Monday, September 04, 2006

A Tale Of Two Sweaters

During the summer holiday I started the cardigan version of the garter stitch baby sweater from Weekend Knitting. I had wanted to make this as a gift for my cousin's new baby.*

Anyhoosers, I went to Tangled Skeins and picked out some Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece. The lable told me that I should get the correct gauge with this yarn. I was quite pleased with my purchase and headed off on vacation with the intention of knitting away at the sweater. I did not do a gauge swatch**, and instead chose to dive right in and knit up the back and one of the front pieces while on vacation.

Sometime in the last two weeks, I was charging away on the first of the sleeves for the sweater when I happened to look at the little drawings in the book. You know the ones, they have each piece labelled with how long and how wide they should be? Um yeah.

So, I'm looking at those little schematics and I've got my measuring tape, so I start measuring away. By this time, I hadthe back of the sweater as well as the two front pieces and most of the first sleeve done.

Now, is everyone familiar with this sweater? It's in garter stitch but the way it is designed you cast on at the side and knit your way around the body. Basically, when worn, the garter stitch lines on the sweater would look like this:


Instead of the usual

See what I'm saying? Ok, so the row gauge didn't matter, 'cause I just knit to the measurements in the pattern, but the stitch gauge... Oh, the stitch gauge. One should always consider that a pattern written in garter stitch would require that I do a swatch in garter stitch. The gauge on the lable of the yarn is in stocking stitch, of course! That little girl would have been wearing one boxy little sweater. And it would have been awfully tight through the armpits.

I called Moe for some whining time. She kept me calm while I ripped. And then encouraged me as I immediately cast on for the little sweater in Last Minute Knitted Gifts.


Seen on the left - the new sweater. Seen on the right - the remains of the Weekend Knitting sweater. Sigh. Lesson learned. Gauge swatches matter.

In good news, I finished the LMKG sweater last night. It just needs to be blocked.

lilli sweater

...and apparently, photographed in a more flattering light.***

In other knitting news

1. I finally finished, (after what, like 3 years?) all of the pieces of my Rowan Cotton Tape sweater, Carla. It just needs to be seamed. This will be, when it is done, the first sweater I have ever made for myself. And also, the first sweater I've ever made for an adult.

2. I wound up 800 metres of alpaca laceweight yarn today:

Misti Alpaca

That's almost a kilometre of yarn! My intention is to make the Flowerbasket shawl from Interweave. Here's hoping it goes ok. I've found a website with a tutorial on how to get started. Anyone know if this tutorial is correct? I was going to cast on for it today, but I got distracted by Carla.

3. Alpaca Fiesta is this weekend. Who else is going? Raise your hands.

In personal news:
After 10 years, I finally got my degree framed:

After 10 years...

Doesn't it look nice?

*No, it's not the same cousin as the one whose child received the bunny hat. (I have 10 first cousins).
**Does this even count as foreshadowing anymore? I mean, we all know how important it is to swatch for gauge.
*** (Because I know you'll ask: It wasn't me who burned the table with an iron. That table was left in our house when we moved in. Someone else did it.)


  1. The tutorial is completely correct - that's how my leaf lace shawl started as well (rather clever).

    *raising hand* Pacafiesta - it is all I talk about around here.

    We are going to look so cute at KOL in our matching Evelyn Clark shawls, matching knit bags, oh and if you bring your kettle it will really tie the look together (I have the same one).

  2. Love the sweater! Verrah nice.

    I want to go to Pacafiesta but I may be carless as my FIL will be here to go to the airshow. I have a list of vendors that was emailed to me if anyone is interested.

  3. Want to see my fibre trends version of the flower basket shawl? Moe says the charts are nicer than the ones in interweave. I only have her word for it though, since I haven't seem the interweave version of the pattern.

  4. Beautiful little sweater! I can't wait to see this fbs knit up. I've been toying with the idea of doing one myself. I shall live vicariously through you.

  5. I'll be at Pacafiesta both days! I'm really excited as I couldn't make it last year.

    Very nice work on the second baby sweater. It's too bad the first one didn't turn out the way it should have. I like sideways garter stitch. It looks neat.

    Gauge swatching is necessary but definitely not fun. Of course, I rarely do gauge swatches - I'm waiting for the day when the knitting gods smite me.

  6. Oooh, fancy Latin degree!