Sunday, March 08, 2009

Stone Cold Pimlico

I finally finished one of my "lust knits"You know the ones that you covet after seeing it on someone else for "oh so" long...the ones where you make all the preparations in getting the pattern and purchasing the yarn.

Yep that would be this one!

~ Project Details ~

Pattern: It's the Pimlico Shrug from the Knit 2 Together book. The collar had me at Hello!! :oD

I really have been wanting to make this sweater for about two years, and can now finally mark it as "conquered" :o)

Size: I casted on for the small/medium size knowing I would shorten the length of this shrug.


As someone simply put it this is just a blanket with sleeves! ;op

Time: I picked up my needles to begin this project at the very end of December and put them down by the end of February all while not being monogamous (when am I ever?!?), which explains all those fun mini knits you all have been seeing as they have kept my sanity! Haha!

Let me just say this thing grows like grass on your needles!!! It really does seem like an endless knit because there is soooo much of the body to do that is one huge square block, and then there is soooo much ribbing of the neckline to do! As some of you may recall I started fondly calling it "The Beast" towards the end! ;op

Needles: Using my Harmonies in US 5 for ribbing, US 7 for body, and US 6 for binding off. While utilizing the 36" cord for magic looping the sleeves, the 40" cord for the body of the shrug and then the 47" cord for picking up stitches and ribbing of the collar.

Yarn & Cost: I originally purchased 8 skeins of Malabrigo worsted in Stonechat (my 2nd fav colorway!)But only needed to use 5 skeins total (having about half leftover on the 5th skein!). So it cost about $50 for this shrug instead of what I originally thought to be $80 in the Mal yarn. It also worked out well that one of my fellow Purl pals ended up buying my extra skeins :)

I truly do not plan on knitting with Malabrigo for large garments ever again (except to finish up Ms. Rho that is already OTN and quietly hibernating), as this yarn does not wear very well at all.

I can already see the "afro haze" and fuzz balls after only one wear!! Just like on my Buttony sweater...pfft. I do not like that at all.

I now plan to keep my use of Malabrigo limited to only accessory knit items.

What I learned: Honestly not much at this point. When I actually desired to do this project I was a very new knitter so the entire thing terrified me, especially the collar and how I would have to pick up stitches with little experience.

Since then I've worked on many projects having done everything I needed to know by the time I made the shrug making it that much easier.

I didn't even dread picking up and knitting all those kazillion stitches (total of 478 to be exact)!

It just dawned on me that I had to M1P for the first time ever and was completely stumped on that for the increases. Thank goodness for the abbreviations in the back of the book. :o) That was a great new little tip I learned!

Modifications & Recommendations: There is quite a few here on this project and I will try to highlight them all.

I didn't get the bright idea to switch up the stitch pattern until I saw Yarn Abuse's Pimlico Yay!! Because the original stitch pattern had too many rows in the repeat for me to concentrate on ;op A hole is a hole is a hole is a hole Haha!

I just wanted something light and easy, so I altered stitch pattern to be: R1: {K2, YO, K2tog} last 3 sts knit; R2: K2 {K2, YO, K2tog} last 5 sts knit. Over the 161 sts

Knitted the body for only 18.5" to avoid the slouch in the lower back However, the way the shrug is structured (square then pick up in a circle) you can't avoid the bat wings ;op I knew that going into this knit.

When seaming for the armholes I almost got twisted and thought to do the bind off and cast on edge, but you truly do the side seams! I mattress seamed the sleeves in for 5 1/2 inches, and should have left an extra inch as there is no budge since you are working with edges (so make sure you leave enough room as it can get tight around your arms).

I also picked up around the armhole then began knitting for the sleeve, rather than knitting the sleeves separately to attach later (nixing the whole seaming exercise).

When I did that I had about 26 sts. (half of the recommended stitches) and it was waaaaaaaaaaaaay too tight!I could take my blood pressure with that! LOL

So I ripped back and still picked up for the number of stitches that was on the armhole (26 sts) then increase the next round by doing (kfb) in each stitch to double the count. Much better!! The 1st armhole came out great at 52 sts. then the 2nd one was 42 sts. and is a bit tight.

