I’m breaking my own rule. The one that says it’s not finished until it’s blocked. But it’s Sunday, Maggie’s Tomten is done, she’s home and we had time for a photo shoot. We’ll call it “finished” and I promise it’ll get a bath tonight. Can I show you all the pictures?

Maggie's Tomten

Maggie's Tomten

Maggie's Tomten

Maggie's Tomten

Maggie's Tomten

Maggie's Tomten

Maggie's Tomten

Maggie's Tomten

Maggie's Tomten

Maggie's Tomten

Maggie's Tomten

In my previous post about this sweater, I mentioned some of the modifications I’ve made to the pattern. Another mod I made besides those already detailed is that I decreased the sleeves to 32 sts, instead of 28 as directed. Then I added that little loopy at the back of the neck with i-cord that you can see in the last two pictures. Don’t ask how I did it, because I don’t think I could replicate it if I tried.* Also, when I finished the pockets, I put the stitches from threads onto a needle, but didn’t bind off right away; I knit three more ridges then bound off. The pockets are nice and deep.

*Essentially what I did: I marked the center back stitch, and when I got that point in the i-cording I stopped attaching it and knit the i-cord for about 10 rounds. Then I flipped it around and attached it again (this is the part I cannot replicate) and continued i-cording as before. When I was weaving in my ends, I tacked the loopy down so that it would stay in place.

The sweater is big on Maggie. I hope it doesn’t look too big, my goal was that it would fit now and fit next year (and fingers crossed, the year after). Seeing as she has nearly outgrown the jeans that I bought her in August, I won’t hold my breath. This Tomten has room for growing, but please don’t grow too quickly, mkay?

Tomten project page on Ravelry

So that’s the Tomten! It was exactly the knitting project I needed after knitting all those socks a few weeks ago. But now I must face the music and get started on all those Christmas ideas I have. Balls anyone?


Tomten, with collar

Maggie’s Tomten is getting a collar this time, not a hood like last time. You can’t really tell but the collar is done, and the very next thing I will do is start the first sleeve!

I’m knitting this from the pattern that appears in The Opinionated Knitter. The yarn is Cascade Ecological Wool and on a US 8 needle it’s knitting up at 4 sts/inch. Therefore, I am following the pattern almost exactly as it appears in the book. The finished size should be about 27″ and Maggie’s actual measurement is 22″, allowing for positive ease and room for growing.

I’m following the cast on numbers, but I have have made a few small modifications. My pockets are 18 sts wide (the pattern says 14; I wanted them bigger). Also, as the pockets are wider, I needed to make them longer, too. The pockets are 15 ridges, and I inserted them at 22 ridges. I made the body longer by 8 ridges to accommodate my growing girl. I always say that she has a long torso, but I really have no idea if this is true or not. It seems as if she has a long torso so I made the sweater longer. I also calculated how long the sweater would be if I followed the pattern, measured Maggie from her shoulder to her waist, and decided two more inches would be perfect.

EZ directs you to cast off the underarm stitches, but Meg’s note on the page says she leaves them on a thread and incorporates them as she knits the sleeves. That’s what I’m going to do.

You can see the red yarn that I’m using to hold stitches; I think I will use that color for an i-cord edging and to finish the pockets. I really can’t wait to finish this and try it on Maggie. It’s such a cute sweater. I am perpetually amazed by the genius of Elizabeth Zimmermann. Garter stitch FTW.



Another year, another round of Halloween costumes. I’m so pleased with how they both came together! Although if you would have seen me during the making of Maggie’s princess costume…well, let’s not go there. It’s done now and everyone is very happy. Just a small note to my future self: never sew with polyester sateen and organza ever again, mkay? Maybe the worst, worst thing about Maggie’s was that the very day I bought all the supplies she said she changed her mind and wanted to be a mermaid. NO YOU ARE NOT BEING A MERMAID. YOU ARE BEING A PRINCESS. Luckily she got over it, and she loves the princess costume.

Jerry’s costume (zombie, if you’re wondering) was $5 worth of goodwill clothes and fabric paint that I had in my box of rarely-used craft paint. And I think he’s got the zombie face down!

happy kids

We are ready for trick or treating tonight, although the temps will be much colder than we’re used to! It’ll be in the fifties! Eep!

In knitting news, I am making good progess on my orange socks.


But I got the itch to knit Maggie a new sweater and swatched and then cast on for a new Tomten. The socks will be a nice break during the big-gauge knitting on the sweater.

Tomten, again

More on this Tomten, my second, next time. Happy Halloween!

Pumpkins All Carved