I got to the yoke part of my Puffin sweater late last week.
The next stage in knitting this sweater meant that I needed to get all of the 'live' stitches from the body and sleeves onto a circular needle, also placing stitches for the underarms onto waste yarn to be dealt with at a later date. This was easier said than done. The 2.75mm circular needle I've used for this sweater is 80cm in length. The number of stitches to be put onto it? 437. Yes, that's right. 437 stitches. I got to a point where I wondered if they'd all fit, but thankfully they did (I do have another, longer, 2.75mm circular, but that's a different brand and I'm using it to knit my stripey scarf).
I then started knitting the yoke. First off, there was a section of garter stitch in black (about six rounds - something like that) and then came the first zig-zaggy round. There are 23 zig-zag pattern repeats, each one separated by a stitch marker to make life easier. Or, they should make life easier if you're not interrupted by your husband when you're doing the set-up round to place the markers, get distracted and mis-count. I had to painstakingly un-knit 300-odd stitches because, as is often the way, the mistake I made was fairly early in the round and it was only when I was at the end that I realised I'd gone wrong. For the second attempt, I ignored hubby and all was well.
I have to say that each round of 437 stitches takes quite a long time, even every other round which is just purling the stitches. The zig-zag effect is created by two increases and one double-decrease in each section.
There were 16 rounds of 437 stitches before the first decrease round and then a second decrease round occurs four rounds after that. I did the second decrease round earlier this morning and the purl round after that and that's where I'm up to, so I now have 'only' 345 stitches on the needle, which makes moving them around the circular much easier. I've got another ten rounds before the next decrease, but stitch-wise I'm now over halfway through the yoke, so all is progressing.
The yoke's looking quite bright. I haven't gone with the colours in the original design as they're not me, but have gone with more jewel-like tones instead. As the sun's shining this morning, I draped the sweater over the fence between my house and next door and snapped an in-progress shot which will hopefully give a good representation of the colours:
While I had my camera out, I snapped this picture of the area in the front of our house. Look how blue the sky is today. It's hard to believe it's November and will be Guy Fawke's night tomorrow. The leaves have turned yellowy orange on that tree and are beginning to fall, but we've been very lucky in our weather so far this autumn.
It's also Jess's birthday. My 'puppy' is five today.
I'm hoping I'll have my Puffin sweater finished within the next week, so I'm going to start thinking about what to cast on next (even though I've got two scarves and a pair of socks on the needles as well).