Monday, May 01, 2006

First Ballerina Finished ....

After a bumpy start I finally finished my first Hanne Falkenberg kit the Ballerina. I made a few modifications but relatively minor. The bottom stitching which is like a mock ribbing sort of just did not look right and it looked a bit unfinished so I added an inch of solid black border. Then the sleeves were way too short so I added some striping there. I also did not like the solid "sage color" band around the neck so I striped that. But other than those few modifications I followed the pattern and it turned out pretty well.

I also knitted a potato chip scarf to go with the sweater with black and sage one row edge. This is not attached to the sweater it is optional. I wear it if it's cold and my neck seems too cold with no collar.

I didn't think the little bit of black yarn I had left over was enough so I sent an eMail to Hanne (from the contact link on her site) I tried to get an extra ball of black yarn, and got firm NEGATIVE. (I think I upset her to even dare to ask.) She was probably upset about the modifications.

She does not sell yarn!
Only the Kit!
So if I want an extra ball of yarn I have to buy a new kit!

A bit too pricey to buy a whole kit just for one ball of black, but as it turned out the knitting angels were with me and I had enough yarn.

When I first started this project I had a very difficult time reading the instructions. I felt that at least they could have done is put more spaces and use a larger font after all this was not a cheap kit. How much would another piece of paper cost them? When I first looked at the instructions I got scared. The photo copy of the pages was very difficult for me to read, the font they use is very small and there is no break visually it really looks like "buckle your seatbelt it's going to be a bumpy ride" (I always loved that line from that old movie) kind of pattern.

I had to copy each section and bump up the size of the font. But maybe it's just my age, I wear reading glasses. Then I had difficulty in the short rows because I have never done short rows before. The front was frogged twice but when I finally got that there were two differrent short rows goig on I figured it all out. Actually I have only been following written patterns for about 2 years. I've knit all my life but never learned how to read a patterns. It always looked too confusing, I knit from a visual then added my own spin, sort of like how I cook. I read the recipe and then cook my version.

I love the small needles and the garter stitch and the design is very nice. I've had lots of compliments when I wear it. I'm knitting this pattern again but I've made some modifications. I don't like the way the sweater is back heavy, as I wear it, it's a constant struggle to pull it back up, it likes to slip backwards sort of like a Japanese kimono. Probably the design is meant to do that but for me it's annoying. Also the front seems too short which adds to the weight in the back. I should have looked at the pattern more closely, it looked great on the model but she is a third my age.

The new one I'm knitting I've made the front longer and took out panels from the back. It still has the same "swing" look but it stays put and covers my stomach area. I'm progressing nicely I'll post the second Ballerina progress.


Lilly said...

Die Jacke ist sehr schön geworden. Ich stricke sie auch gerade und habe Angst, daß die Ärmel zu kurz werden.. aber das mit den Streifen sieht super aus an den Ärmeln das mache ich dann auch..

Becky said...

Looks great!!!! I love it! And the scarf is a great idea too. Do we get to see modeled pics?

frances said...

WoW!..I love your interesting embellishments to your jacket! I love the stripes on the collar!

I am working on the Decapo in color 9 (the spring greens and yellow). I too received the kit, looked at the directions and promptly put it away for 2 years!
I finally pulled it out and began....I was immedaitely reading and rereading the directions...trying to make sense of them!! I still don't think I have completely figured them out but plowed ahead anyway....for example I had trouble with the first row....and especially with the "turn" middle stitch....I made up my own turn stitch!....anyway I'm more then 1/2 done after knitting and tearing out every new row!!!and have stumbled upon this web blog and feel so happy to read about other peoples struggles...and find explanations and a lot of solace!!

Now, if Amy would only decide to make the Decapo and rewrite the directions in your clear organized spread sheet! But truly, I am actually enjoying the process...and very happy to hear the
yarn does become softer after washing!!!!

It is clear the Mermaid is a big winner! I will have to attempt it next.

I do think there are several mistakes in the directions for the Decapo. Has anyone rewritten them like Amy did for the Mermaid?

Denise/CT said...

It looks beautiful! Congratulations on a job well done. I like how you've changed the pattern to make it your own. I love the scarf idea, really compliments the jacket. Too bad she is such a "pill" regarding the extra yarn. She is doing her self a real dis-service. It will just force people to look for other yarns if they want to knit the pattern again. Looking forward to seeing your second jacket. Please post progress pictures.

HPNY Knits said...


sherry said...

wow, that is very very beautiful.

angela said...

Your jacket is wonderful!!!!
Great job done!
I really really like it!

Lyn said...

I love your Ballerina! The modifications came out beautifully, and I can't wait to see your next one!

Frances Goodman فرانسيس said...

That is really beautiful!

Julie Hammond said...

I just started the ballerina kit so was interested in your comments. I too am having a bit of difficulty with the pattern. May i ask your interpretation. From the start on ridge 3 it says to knit until 2 stitches before the previous turn (you have 4 sts + yo+2 sts left ont he left needle) does that final 2 stitches include the yo from the previous row or is it not considered a stitch in the count. If I include it as a stitch then I am actually 3 stiches from the turn. I suspect se does not refer to a yo as a stitch. Thanks for any help I can get. Julie

sherri said...

Dear Ana,

I hope you are the right Ana who made the Ballerina with the minor modifications. I absolutely adore the potato chip scarf that you made. I have carried around the picture until I finished my jacket and saw if I had extra yarn. I would love to make one to go with my black and camel ballerina. Do you mind if I ask where you got the pattern? What I love the most is the way the edge was done in the blue(or gray??) color. I've never seen that before. I'd appreciate any help that you could give me.

Do you love your Ballerina?


Becky said...

Sherri, I don't think anyone is going to see your comment on such an old post. Try posting your question as a new post so it will show up in the current knitalong posts.