Amanda panel progress report: Let’s see these sweaters!

Amanda panel progress repot: Let's see these sweaters!

I had originally planned to talk about joining the body and sleeves this week for the #fringeandfriendsknitalong, but am feeling like maybe we could all use a little Information Intermission. And I thought this would be a good time to check in with our panel and see how some of our sweaters are progressing. Rebekka, Amy and Anna are each knitting uneventfully at their own pace.  Anna is nearing the join and will hopefully have photos of that process for us to talk about next week sometime. But for the rest of us, it’s been a little more eventful.

That’s me up top: two front panels is what I’ve got. Notice anything? I’m determined to do ribbon-backed button bands, which I’ve never done before. Plus I want them to be knitted at an even tighter gauge than my ribbing. (I really can’t abide a flimsy button band, and am at risk of taking it too far the other direction!) So I’d been debating about whether to do the bands as written or knit them separately. After spending a couple of evenings studying Brooklyn Tweed’s tubular cast-on and figuring out how to figure out how to calculate my own cast-on for flat, 1×1 ribbing in that method, I then stupidly cast on the wrong number — and didn’t realize it until I’d knitted the whole ribbing. The good news is I had started with a front piece precisely because it’s the smallest piece and I wanted to make sure my tighter-gauge version of a bigger size was going to come out right. Still, I hated to rip it out and start again. But then I realized I actually had the perfect number of stitches if I were doing the bands separately. So I took it as fate making my mind up for me, and forged ahead. Knitting the bands separately will give me lots of leeway to screw them up, pull them out and do them again if I need to, or change them at any time — which feels good to me.

. . .

Amanda panel progress report: Let's see those sweaters!

Meg Strong, Owner of KnitKnotes (Instagram: @knitknotes)

Meg has arrived at the underarms on her seamless body — but there was one notable setback: a dog ate it! Meg and her brother DG (now my right hand at Fringe Supply Co.) share a house and have the most docile pets on the planet. (I mean.) We stayed with them for most of two months this summer and I was stunned to see knitting and yarn left casually all over the living room each night. My cats would not be able to resist such temptation. So while Meg was watching this dog, she trustingly got up at one point to go to the kitchen, and when she came back the dog was standing on her sweater, using her precious ebony circulars as a chew toy. The knitting was collateral damage, and thankfully she was able to restore it. The circs were totalled.

You’ll also notice Meg’s button bands are of interest. At moments when she needs a little mindless knitting, rather than pondering a quick shawl, she’s been working her bands. Smart!

. . .

Amanda panel progress report: Let's see those sweaters!

Jaime Jennings, Co-owner of Fancy Tiger Crafts (Instagram: @fancyjaime)

You remember Jaime had put a lot of thought (and math) into knitting her sweater at a looser gauge than pattern gauge. She ripped a few times to make adjustments and decided she didn’t like the sweater as much with less honeycomb. So she started over and is now knitting with the same yarn at pattern gauge, which is giving her a denser fabric than she at first thought she wanted. But seeing it writ large, she’s liking it! She’s also pretty much the fastest knitter in the West, so even with all of that — and a week off last week for Spinzilla — she’s ahead of me. She has set a deadline for herself of Nov 5, so she can capture it on her next ultra-photogenic trip, and I’m sure she’ll  make that goal.

Also, clearly her early trepidations about the cabling were unfounded.

. . .

Amanda panel progress report: Let's see those sweaters!

Kate Gagnon Osborn, Co-owner of Kelbourne Woolens (Instagram: @kelbournewoolens)

If we were knitting on a schedule, or there were prizes for speed, Kate would be winning. She redesigned her back to have three diamonds and two braids, which looks great, but then she wasn’t liking how it played out with the raglan shaping. So she converted it to set-in sleeves! She’s a maniac. And no, we won’t be trying to teach how to do that particular alteration! But I can’t wait to see how hers turns out. I think she’s about 10 minutes from done.

So that’s the panel recap. Fill us in on your progress below! And remember there’s another big prize coming this Friday, so keep those photos coming!


PREVIOUSLY in #fringeandfriendsknitalong: WIP of the Week, week 3 (plus new buttons!)

36 thoughts on “Amanda panel progress report: Let’s see these sweaters!

  1. This is the best, most compelling KAL I’ve ever followed! Although I’m not in on it, the detail and most importantly, the differences in each knitter’s approach to this one pattern are compelling! Can’t thank you enough for sharing all the wonderful detail on this gorgeous pattern!

  2. Kate Gagnon Osborn IS a knitting maniac! I witnessed her knitting on her sweater first hand at a recent retreat we attended together. I’ve never seen anyone knit so fast! The re-design is beautiful, BTW (you wouldn’t expect anything less from her!)

    • Awww, Laurie, you’re too sweet! It was so wonderful to meet and hang out with you in person. (Although I do wish I was even *faster* and could have finished in time for the etreat…I still can’t believe how cold it was!)

