on. After the seaming I had already done, I wasn't keen on that method. I decided to pick up stitches all the way around and then try to knit the edging on row by row. As soon as I had picked up the stitches, I realised it would be much easier to just keep knitting on the same long circular needle, completing the border in just a few long rows instead of hundreds of short ones.
It didn't take too long, though I did rip it out once and do the whole thing a second time to correct a few poorly picked up stitches and put the buttonholes in the right place (it really helps if you mark the positions for buttonholes before you start bunching the whole cardigan up on one needle!). I wish I had remembered to use a smaller sized needle, though, like for the cuffs. I do like the way this edging method matched the cuffs better than the one in the pattern - though this is just a side-benefit.
humpty cardie
After experiencing the fiddliness that is knitting a baby garment in pieces and then seaming it (doesn't the softness of baby wool just seems to emphasise the lumpiness of seams?), for the second twin cardie I was ready for a seamless pattern. I used Carole Barenys' top down raglan, which knit up so fast! A long time ago I started a top-down raglan for myself. That project didn't make it because I ran out of wool, but it sold me on the magic of the seamless raglan. I omitted the garter stripes and went down a needle size to get the fabric I liked. For sleeve length and body length I looked to the orange cardie as a rough guide (though of course it is a very different shape). You may be able to tell that the bottom button is a bit close to its neighbour - that's because I ended up stopping a few rows short of the pattern.

The contrast green yarn is the other Live2knit sock wool from the same purchase, colourway 'Spring'. It looks like my inexperienced colourwork has come out tighter in the round than it did when knit flat for the orange cardie. It sort of looks like I did waist shaping! I don't think it will be obvious when it's squished and wrinkled around a baby, though.


Bells said...

oh well done Olivia! They're lovely. And those names! Too cute.

All the best for your sister next week.

twitchy fingers said...

I love them - that colour work is great. I might have to borrow that pattern from you...

And could humtygumpgar be a marriage of humpty dumpty and oscar the grouch? I love trying to work out what kids are saying!

Rose Red said...

I love the matching but not set!! So cute! The colours are great.

Olivia said...

Rose red, exactly, I liked making them "matching but not". Months ago when I showed my sis the bolero pattern she said she thought it might be a bit feminine for a boy.

And re Oscar the Grouch, it's probably not an unusal story, but when my younger sister was born, I was nearly five and I sincerely wanted my parents to name her Oscar. Boy or girl, didn't matter.

Donna Lee said...

I like that they're similar so they look like they belong together but are not joined at the hip. Good color choices. I love the orange. I recently bought myself an orange shirt, not a color I would normally wear but I am determined to stop wearing all neutrals and blues.

Melzy said...

Oh Liv they are sooo gorgeous. You chose the best colours and I think these will get passed through the family. Can't wait to see our little niece and nephew in them. x

kms said...

gorgeous pieces of work, both of them. you are very clever to figure out the edging like that.