My brain has been going off on little tangents over the past few months on things I'd like to design. Sweaters, in fact, that I'd like to make. It's a somewhat daunting prospect, seeing as the only things I've designed so far are a kid's sweater (using the EZ percentage system, not so hard), and a couple of pairs of socks. For whatever reason, the idea of A.Whole.Sweater. is both intriguing and terrifying at the same time.

I've got two ideas bouncing around in my head. One was inspired by a number of things, the most striking being a hike we took up Dunkery Beacon in Somerset while we were in the UK. It was the first time I've really seen heather. As in heather on the moors. Real English moors.

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I was totally amazed at the colors - purple and lilac and shocking pink and yellow, blending with dark reddish green and brown, and shading off in the distance into straw. And I started mulling over the idea of making a sweater, starting with the fiber and dyeing it myself, then spinning it up and knitting my own design incorporating all the colors of the heather (except for maybe that bright yellow, which I don't really care for).

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About this same time, I was being overwhelmed by Adrian's Fantom Bohus, which she designed herself. And then last month, That Laurie did several guest appearances (first few posts at top of the page) on Stephanie's blog showing some absolutely incredible sweaters she'd done with yarn she'd dyed and spun herself.

So now I have it in mind to create this incredible handknit, handspun (at least partly) Bohus inspired sweater type thing, that might instead have a handspun yoke with a slipped stitch pattern and long color repeats winding up the chest. I even bought Poems of Color with my birthday gift certificate specifically for this project. Phew. Maybe when the kids go off to college I'll have enough time for this puppy.

The other thing that I've been mulling over for a while, and is much more likely to happen in the near future (given the copious spare time I have in which to design, dye, spin and knit an entire wool sweater for myself while I live in Houston*), is a sleeveless sweater vest dealie that I could wear over something when it's "cold" and wear alone when it warms up on or before March 1. I've even got the yarn for it (left over from the Peapod cardi, which only took 1+ skeins out of a bag of ten),

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so all that remains is the swatching/designing part. No big deal, right? I made a sketch of said vest during a seminar yesterday: empire waisted, with ribbing on the body, a garter stitch or reverse stockinette band to separate the bodice, and a small all over textured pattern on the top. Wide scoop neck. Narrow sides. And I can start right after I finish all the C$#)^)$# knitting.

* Note: it was 50 degrees when I left the house this morning, so I was able to actually wear a handknit sweater. Yippee! It was this, in this, which my MIL bought for me for C$#)^# several years back. Mmmmm...Mountain Mohair....