Friday, February 12, 2010

Current Project

Over at Knitting on Impulse, Ruth is knitting an Olympic tribute sweater to wear during the winter games, which are hosted in her town this year. How exciting that must be. She isn't publishing a pattern, rather sharing her design process. I'm really excited by this. I have been needing a new sweater, or a few. I have two old favorites that get the most wear, and it shows. They are well worn and unraveling in places. I've had them for years. I still wear them around the house and garden because they are comfortable, warm but not too hot, and I haven't found anything to replace them with.

I've looked. I've tried on sweaters and come home with nothing. I have a few newer sweaters, but they'll never get the same wear. I'm picky. The last sweater I bought was very pretty and fluffy, but it makes me itch and isn't as flattering as I once thought. I am attracted to the pretty and feminine sweaters in the store, but I don't like wearing them. My favorite sweaters are roomy, cotton pullovers with good weight and drape.

My figure is not at all standard, so finding clothes to flatter and enhance is a challenge, especially bulky sweaters. Realistically, the size I need is large for the shoulders and waist, 2XL for the chest, and only medium for the hips. So, I need something soft in the shoulders, extra roomy around the bust, narrowing to the waist, and with a bit of flare at the hips. I think that would be the most flattering, maybe. I"m also short waisted, but prefer longer tops to avoid calling attention to this. They just have to be fitted in the right area. Oh, let's not forget I'm a fiber snob with allergies and prefer comfort over high fashion, but still want something flattering. I've never even found a pattern that looked worth the time and investment. I am a very slow knitter.

I've admired Ruth's hand-dyed yarn and her amazing knits for some time, now. I'm thrilled that she is blogging her design process for a project that I believe I can customize to look good on me. I bought the yarn and started knitting Sunday. If you look at the inspiration and then mine, you'll see that I've already made some adjustments. My neck is much shorter. I don't wear turtlenecks and am uncomfortable with anything tight around my neck. In addition to being shorter, I knit the neck ribbing on larger needles. Usually, ribbing is done with smaller needles, so my ribbing is extra loose. The tubular cast-on was new to me and turned out very nice. I'll be using that again.

My waves are also more random instead of evenly spaced. It's a bit wonky, but it suits me. Since my sweater isn't meant as an Olympic tribute, my thought is to continue the waves further down the sweater, possibly throughout. The horizontal braid might work further down the sweater for me, but I don't want to call extra attention to the bust area. For now, I have a few more rows I can continue with, but then I'll wait and see how the stitches are divided for the front, back, and sleeves. I'm considering short rows to add ease to the bust, sort of mimicking the side darts in some fitted tops. I'm familiar with the technique, in theory, but have never tried it. I'll have to see how the sweater shapes up and be prepared to frog if I don't like it.

Anyway, this is what I'm working on. When I was taking the photo, I found a few other things that I've made the last few months. I'll share photos as soon as they're ready. Mostly, I've been working on fun and functional knit items, but I did get a bit more done on my Christmas stockings. I've also begun blogging about my new passion and creative outlet at Evolution of a Gardener.