Sunday, January 11, 2009

lessons in unravelling

Another reworked, much unravelled project.  I must have started this in the summer, but I have lost count of how many times I picked it up just to hide it away again.  I started with Knit and Tonic's "Something Red" pattern (I was happy with it after finishing a "Something Black") and the body came together quickly.  The bottom band, collar band and sleeves were another story entirely.  

I worked the bottom band in a 2 x 2 rib, then picked up the entire collar band and knit to the button hole, doing the short row shaping and all. Then I tried it on.  Yuck.  Although the Misti Cotton I had used in my first sweater lay flat, this Patons merino wool (yes, I was using Patons) had too much bounce and the ribbing puckered...everywhere. So, without a curse word, I unravelled the collar and the bottom band, and worked a seed stitch border instead.  

Then it was time to pick up the collar band again. Because seed stitch would sit differently I basically guessed how many stitches I needed. First up, something like 250.  Worked 4 rows, knew it was too much. Ripped again, went down to 170 stitches.  Worked 4 rows, knew it was too little. Determined to get it right, I split the difference and picked up stitches - for the FOURTH time - to total 220.  Thank goodness that worked.  Then all I had left were the sleeves.  

I'm not sure why, but I picked up 10 stitches under the arm.  This made for a very wide sleeve, but I started decreases every 2 inches.  I tried the sweater on about three times, each time saying to Jay, "huh, I think I like the unfinished sleeve better".  He thought the look would be too "funky" (his code word for not good) so I figured I would need to finish the sleeve to know for myself for sure.  I finished it...and knew for sure.  So, I unravelled the whole sleeve and started again with less stitches picked up.  I also shaped the sleeve quickly to make the sleeve band fitted.  The decreases are all under the arm and although it's probably not what a professional would do, it works for me.

Now I have 2 balls left over, but even if it was bargain wool, I really like how it worked for this sweater.  I'm fond of heathered colours, and this will be easy to wear with most of my clothes. It does nothing to hide my bulging belly - as seen above! - but I like the slightly higher neck and short sleeves, even if it's "funky".  And really, what do men know anyway?

(P.S. I'm undecided about the spelling of "unravelling" - I can find both, and it would seem my natural pull to the two l's is very Canadian of me.  So if I'm going to stick with "our" in colour, I should support the two l's.  There's my english research for the day.)


petite gourmand said... [Reply to comment]

And the sweater is super cute too.