Saturday, February 16, 2008

Snap Cardigan

Blue Sky Alpacas Snap Cardigan.

Knit in Malabrigo in Velvet Grape and Rhodesian (about 2 skeins of the grape and 3 of the rhodesian, I think). Ribbing on a size 7 needle, body (except the top of the back, where I bailed and switched to a larger needle) on a size 8, both circular Addi Turbos. Size Small. Measurements after finishing (but before washing) are dead-on, even though my gauge with the size 8 needle in stockinette is 17 stitches and 26 rows instead of 18 stitches and 26 rows to 4" as called for in the pattern. Design by Leslie Scanlon.

This is an easy knit, even though the pattern calls for intermediate level experience. All stockinette and ribbing on a large enough needle that it goes fairly quickly. The size Small truly is a small (I usually wear a 4 in a jacket and this fits me.) And I love the Malabrigo: the kettle-dyed colors that have some varigation in the skeins, the colors themselves, the feel of the yarn.

The neckline. I reworked it a few times, then gave up. I don't love the way that the edge, where I picked up stitches for the collar, shows as a heavy seam. I steamed the collar and front edges, and now that I've (immediately and already) worn the sweater for a few hours, the fabric is relaxing and the collar seems to lay better and cover up the seam.

The only real trouble I had was in working the collar. The directions have you seam the sweater together, then pick up for the collar and work the K5P2 ribbing for eight inches. This was tricky because the sweater is bulky; it would have been more comfortable to be able to knit the collar on its own and then attach it to the sweater.

Also, I never, to my perfectionist satisfaction, managed to pick up the stitches so that the ridge between body and collar looked good enough to me. As I mentioned above, I don't think that this is an issue once you start to wear the sweater and the collar relaxes enough to lie flat over the neckline (at least if you knit it in wool instead of the cotton called for in the original pattern). But it seemed that there might be a more efficient and prettier way to connect this large sailor-style collar to the body of the garment. I'm just not experienced enough to know what that would be.

A great, practical sweater. I have a feeling that I could use the pattern as a template, a la Ann Budd's book, and try different sleeves or collars or buttonbands onto the basic shape.

3 comments:

Olga said...

Hi, I just found your blog and WOW! The colors on your sweater are sooooo beautiful! I think it looks great!

FairyGodKnitter said...

Nice job! I love the colors together.

JANET said...

thanks all!