Sunday, May 12, 2013

A Lucky Find

Yesterday, Hubby and I went out for brunch with a group of friends in a neighborhood we hadn't visited before.  Since I ate a little too much, we decided to walk part of the way home, and along the way we came across a used bookstore.  Hubby can't resist a bookstore, so in we went.  While he pored over the CDs, I checked out the selection of craft books, and discovered this:


Now, this book is currently in print - it was reissued by Dover in 2011 - but instead of paying the list price of $21.95, I paid $10, and it's in brand-new condition.

I got really excited because inside were pictures of a sweater I've wanted to make for years:  the Oregon cardigan.


I'd only ever seen this as a kit sold by Virtual Yarns, Alice Starmore's website.  After perusing Ravelry, I saw that it was also published in Vogue Knitting Holiday 2007.  As I flipped through the book, I thought I saw the charts needed for this design, so I brought it home with me.

On further inspection though, it turns out that only the leaf chart for the bottom border is included.  However, there are very clear photos which will enable me to recreate the main pattern.  It's even on the cover of the book!


I'm glad I bought the book even though it doesn't have the pattern I was hoping for.  There are tons of great charts included, and tips on designing a sweater using them, so it's a great addition to my Alice Starmore collection.  And the Oregon sweater is way down the road for me anyway:  I definitely want to finish my Queen Anne's Lace before starting another Starmore.

I haven't shown that sweater since last August!  I did a good job of working on it consistently til about mid-December, but have only done a couple rows since then.  But I'm really not that far from being done:  I'd gotten all the way to starting the neck shaping.  Here is the current state of affairs:


What a gorgeous pattern.  Alice is truly a genius.  Here's my armhole steek:


And the beginning of the neck shaping:


I should really turn off the TV and get back to this!

31 comments:

  1. Wow - your knitting is so impressive, I can just about manage stocking stitch! What a good find, sounds as if the right person found it :)

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    1. Thanks, Jacq! I am happy I'm the one who found it, and I'm very curious who would let it go!

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  2. That is puurrty! Hurry up and finish. I want to see what it looks like!

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    1. Thanks, Linda! This is going to be a sort of "sloppy joe" sweater, even though I took the size down a few inches from the original. You can see that there's no shaping at all.

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  3. so pretty! i really love the pattern and the colors. hope it gets finished someday!

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    1. I have a knitting buddy who I knit these Starmore sweaters with, and we're on our second one now. We did the same sweater first time around, and this time we're doing different ones. I already wrote to her and told her this will be my next one!

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  4. Ohmigosh that looks so haaaaaard... Quite impressive! :)

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    1. Hehehe - it's not for a beginner, that's for sure! Probably not for the ADD sufferer either, which is why it's been sitting for so long!

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  5. I swear my keyboard started throwing sparks from all the drool! :)

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    1. Haahahahaha! You alway's crack me up, Pam!

      (threw in a little extra apostrophe for you)

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  6. What a great find ... used book stores are such treasure troves but it does take a keen eye to find those gems. Your sweater is amazing!

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    1. Thank you! This one was really nice too - bright and clean, not musty at all like a lot of them are. Honestly, I'm usually reluctant to go in because they play havoc with my allergies, but this one was really great.

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  7. Nice find at the bookshop!

    The Queen Anne's Lace is such a lovely pattern; one of many Starmore designs in my queue. Also, I know some Ravelers who have modified Starmore classics for a more fitted silhouette, so I've marked their projects for my future guidance. Of course, there's still room in my wardrobe for the sweatshirt type of sweater, too.

    Did you know that the Virtual Yarns webshop actually ran out of several colors for some weeks after VK published the Oregon sweater? I had to wait quite a while for my Grant Avenue kit, which needed some of the same colors. They'd underestimated how much a VK appearance would boost sales!
    -- stashdragon

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    1. I think I will probably add some shaping to the Oregon sweater when I get to it, but for this one I felt it would really interfere with the patterning - and I have to admit I have a nostalgic love for those late '80s/early '90s sloppy joe shapes!

      That's incredible that she ran out of yarn! But in a way I'm not surprised - she is such a genius with color, I can understand people wanting to use the exact colors she used. In fact, if I'm feeling flush when I get ready to start this, I may just order the kit myself, rather than try to puzzle out good colors.

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  8. Great find! Your colorwork looks amazing!

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  9. Nice find! That sweater is looking great and is going to be amazing. I can’t even begin to imagine the amount of concentration that is involved in a single row of colourwork.

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    1. Thank you! Believe it or not, doing this is actually much easier than the Geno sweater I recently finished (the short-sleeved red one). The pattern is very predictable and easy to memorize within one row, and it gets easier as you go along because it's so repetitive. Not nearly as impressive as it looks! I am quite proud of my tension though :-)

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  10. Oh steeking, how fun and adventurous! You have perfect tension for the colorwork, I admire it! I've also never seen a Dover book that is that expensive, maybe the company has changed since I was a child?

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    1. You're right! The Dover books I remember from when I was a kid were cheap in both senses of the word. But this one is like a "real" book, so maybe they've changed their operation, at least in part? I know you can still get those other types of Dover books.

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  11. Yes you really should get back to it. It is just so beautiful!

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    1. Thank you! Yes, I really should! At this point though, I'll probably wait til it's air conditioning weather - it gets quite warm to have this on my lap!

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  12. What a great find! I've been in awe of Starmore's designs ever since I first discovered them, but haven't attempted any yet. I love your Queen Anne's Lace so far - can't wait to see the finished sweater!

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    1. Thanks, Debbie! You should try a Starmore - they're not nearly as difficult as they look. They kind of "make sense" in a way that other colorwork I've done doesn't.

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  13. What a terrific find! The colorwork is awesome. Now I wanna visit the neighborhood bookstore and check out the used craft books! I just may do that tomorrow.

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  14. Wow! What a treasure! I'm jealous that you are a knitter as quickly and accurately ... This sweater will be spectacular!

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  15. I have Alice Stratmore's book on fair isle techniques and it's one of my favorite knitting books! What a lucky find!
    The sweater is beautiful! Your fair isle tension looks perfect! Unfortunately, I don't seem to have the fair isle gene... I never seem to get the tension right and if I do my hands hurt after just 10 minutes of knitting :(

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