Knit Cabled Poncho: Living the Dream (plus exciting news!)

Oh man, you guys…I am SO not feeling this whole blogging thing right now :P. As is evidenced by the fact that I haven’t blogged for over two weeks. Sometimes when I really get into the “thick of it” in terms of making actual finished projects, I find that I just can’t get into the blogging mindset…do you ever experience that???

I couldn’t wait any longer with today’s project, though, since it’s one that I absolutely love – I mean, a poncho is basically a wearable blanket, right? And isn’t that just living the dream? Now that spring has decided to actually show up here in New England, it’s getting a bit on the warm side for big knitted projects like sweaters, so this is a perfect transition piece, especially when knit up in a seasonally appropriate yarn (more on that in a minute!).

This is pattern is, once again, by my wonderfully talented friend Mindy of Minuet Knit, and is part of her Irish Roots collection of Celtic-inspired knitwear (my cabled sweater from a few weeks ago is from the same collection). I’m such a sucker for cables, so the gorgeous cable down the front just had my name on it!

I did make one change to the pattern. Instead of putting the armholes slightly to the front, I put them right at the side of the garment (I’ll put up details on Ravelry soon). I did this because I have insanely hyperextended elbows, so the armholes in the pattern pinned my elbows uncomfortably close to my body. I imagine that on normal elbows this would not be such an issue :). Changing the location of the armholes fixed that problem nicely for me, though!


The yarn – oh my goodness, the yarn! – is a gorgeous silk/wool blend from a local New Hampshire yarn company called The Woolen Rabbit, which the fabulous owner of Twill had picked up at a recent yarn convention. Now, I have a confession to make – I used to try to get the cheapest yarn possible to make sure that my knit projects weren’t too pricey. And while this was fine when I was first learning, I’ve finally discovered the true joy of knitting with quality fibers. This yarn was not cheap, but it was worth every penny. It made the process of knitting infinitely more enjoyable, *and* I’ve made a garment that I love – and you really can’t beat that. So, my friends, the good stuff is worth it. Trust me.


…which leads me to some exciting news: I now work at Twill as one of their sewing teachers! I’m currently teaching beginning sewing classes, for both adults and kids. I’ve already had a few students, and it’s been exhilarating! As we build up a bigger sewing base, I’m hoping to get a few garment classes off the ground as well. Being part of a local knitting/sewing community has been so nice, and has really helped me transition from crazy city life to the calmer suburbs. The Twill family has really taken me in, and I’m so thankful!


Pacific Jeggings

I’m not quite sure how to break this to you guys, so I’m just gonna come right out and say it: I made jeggings. Deep breaths. Those of you firmly planted in the “leggings are not pants” camp are probably yelling at your computers now, but before you delete me from your blog readers in utter disgust, let me assure you that these are lounge pants. As in, I-only-wear-these-out-of-the-house-to-buy-groceries pants. And only-to-be-worn-with-extra-long-tops pants. I promise. Can you forgive me??

As much as these pants might be a giant faux pas, however, I do really like them. In fact, they’re probably the most comfortable pants I own – their only real competition are my yoga pants, which have taken second place in my lounge clothes drawer since these guys came along. The pattern is, once again, the Sewaholic Pacific Leggings. This time I made view A and added some width at the bottom of the legs so that they aren’t skin tight at the ankle. I added 5/8″ at each side seam at the hem, creating a total of 2 1/2 additional inches at the bottom circumference, and tapering to nothing by the knee. I’m definitely happy with this modification for a casual fit – from a distance, they look almost like real jeans, which is what I was hoping for.

The fabric is some wonderfully enigmatic substance purchased at Britex a while back. At first I thought it was a knit that was made to look like denim, but then after I cut it, I noticed that the edges were fraying a bit like woven fabric, so now I’m stumped! My current best guess is that it’s a woven (twill weave) fabric with an extreme amount of spandex, since it stretches like a knit. It’s a bit on the light side for a bottom weight fabric – I wish it were just a tad heavier – but since I’ve limited these to mostly around-the-house use, I think it will be fine.

I also added a triple stitch topstitching detail on either side of each seam. I saw a detail like this on some leggings that one of the ballet teachers I work with was wearing, and immediately knew I wanted to steal it. In fact, those leggings were my inspiration for this garment! That and the fact that I found myself in those yoga pants more often than I’d like to admit…


And some details of the topstitching:


I apologize for the awkward bum shot – it was the best pic I could find for the back topstitching!

These pants have gotten worn almost everyday since I made them (always before or after work, of course!), and I’m thinking I may need to make a second pair just to be sure I don’t wear them out too quickly!

So, I’m sorry if I made your eyes bleed with this post, but sometimes comfort wins over socially appropriate clothing…