Last time I mentioned the green sweater I’m making for my mom, I was still swatching and thinking. But once I decided to cast on, I threw myself into the pattern. I had a vague notion of finishing it before our summer vacation (I hate returning to large projects after a period of time)… and I’m pleased to report that I have!One thing I really like about the CustomFit sweaters is that they are knit in pieces, which makes them portable. The ones I have made have large portions of stockinette, which makes them easy to work at the office, at soccer games, and while watching TV.
That daisy stitch was a bugger to work, but there wasn’t that much of it… until I got to the neck band (which had 333 stitches). I had to slow down my work because that stitch really hurt my hands, despite being worked on a needle 3 sizes bigger than the size used for stockinette (I used 4 on stockinette, 5 on garter, and 7 on daisy).
I thought I’d show you some blocking pictures this time. I am always freaked out by how large the pieces seem after I soak them. When I pin it out to match the schematic, I have lots of extra fabric – like this: (That weird pin in the middle marks the waist, halfway between the last decrease and first increase.) I pin out all the edges and patiently smooth the fabric, and eventually I get this:
Next I seamed the fronts and back together with magical mattress stitch (which I now find soothing instead of stressful): To finish the armholes, you pick up stitches and then work an applied i-cord. The pattern clearly says to pick up and knit 1 stitch in every stitch and every row around the armhole. I found that this was too many stitches, though. After doing the first armhole this way, I thought it was kind of wavy and ruffle-y. When I did the next armhole, I skipped a stitch every so often (maybe 3/4? or 4/5?). The result was much better. Here is a photo I took before ripping out armhole #1 on the right – you can see how it’s not as smooth as the one on the left: The stitch pickup instructions for the neckband were fine, if a bit complicated to keep track of (different ratios for picking upon the vertical, diagonal, and horizontal edges). I had 333 stitches in that pickup.
Here’s where my anxiety level started to rise. The pattern calculated that I would need 849 yards of yarn total. I think I read somewhere that CustomFit builds in a cushion so that is a conservative estimate. I had 5 balls, or 960 yards. I should have been fine on yardage. But I was running so low that I left off the last 2 rows of the daisy stitch pattern on the neckband (working it for 14 rows, not 16 – the hem edge has 16). Even still, I wasn’t sure I would get through the 3 rows of garter stitch plus bindoff. It was a real nailbiter, but this is how much yarn I had left: Yikes! The next morning, I pinned it out a bit and sprayed the neckband and armholes with water so they would lay as smoothly as the rest of the sweater:
The sweater doesn’t look so great hanging on a hanger, so I have to show it to you on a model. But please keep in mind – this is a CustomFit pattern for someone who is NOT ME, so it’s not going to look perfect. My mom is a little shorter than me and a bit wider. She also prefers that her sweaters hang lower than I do. And she lives in a faraway state, so you won’t see pictures of it on her for many months. Anyway, here goes!Maybe you can get the general idea?I don’t think it hurt the neckband one bit to leave off those last two rows – it lays nicely:I can cross that big gift knitting item off my list. Next up I will have a reclaimed hat to show you. Hope your summer is going well!