Outfit Along, Part 2: Une Vianne Verte

And now for the knitted portion of the Outfit Along! For my pattern, I chose Andi Satterlund’s Vianne cardigan, which was the “official” knit garment of the OAL. I usually make a size S in her patterns, but I’ve been noticing lately that the armholes and bust have seemed a little baggy, so I sized down and made an XS. I’m so glad I made the change – the fit is much better, and I think this might be my new favorite cardigan!

For my yarn, I used Cascade 220, and I have to say, using this higher quality yarn made all the difference in the world. In the past, I’ve used either Knit Picks or Lion Brand yarn to save money, and while both do the job just fine, the Cascade feels sooooo much more luxurious. It also blocked like a dream, and my stitches really evened out nicely. I guess I just have to invest more in my knitting projects… It’s worth it, though, since knitting takes so much longer than sewing, so you really want your final product to turn out well!

A quick note on tension – you may be wondering why I used the Cascade 220, a worsted weight yarn, when the pattern calls for DK. I’ve discovered that, since I tend to knit with a fairly tight tension (I think this is due to my personality….oops…), I need to go up a yarn size to get the correct gauge for the needle size. I know you’re supposed to change needle sizes to attain the correct gauge, but I’ve had a lot of trouble with that in the past, and have discovered that I get the best results when I size up the yarn. So there you go.

And now, pictures!

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I just love the back mesh detail in this pattern! Since I carry a lot of music books around in a backpack during my commute to work, my back tends to get reaaaaaally grossly sweaty (tmi, I know, sorry), so the extra ventilation is really nice. I added petersham ribbon to reinforce the button bands, which really helps everything stay in place. The buttons were on sale at Britex – as soon as I saw them, I knew they were the ones! (of course, in spite of that, I made the guy at the button counter take out a ton of other choices just to be sure…)

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And a few more shots, for good measure:

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So, that’s my contribution to the OAL! A big thank you to Lauren and Andi for hosting it – it’s a great tradition, and I look forward to next year!

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Audrey in Awesome

This morning I am off to the east coast for some holiday-with-family goodness! Huzzah! I’ve actually got quite a backlog of projects to share at this point, due to poor photography weather and a great deal of travel-induced stress sewing. I’m hoping to get some nice pics when I’m home in PA – my dad is quite an avid photographer and does a great job with his fancy camera! (Hint hint…:) )

Anyhow, my make for today is from several weeks back. It’s the fabulous Audrey in Unst knitting pattern. After seeing fantastic versions by both Tasia and Lauren, I knew I needed to make one. The process took me a while – I started in June and finished knitting it in September, though it took me until November to sew the button bands and buttons on! But I’m quite pleased with the outcome. It has been the perfect weight for our extremely mild fall weather, and I was able to wear it a lot in lieu of a coat.

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My particular cardigan actually has a rather interesting story. It started life as a different sweater many years ago, which I cast on, knitted a bit, and then put aside. Several months ago I tried revisiting that project, and after looking at my gauge, I realized the yarn was too thick and would result in a sweater that was way too big. Somehow I missed this even though I made a gauge swatch! Ah, well, we all make mistakes :P.

So anyhow, I realized that the yarn would be perfect for the Audrey, and went from there. About halfway through, however, I discovered that I didn’t have enough yarn to finish, and the yarn was no longer being manufactured. Agh! I was resigned to the fact that it might have to have short sleeves instead of 3/4 length, but in a last-ditch effort, I decided to do a little search on Ravelry. Did you know that you can search other people’s yarn stashes and inquire about buying a few skeins? This totally blew my mind, and saved my butt!

I wrote to several folks who had the yarn in the right color in their stash, and Sarah (aka SarahStockinette) replied, saying she would be happy to send me the rest of her skeins for just the price of shipping. How awesome is that?? I’m totally indebted to her kindness, and the dye lots matched perfectly (which was kind of magic, since purple can be a tricky dye!), so I was able to finish the project without a hitch. Just another example of how generous this community can be!

Anyhow, more pics:

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Here you can see the “faux side seam,” created by knitting a purl stitch at each side. It helps the sides stay in place while wearing without the hassle of seaming.

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Lace yoke detail – my favorite part of the knitting, since it went super fast!

It’s probably too cold back east to take it with me for the holidays, sadly, but I know it’ll get lots more wear over in SF when I return!