We went to Fiber Gallery yesterday to pick up some yarn for my next big project. I discovered with the sideways cable sweater that I really like having one lace and one big project going at once. I get the fun intricate stitches in the lace, and the gratification of adding inches quickly to the big project. Also, the big knitting hurts my hands after a little while, and lace doesn’t, so I can switch between them and avoid the hand cramps. It works out well.

Since my last sweater was for me, I’m doing one for Branden this time. I don’t like the way the last one I made for him turned out, so I’m hoping for better luck this time. We both like cables, so we decided on a cable sweater. I don’t want to do a full-on Aran, but something with a cable focal piece would be nice. I think I’m going to practice steeking on this one, too, so the body will all be done in the round. Instead of having one cable focal point and the rest all stockinette, we decided that it could be fun to do some color patterning on the sleeves. I’m not sure what pattern I’ll use yet, but we did pick out the yarn.

I love Cascade Eco wool. It’s super soft, warm, and springy. It seems to hold its shape well, and it doesn’t pill much. And, to top it all off, it’s cheap! We really like the natural colors, and Branden was interested in an oatmeal sort of color. The main body will be in the lighter yarn, and the sleeves will be colorwork with the darker brown mixed in. We picked a “dark” color that’s pretty close to the light one, so that the colorwork will be really subtle.

I have to admit to a moment of misgiving as we talked about the sweater design in the store. After all, colorwork and cables don’t usually go together. But then, he loves his hybrid car, why not a hybrid sweater? I’ll be able to practice some really simple colorwork in the sleeves, and then fly through the stockinette body and cable. It’ll be simple enough to go quickly (important when knitting for someone who is 6’1″ and has very long arms), and complicated enough to keep me interested. And, I’ll get to practice two (mostly) new techniques on my list: colorwork and steeking.

I don’t have the cables or the color pattern worked out yet, but I’ll be flipping through the pattern books in the next couple of days to come up with something good. I’ll keep you posted!