Sophie’s So Faded

Sophie 5x5

I’m fairly new to Andrea Mowry’s knitting patterns and only became familiar with her earlier this year when she released the Find Your Fade shawl, which uses a very similar fading process to the So Faded sweater pictured above. I have found that I am strongly attracted to knitting any kind of fade or blend. (In fact, my Cupid’s Mix beanie design from last year fades colors from one to the next. Click here for my Cupid’s Mix post and free pattern.)

Needless to say, the Find Your Fade hook was in my mouth before I knew it, and I rapidly ordered yarn and cranked one out–not because I needed a shawl (but who can have too many), not because the design was irresistible (although it is very pretty), but because I simply had to work that fade. Thus began my introduction to the beautiful knits of Andrea Mowry. (To see my post on the Find Your Fade shawl, click here.)

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I’ve been rather uncertain whether I could pull off a So Faded sweater for myself, but I was positive a So Faded Sophie would be adorable, so I showed her the pint sized version of the pattern. Pictures of the sweater got her quite excited, but it wasn’t until we started searching for yarn that she was bouncing in her seat. We ended up at the site for Old Rusted Chair, whose Nashville-based owner is the sweet and acrobatic Lauren (yeah, she’s got all kinds of skills). I’ve been no stranger to her enticing yarn, having used it in several of my previous projects, and I can say with authority that her style and quality is supreme. I let Sophie select the colors herself from Old Rusted Chair’s site, although I did assist her so that we’d end up with the ultimate Sophie fade. Above are the colors we chose, which are from top to bottom Chrysalis, Spring Forward, Don’t Forget Your Shades, Test Kitchen and We Will Rock You. Which is your favorite???

Like Find Your Fade, So Faded is a super fabulous pattern, and I hope to make another one. Perhaps one of my friends knows a baby or child for whom they’d like me to knit one? Let me know!

I am of the opinion there cannot be too many pictures of this sweater. We love our So Faded so much! The So Faded patterns (regular and pint sized) can be purchased directly from Andrea Mowry’s site here.

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Cushman Sweater

When I first saw the Cushman Pullover on Instagram I had an instant must-have reaction. The pockets are adorable, plus it is knit up in Malabrigo Rios, an aran weight yarn–meaning it will be a cozy, super fast knit.

The pattern, which is written by Isabell Kraemer, is found in the Malabrigo Book Ten: Rios pattern book. This project is my first completed by Kraemer, but I have another WIP (Aila tank). Both patterns are well written, and the styles are very cute. I have several of her other patterns in my queue. To purchase and download the Cushman Pullover pattern, click here.

For my yarn choice I went with Rios Ilusion. It wasn’t an easy choice given that Malabrigo has dozens of rich colorways from which to choose. Much like its name, Ilusion has the mystifying effect of appearing quite differently in various light settings (see above). Furthermore, from a distance Ilusion appears purple to grayish purple; up close, however, the yarn reveals itself in muted jewel tones. This type of property involuntarily causes me to gleefully rub my hands together and open my eyes really wide like an excited monkey.

It took me over five months to complete this sweater, but that was mostly due to Christmas knitting and other projects. I’m a polygamous knitter, so I’m constantly bouncing around on various projects because I lack the focus to do otherwise. Needless to say when I was working on the Cushman it went quickly, as expected. The pattern is straightforward. The pockets were not difficult, and since I knit the sleeves two-at-a-time via magic loop, they were a cinch.

Instructions for Knitting Sleeves Two-At-A-Time

Knitting sleeves two-at-a-time enables you to knit them to a consistent length as well as maintain the same tones from a single skein. The negative is that you cannot try them on easily for sizing, so you have to knit them to your measurements. To knit identical sleeves two-at-a-time divide the held sleeve stitches roughly in half for each sleeve at the underarm and top of the shoulder, so that you have stitches for the Front Right (FR), Back Right (BR), Front Left (FL) and Back Left (BL). (The underarm will be the beginning and end of the round for each sleeve.) Then pull your needles for magic loop through all held stitches in this order: BR underarm to shoulder, FL underarm to shoulder, BL shoulder to underarm and FR shoulder to underarm. The BR and FL stitches will be on one needle and the BL and FR stitches on the other. In order to get the needles through all stitches the sleeves will have to be folded over each other and twisted slightly as shown above. You can then knit the pattern as stated, starting with the BR stitches and copying the instructions for each sleeve. All identical sleeves in which the pattern begins at the underarm can be knit in this fashion.

First sweater of the year complete! My only issue is that the bottom of the sweater is knit with a warmer skein, so as you can see above the bottom two-fifths is a slightly different shade. I forgot to check the dye lots before beginning, and I did not notice the gradual increase in warmth until it was too late (too late for my stubbornness). Oh, well. My husband thinks it looks better for it, and perhaps over time I’ll think the same.