Tag Archives: Debbie Bliss

Victory! … Sort Of.

There are few things more satisfying than finishing a knitting project.  It’s such a rush to you hold your FO in your hands and marvel at its construction, its artistry, its awesomeness.

It's done! It's done! It's done!


Then you run up to your room to try it on, and… well, let’s do a little comparison.

Debbie Bliss's Cable Detail Sweater, worn by gorgeous model.

yarnyMarni's Cable Detail Sweater, worn by... yarnyMarni.













Clearly mine isn’t fitting like Debbie’s, and I have no idea why.  Because I… got… gauge.  I did.  I’m very careful about making gauge swatches, and in fact, I got gauge on this using smaller needles than what was called for.  Was there something wrong with the pattern?  No… no errata on Debbie’s website.  Was I measuring everything correctly?  Yes… measured all pieces multiple times, in inches and centimeters.  Am I lying to myself about my gauge?  NO.  Is Debbie lying to me about her gauge? Hmmmmm…  

Well… it’s still wearable.  It’s certainly warm and soft, so it’ll get a lot of play this winter.  But my next sweater pattern?  It’ll be fitted.


On A Lighter Note…

I used to listen fiendishly to knitting podcasts, but when they started to get too time-consuming, I gave up on all of them, all at once. I’ve decided to test the waters again, but I’m starting out slowly.  So today, I listened to Knit Purl Gurl‘s podcast, which I enjoyed a lot, but geez, what doesn’t this girl do?  She knits, she crochets, she sews, she writes patterns, she reviews yarn and books and needles and gets paid for it, she leads KALs… it’s kind of intimidating… and annoying… and unfair… andmanIwishIcouldbeher.

I also listened to Alana Dakos‘s Never Not Knitting podcast, Episode #60, which was an interview/Q&A between herself and knitwear designer Hannah Fettig.  They’re friends who live on opposite coasts but still managed to write a book together – Coastal Knits.  They answered a bunch of questions from Ravelry fans, and gave a lot of really good insight about their collaboration and design processes.  But before you run off to listen to Alana yourself, be warned:  Episode #60 was her last podcast. She’s having a baby, so there won’t be time for podcasts in the near future.  I understand that.  But why did this have to happen when I started listening… ?  Here’s hoping Alana finds the time to keep us posted on her knitting, designing, and growing family somewhere down the line.

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Staring Obviousness In The Face, 24 Hours Later.

Ohhhhhhhh… this hurts…

The almost-finished Cable Detail Sweater.

I have to rip back.

The thing about Glen is that each skein fades from a darker hue to a lighter hue (or vice-versa… you know what I mean).  You have to be careful when joining a new skein to the work so that you don’t get an obvious line, like the one in that sleeve there on the right.

And, if ¾ of your work is matching up perfectly as far as shades of color is concerned, then really, you should probably make sure that the last ¼ matches up, too.  Otherwise… you end up thinking about it all day long while you’re at work as you try to convince yourself that no, really, it’s ok the way it is… it’s quirky!  It’s Random Acts Of Color!  It’s like tie-dye (that’s my daughter’s voice, right there)!  It’s… not at all what I was going for.  Why I didn’t come to this conclusion while I was actually knitting the sleeve is truly beyond me.

And so, with wine glass in hand, I shall spend the rest of my evening ripping back all that yoke-work and very probably the whole of the sleeve.  My only consolation is that my short-term goal was to finish this by month’s end, and even with all this ripping, I’m still on track to do that.  So… yay.  Hooray for me.  Hmph.

On A Much Brighter Note…

For anyone who’s looking for more 2012 PA Farm Show info on submitting crafts for judging, please read the wonderful Carlin’s comment on Monday’s post.  Many thanks for being a lot more vigilant about finding all that info than I was… I admit, I was so excited about the site being live that I kind of skimmed it a little too quickly.  As time permits, I’ll try to find out as much as I can to post here, but by all means, if you, faithful reader, find out anything, send it along!

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A yarnyMarni Shout-Out: Debbie Bliss “Glen”.


The Cable Detail Sweater (back), from Debbie Bliss's "Glen" pattern book. Loving the fat cable!