  3. Wondering if anyone is blocking all the individual pieces before starting on the yoke or combing them all? Not sure if this should be done or blocked as one whole piece. (Sorry about putting in a bad spot earlier Karen, this is a better spot for this) :)

    • Callie, sorry, I lost track of that question. I’d be interested to hear what others say, but I don’t plan to block mine before joining for the yoke. I’ll probably steam the whole thing before I do the seaming, then wet block it once it’s one solid piece.

      • I have another question for the blocking departement, Karen:
        how is or isn’t blocking different with yarns that are half cotton?
        (I am using Spud & Chloe Sweater which is a 50/50 wool/cotton blend.)

        For the status quo of my Amanda:
        I finished back, left front and one and a half sleeve so far and I cannot wait to start the raglan.
        I have never done a raglan bottom up so I am really excited and looking forward to it :-)

        • There’s not any difference that I know of, blocking a cotton blend vs pure wool. The O-Wool I’m using is machine washable — not sure about the Spud? So I actually washed (and dried!) my swatch.

    • I had this same question, too. I’m going to have to end up stretching my sweater a little bit when I block it, so I decided I’d better wait till the whole thing is knit.
      Although, I’m not sure if I should wet block it before seaming or after. Sounds like Karen would wet block after seaming. I’m curious to see what others say. I’ve never done a cardigan before!

    • Thanks so much. I’ve never done a cardigan before either so I’m not sure what the best route would be. I have to stretch mine out a bit too Catherine. So I would love to hear what everyone else plans on doing too! :)

  4. Karen, I did my first ribbon lined button bands on my Cadet and they came out great. I have a few notes there if you are interested.

    The extra bit of work is well worth it. I will be interested to see how your panel handles their button bands, lining or not. I know there are many virtues to the ones that are knit separately and aim to try that on my next heavier weight cardi. Which, considering work and travel may not get queued for several months. Vicarious enjoyment here instead….sigh….

    • That looks awesome, Clare. I’ve never seen it done on a v-neck, I don’t think. Did you run them all the way up and around the back neck, or stop at the top of the v? And did you hand-stitch the ribbon onto the cardigan?

      • Thanks! It worked out well but a ribbon band is an even better fit for a round neck cardi like yours. I started mine at the V, a good inch above the first buttonhole. I also hand sewed it. I probably would have hand sewed the edges of the buttonhole as well, if the grosgrain had not been so stiff and quick to fray. Grosgrain isn’t what it used to be, at least not the stuff I can find in my neck of the woods. Washing it thoroughly before working with it does help.

  5. I’m enjoying these KAL posts so much although I do wish I were knitting along. Still, these will all be bookmarked for future reference!

  6. I know you weren’t planning on discussing Kate’s conversion from raglan to set-in, but I would love to see pics of how it turns out! I love her additional braid cable, and I think I’ll copy that mod on my Amanda! :)

  7. Absolutely agree that this knit-along is the most interesting I’ve followed. I’m also following vicariously right now (and I love that you’re so welcoming of us, Karen — it’s fun imagining my own fisherman sweater, but realistically it’ll have to wait until January). Discussion of construction and design details is catnip to me, and it’s been so great seeing people’s different approaches thoughtfully articulated. Thanks so much to Karen and the panel!

    As one of the vicarious -alongers, I do have a question/request: I’m super intrigued by all this talk about button bands (I am with you on flimsy button band distaste), but since I don’t have a copy of the pattern, it’s a little hard to follow the discussion sometimes. Would it be possible to post a bit more context about how the Amanda button bands work? I’m having trouble picturing the method clearly, which makes it hard to understand people’s variations. Sorry if you already covered this and I missed it somehow!

    • We’ll definitely be talking about button bands when we get a little farther down the road. The way Amanda is written, you cast on all of the stitches with you waist ribbing, then set aside the button band stitches and come back and work them the rest of the way up later (on the smaller ribbing needle). Then seam it together. I’m not sure what the benefit is of this versus a full seamed band.

      • Aha! Thanks—now I understand what I’m looking at in the photo of Meg Strong’s fronts! Super excited to hear what you and the panel think when the knitalong gets to button bands (and happy that around these parts, being “excited to debate button bands” sounds totally normal ;-) )

  8. Just received the call today from my local yarn shop that Essentially Feminine Knits had been delivered. Excited to pick up my copy tomorrow!

  9. I waffled about doing one and finally decided to go ahead. I’m doing a different pattern, one that I found on Ravelry, the Leaf Panel Cardigan by Patons The band at the bottom is supposed to be seed stitch, but I made ribbing. I only have about 6 inches done and I know it’s going to take me forever, because I can’t knit this and do anything else at the same time. Still, I’m happy to have started it…we’ll how it goes!

  10. Pingback: WIP of the Week, week 4 | Fringe Association

  11. Pingback: The button band conundrum | Fringe Association

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