Royal Knitting

Did you see the Royal Wedding? Middletons Katie got her Prince Willie Charming and us humble commons got to watch it on TV. We had a six-hour live broadcast here in Germany on Friday morning and since Friday is my day off, I decided to do the couch potatoe thing and watch the whole palooza. The last Royal Wedding I acutally watched on TV was that of Willies Mom in the 80ies so it was about time for a new dose of yellow press romance. My own Personal Prince Charming refused to watch and only called William a “poor bloke” for having to go through all the fuss .

Well now, the truth is, I was only looking for an excuse to be knitting instead of sewing and I got done a lot in six hours. Here’s the progress on my Briar Rose.

But let’s start at the beginning:

The colour of the yarn is what me and my sewing buddies always jokingly call “liverwurst”. Well, if peach can be a colour, why can’t liverwurst?. On the pictures without flash it looks too violet and on those with flash it looks too grey. In reality it is a beautiful greyish pink. I have 11 skeins of this yarn and it should be more than enough since the sweater is not going to be very long.

Because I really want all the hard work to end in a fitting sweater I made a gauge swatch for the first time in my live AND washed it AND blocked it. That was a chance to try my brand new “blocking board” I got from a friend (Thank you, Martina). In reality it is a kid’s play mat which consists of 8 tiles of soft spongy whatever and can be assembled to larger pieces. It’s perfect for blocking, needles go in easily and it doesn’t soak up any water so the knit fabric will dry completely.

You can see that I tried a few simple knit/purl patterns as well but in the end I decided to simply make the Briar Rose in stockinette stitch as suggested in the pattern. Not too many difficulties for the first project.

Then I measured, calculated, measured again, calculated again and calculated a third time to be on the safe side:

144 stitches per piece – that sounded a lot to me. But the yarn is thin and I am working with 3mm-needles, it’s the way it is.

3,5″ Ribbing (knit 1/ purl 1) and I worked in the back part of the knit stitches because this gives a more substantial ribbing and I like it better than the regular version. I started the increases directly after the ribbing to get from waist to bust measurement and I keep track of my increases with a tally sheet.

Status on Sunday evening: Both bodice parts are finished up to the armhole increases. Now I have to get my brain in gear again to calculate how to decrease for the armholes.

I am really surprised how far I got over the weekend and that I am still extremely motivated. In my enthusiasm I even digged through my little yarn stash and found something for the next project:

Isn’t it wonderful for a nautical summer sweater? And those are also the colours of the Union Jack which brings us back to Royal Knitting 😉 .

Speaking of Royals: I absolutely loved Kates dress. Simple but with intersting details like the lace bodice and the embroidery on the skirt, really gorgeous.

And what did I wear to the wedding? Well, even though I am technically a princess since I have my own Personal Prince Charming I still didn´t make it on the guest list so I decided on the “undone look” for the event. Meaning pajamas and freshly washed, wet hair for the first 3 hours and curlers for the second 3. Nobody complained 😉 .

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