monster vs. monster

the hollows
July 10, 2010, 5:52 pm
Filed under: knitting

Today is a very happy day, filled with very happy things. Waking up from a night with good friends and great music, wandering off to coffee and bagels and newsstands and friends on street corners, and looking forward to dancing to some bubble gum electro pop later tonight. What is making me happiest, though, is that I finally finally finally have pictures to share of the best thing to ever have come off my needles. My very first cardigan, in a delightfully bright turquoise, with a name that just rolls off the tongue: 113-17 jacket with raglan sleeve and pattern on yoke in ”Silke Alpaca”. Honestly, I’ve always been hesitant to knit a DROPS pattern, even though they are all free and all gorgeous, simply because the names leave me less than inspired. A good name can really push a pattern to new heights. Even naming my 113-17 jacket w.i.p. after a Why? song in honor of its concert cast on context, I still felt a little strange about  it. But I’m glad that ravelry revved up my sweater-envy enough to get me going on this pattern because, like I said, best thing from my needles. Ever.

The sweater really sped by, but it took me three and a half weeks to finish. I started knitting a large, and 80% of the way through I discovered that I could wrap the entire thing around my torso, twice. I ripped the whole thing (while my extended family watched in mixed horror and awe) and restarted in a size small. I decided to knit a few extra inches in length to compensate for the smaller size, but this sweater grew an insane amount when I blocked it and ended up reaching almost halfway down my thigh! I cut open my cast on, ripped out lots of rows, and re-knit the bottom ribbing from the top down. Then I added pockets and a ribbed button band, which took a good day to sew on straight enough to look semi-normal. In the end, I am baffled as to how a small size sweater ended up as a roomy medium with a super wide neck. I don’t do gauge swatches, since I am far more at peace ripping out inches upon inches of stockinette than completing mathematical equations, but I tend to be a tight knitter and I’d have thought, based on the finished projects I essentially carbon copied, that my sweater would err on the side of too-small rather than comfortably-generous. Do not be alarmed, though. I am elated with the result.

The lace yoke is absolutely lovely, but what really make this sweater for me are the short sleeves and the pockets.  In fact, I have a hard time not shoving my hands deep into my pockets as soon as I put this sweater on, which may be why the front is, oh, two inches longer than the back. They also come in handy as balancing agents when you’re bending over to check the new hemline of the amazing never-before-worn polka dot dress from 1982 that you found in your grandmother’s closet with the tags still on and bribed your mother into shortening so you could wear it dancing at one of your favorite spots. And balance is always good. I am not always one to feel super confident in my own clothes, but this adorable sweater has seen me through two nights in Los Angeles (including an approving glance from a certain celebrity!) and several Oakland hipster spots, always with my head held high. Partly because I made it and that astonishes me. And partly – okay, mostly – because, um, it’s bright blue and it has pockets. I guess these days I am pretty easy to please.


1 Comment so far
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DEVON!! This cardigan is lovely! Your skills never cease to amaze me.

Comment by ashley

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