Handknit Street Style

So Lolly has started a flicker group called Handknit Street Style for people to show how they wear their handknits with other wardrobe pieces. Here’s how I’ll be wearing my newest FO (the first of 2007).

With a skirt I made!!

With my leather boots from Italy!

Can you tell I’m excited?!? I can’t believe I actually made a whole outfit (okay, the sweater and the skirt – it’s not like I knit the tights or suddenly learned leathercraft). I’m equally excited that I finally have something to wear that will show off the boots I bought in Italy. When it comes to skirts, I usually wear long slim ones – so this knee-length A-line is something of a departure for me.

What could be better for a snowy winter day, then a grey wool sweater, a black corduroy skirt, and leather boots?

The specs:
pattern: glampyreknits Easy V-Neck Raglan
yarn: Ironstone Harmony, in charcoal grey (11026)
needles: size 9s for the body, the sleeves, and the sleeve ribbing, size 7s for the body ribbing
dates: started December 26, 2006, finished January 18, 2007
modifications: The pattern calls for the ribbing to be done with 7s, but after seeing Amylovie’s version and asking her how she did her sleeves, I decided to stick with the 9s (which is what she did). I wish I had done that with the body ribbing too (more on that in a minute.
I also did not decrease the sleeves as much as the pattern called for, because when I did, they were way tighter than I wanted. I did the sleeves four different times to get them the way I wanted (and they are still a wee bit tighter than I might want).
challenges: In addition to having to try four times before I got the sleeves to fit the way I wanted, I had trouble with my bind-off being too tight on the body. The ribbing is done on 7s and at first I bound on with 7s. Not stretchy enough. So I ripped and then bound off with 9s. Still too tight. So I ripped and bound off with 11s. Better, but still I wish it were stretchier. In fact, I wish I had done the body ribbing with 9s so that it would be a little looser overall. Everyone else’s easy v-neck seems to hang looser than mine (perhaps I should’ve gone up a size? but I did the one that went right with my measurements). But the fact is, I don’t think I could’ve managed to do it in 9s, because of this:

That is how much yarn I had left after binding off!
I don’t think there’s any way I could’ve had enough yarn to do the ribbing on 9s.

verdict: I love this sweater and I love this pattern. It is a super-fun knit, and pretty quick (though not nearly as quick as SpiderWoman was able to do! A weekend, really? No way I could manage that.) I love the rustic look of this sweater, especially the neckline. I love this yarn. I love that this sweater could equally well with jeans or a skirt. Unlike any other sweaters I’ve made, I think I will be wearing this one a lot.

The specs:
pattern: Basic A-line skirt from Sew U.
fabric: Black corduroy on clearance at JoAnn’s, $2.99/yard, 1 5/8 yards. Black lining from Joann’s, $4.99/yard, 1 5/8 yards.
notions: Black zipper (my first zipper!). And, of course, black thread.
dates: January 18-20. Dude. Sewing is so much quicker than knitting.
modifications: I hacked off about 4 inches from the bottom of the basic pattern. And, it turned out that I made the thing too big and had to take it in. I went by the sizing suggestions based on my measurements, but that was tricky because my waist measurement puts me as a large and my hip measurements put me as a small! I thought it would be better to make it too big and have to take it in than to make it too small and have to start all over again. Turns out I could’ve gone even smaller than I did, so I’m perplexed about which size to make next time (and there will definitely be a next time!). In retrospect, I could’ve bought a lot less fabric since I ended up with a much smaller skirt than the original pattern I used.
verdict: I couldn’t be happier. This is a great, straightforward pattern for a beginner, and the book offers lots of options for variations. With this book and this pattern, I learned how to install a zipper and how to make darts. With the help of the folks at Sewing Mamas, I learned how to take it in. I’ve discovered that I get very excited by sewing projects, but the energy is totally different from what’s involved in knitting. I find it tires me more than knitting, and it’s more exciting and less relaxing. I can’t wait to make more skirts. And other stuff.

I’m really, really happy with this.

10 thoughts on “Handknit Street Style

  1. Wow! Such an great outfit — you look fantastic!! I think the sweater fits you perfectly. The skirt is cute too, and I love the boots!

  2. Wow! what a perfect outfit!! I can’t believe how little yarn you had left over – bet you were sweating towards the end eh? Those boots are great!!

  3. That is a kick-ass outfit! I’m so impressed with both the skirt and the sweater. Both are so very wearable. And with the boots? Total fashion plate. Congrats on two great FOs!

  4. this is OMG FANTASTIC! it looks FABULOUS on you! what an incredible feeling to have created that and have it look so beautiful on top of it! you must be so very proud, as you should be! AWESOME!

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