October 27, 2016

Hmmm, how many ponchos does this make for me now?  The answer is many and you might think I'm done with knitted ponchos, but nope--turns out I can't get enough of wearing big blankies with head openings--love 'em.  I originally bought this yarn for an oversized boyfriend cardigan, but when Rowan Mag 60 came out and I saw this, I knew my half done cardi would have to mutate into a poncho.

What's lovely about this poncho, even though it's bulky, it's very, very lightweight.  Brushed Fleece, for all it's bulkiness, is almost weightless and so very lovely to knit.  It's perfect for larger garments such as coats, ponchos and oversized sweaters as it won't be heavy and droopy yet will still have a bulky look and be snuggle warm.  The yarn is extremely soft and very easy to knit--it's my second time using it and I'm a total fan.  My first BF project was a hooded coat knit two years ago.  I've worn my coat throughout autumn and winter for the last two years and have just recently had to de-pill it for the first time.  Great wearability!  For these reasons, I would hesitate subbing yarn for this particular pattern.  For all it's blankety goodness, my poncho is very lightweight.

The pattern is one-size-fits-all simple perfection.  I made no changes at all, except while knitting I changed the placement of the markers to make it easier knitting.  The cast-on edge is seen in the picture above.  The rib runs horizontally across the body, increasing on both sides of the larger, center rib.  Next comes separating and casting off for the head opening, casting those stitches on again rejoining the front and back, then decreasing along the center rib.  This makes a squarish poncho with two slightly convex edges.  Lovely.  I can't quite remember how the pattern has you place the markers, but placing them on either side of the large center rib was much easier for me to remember where to increase and decrease.  It's a simple thing to change, but it helped me.

One more thing: 10 inches along each side, under the armholes, I tacked the front and back together for just an inch on both sides and essentially made "arm openings".  This brought it in a bit and looked better on me.

Caliban is my poncho of the season, but with that said, I do have some lovely young women in my family, and if they love this too, they are welcome to it and I will just knit another.

Caliban, all the details on my Ravelry project page
Caliban, the pattern by Lisa Richardson
Brushed Fleece, a blend of wool and alpaca

Did you survive Halloween?  I'm writing this post while roasting a chicken, making mashed potatoes, gravy and all that goes with it, plus answering the Halloween doorbell.  I'd say, phew!, but we don't exactly get many kids here.  If the doorbell rings I make a big deal and try to guess who they are--I want to let them know I appreciate that they ventured down our dark street even though all the while they want to scamper away to get more candy.  For the most part we are pretty quiet on Halloween night and cooking a chicken dinner is easy enough.  I'll often roast a chicken on Sunday night in fall and winter, but we went out to dinner on Sunday night, so it left us with Monday for the chicken dinner.  I remember being newly married and being so completely broke and having a big, young, hungry husband to feed every night.  I was positively overwhelmed and somewhat terrified.  He would come home and look at me to feed him.  Huh?  I barely knew how to make a sandwich let alone cook a dinner.  Bravely, I would suffer through a recipe that said "serves 8", thinking I could make this meal stretch for 4 days, only to have him eat the entire meal in one night //insert big tears//.  That first year, telling my Aunt Patty of my newlywed woes, she advised me to roast a big chicken or two (or even a turkey) on a Sunday: Roast chicken and gravy on Sunday.  Monday, leftovers.  Tuesday was for a concoction I called chicken tetrazzini, then on Wednesday, boil those bones and make chicken soup.  Important: don't let that young man see the entire chicken on the first night because he'll eat the whole thing.  Serve him and immediately hide the leftovers.  This way you'll get four meals for the price of one!  She was a genius!  Oh I know it sounds old-fashioned now, but I am going back many years and that's how it was.  Now we can all buy pre-roasted chickens from Costco or from the RoliRoti truck, and I know that saves time, and I've certainly done that, but when I make the time to do it myself, the beautiful fragrance of a roasting chicken wafting throughout the house, plus making luscious gravy, not to mention the supreme value of it all is so worth it.  Even though I don't have to count pennies anymore like I did as a newlywed, I am still a frugal cook, and a roasted chicken on a random Sunday is a blissful bargain I doubt I'll ever give up.  Now I've got to head back to the kitchen to clean the mess, hoping for the distraction of a trick-or-treater or two.  Goodbye 'til next and happy knitting and happy cooking.

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  1. Gorgeous looks. I am so amazed at your talent.

    1. Awww, thank you Linda and thanks for popping over. Hope your Halloween was a fun one!

  2. So, so beautiful. Love the colour, too.

  3. Loved the chicken dinner story! Also, great idea to tack the front and back of the poncho together!

  4. I'm a little late to the poncho party and just bought one last weekend. My first!! Maybe I need to knit one! I love yours and the yarn sounds lovely!

  5. Loved your chicken dinner story! We have been married 40 years this January and roast chicken is a favorite around here too. Thank you for that fun memory. And your knit stories too.

  6. Ooh. You had me at the color red. You had me at a poncho. Now I will have to look into brushed fleece. Several years ago I could have gotten it for half price at a going-out-of-business sale, but I distained it then - too old-fashioned. Now II want it. Isn't that always the way? Chloe


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