Vivacity | Synchronicity

I’m so happy to share with you some more of my friend Cindy’s new patterns. Every couple of weeks I get a call: “Hey Mandy, are you available?” And I know that means Cindy has her next pattern ready to be photographed. Fortunately for us, her daughter/model Mallory was home from college for the long weekend. Next time I guess we’ll be heading to the mountains for the photoshoot. Fine by me! Get the floor ready, Mal, because I’m spending the night.

This first pattern is Synchronicity, or 11:11. From the pattern: “The 11:11 scarf if a mind-focusing project that gives you an opportunity to reflect on your spiritual purpose in life.” I knit one. I had revelations. Get your copy for just $3 on Ravelry. The pictures:

Synchronicity Scarf by Cindy Colbert of knitfocused.com

Synchronicity Scarf by Cindy Colbert of KnitFocused.com

Synchronicity Scarf by Cindy Colbert of KnitFocused.com

Synchronicity Scarf by Cindy Colbert of KnitFocused.com

You can see it’s a straightforward pattern that gets it life from your yarn choice and the energy you put into it while knitting. I used a hand spun, hand dyed BFL which obviously was amazing. I’ll have to snap a pic.

The next pattern, which we just photographed yesterday, is Vivacity! It’s a sweet open-front sweater, constructed with lacy squares sewn together. This one is $5 and is available on Ravelry right now!

Vivacity by Cindy Colbert of KnitFocused.com

Vivacity by Cindy Colbert of KnitFocused.com

Vivacity by Cindy Colbert of KnitFocused.com

Vivacity by Cindy Colbert of KnitFocused.com

The other option for getting these patterns or any of Cindy’s other designs is to visit her website www.KnitFocused.com.  Cindy also is really getting into the groove with her tweeting. Check it. She needs more followers!

another bear

Two years ago, almost exactly, I posted about a bear vest that I knit as a baby present (for my first cousin twice removed, or whatever, I don’t even know if that’s right). To remind you, this is the one I knit two years ago. It says “paxtyn” but it’s hard to read because he’s narrow in the waist.

i knit for bears

Well, there was another baby this year, and another teddy bear came to live with me for a while and left with a personalized sweater vest. It took me a while to get started on this project but once I got it on the pins all went smoothly. There were no gauge issues this time, and therefore no steek was needed. It’s a simple vest, but cute, I think. My Aunt, who commissioned the vest for her great-grandbaby, says that it’s “displayed” with the other bear. No higher praise for a knitter, right?

This bear vest says “conley” and is knit in the same pattern and yarn so they’re matchy-matchy brothers. I never wrote the pattern down or anything, so when it came time to knit the second vest I referenced the pictures from the first vest. Check him out!

I knit for Bears II

I knit for Bears II

Cute, right? Part of the cuteness is definitely the bears, which I believe were handmade by my Aunt! These guys are family heirlooms and I’m honored to be a part of their story.

the suspender sweater

new sweater

What you need to know about the pattern:

The pattern, Suspender Sweater, is from Knit One Knit All (scroll down), the posthumous garter stitch frenzy book by Elizabeth Zimmermann.  I started this sweater over a year ago. Maggie was smaller then, but there were just a few adjustments needed to make it work with her current size without starting from scratch.  The pattern is written as a regular pattern (with regular directions like, “cast on…sts”) but also has all the information necessary to adjust for any gauge and any size. I figured out my gauge using Nature Spun Sport on size US 4 and went from there.

I experienced a lot of trouble with various aspects of this project, none of which were anyone’s fault but my own, I assure you. First I had trouble picking up stitches. Then I misunderstood the meaning of the word “center”. Next I knit the first sleeve too narrow and didn’t admit this until the sleeve was almost fully knit. After that I knit the second sleeve too long, and really there is no excuse for that sort of thing when you have the first sleeve (complete with easy-to-count stripes!) to compare it to. Finally, I had to unsew one of the woven (garter stitch kitchener) side seams and re-do it because apparently the direction in which you do that trick matters.

But from the very beginning of this project I pictured the finished sweater and thank goodness because that is a lot of roadblocks to overcome. I knew this sweater was going to be The Cutest. And finally this morning I saw the results of all that knitting, unknitting, reknitting, ad nauseum. It’s exactly as cute as I hoped it would be.

What you need to know about the pictures:

Maggie likes the sweater much more than she likes modeling the sweater for pictures. I really wish you could have heard the monologue she performed during our 10 minute photo shoot. It was a lot of “Wouldn’t it be good if we went on the tire swing?” and “I’ll be right back, I need to get my bird!” and “Let’s go over here!” and “I’ll put on this bonnet!” until I was exasperated and had to remind her that I was in charge of the pictures and please do what I say!

Maggie did her own styling, including props.

I took a bunch of pictures and a lot of them are posted here. There are even more in the Suspender Sweater set on flickr.

First, a picture of the underarm; the sleeve (top) is a sewn seam and the side (bottom) is the woven garter stitch. Details. They matter.

new sweater

And now the model, my Maggie.

new sweater

new sweater

new sweater

new sweater

new sweater

new sweater

new sweater

new sweater

new sweater

new sweater

new sweater

new sweater

One last picture. When I was ripping out the first sleeve Maggie drew me a surprisingly accurate schematic in order to help me get it right the next time. I was sort of blown away.

Maggie's surprisingly accurate schematic of the sweater I knit her.

I got it right, Mag! Finally!