Cornflower Tudora Epilogue

No sooner had I finished Tudora than I realized I didn’t quite like how it looked (perfectionism!), so I ripped out the seed stitch buttonhole band and got more creative.  According to the pattern, after knitting the bulk of Tudora, you add the buttonhole band just as you would for a cardigan by picking up stitches on a finished edge.  Then the band is made using garter stitch, which I had originally changed that to seed stitch, and you incorporate the buttonhole into as it is worked.  But for my Tudora there were a few things going on that I wanted to change:  I wanted the majority of the buttonhole band to match the rest of the cabling of Tudora and I wanted more over lap where the scarf is buttoned, as well as a looser fit.  I also didn’t care for the abrupt drop-off of the top edge of the buttonhole band (see top photo below).

Original buttonhole band.

New buttonhole band.

Not wanting to frog the whole scarf in order to make the buttonhole band match, I ended-up cutting off the existing band and casting on the desired number of stitches so as to create an extension piece.  This  meant working the buttonhole differently, especially because I wanted a verticle buttonhole as the pattern calls for, and which I think is best suited for the project.  So for the buttonhole, I k2tog at the desired location, added another piece of yarn so that for a few rows I was working both sides of the buttonhole with two different strands of yarn concurrently.  At the top of the buttonhole I made a new stitch and resumed using one strand of yarn.  Since Tudora has a sloped top edge, I worked the top edge so that it sloped and it didn’t have that abrupt drop-off look on the original band anymore.  I did end up putting a small amount of seed stitch for the end of the buttonhole band to give some stability and to minimize curling edges.  I had to sew the new buttonhole band on since I didn’t pick-up stitches for it, so the area where it’s sewed-on is somewhat visible, but it’s not too obvious.

I’m pleased with how it all ended, except that I don’t care for how the lumpy texture of Manos del Uruguay makes the edges of Tudora look so uneven, but I did want to use some of my stash yarn and Manos was calling to me. It’s okay, it doesn’t have to look machine-made. Right?

Cornflower Tudora

My first finished object of the new year is Tudora.

I like Tudora’s design because it provides good neck coverage and doesn’t have long, scarf ends getting in the way when bending over.  Bending over may not seem like a big deal, but when you’re in a public bathroom helping your young child do what he needs to do, bending over and having scarf ends dangling precariously over a toilet is something you just don’t want.  Am I right?

Tudora is an easy pattern, and I made it while watching, appropriately enough, the movie Elizabeth I starring the fabulous Dame Helen Mirren in installments.  Speaking of Helen Mirren, I hope I look that amazing in a bikini at 62.  Anyway, back to my knitting:  it’s a good thing that I made it in installments because it’s meant to be tightly knit, and using Manos del Uruguay probably made it even tighter, so I knit it in mostly 2-row increments at a time, and then gave my fingers, hands and wrists a good shake and stretch afterward. Manos is probably not the best-suited yarn for Tudora, perhaps just a tad too thick and lumpy.

Brass button from the collection of vintage buttons I inherited from my grandmother.

Pattern:  Tudora by Cheryl Marling, from Knitty, Winter 2007
Yarn: Manos del Uruguay in Cornflower (stash collection)
Needles: 2.75 mm / US 2 circular
Button: personal vintage button collection
Modification: instead of the garter stitch buttonhole band, I added one more stitch and made it a seed stitch buttonhole band.

The yarn, by the way, was another skein of the four skeins of stashed Manos from a few years ago, and that leaves me with enough to make mittens with. I’m thinking Yellow Harvest Mittens (Ravelry link) from Vogue Knitting, Fall 2008.  I’m a bit excited, because if I make the mittens out of the remaining Manos, then combined with the Esme hat I made at the end of December and Tudora, I’ll have a full matching set to wear for those rare times when it actually gets cold enough to wear a full set!  I know it sounds rather silly coming from a knitter, but I’ve never had a full matching set of hat, scarf and mittens, just bits and pieces, so whenever I needed to bundle up, I looked rather mismatched: red scarf, blue hat and dark brown driving gloves.  It’s the little things in life.  You know?

Along with my first finished object of the new year, and refusing to be out-done, Zephyr, went out and caught his first mouse of the new year, and delightfully decapitated it on the deck off of the dining room (at least he knows where to dine), leaving the body for our, er, enjoyment.  As much as I would love to share the object of my revulsion, I’ll spare you the picture.

Zephyr looking too logy to look up after his New Year kill.

Why they don’t make canned food for cats out of mice, rats and goldfish?  You laugh, I know you are, but I’m serious!  Okay, it wouldn’t be that bad, I mean they already kill something to make canned cat food.  Right?  So why not have a whole farm of these little rodents instead?  The kitties would thank us for it.  I really don’t think kitties have a taste for something out of their food chain.  Can you see a kitty taking down a cow?  Think about it:  Mouse & Oat Grass Buffet with Catnip Coulis in a can, coming to a pet grocer near you.