FO Friday: Borough For Sale

I finished this project a while ago, but I put off blogging about it, just in case.  These mittens are a commissioned project for someone’s mom.  I didn’t want to take the chance of spoiling the surprise!

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Project: Borough For Sale

Pattern: Borough

Designer: Veronica O’Neil

Available: FREE! on Ravelry

Yarn: Madelinetosh Tosh Vintage in Alizarin

I followed the pattern exactly, with one notable exception.  (See mitten surgery below!)  My friend’s mom really, really wanted flip-top mittens, but she couldn’t find what she wanted in shops.  She asked if I ever knit on commission, and I quoted her my rates … which usually scares people off.  (For custom work, I charge $0.25 per yard in the finished object.)  She didn’t even blink at the price — so we chose yarn, and I got to work.

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After completing the first mitten, it was clear that I would be short yarn by about ten grams.  It’s not uncommon for a pattern to be a bit off … it’s frustrating, but true.  I should have suggested ordering a second skein to be safe — especially since hand-dyed yarns like Madelinetosh can be difficult to match across skeins.  I ordered a second skein from WEBS and crossed my fingers …. but it didn’t work.  The new skein was WILDLY different — I couldn’t use it with the yarn I already had.

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What to do, what to do?  The pattern as written had generous cuffs.  I decided I could salvage the necessary 10 grams from the cuff of the first (already-completed) mitten, and make the second mitten with a matching shorter cuff.

To begin the surgery, I put circs through at the beginning and end of the section I planned to cut out. I was very careful to catch ALL the stitches.

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Next, I cut the yarn a few inches before the top, and carefully picked out the row below the circ there.

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It was easy to rip back to the lower circ.  I wound the salvaged yarn into a tiny precious ball, and left just enough yarn attached to graft the cuff back together.

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Here is the grafted cuff — you can see a bit of loose grafting if you look closely, but it is nearly seamless.

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FO Friday: Sea Drift Toque

For Christmas, my in-laws gave me a copy of Weekend Hats. Swoon!  I cast on and finished this sweet little hat in less than a week — I found the pattern absolutely addictive. My middlest son was kind enough to model for me … but I think this hat will be for ME, thank you very much :).

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Project: Sea Drift Toque

Pattern: Drift Toque

Designer: Jocelyn Tunney

Available: in Weekend Hats ($15.30 on Amazon.com)

Yarn: Happy Feet DK in #52

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This hat has a really cool construction!  It’s worked sideways from a provisional cast on.  The cables sidle back and forth using increases and decreases (hidden by the reverse stockinette), and the crown shaping is accomplished with short rows.  I’m great at hiding short rows on the stockinette side — looks like I could use some practice hiding them on reverse stockinette too. At the end, the large graft is a bit of a bug-a-boo, but totally do-able.  I only had to undo stitches once, and that was only 10 or so.

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