Yes, I realize that Thanksgiving is not until Thursday, but I'm already giving thanks for this:
This sweater was a hard-won knitting victory. Design modifications galore, four sleeves, frogging the raglan, worries about fit. You name it, I dealt with it.
The good news is that the fit is great! With this sweater I finally learned that even after blocking, a wool sweater will stretch. If you want a slim fit, then plan for it. After blocking, I slipped the cardigan over my shoulders and I was horrified: it was tight. It wasn't incredibly tight but I would have liked about an extra inch in the sleeves. Once I seamed the armholes and wore the cardigan for about a half hour, I got my extra ease.
The zipper and collar still remain. I'm not rushing with the collar, mainly because I'm not sure about the approach. A proper fold-down collar? A simple crochet edge? Pick up and bind off stitches? I still don't know. I can't rush into that zipper, because I don't have it yet.
Yay, yay, yay! Need I say any more?
As I hinted about in my last post, I have decided on a zipper closure for the Softwist Cardigan.
Zipperstop (Beware, the site opens with loud music. Last time it was "New York, New York") sells custom-length YKK zippers in an assortment of colors. When I mentioned Zipperstop in a previous post, Knitsmith Terri volunteered that she owned the YKK colorcard, and offered to lend it to me.
Aren't the Knitsmiths great? With the colorcard in my hands, I could confidently select a zipper color in a low-contrast hue that would finish off the cardigan perfectly!
Never mind that I have never installed a zipper before. As one of the responders to the knitting meme (for which I have been tagged, and I'll get to it soon) wrote, the most important skill for a knitter is bravery. I couldn't agree more!
The good thing about a raglan is that once you get it to the blocking board, most of the finishing is behind you. I wove in the ends, and all that I need to do now is to sew the armholes closed and do some sort of edging (pick up and immediately bind off the stitches, perhaps?) for the collar. Oh, yeah, and I'll need to sew in a zipper, but I'll cross that bridge when I come to it.
Here's the cardigan on the blocking board. I love it. It definitely grew in width through the blocking process. Has it grown enough? Is this fit the best for that yarn? That waits to be seen.
The raglan shaping is done! I need to weave in the ends and block.
I'll admit that I slipped this thing on last night, just to test. It's tight. Please keep your fingers crossed that blocking will cure all.
Once I joined the body and the sleeves, the raglan shaping works up quickly. I know that I'll be done with this shortly.
Every other row you lose 8 stitches. So, in a matter of four rows you're down by 1.5 repeats.
Now, my anxiety begins. I designed this sweater to be close-fitting. Not tight, but not at all loose. I know that the Softwist bulky grows with blocking and stretches with weight and wear. But right now, the whole thing looks too dang small to ever fit big ol' me.
Mark my words: pretty soon I'm going to knit a pattern as written with the correct yarn. I need to take some time off of the guesswork!