Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Favorite Sweater

I started working on Ann Bell's Favorite Sweater from Modern Knits Vintage Style while I was on vacation. The starting didn't go as smoothly as I would have hoped. I'd chosen Honor for the project. It was exactly the same gauge as the pattern called for and I figured it would be a no brainer.

It was a long flight and I thought I'd be able to get a significant start on it while were in the air. I dutifully knit a gauge swatch and even though the little voice in my head told me that US 2's seemed awfully small, I went ahead and cast on. I got through two inches of ribbing on size 1's and the little voice got louder. It was so tight, it was hard to knit. I not a huge fan of ribbing and I told myself that it was just the ribbing that was the issue and that as soon as I got past it, everything would all be OK. Two inches past the ribbing, I got my tape measure out and sure enough, I was knitting far too tightly. I took a deep breath, frogged the whole thing and started over.

I sometimes feel a sense of relief when something like that happens because I figure once I get past the hump, it will be smooth sailing. Not this time. I was about half way through the second try at the ribbing and it was much easier going. The gauge looked right and the knitting felt good. Not too tight like it had before. But something was still amiss. The little voice told me that the sweater looked too small. I checked the number of stitches and I had the correct count. Again, I thought that once I got past the ribbing everything would work itself out and told the little voice to be quiet. As it turns out, I had the correct stitch count for the wrong size. Rip. I had completely wasted 12 hours of perfectly good airplane time and all I had to show for it was a kinky ball of yarn and two empty knitting needles.

But the third time is a charm. The back is finished to the armhole decreases and I am seriously loving this sweater.

At 7 sts/inch this isn't going to be a quick knit, but I don't mind. It's an easy pattern to follow and the yarn is perfect. I've even checked the sizing against one of my go-to sweaters and it looks like it's on track.

I have this little dream that I might finish it in time for market in January, but I'm not going to get my knickers all bunched up if I don't. This is about enjoying the process.


CathPete said...

Pretty! I didn't know you could take knitting needles on a plane--I figured they would be viewed as possible weapons. Maybe I'll do some knitting on my trip to Portland for Christmas.

JKN said...

It always impresses me when people talk about the little voice that tells them what's wrong with their knitting. My little voice has terrible judgment and always guides me astray by telling me something looks too small when it's not, or too long when it's a little short, or vice versa. I have had to train myself to ignore that voice!

HaveFaith said...

Wow, incredible patience. I have had to frog many items but have to wait a day after pulling it all out before I start again. Now, I am casting on for a cowl that I have made before but the cast on and first row were difficult for me. I keep putting it off even knowing that after that first (30 minutes??) I will be off and running. I need to a can of "get going".

Mary Beth said...

I might be the oddball here...I love making ribbing with small needles...but then again I like making vintage garments.

woolwoman said...

the color you chose for your sweater is gorgeous. I STILL have not tried Honor - note to self to order some right away ! and belated happy 50th ! It was hard for me too but the alternative isn't too great - Enjoy the 50th year with all your heart - Melody