Sunday, April 27, 2008


080413 babysurprisejacket sara
Pattern: Baby Surprise Jacket (BSJ) by Elizabeth Zimmermann
Size: 9 months (ended up with 12 month size)
Needle: 7 (4.5mm)
Yarn: ArtYarns Supermerino in color 107, ocean blue semisolid
For the jacket, I used a little over 300 yards. For the hat, I used less than 100 yards.

This is my first completed Elizabeth Zimmermann pattern, the ever popular BSJ. Her patterns are a test to the knitter's confidence. The instructions are a little vague because she intended for the knitters to make their own decisions. In the beginning, things were a little haywire, as I wondered "is this what she meant?" all over the place. Then, I got help through a dvd, and instantly I knew I was ok. Plus, it was a great moment when I folded the amorphous lump of knitting into a recognizable jacket. If you don't know already, this pattern is like origami.

Using DK weight yarn, I chose to make this jacket in the 9 month size. However, after handwashing it in Eucalan and blocking, I measured it to be for the 12 month size. Chest 18 inch circumference, length 12 inches. I really have no idea at what age the baby will be able to wear this! If he grows really fast, he might wear it at 6 months?!

Hi Sara. Surprise! I shipped this off to you last week, so I think it's safe for me to post about it now :) Enjoy!

080413 bsj sara

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Purple Karma

Pattern: Anthropologie-inspired Capelet by Peonyknits
Yarn: Knitpicks' Wool of the Andes Bulky (2.5 skeins) in Grape
Needles: size 11 (8mm)

I really liked knitting this pattern. Very easy and straight-forward to knit. And in the end, you get a great cropped cardigan. Yeah, it's thick wool and wouldn't be worn outside during the warm spring/summer months. It might work out well in my office though. With the air conditioning blasting during the summer, it'll be a little bit of armor against the chill.

This capelet was the third incarnation for this yarn. Originally, I bought it to make the long sleeved v-neck sweater from Fitted Knits, but that didn't work out. I wasn' t sure about the color, I wasn't feeling the pattern, etc. The yarn was so tough at the gauge I thought it should be that my knitting needle cord snapped due to too much pushing and pulling of the stitches around my needles. Resistance is futile. Who said that? It was true in more ways than one. I do know better than to force yarn and needles into a gauge not meant to be, but, at the time, I obviously wasn't thinking.

Then, I came across the Rorschach Jacket pattern from Elizabeth Zimmermann. Again, the yarn had too much resistance on the needles (incorrect gauge) and miles of garter stitch with this stuff was not making me happy. Frogged. Although I will make this EZ jacket some other time with different yarn.

Finally, I remembered this cropped cardigan pattern and it used bulky weight yarn. I got gauge on size 11s (bigger needles than with the other two attempts at size 10s). The yarn was so much easier to knit. The stitches moved smoothly around the needles. Happiness. Good karma.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Inexplicable Knitters Day

I didn't intend to do anything special for the Inexplicable Knitters Day, April 1. I'm not working on a sock at the moment, so I don't have any pictures with socks-in-progress, a pre-requisite. Still, this may count, as just inexplicable.

We walked across the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, so how could I pass up an opportunity to take a knitting picture there? I'm really sorry I didn't go back to the car and get out my BSJ sweater work-in-progress. So, I did the next best thing and whipped off my knit hat and held it up for a picture.

Then, we found Yoda and thought why not continue with my knit hat pictures? I thought about putting my hat on Yoda's head; he would've looked grateful :)

Anyway, those were my sorry attempts at crazy knit pictures. I know holding up a sock with four needles sticking through it would've been weirder. Still, I got a few weird looks at the Yoda statue. Mission accomplished, I suppose.

I should explain why I happened to be at these places. It was not to take knitting pictures, that's for sure! We had decided to take a mini-vacation in San Francisco, the city I grew up in. We did a bunch of touristy things, as well as visiting some of my old haunts for eats in the neighborhood. I haven't walked across the Golden Gate Bridge since an elementary school field trip, celebrating the bridge's 50th anniversary. Last year was it's 70th. It's a really nice walk, especially if it's a non-foggy day. After that, we decided to hunt for Yoda, since we were still in the Presidio. We don't live far away at all and do come back to the city quite often to see family and friends. It's just we never have time to stop and do these types of things.