The picture represents about 15% of my finished Cable Detail Sweater.  I’m really enjoying this project, for a few reasons.  Strangely enough, one of those reasons is the fact that this sweater is knit flat, which I haven’t done in a while.  I do love the immediacy and convenience of knitting sweaters in-the-round, but once in a while, I embrace the challenge of assembling the finished pieces and stitching everything up.  It’s been said before – more gracefully, I’m sure – and I completely agree:  if you’re willing to spend the time to perfectly follow a pattern and match your gauge, why ruin it with shoddy finishing?  I consider it a necessary skill; it’s not exactly “fun,” but when I’m done, and my FO looks fab… well, there’s no better feeling, y’know?

I really like this yarn, too.  Debbie Bliss Glen is a medium-to-bulky, single-ply, heathery/marled yarn made up of 30% fine alpaca, 30% merino, and 40% acrylic.  I’m not a big fan of acrylic yarn, but… I’m making an exception here, because it’s really soft, really warm, wonderfully squishy and springy, and really lovely to knit with.  I’ll probably have to wear a T-shirt or something underneath the finished product since my skin’s pretty sensitive, but from the feel of the knitted portion above, it should be pretty comfy next to the skin.  Each skein has subtle shading, as you can sort of see above, so when starting a new skein, I’m trying to match the shading so I don’t get any harsh color changes.  So far, so good…

… and speaking of “so far, so good,” I haven’t had any issues with the pattern.  Why is this noteworthy?  The Type A, analytical knitter in me craves 100% clarity in her patterns, but this is seldom granted.  I’m productive and elated at 90% clarity, pretty happy at 80%, perturbed but determined at 70%, and… well, let’s just say no sir, not at all happy at anything less than 60%.  This pattern is rated, so far, at a strong 95% clarity.  I “get” the vast majority of the pattern, but there’s 1 or 2 places where I’ll just have to… punt.

Ok, gonna get back to the knitting now.  Tomorrow:  register for VKLive!

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The Rhinebeck Sweater.

Back in May, my LYS-Away-From-Home was having a Grand Reopening celebration, and they had 8 different lottery drawings for yarn and pattern booklets and things like that.  I showed up just in time to drop my raffle tickets into a couple of the prize buckets… and guess what???  I didn’t win. But my mom won, and she gave me her prize – 10 skeins of this gorgeous yarn along with the Debbie Bliss Glen pattern book:

This yarn is wonderfully soft. But what will it become... ?

And now Rhinebeck is upon us.  Surely I need a Rhinebeck Sweater… I mean, everyone’s knitting one right now, or so it seems, according to Ravelry and Twitter and… well, everyone.  So here’s mine:

The Cable Detail Sweater, from my Glen pattern book.


… and here’s how far along I am:

This WILL be my Rhinebeck Sweater... in 2012.

No, I’m not going to Rhinebeck this year.  I’ll be in NYC with my daughter, celebrating all things American Girl.  But next year, I will attend Rhinebeck… wearing this sweater.

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Depression != Knitting.*

This post is less about knitting and more about why I wasn’t knitting, or blogging, or doing much of anything except losing myself in my computer.

Back in October, I had a meltdown of sorts.  A great deal of stress stemming from every part of my life converged on one unfortunate Sunday.  I cried in bed all day.  I went to the doctor.  I started taking medication.  And for 4 months I didn’t knit.  I worked, I ferried my daughter to school and birthday parties and ballet classes, I played a lot on my computer.  But I didn’t knit.

Looking back, I can say for certain that one of the things that was stressing me out so much was the knitting.  I absolutely love doing it, and I really love knitting for other people… but that’s exactly what led to my partial undoing.  A lot of people asked me to knit gifts for them to give to family and friends over the holidays, and I wanted to do it for them so badly, especially since they were going to pay me to do it.  But I just… couldn’t… do… it.  There were too many people to please, too much research into the kinds of knitted gifts they wanted, and just not enough time for me.  Luckily, every one of those people forgave me for not being able to provide them with gifts.  But I had a hard time forgiving myself for not getting it done.  I still feel bad about it, but I’m learning that it’s okay to say no, that I need more time for myself, and I need to make more knitted things for myself.

So… this year, I’m knitting for me.  Well… and probably for my daughter, too, because this magazine has 2 amazing little girl dresses that I’d love to knit up.  I had 2 projects on the needles last October, and they’re both finished now – socks for my husband, and socks for my daughter, done.  Even though it’s March, I’m currently knitting up a cashmere scarf, for me, in a neat cable pattern.  Hopefully I’ll have pictures up soon – my camera is ok, but the USB cable is shot, probably have to order a new one.

And I’ll hopefully blog more, about knitting… and everything else.

* “Depression does not equal knitting.”

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