Aug 07 Got stitch gauge with #9 needles and yarn held double. The fabric is thick and really firm but a little stiff to work with. It’s going to seriously reduce drape, but I’m not sure by how much.
The more I knit this, the narrower it seems to get… what with all that curling. Once I get the back done, I’ll block it and see if I can get the width back.
I adjusted the ribbing pattern on the bottom because one of the stockinette stripes up the back was lining up with the ribs, but none of the others were. It drove me crazy enough that on row 40, I started over.
I modified the rib to CO 77 then: k4 (p3, k3) & repeat parenthesis to last four stitches, then k4. On the last row of rib, I increased one stitch in the center.
It centered the ribbing, making nothing line up (better than only one on the left side!) and gave me stockinette on both edges to seam. I’ll adjust the front ribbing to something like k1 (p3, k3) and ending in (k3, p3) k1. It will give me one knit selvedge stitch and continuous rib to the back.
Aug 08 I put this on the blocking boards this morning. It stretched to measurements without difficulty and I’m hoping it’s dry by the time I get home from work today. With eight inches of ease, even if it springs back a couple of inches, I’m still not going to worry.
Aug 09 I didn’t do any knitting on this last night, but I finished graphing the front, adding a stitch and increasing the bind off on the armhole by one stitch. The back blocked to about 18 1/2 inches and it’s still curling enough to be a bit of a pain when it comes time to seam. It takes forever to dry -- being so thick -- and I didn’t let it finish drying when I took it off the board. I think it will block flat if I do it again when I get to the finishing.
The blocking had one great effect, though: it really made the drape much nicer. The stiffness of the stitches I felt while I knitted almost completely disappeared now that it’s been blocked, though it still retains the feel of a heavy sweater. I can probably wear this as outerwear when it gets chilly this fall.
I’m not really digging the orange, but I feel like I’m obligated to use this yarn up since I bought so much of it. As thick as I’m knitting this, it should take up at least ten skeins.
Aug 15th Finished the first sleeve and got half the second done last night. The fronts are blocking and ready to sew up the shoulder seams.
For the sleeves, I CO33 and did a k3, p3 ribbing, ending with a k3. At the first bind off, I did 4 on one side and 3 on the other, marking the side that decreased four stitches -- for the front side of the sleeve. I think this will match up with the modification on the fronts better.
I’ve also been charting whole patterns so that it’s easier to mark my place while knitting. I just bring them up in Photoshop and use a transparent bar across the row that I’m working on. It seems to be working, because I’m not constantly frustrated by forgetting how many decreases or increases I have left to go.
A note on the yarn: It’s a little less scratchy after washing & blocking, but still nothing to write home about. But as cheap as it was for a 100% wool yarn, it works well with my budget. It felts beautifully and spit splicing is a breeze.
August 17th Will finish the belt tonight… The third night I’ve been working on it. Out of the whole project, this is the most tedious. I’m hoping to get the shoulder seams done tonight so that I can start on the collar tomorrow after work.
August 21st All finished! I really love the fit of this sweater.
I decided to put the belt loops on the sides instead of interrupting the front and back.
The photos are pretty cruddy because of the flash. I’ll try to post better ones next weekend.