This is a picture of me being more diligent than I have perhaps ever been about anything. Also: putting the slow in slow fashion. Toward the end of last month, I accepted the fact that all I have headroom for right now is stockinette. But you know how I like to always be learning something new, so I decided it’s time to make an old-school seamed sweater.
Last summer, my friends at Shibui sent me a big box of yarn, including a sweater’s worth of their Merino Alpaca in this artichoke color I love. I’d been looking for just the right thing to do with it, when along came Slade. It seemed to me the two might be made for each other. Knitted in this yarn, in this color, I suspected it would look like it could actually be Army-issue — if the Army had a taste for fine yarns. An officer’s sweater maybe, from the days when things were still made of wool. Right? On the one hand this a nice, relatively mindless project, being a whole bunch of stockinette. But on the other hand, since I’m changing the yarn (and with it the row gauge) and some of the shaping, and have never dealt with mods or discrepancies around a set-in sleeve before, it’s also a whole new experience. I told myself going in that I would not rush it. If I get it right, this is a sweater I will wear for years, so I might as well take my time knitting it and make sure I do, in fact, get it right.
I admit it might be taking a little longer than I intended.
I’m a big believer in the sleeve-as-swatch theory of sweater knitting. (The best swatch is a big swatch, so why not a sleeve?) So that first week I made this sleeve. And a couple weeks later, I blocked it. It blocked beautifully — I’m in love with the fabric. The widths are all exactly as intended. I intentionally made the sleeve longer and a little narrower at the wrist than the pattern calls for, but the armhole is deeper than the pattern dimensions, because my row gauge is bigger. So I did some number-crunching and pondering, and asked Michele Wang some noob questions. And it sat in its bag, waiting.
The other night, I was having a mild case of that out-of-sorts feeling that comes from not knitting for days — you know the one — so I took five minutes and pinned the sleeve along the eventual seam, so I could pull it on. (It’s kind of weird how much good that five minutes of interacting with yarn did me.) And then yesterday I pinned it to this shirt — a shirt of my husband’s I cut the neck and sleeves off of long ago — and wore it around a little bit to see how it felt. After a month, and all that due diligence, this sweater is officially a go.
The reason for no knitting this week? The overwhelming response to the Yarn Pyramid. I have been shipping nonstop, all over the globe (and to a couple of new stores I’ll announce next week), and am so thrilled that you all love it so much. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, to everyone who has not only ordered it or visited one of the stockists to buy it, but who has blogged about it or shared it on social media or even just said to me how much you like it. It means so, so much to me. And if you’re someone who got a crazy international shipping quote from me in the first couple of days, I have better news for you and will be in touch.
By the way, if you’re not on the Fringe Supply Co. mailing list, you might want to pop over there and plug your email address into the sign-up box. Just sayin’.
Have a great weekend, everyone! Love to hear what you’re working on …