Tuesday, July 08, 2014

In Fine Knit

A burst of speed right at the end and I've finally completed the Fine-Knit Cardigan, started in April. I got to spend much of the holiday weekend working on piecing it together and weaving in ends. Oh, the weaving in of ends. How can there be so many when using just one color and type of yarn?

I've got quite a track record for finishing sweaters in the height of summer. I'm a patient man, and don't mind having to wait to wear them -- better than finishing one just as spring begins -- but trying to get photos taken this time of year is a chore. The heat and the mosquitoes meant we were out in the back yard for maybe 10 minutes. Jeff, as usual, patiently put up with all my suggestions.

I think this sweater is going to serve its intended purpose well. Not only does it satisfy the unwritten official librarian work outfit regulations, it will be a good foil for my library's enthusiastic air conditioning. This will replace the Keruoac Sweater I've been using for the last three years. That garment is far too big for me these days and will get donated. I will say, though, that my new sweater is heavier. Being a 50/50 wool/cotton blend, it's a bit cooler, but all that cotton adds a lot more weight. Weight-wise, it reminds me of all those fisherman's rib cotton sweaters we used to wear in the 80s. But it will be a good option for wandering the frosty stacks.

If you've been following, you'll know that this pattern presented some challenges. I'd chosen this yarn because, well, I always wanted to use Rowan Wool Cotton, and because a fellow Raveler had used it for this pattern. However, I can't imagine she got anywhere near gauge. I had to modify nearly every cast-on, increase, and decrease number for the medium size using a ratio method. And that after going down two needle sizes. The whole thing had me on edge most of the time, but, as usual, math didn't lie. I'm just glad I listened early! The only area I didn't modify was the armholes and the corresponding sleeve caps. The numbers were small enough that I didn't think it would matter. The result was upper arms and shoulders that might be just a tad large proportionally. I'm hoping those who haven't read this will just assume I have naturally broad shoulders and huge biceps. Math doesn't lie -- but knitting can. I'll post modification details soon in the project notes.

After I finished major operations yesterday, I ran over to Stitch Lab to look for buttons. I'd heard from friends that they had inherited the pile of antique shell buttons that Silk Road used to have. I have fond memories of digging through those with Snowden several years back while looking for buttons for my Whitfield Jacket. The pile has since diminished greatly, but I was able to find 7 buttons that matched. Not the fanciest in the bowl, but the right size and beautiful in their no-two-exactly-alike simplicity.

So, now on to other projects. I have some socks to finish up, and a crocheted throw that needs some attention.


  1. A lovely sweater - my compliments. Always partial to cardigans. Love the sweater-and-shorts look, too.

  2. I love the cardigan and shorts look too! It turned out great and well done on reworking the maths.

    You know, I almost always come out exactly on gauge but I've had problems with just a couple of yarns, and they've been Rowan both times! I bought Kid Classic intending to knit the Wilson cardigan (from Rowan Dalesmen) but I couldn't get anywhere close to gauge so went down a needle size or two and used it instead to make a button collar pullover. I'm working on a cardigan as we speak, Thwaite by Marie Wallin, although it's quite chunky and I changed the yarn gauge to try to work with the stupid Rowan pattern sizings.

    I definitely have a love/hate relationship with Rowan, and I really should try a finer gauge cardigan next time!

    ps: I followed the link to your Whitfield jacket which looks great too! I've been thinking about that pattern for a while...

  3. What a satisfying read and what a great looking garment on you!

    Your need for a summer sweater at works reminds me of years ago when my mom used to complain that due to poor air handling that in the summer her office was as cold as a meat locker. I made a sweater for her that she kept at the office every summer afterwards. She referred to it as her Meat Locker Jacket.

    Your are going to look great strolling through those "Frosty Stacks"!

  4. Another great sweater. Looks great - all your mods worked! (Wish I could say the same of my latest green sweater...) Well done!

  5. It looks like a perfect fit to me, over those broad shoulders and bulging biceps of yours. :)