A new craft store and a spring cardi

On March 1st, I went to the opening night of Baltimore Threadquarters in Highlandtown. The store is in what seems like a great location at Eastern Avenue and Conkling Street and the concept of art gallery -cum- craft store -cum- class space is really exciting to those of us that craft (and feel like everyone else should join us in our crafty endeavors). The store is in a long narrow building and it seems like a good lay-out with a pretty large area for classes.

The selection was not very large, but included some gorgeous fabrics and an interesting mix of new and vintage supplies. In talking to one of the owners, it sounds like neither of the partners knit but they decided to go with a selection of Cascade yarns  to start their yarn stock. You can’t go wrong with Cascade and they had some Eco+ that I may have to go back and get a skein or two of in a dark, heathery blue.  They’ve created a really appealing display of scooped shelving with stacked yarn (image on their website here).

I was admiring some of the cascade yarn I hadn’t seen before and liked the slight sheen and soft feel of the Sateen yarn. I ended up buying a skein each of the lilac and silver colors for a sweet spring baby sweater. I’m sure I’ll be a repeat visitor to Threadquarters and I’m going to watch the current stock page to see what kinds of yarn they carry as the store grows.

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I decided to get started on the spring sweater right away and I have an intended recipient in mind. For basic raglan-sleeved cardigans and sweaters (like the Plain Vanilla Sweater), I like to take a page from Elizabeth Zimmerman’s book and do the math for a custom fit. Unlike the Plain Vanilla Sweater, I’m not measuring the intended recipient so I went with a standard 18 month top size. I knit up a gauge swatch then did the math to figure out how many stitches to cast-on and how many increases to do for the arms and body as well as what length to aim for.

I’m knitting the Sateen yarn on US4 (3.5 mm) needles so it’s a pretty fine knit, but speeding right along. The sweater is mostly lilac with small silver stripes. I also realized that the picture I took (below) that shows where I was doing my math has the sweater upside down. I put the sweater down with the needles at the top and since I’m knitting from the top down the neckline is at the bottom of the pciture. That’s alright, you get the idea of what a purple and silver striped sweater looks like in progress.

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I’ve finished the buttonholes (four spaced from the neckline to right below the underarm) and will probably go button shopping next weekend. I’m thinking I may actually go full cutesy and get little flower buttons.

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