Highly recommend going with the 52 sts count on the sleeves.

I also shortened the sleeves by 1 inch in the 2x2 section, based on some comments by others that the sleeves were too long. But now wish I had knitted the full 10.5" sleeve (rather than a total of 9.5") as I like the long length.

As far as the collar instead of binding off the body I kept those stitches live and then came around to pick up the other half of the stitches for a total of 318 (later increased to the 478 with the 3x3 ribbing).

That worked out well for the lower part of the body to drape nicely. But if I had to do it all over again I would have bound off and took the time to pick up the stitches again for a better "structured" look.

Verdict: I am torn. As this has been one of my highly sought after knits, with lots of hours clocked in, but can't see myself really wearing it outside the house much.

As you can see so much has changed since my last post. It is sunny and mid 70s here this weekend!! So the shrug is really not needed outside anymore! I really was trying to beat the spring fever spell!

I am sure there will be a few more brisk days ahead and since the Malabrigo gets your body heat up super fast (read as: "hot as hell" LOL) I think this will now become my new house shrug, replacing my beloved Bobbilicious.

Glad to get the Pimlico Shrug out of my system, and I now have a new fav "cozy up in" knit!

47 Comments:

  1. Erica B. said...
    That is gorgeous! I love that first pic!
    Monique said...
    I agree. Very dramatic and fashionable pic. You did a great job!
    Channon said...
    Love the colorway! You look like a model...
    Kay-From the Back Yard said...
    It really is lovely!

    I'm sorry to hear about the fuzzing and pilling, though, as I have a scarf started in the stonechat colorway.
    Kamika said...
    Very pretty! Work it girl! I just love your Meezs.
    Martha in California said...
    Your shrug is beautiful. You did an excellent job on it. Thank you for all the modification tips, it's going to help a lot whenever I start my shrug...hopefully soon.
    Have a great weekend. Good to know the weather is nice in your area.
    Adrienne said...
    Beautiful girl! I Love the first picture!

    LOL@ blood pressure lol
    WandaWoman said...
    It is a beautiful garment. I'm sorry it didn't live up to your expectations. I think it looks good and that you could definitely wear it outside of the house

    Malabrigo is a beautiful and luxurious yarn, however, it is not for garments, imo. Just for the fact that is fuzzes so much. It is an affordable luxury for small items such as scarves and hats. It's so soft, that it's nice to wrap around your neck because it feels like butter. Then if it fuzzes, as it will, it's all good
    sophanne said...
    That looks great on you. I'm with you on the mala. I wish I could get more varieties of Lambs Pride around here. That not being the case, I'm sticking with tried and true Cascade for the sweaters until I find something I can count on as much.
    cpurl17 said...
    You look great and you should wear it out of the house because you look great in it!

    I wish I could remember exactly what she said but an older knitter once told me that the fuzzing & pilling of yarns was okay and normal and eventually it goes away. I think she said to use one of those stones they sell for removing pills. Well so much for a helpful comment but ti does look fantastic on you!!
    Chelette said...
    Itlooks great and I Love the collar! I think you will get a chance to wear it again even though we are having mild temps. I am sure another cold spell is waiting in the wings.
    chicagopurl said...
    I luuuuuuuv it chica! I love the photo you took! I also love the way you broke down everything about the project in the blog. The sweater is beautiful but I am soooo glad I read your post because I was going to use the mal I had for a shrug that I do plan to wear regularly! Do you think it will pill that way in the silky mal? Either way it's beautiful!
    Scheherazaad said...
    what do you mean you are not wearing it out of the house? That second picture so looks like "going to Starbucks in the morning and being the chic-est in line". Remember you can shave the pills. Hopefully it stops doing that after awhile like cashmere.
    Mandy said...
    Gorgeous!
    KnitFloozy said...
    I love it! im gonna dig up that book now!
    Knitterella said...
    Looks just awesome!
    Walden said...
    Looks gorgeous! I like the stitch pattern that you used on the back! I am not a shrug person, but you almost had me wanting to cast on for this.
    diddlinaknits said...
    :o I LOVE IT!!!! it's beautiful!!! i wanna come over and take it-still cold here :)
    You did a great job and wrote another great post. I liked this pattern when i saw it but now that i have seen yours i like it even more.
    Reckless Glue said...
    It looks amazing --great colour choice! It's funny, I just tried mine on again the other day after not having looked at in a year or more...I think I may take a stab at dying it---the orange just isn't working for me anymore.
    yours is beautiful!
    urbanknitrix said...
    Love it!! The colors look good on you.
    Dave said...
    That is one of my favourite colourways too! :-)

