starting a new sweater before the New Year

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I cast on for a new sweater a few days ago, in two shades of Classic Elite “Mohawk” yarn:

Loving my Elle Melle (in progress)

What you’re seeing there is actually my second attempt, because my first attempt was turning out to be WAY too wide. It’s a grown-up version of Elle Melle, part of my mission to *actually* knit all the things I keep saying that I’m going to knit (seriously). (Note that I’ve talked about doing this in no fewer than 4 previous posts!)

Grown up Elle Melle progress.

The Elle Melle pattern obviously does not include grown-up sizes, but I’m only a bit bigger than the 12yo size, and I’m good at math. (At least, I’m good at it the SECOND time I do it!) Though I spoke of changing it from a raglan to set-in sleeves in those posts I linked to, I’m actually coming around to leaving it as a raglan, because while raglans in general are not necessarily the BEST design for me (given my broad-for-my-petite-frame shoulders), I kind of feel like the angle of the contrast sleeve is an inherent part of what I *like* about the look of the cardigan.

One thing I *don’t* like the look of, at least for me, is the somewhat “balloon-ish” hem in the original pattern – I think that’s a cute look on a little kid, but wouldn’t function so well on a person who has hips and a waist (not that I have MUCH in the way of hips or waist, but I’m curvier than a little kid!). But I also like for the hem to be a VERY firm garter stitch, so instead of using one needle size smaller for the hem, I used one two sizes smaller – a size 2! But I got the hem I wanted, over 230sts:

Elle-Melle bottom hem.

Then, instead of increasing (as the pattern calls for), I decreased down to 220 stitches (which should give me a ~36″ circumference) for the body. The end result is a hem that just barely pulls in from the body, which is exactly what I wanted!

Grown-Up Elle Melle in progress

I absolutely adore the texture of Elle Melle – the 2 color “corrugation” is just so delightful to knit, and it’s also very easy to keep track of (which I appreciate, because my brain still feels pretty fried). I’ve got 10 dark ridges so far, and I’m thinking that I’ll need around 25 or so to have the length I want for the body before dividing for the yoke. This is actually the first sweater I’ve ever knit for myself in anything less than worsted weight – a sweater at 6sts/inch definitely takes much longer! But I think it’s going to be worth it.

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