Remember how I said I’m a selfish knitter? I guess my recent knitting posts haven’t really proved that.
I just completed one of my largest non-selfish projects: a sweater. A sample knit sweater for Lorna’s Laces here in Chicago. I’ve never made a sweater before, but what the heck? Seamless, raglan sleeves, simple-yet-beautiful lace? Should be pretty easy.
And it was! I was given the pattern Windswept from Tin Can Knits along with several skeins of Honor in a beautiful tonal, a reddish brown named Worcester. The first thing I did with this lovely yarn was pet it. It’s so soft and silky! Honor is a DK weight yarn and is an alpaca/silk blend. The end result of Honor is stunning; there’s a slight sheen from the silk. The knit fabric has a beautiful drape while still being structured. The yarn is a bit splitty and knitting with super-pointy steel needles called for constant attention to making sure the needle was going into the stitch and not the yarn. It should also be noted the fabric ended up growing a bit during blocking, but only a bit.
The sizes in Windswept go from newborn to 4XL. I made a Medium, using just over 3 skeins of Honor. The pattern is wonderfully written. As I said, I’ve never made a sweater before and so I’ve never done techniques like raglan sleeves, making a yoke, creating a v-neck, provisional cast-on (I used this one after a long search)…and everything was written simply and clearly. Each section of the sweater is a section on the pattern. I liked crossing off a section as I finished it and setting goals so I could finish the sweater on time. In total, it took me almost 7 weeks to knit. I used a suspended bind-off to keep the cuffs and hem stretchy (nothing’s worse than finishing a project and finding you made the BO ends too tight and it looks lopsided!).
And once I finished it, it looked like…well, a lumpy sweater. It was box-like, it seemed wider than it was long, and I was halfway-doubting my knitting abilities. We won’t even mention the laddering on the sleeves from using DPNs. I just kept telling myself that it wasn’t so bad that blocking wouldn’t fix it. I’ll let you be the judge and compare this photo to the finished-and-on-the-mannequin photo…but I’ll go ahead and say that the blocking fixed anything I’d been worried about. It turned the boxy shape into a figure-flattering curvy sweater with a slight flare at the hem. Needless to say, I was amazed. And really impressed with myself. I made that! It’s beautiful! And a sweater and I didn’t totally screw it up!
I took it over to the Lorna’s Laces studio Monday afternoon where it was met with exclamations of how lovely the pattern looked knit up. They promptly undressed a mannequin and popped the sweater on with a beautiful dark blue satin skirt and finished the look with a giraffe head. We took her out to the terrace so I could snap some project photos in the sun. And now, I think it’s safe to say I’ve been bitten by the sweater bug.