    That stuff is s gorgeous -- it's really too bad that it doesn't hold up better. Kind of funny, too, how some of our "must have" projects turn out to be kind of "meh" at the end.
    Sereknitty said...
    Gorgeous, Stacey! Workin' it with those 'shades' and attitude! Sometimes we just need to 'conquer' a project, to get it out of our system and then we put it aside and say 'that job's done' and move onto the next challenge.

    Yup, that's the conclusion I came to myself -- love the Mal, but use it for accessories only. Soooo not into the hanging clumps of fuzz :(

    I've got some silky Mal and I think I'm going to knit a swatch first and pin it in my jacket for a few days and see how it holds up before I make anything bigger out of it.

    Enjoy your week!
    Renee said...
    Wow, that is so pretty! I love the color.
    gold said...
    Girl all that work payed off!It looks beautiful!!Love your pics!:)
    Stacey said...
    beautiful!
    Jeanine said...
    One word... GORGEOUS!!! Great yarn choice/color too.
    Liz said...
    It's lovely!! Well done you, you look great in it!!

    PS Is it me or are you becoming the shrinking woman??x
    Knitting Diva said...
    Oh My, you look so fashionable!

    You did such a fine job on this piece and your pics are fab!
    turtlegirl76 said...
    The shortened length turned out great! The color is awesome. I like your modified stitch pattern too.
    moo said...
    You are the one! Stacey, I want to knit with you for inspiration and fun (I could take my Blood pressure..!)
    tiennie said...
    It's beautiful! Such a great colorway. Great photos too. :)
    Susan said...
    Gorgeous! No wonder it was a "lust knit". lol. Great colors, too.
    DeltaPurl said...
    really cute!
    Ava said...
    It's lovely. Why won't you wear it outside the house?

    Love the photos!
    del said...
    Cute! You did an awesome job.
    kim said...
    MMMMMmmmmmmm.... Malabrigo. It is beautiful! It looks so great on you.
    IrishgirlieKnits said...
    OMG! That is absolutely stunning on you!! Gorgeous!!
    tina said...
    Delish---- and you look fabulous in it! Those silly Vogue cover girls have nothing on you honey!!!
    stillpatrice said...
    very purty! love youre 1st pic :)
    Michelle said...
    OH that is gorgeous! I know what your saying about the Malabrigo. I lurv it so, but it doesn't wear well. I have to restrict myself from bying sweaters worth of it!
    dawn said...
    It sure does look great on you for a blanket with sleeves. I really love it! And the color is gorgeous!
    jerseytjej said...
    Beautiful yarn color, but then again, I am partial to reds! You are working it! Also, I found a coworker who speaks fluent english and can KNIT!!! I am over the top happy! gina
    smariek said...
    It looks beautiful on you, and I especially love that first photo cuz it make me think of the word "cozy". :-) The Malabrigo must be nice. So that's what the Stonechat colorway looks like knitted up! My BFF & I were looking at it for a possible scarf, but she wasn't sure she liked the browns in it.
    MRS MJW said...
    Lovely shrug. I have been sick 3 times this year already...must be some mega viruses out this year. The Ben and Jerry's will make it all right. ;-)
    BrianaE said...
    This is gorgeous!
    sahara said...
    Wow, you get to wear a beautiful shrug; we're still cold up here!LOL

    Gosh, I've missed a lot! Your fingers have been on the move.
    Cathy said...
    This has been a lust project for me since I saw it on someone a year ago. Someone warned me about making garments out of the Malabrigo, but yours turned out SO BEAUTIFUL!! I am thinking of doing it in a Knitpicks City Tweed. Thanks for the info about the changes you did/would make, very helpful.

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