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Every Last, Little Scrap

I did something today that I consider a very desperate, and slightly tacky, move.  I tied scraps, lots and lots of little yarn scraps and clipped yarn ends, together to make about two yards of knotted yarn to use for binding off my Bernadette cardigan.  Argh.  Knots are the worst, but I wasn’t about to spit splice 20 pieces of yarn together.  Who wants a row and a half of that?

And this was discontinued Gynx organic merino Aran.  I was thrilled to get a sweater’s worth of it when it was on sale.  But there was no more to order if I ran out, so I really had to work to get a sweater out of it.

The photo above was taken before I added the button bands and collar.  The way they were added determined how I handled my yarn shortage.  Normally, I would’ve just picked out the bind off edge and removed a couple of rows worth of yarn from the bottom ribbing to have enough for my last two collar rows.  Only, I’d already attached my button band to the very bottom edge of this ribbing on both sides.  Then, the collar was attached to the tops of these button bands.  So to get to the yarn at the bind off edge of this sweater, I’d have to rip out the collar, both button bands, the bind off edge, and then pick up all of those stitches again.  Picking up stitches is enough Greek mythology-type torment in itself.  So I could either be all perfectionist over it, because of my hate for knots, or just suck it up and start tying.  I tied.

The pattern called for 500 yards of Aran to get a 33″ size.  The goal is at least 2″ of negative ease, so that size will work well for me.  Somehow it took all of my 543 yards of my yarn.  I ended up reducing the ribbing at the sleeves by two rounds on each one and my bind off is a bit tight along the sides of the neckline, but I think I can still get a lot of length when blocking.  There are lots of stubby yarn ends hanging from the inside of my sweater that I’ll have to deal with, but I’m very thankful that the fit seems fine.  It’s only slightly snug, which I was prepared for after blocking my swatch.  (Yeah, I swatched. See, I’m classy about some things.)  It should fit perfect in a few days.  Now, for buttons.  I may have enough odds and ends buttons in my cabinet to work for this, but I’m thinking vintage navy ones would look especially cool.  However, this would involve ordering and patience, or making a trek to a hobby store.  I am a lazy, knot-tying kind of girl, so…

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  1. Not sure what happened but if I leave 2 comments, my apologies!
    I love this sweater! The vintage feel to her designs is so great I can't wait to see your modeled shots. No one will notice any knots. Just you. Enjoy your new sweater!

  2. Oh it looks great in that photo, I can't wait to see the finished piece! Thanks for the good laugh over tying all those notes, although I'm sorry to laugh at your pain. 😀 I admire your patience.

  3. Thank you, Sarah! You're right, Andi Satterlund has got the vintage looking cardigan down! I'm actually not noticing any knots when I fiddle with it while it blocks. So, it looks like things worked out this time.

  4. Thanks, Heather! It was one of those evenings where the dog didn't even want to sit by me as I fretted over all those little yarn bits.

  5. I did use the swatch! That was prime finishing yarn. I'm glad I just went with it. At one time, I probably would've ripped the bands and collar back to "do it right" but I think its a real sign of growth in me that I let it be a little hacked and thrown together, strange as it sounds.

  6. OMG, poor Michelle. Those ends are like nightmares and it's usually what makes me stop loving a project and abandon it for a while. I'm happy that you have plowed on and finished it, even with knots. I have an unfinished project in my drawer of shame from the time I used to crochet. I knew I was not going to have enough yarn to finish it and I left it half way… four years ago. Last weekend I decided to gift the left over yarn and forget about it.

  7. Hi Michelle, I've just discovered your blog thru V and I'm so glad I did. I'm thinking about learning how to knit any day now that I can find some spare time…wait…what spare time. 🙂 (Love the Princess Leah hat, showed my daughter and we both agree that we'd wear that every day)

  8. Gifting is a great way to deal with ugh! projects. I was right at the end on this one, though, and this yarn had to be this sweater- there was no choice, so I tied knots. It's blocked now and awaiting buttons.

  9. Hi Veronica! So glad you stopped by. The Princess Leia hair was a fun little project to make and wear. It's something a beginner could definitely do. If you ever want to give knitting a try, there are some good tutorials on Kollabora and youtube to get you started.

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