A finished “swatch”.


Before we begin, a PSA for y’all:

If it is 82 degrees in your house, and your hands are sweaty, for the love of all that is good, DO NOT attempt to repeatedly rip out bind-offs and reknit portions of your sweater. You know what happens when you mix wool with heat, moisture, and friction, right?


I was able to cut off the partially-felted first attempt at a neckband and fix it this morning, with only minimal fuzzing of the edge where stitches were picked up, thankfully, but save yourself the tears and don’t even try it in the first place.

And now we return to our regularly scheduled programming. The Swatch has been finished:

done! [365.348]

Pattern: My own. Tentatively calling it “Garter Whimsy”, an allusion to the name of the quilt Chawne is making me.
Yarn: Cascade 220, in Sapphire Heather. Less than 4 skeins (yes, really!).
Needles: Size 8 Denise Circulars and Harmony dpns.
Time to knit: Exactly 2 weeks (May 8th-May 22nd).

I quite pleased with it, despite all of last night’s frustration with the finishing. And it totally served its purpose; I figured out what worked and what didn’t work, and which measurements I need to ask for, and now feel quite prepared to knit a sweater for C. How about some more pictures?

waist shaping

Garter stitch (and particularly garter rib) is sort of the star of this sweater, even though the bulk of it is knit in stockinette. I did waist-shaping on the outside of a column of garter rib, which worked beautifully…you get the nice look of waist-shaping along with some stretch at the sides for comfort. I realize I’m a scrawny little thing, so maybe I’m wrong in thinking this, but I suspect this would be especially nice if you’re not as scrawny as I am.

wrist detail

(I also like the look of the neckline before I added the garter ridges, as in this photo). This is the detail I used at the wrist; it’s an i-cord cast-on, followed by some garter eyelet. I adore it. C wants more garter rib at the wrist of her sweater, though, and I’m happy to oblige, since I love that, too :)

back view

The back of the sweater, where you can see a bit of the seamless set-in sleeve shaping, which was a modification of the (rather terse) directions given in EZ’s Knitting Workshop. I didn’t want to steek the v-neck (I was worried it would add bulk), so I altered the in-the-round directions to knit from one edge of the V around the back to the other. It was a bit of brain-twister, and of course, I figured out a better way to handle the very tops of the sleeve caps after I’d bound off and woven in the ends, but it’s ok…I’ll do it the better way on C’s sweater!

sitting on the porch

I’m quite pleased with this sweater! It’s not perfect, but for a sweater that was really meant to be a swatch, it’s pretty darn good. I’m utterly shocked at how little yarn it took: well under 4 skeins! I’m so tempted to pick up 4 more skeins of Cascade 220 in the Webs sale while it’s cheap so that I can knit myself another one of these, since it’s such a nice basic sweater (and we all know how much I love my nice basic sweaters, given the last post!). I’m considering putting together a pattern for this, once I’ve knit C’s. The idea would be to make it a little bit mix-and-match, with instructions for different detailing at the wrist and neck, since C’s is going to have different detailing at the wrist and neck, anyway, and I want to try out a minimalist neckline like the unfinished one I had before the Great Accidental Felting Incident of 2009, too. If you’d be interested in me taking the time to write this one up as a pattern, let me know!