Monday, March 30, 2015

A Finshed Patchwork

Although Radicchio and my sideways vest earned  'first past the post' spots of 2015, they have 'buts' attached.  Radicchio  might have been the first sweater finished - but - it was started last year.  The Sideways Vest was finished before Patchwork  - but - it is a vest.     Patchwork claims the  designation of first sweater started and finished in 2015.  Started on the back deck of Ruby's Florida condo in January, and finished in the reclining chair in my living room in March.  Not bad considering there were 5 weeks of vacation time in there.


Pattern: Patchwork by Julie Farmer.
Yarn:  Knit Pick's Palette held double.  A gift from friend Nicki.  Her hubby gave her a giant container of the entire colourway of Knit Pick's yarns a few years ago as a Christmas gift.  Knowing that they didn't suit her, she gave me all the balls of yarn that qualified as  'autumn' colours.
Needles:  5mm. 
Gauge:  18 sts over 4 inches.
Mods:  This being a man's pattern, there were a few changes made.  Other than following cast on numbers and the patchwork chart contained in the pattern, I mostly designed on the fly.
*I eliminated the band of colour above the ribbing and went directly to the patchwork design.  Perhaps a man can wear a band of colour around his hips with no non-flattering  implications, but not me.
*I also made the ribbing narrower - one inch instead of the 2.5 called for in the pattern for the same reason.  
*Waist shaping was added because - well -  I have one.
*And I   lowered the neckline.  I thought it suited the sweater more and would also show off whatever blouse I might wear under the sweater.
*The shoulder slope was shaped with short rows then  used  a three needle bind off to join them.  Lovely, I think.
*Lastly, I think, I narrowed  the shoulders to fit me.  My shoulders are 14 inches across.  With a set-in sleeve sweater, I am very particular that the sleeve cap seam sit precisely on my  shoulder bump/bone and does not droop.  It is a poorly done  sleeve that droops below that bump.  With knitting being as stretchy as it is, the droop comes more naturally in a sweater than it might in a tailored fabric garment.  To counteract that possibility, while knitting the armholes, I continued decreasing until  the body width was 13 1/2 inches.  That amounts to a quarter inch of negative width at each side - my droop allowance.  You can see at the bottom of the post, how nicely those sweater shoulders sit on mine.

I did run out of yarn and had to use some of my own stash yarn to finish the sweater.  But since the colours Nicki chose to give me are definitely 'my' colours, I had lots of  yarn that would do.  Sensing that I might run out of yarn, I stopped sleeve number one at the underarm in order to begin sleeve two with the remaining yarn.  Sleeve two didn't quite get to the underarm before all the yarn was gone.  Above, in the shoulder seam photo, the green sleeve cap on the left, knit in seed stitch, is yarn from my stash.   Below, on the other sleeve, the two upper colours - the grey green and the rust brown are both from my stash.
See, it pays to have a wardrobe that lacks diversity of colour.

The neckline is trimmed in the same ribbing as the cuffs and lower hem.  K3, P2.  I also did not use a smaller needle for the ribbing.  I didn't want the hem to pull in - those hips again - so used the same size needle for ribbing as I did for the body.  The neckline was finished with 5 rows of ribbing, one row of straight knitting then the cast off.  The row of straight knitting was done for a couple of reasons.  I wanted two colours at the neckline.  I had just enough of the darker green (yes it is dark green, not grey) left for two rows and wanting a bit of a rolled looked to the edge AND not wanting the purl bumps to show in a different colour meant  I had to work a knit only row, then the cast off.

I really like the finished product.  During the  last couple of days of knitting on Patchwork, the weather warmed up and I thought I would simply be placing Patchwork on a shelf until next winter.  But then another cold spell settled on our area and I was able to wear the sweater three days straight last week. It wears well - always, in my opinion, the true test of knitting success.  I received many compliments on it - test number two some might say.  

Next test will be to see how the 'economy' yarn holds up.


Sel and Poivre said...

Its adorable! I love eyelet and this application keeps it from being too sweet or precious!

Needles said...

I made a pair of socks from Palette once. I wore well enough but they felted when I forgot to keep them out of the washer. And so it goes. i love the sweater!