Audra is finally available! I just released the second of five patterns that I’m working on in collaboration with Southwest Trading Company.
On The Road
Audra and 3 other finished patterns were sent to and exhibited at the SWTC booth at the TNNA (a needlearts) trade show in Columbus 2 weeks ago. Currently, Audra and her sisters Pacifica, Carmen and Lillian are on tour with SWTC. They will be visiting other trade, fashion and trunk shows with the SWTC team. (I’m staggering the pattern release, so Carmen and Lillian will be released in the upcoming weeks.) If you are on Ravelry, you can find Audra here.
The yarn I used for Audra is Tranquility, which is an optimal blend of wool and bamboo. Sometimes I find that wool/bamboo blend yarns “grow” too much after blocking, and sometimes they are not spun up well. However, I did not find that at all with Tranquility. In fact, the yarn also stood up to lots of abuse without any unsightly pilling or over stretching.
I’ve always lived in warm-weather areas, and never really needed any super heavy garments. (The coldest area I lived was Santa Clara, CA, about 1 hour south of San Francisco.)
I wanted to design something that would show off the colors and textures of the yarn, but also have a modern sense of style and practicality. Audra fits the bill with cables that “grow” as the capelet/ shoulder warmer expands. The resulting shape is a nice clean A-line shape juxtaposted with a generally traditional cable motif and buttons with a bit of a Victorian flair.
You Did WHAT To The Garment?!?
Initially, the sample of Audra was knit up by my friend and first time sample knitter Denise W. After she finished the sample, she realized that she made a mistake half way down. So unfortunately, she had to rip out half of the garment to remedy that error.
The sample was perfect when she gave it to me, but then I was unhappy with the way the neckline behaved, as it was a little too wide and lose. It was design flaw oversight, and entirely my fault. All it needed was some minor tweaking to the instructions, and a correction of about 2-3 inches of the garment. I’d just have to undo that part and fit it.
Sounds easy, right? BUT the garment is knit top-down. I’m pretty smart (I think, most of the time), and don’t call myself Crafty Diversions for nothing, right? So, I thought that I could reknit the part that I want to fix, then I would carefully CUT out the portion with which I was dissatisfied and GRAFT it. Daring, but it was certainly going to be easier than reknitting the entire thing. Or so I thought. The idea really would have worked if it wasn’t for the fact that the pattern is an all-over cable. I counted, checked and marked the rows carefully. I even took precautions and put lifelines in the row directly above the snip line. The logic and theory paired with some patience seemed sound, except I sure didn’t anticipate how much the cables would try to untwist itself, making it really difficult to see which stitch belonged where, even with the lifeline in place. Thus, after several hours and the successful grafting of only about 12 stitches, I gave up.
Third Time Is A Charm
rrrribbbbbitttttt. It was painful to rip out all the lovely work that Denise put in; more painful than cutting it. I was hoping that Denise wouldn’t ask about it so that I didn’t have to tell her what I had to do to all her hard work. ::headdesk::
Thankfully, third time is the charm! I reknit the whole thing with the revised instructions without any problems save my sore hands from trying to rush. If only knitting was as easy as ripping put though. I am finally happy with the outcome — the neck fits the way that I had imagined it to be, and the yarn really stood up to all the ripping and abuses.
You may have noticed (or not) a new little button on my sidebar. Yes, the Twitter one. I don’t know how I feel about it yet, but yes, I did succumb to the trend and started a new Twitter account. I was trying to avoid it, but it is a good way of increasing visibility, so I decided to try it out. The thing that really irks me is that there really aren’t many Anne Lukito’s out in the world (2 others on Facebook that I found), but AnneLukito is not available, and Twitter is showing that there is no user by that name. grrrr. The other thing is that they only allow 15 characters, so I am CraftyDiversion, without the “s” at the end of “diversions.” Boo. I guess this is what happens when you are a late player to the trend game. I could’ve done my whole name, but that’s 3 words. Should I change it to @AnneKuoLukito or keep it as @CraftyDiversion?