Friday, April 12, 2013

This Took Forever

Last summer, in a fit of unprecedented generosity, I agreed to knit a baby sweater for my hairstylist's niece's baby. I must have been drunk or delusional because doing so goes against one of my only two rules of knitting:

1. Never knit with yarn that makes my teeth hurt (anything 100% synthetic).
2. I only knit for people I am
       a. Related to by blood
       b. Related to by marriage
       c. Absolutely adore
       d.  Sharing a bed with (which includes, at this time, my husband and my son)

Now, I do absolutely adore my hairstylist, but I don't know her niece from Adam. It could have been that this was the kiss of death for this project, but alas, that was not the only reason this project was cursed.

Little did I know, that when I cast on the project, I was just barely pregnant. Pregnant at 38 with a 3 year old at home. Which, if you have prior experience with pregnant women, you will understand, brings on about three months of vigorous napping, extremely early bedtimes and brain fog.

So, I cast on Roo, the absolutely GORGEOUS baby sweater as designed by the extremely talented and lovely Kate Gilbert. And within the first bit of instructions, I was certain that this pattern had been brought to me by some evil villain bent on discrediting me as an experienced knitter.

Roo the day 

 Here are the things I learned while working on this sweater:
1. It pays to have two paper copies of a pattern - one for writing in all the chart notes and the other for balling up and throwing at the wall in frustration.
2. Never make assumptions.
3. Always write shaping instructions on your charts, event if you are a confident knitter who "knows what she's doing" hint: hubris is a bitch.
4. Always hold the fronts of a cardigan up to the back to ensure you didn't miss, oh, a full chart of knitting on both fronts. Hint: you should do this before stitching everything together and knitting the hood.
5. Never agree to knit something with a deadline when you are pregnant.

All that being said, this is still a beautiful pattern. It was a series of unfortunate stupidity that dragged out the process of knitting it. It definitely pays to look up how to Kitchener stitch various kinds of stitches together (garter, purl, knit) as the join in the hood looked so much better when I did this... You know, the second time around.

Roo the day (2)

Would I knit it again? Well, considering the number of things i ripped and reknit, i swear, it feels like i did knit this sweater twice!

As for actually making a second sweater, well, I'm not sure. I really love the final result, but I fear the frustration I felt knitting  it the first time might not dissipate even with time.

I would like to publicly apologize for all the private cursing of Kate Gilbert's name I did while working on this project. There is absolutely nothing wrong with this pattern that not being a dumbass while knitting it wouldn't have fixed.

Yarn: cascade 220 Heathers


  1. Ah, Kate Gilbert is a very creative designer. Definitely not who you want to turn to when you're not completely in the game. The finished product looks great.

  2. Is it wrong that even though I know the pattern caused you all kinds of grief, the finished product is so gorgeous I want to go knit one right now?

    Well done on the persevering-and-making-more-beauty-in-the-world front!

  3. FABULOUS!! It turned out so great!

  4. Reneelynn11:59 p.m.

    You did a fab. job on this sweater. Someone has a beautiful sweater to wear. I hope the LOVE it!!!