…from the response I’ve had to Ivy since its release… *checks calendar* 2 days ago. I only wish I hadn’t been away from home at the time! (Note to self: In the event of any possible future pattern designs, try not to be gallivanting around London at the time of their release. Or if gallivanting around London, try to have internet access more frequent than occasional internet café visits.)
First up, let me give the mad props to the fine people at Knitty, in particular their technical editor Mandy who, in my opinion, improved upon Ivy’s pattern instructions and made them even clearer. And, of course, I thank them for accepting my wee pattern and taking a chance on the new kid in town, so thanks Knitty!
What a difference 2 days make
Soooo, yes. Ivy, she is out in the world now and what can I say but I am thrilled, humbled, overwhelmed, etc at the response I received and so quickly. I think I’m going to just save up all these congrats for when I get the blues and they will give me an instant lift.
The astute among you may have noted that Elann has already changed their Quechua yarn page to show photos and a Knitty pattern link for Ivy. Ahahahah. I just about fainted when I saw they’d changed their ad on Knitty to reflect the exact Ivy yarn and everything. I SO did not anticipate that one! But sure enough, within less than 48 hours (nay, less than 24 hours, even) I had an email waiting in my inbox from the fine Elann people asking for permission to include a pattern link on their site, and since Elann already owns my soul, how could I possibly say no? ;)
Also in the 48 hours post Knitty release, my blog site statistics fairly exploded – I think I had more visitors in 1 day than in the entire first 4 months of my blog! Whoa! Let me once again say hello and I hope I will entertain you for at least a millisecond with my knitblogging. Maybe even two milliseconds. And what really and truly flatters me is that there is already an Ivy Knitalong up and running! That one deserves credit to the Crazy Fiber Lady, she has set up a blogspot account for it and everything. Kudos.
More about ye olde Ivy pattern…From what I’ve managed to absorb from some very kind emails, comments, and general buzz, there have been some thoughts and inquiries along the lines of:
“Thanks so much for including the plus-sizes!“
You are so very welcome. I hope the pattern works well for all sizes concerned. In fact, let me thank YOU for your kind words. Seriously, I never intended to stop just at Size L or XL, I figured that was a given by now in this post-Big-Girl-Knits world that we’re living in. In fact, if I had had the time to write up more sizing I would have happily gone up to 4X or 5X. Wait, let me just pencil that in on my to-do list for a rainy day after the rubble has cleared.
“About that yarn you used…”
I chose Quechua because it comes in pretty colours (there are more, I think, than what is currently up at Elann, but the ones that are there now are so covetable…The red and the lavender are calling to me…), it is soft, it has a modest sheen to it, and oh yeah, it’s WARM. It’s a tough endeavour, trying to remain warm in Canadian winters without adding a bazillion layers, but this sweater is at least 1 attempt on my part to do it in moderately attractive style. And it’s a yarn that’s priced to own. And Elann is based out of Canada. And did I mention also that Elann yarns practically own my soul? I mean, all they have to do is re-stock any of their Peruvian Collection colour selections and I’m a happy camper all week long.
If an alpaca-blend yarn isn’t your cup of tea, whether because you prefer wool or you’d like to stick to non-woolen-related fibres altogether, then for yarn substitutions your first task is to find something that works up to Ivy’s stockinette gauge of 6 sts per inch. So, sport weight or something on the lighter side of DK is what you’re looking for. Your best bet if you’re unsure is probably just to do a swatch of the ribbing pattern in the yarn you’re thinking of and see how it holds up before and after washing, and if it looks good then go for it! My friend K is currently making one in KnitPicks’ Telemark, and from all reports it is going well so far.
“The pattern calls for straight needles. What if I want to use circulars?“
I knitted each piece of the sample in the photo flat using circular needles, I just worked them in the back-and-forth style in the manner used to work flat pieces on a pair of straits. Just don’t join the stitches for in-the-round knitting and keep turning at the end of each row and you’re fine.
I like using circs because they’re easier on my hands. I don’t think this pattern is suitable for modification for in the-round-knitting, though (But if you figure out a way, feel free to let me know and I’m happy to be proven wrong) – all cardigan-style aspects aside, the pattern asks you to leave a gap in each of the side seams to form a hole for the sashes, and that would be tougher to manage if you were knitting the whole thing in one piece.
So, to sum up, allow me to say THANK YOU to everyone who has responded so enthusiastically to Ivy, and I hope she will be a good knit for you. I’d be thrilled to see pics when anyone gets to the FO stage. Or before that. Heck, I like photos of anything that’s knitting-related, let’s face it. Even stash photos are good. And I like knitblogging, so I’m looking forward to getting to know more of you who have commented. Knitters are, after all, the best folks ever. ;)
Happy knitting until next time! I now have the job of de-jet-lagging and propping myself up (with some knitting no doubt) and trying to stay awake until it is at the very least dark outside. My best to all…