Monday, April 11, 2011

new sweater!

I finally finished my Tilted Duster sweater. These photos aren't so good--I was trying to do them myself and used one of the mirrors in my house. The mirrors are on the (original) doors and therefore are about 100 years old. This means that no matter how much you clean them, they are still a bit distorted and spotty at times.

Caption: Sally mainly watched the activity at a distance while I did my photo shoot...

The professor declared my photos "artistic" which was a nice way of saying they weren't that good...sorry about that. If you liked this pattern, you could buy a download of it here. Every so often, I try to knit someone else's design from start to finish to learn from their writing and design ideas. I find it particularly interesting if the design has an interesting construction or if I really respect the designer. (I really respect Norah Gaughan. Her designs are so innovative!) In this case, I used Jo Sharp Silkroad Aran yarn, which is now discontinued. In fact, Jo Sharp yarn is now no longer available in North America, for the most part. Very sad. Some of it was purchased in Australia when we travelled to Brisbane in 2004.

Of course, it is hard for me to restrain myself, so I went into this thinking I'd just knit a black sweater and ended up making changes anyway. The collar and sleeves are knit out of a purple color called "quartz" and I lengthened the ribbing on the sleeves and shorted the sleeves themselves as well. (I have short arms.) The sweater took way too long for me to finish, largely because knitting has been hard with my sore hands. The professor helped me choose the perfect buttons from my large button stash. (The button collection is mostly inherited from his mother and grandmother, but I do frequent building of stash to keep things interesting!)

We looked at gray mother of pearl buttons with a purple tinge, which came in at a close second. They were very dressy and gorgeous, but maybe a bit too flashy. I bought those mother of pearl buttons at an antique shop to match my -second hand-winter coat in the fall of 1991, when I was a freshman in college in Ithaca, New York. When the winter coat finally wore out, I cut the buttons back off again--they've been waiting for the next right garment ever since!

We looked at purple buttons (not a great match) and silver and black buttons (also a bit flash). In the end, we chose some plain black plastic buttons that looked as though a thrifty relative had cut them off of an outfit long ago.

Before I began sewing them on, I blocked the sweater. I usually block things by handwashing and pinning them out to dry. That seemed like a long time to wait and a lot of heavy damp material in this case, so instead, I used a steamy iron to block things. The collar flopped down immediately into a sailor suit collar, and when I put that on, I saw it suited "the big belly" far better than a high collar. I'm saving the buttons for later on, and for now, a pin will do. Temperatures are now reaching into the 50's (10-15C) here so it is a perfect outdoor sweater. I've taken to wearing this frequently now.

See, every so often I do talk about fibery things... I'm now trying to refocus my efforts on the last sleeve of this red sweater, which I first talked about last September. It's a good thing I'm also creating twins over here, because the sweater production sure has slowed down!

I want to thank everyone who left me a comment or sent me an email saying they were sending good vibes in my direction. I really appreciate it. I've felt a bit isolated lately and your notes have been very cheery. I am also expecting to have a very low key celebration this Passover ...very different than the travelling to see family or complicated holiday meals I've made at home in the past. It feels a little strange but as Nina mentions in her comment, "it's all good" --it will all work itself out. (It doesn't seem to be a good time to exert myself in the cooking and cleaning department!)

Labels: , , , , , , ,


Blogger Nancy Nordquist said...

The sweater is lovely! The photos make me want to tell you to sit down and put your feet up!

Good luck as you go through these next few weeks. You are obviously doing a great job of caring for your precious cargo. :)

April 11, 2011 at 1:48 PM  
Blogger Freyalyn said...

Nearly there! And such a lovely jacket too.

April 12, 2011 at 2:22 AM  
Blogger Alison said...

That sweater is perfect! And I love seeing you beaming like that. Very cool.

--AlisonH at

April 13, 2011 at 12:13 PM  
Blogger Nina said...

Lovely sweater. I have been wanting to get down to some sweater knitting and and continuing with small projects. You are doing amazing things, even with swollen hands and feet!

April 15, 2011 at 7:18 PM  
Blogger Nina said...

Sorry, I meant "and am continuing"!

April 15, 2011 at 7:20 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home