Thursday, April 1, 2010

Fitted Knits

There are lots of times when I wish I could sew.  I've seen beautiful things made by other talented seamstresses... and the skill would come in such handy when it comes to altering my purchased items.  But unfortunately for me, I can't sew a straight seam to save my life.  Knitting, however, doesn't REALLY require any actual skill.  I learned the basics of knitting from my grandma, but scarves bored me to death and I never really got into it.  Everything changed, however, when I picked up this book a couple years ago:


It literally changed my life!  Most handmade sweaters I've seen before were boxy shapeless ones, and most sweater patterns are for generic S/M/L sizes that of course would never fit me.  But from this book I learned how to make a seamless, fitted sweater customized to my own exact measurements, using any kind of yarn.  It's really just about the math... and with some basic knitting skills anyone could easily do it.  And with a little experience, you can even just look at a sweater sold in stores and figure out how to construct it.  I don't even use patterns anymore, I just buy the yarn that appeals to me and sort of design my own.  There's also a wonderful online knitting community called Ravelry where tons of knitters post pictures of their work and review yarns/patterns, and that's been an invaluable resource.

I don't have that much time to knit anymore, but here's some pictures of the sweaters I've made in the past.  The first one was made from a pattern, the rest are my own experimentations with design.

Pink V-Neck Pullover


Purple Tweed Cardigan


Cotton Lace Top
(the lighting was horrible when I took this pic, actual color is more like on the dress form)


Cream Tweed Cable Boatneck
 

It's actually kind of funny because I live in SoCal where the weather is probably too warm for sweaters for most of the year... so it's a good thing I'm always cold!

14 comments:

  1. Wow, those are beautiful! I want to learn :)
    How long does it take you to knit one of those?

    ReplyDelete
  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Sorry, I accidentally posted twice!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Omigosh - that purple tweed cardigan! I love it so much!

    Knitting seems daunting to me ... I'm sure you're being modest when you say it doesn't take much skill!

    ReplyDelete
  5. The purple tweed looks so comfy! It makes me want to curl up on the couch with a big mug of coffee.

    ReplyDelete
  6. @Diary: It depends on the yarn thickness... the tweed yarn was thicker so each sweater probably only took me about a week (of pretty constant knitting). The cotton lace took me at least 2-3 weeks though. Then again I'm not a particularly fast knitter.

    @PAG & AN: I loved that purple tweed yarn... it's such a gorgeous color.

    There really isn't much skill involved in the atual knitting, just a lot of planning and math. You only need to know 3 basic things: how to knit a basic stitch, and how to increase and decrease. Then you can make any size sweater using any kind of yarn.

    Like for example, if your yarn knits 5 stitches per inch, and you measure 30/25/30, then you would knit 5x30 = 150 stitches for the chest, then decrease to 5x25 = 125 stitches for waist, and increase again to 150 stitches for hips.

    It is time-consuming, but not hard! I'm a serious TV (and Asian dramas) junkie so I just like to veg out on the couch and knit while I watch :)

    ReplyDelete
  7. So jealous! I wish I could knit. I love that purple cardigan.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Interesting...I didn't know you measure than multiply by knit. Your open cardigan is making me want to dabble in this seemingly fun hobby!

    ReplyDelete
  9. @PAG: If you do decide to, I highly recommend this website for how-to videos (http://www.knittinghelp.com). Also definitely join Ravelry... it's a huge community that's super helpful from what yarn to choose to whatever questions/problems you might have... and they have free patterns to get you started too. I basically taught myself everything from those 2 resources.

    And although I'm by no means an expert, I'm more than willing to help anyone who's interested in trying it out... just email me!

    ReplyDelete
  10. I wish I can make anything like that. You're a great knitter.

    ReplyDelete
  11. omgosh, ure awesome!! these came out really great and even looks store bought. i'm quite intrigued with this book! i'll def check this out. i actually picked up knitting in college, but we have a love-hate relationship lol i think i just need to practice, practice, practice haha! thx for sharing!:)

    TheOwlsCloset.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  12. Wow! That`s so cool, I have only every knitted a scarf. I love the boatneck cable sweater. But cosy and chic :)

    ReplyDelete
  13. Thanks everyone for the nice comments :) Knitting is the only hobby that I feel somewhat competent in.

    @Owl's and Aspiring: I still can't really stand knitting scarves lol... it's so much more interesting and rewarding to make useful and fitted garments.

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...