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a sweater for me this time?

  • Posted on April 28, 2017 at 10:40 am

first i need to start by saying that i haven’t knit a sweater for myself in over 30 years, and it’s probably been over 20 since i last knit one for a real person. that one was an purple acrylic sweater with a neon dinosaur on the front, for my then 4 year old son. he loved it, wore it constantly and it later was passed on to a nephew, who wore it till he couldn’t squeeze into either!

but i’m going to a wedding this summer and while i found the perfect skirt to wear – a gorgeous navy lace pencil skirt – i’m not having much luck so far finding a top that fits and coordinates. i’m picky. it has to be a knit, because woven’s just never fit right on me. it has to be dressy enough for a semi formal wedding, and yet look neither like something a teenager would wear, nor something my 70+year old mother would. i haven’t given up looking, but i have some gorgeous purpley/blue, silk/linen yarn from eatsleepknit and thought i would make an attempt, at least, to knit something myself. i have spent the last several weeks poring over patterns, but they were never quite right, so out of desperation i decided to just make my own. that is my standard mo anyway, so i’m surprised it took me this long to just go for it!

first i needed to know how many stitches i have to work with. so i need to swatch and figure out my stitch and row count. i have lots of circular needles in my stash, most from a chinese supplier. i love working with them, but the numbering is odd and i always have to use a needle sizer to figure out what they really are. ive seen this yarn stitched up on 3.5mm needles and quite liked the look of the fabric, but i only have 3.75mm and 3.25’s. i want a loose, drapey fabric so tried the larger ones first… no good… the fabric is too loose and gauze like. so i switched to the smaller ones, and that is much better.

now to pick the fancy stitches for the neckline and sleeves. i pored over my japanese stitch pattern books, looking at them upside down since i’m planning a top down sweater and finally found two i thought would work well. bonus they have the same stitch repeat, though they would need to be done offset so that may be tricky. i ripped out my original swatch and made a larger one to test the new stitches. i love how they turned out. finished off with some stockinette so i can get a stitch count for the body, then a rib for the bottom to control the curl. the rib looks bad, i’ll have to figure out another way to finish the edges, but the rest looks great so now i just have to wash and dry the swatch to get the finished gauge.

winning swatch unblocked