Monday, October 17, 2016

Lots of Progress—No Yoking About It

So I cast on Saturday, October 15th-- and here were are now, 2 days latter, with the better part of 2 skeins knit up!

This translates into 3.5 inches in front, and through the miracle of short rows, a full inch more in back (4.5 inches). There are 2 small button holes, too. I don't think I will continue the button holes past the yoke—but there will  be a third, and maybe a fourth one as well.

The sweater has a scoop neck—because I really don't like things snug about my neck—I like scoop or V necks best, and crew neck are OK—I can tolerate mock turtle necks but I really dislike a real turtle neck. Since is it not a high neck, I think 1 inch of extra length in the back is enough.

The yarn is Araucania Atacama, is 100% alpaca –so this will be a warm sweater—warm enough that a scoop neck, will still be plenty warm enough to ward off any chill. There was, some years ago, a kerfuffle with Knitting Fever Inc, (I forget most of the details except not their fault) but a result was several yarn stores stopped dealing with KFI—and one store, cleared it shelves (at a steep discount) of all of the yarns KFI distributed. I bought this yarn back then.

Generally speaking, I am not a big fan of pink—I have a rosy tone to my skin, and I don't think pink is that flattering a color for me, most often.   But I do like this mottled pink. I had sorted the skeins, and I started with the lightest of the skeins-with more pale pink and less deep rose. As the sweater progresses, the skeins will get a bit darker (rosier) but even the darkest skein still has a lot of the pale pink.

I started with a single skein, but about half way through, I started to alternate 2 skeins—I have just enough for 2 more rows of skein one, and I am about half way through skein 2. I will continue to use 2 skeins at a time—just to keep things mixed up (and make each change a little less obvious.

I intend for the garter portion of the yoke to be about 7 inches (un-stretched) The weight of the sweater will tend to pull the garter stitch open. So 7 inches will over time, will grow to 9 inches.. (if not more). Alpaca is pretty well known for stretching—it just doesn't have the bounce of wool. I don't want the yoke to be too big.

So the design is a variation of the Lady's February sweater—but it deals with all the things I dislike about the original design—Upper body shaping (so it doesn't tend to ride to the front), A slightly stretchy cast on edge (so the cast on doesn't totally stretch out as it carries the full weight of the sweater), a rounded, not a square yoke (so it doesn't look too boxy) and finally a finer, lighter fiber to make it look more tailored.

There will be some more changes at the underarm, (to reduce some of the extra bulk). I love the February sweater for a baby—I think EZ was totally spot on with her design. I just don't think the design scales up to adult (and my case a extra large adult) size with out some changes.

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