Thursday, April 24, 2008

Scrolldown Fug

Oy. Where to begin?

So after a layoff of over a year, I finally finished my Noro sweater, made of Silk Garden, for my mom. It had rather strange construction, so I sent it out for finishing by someone who had been recommended to me, and... well...

Here's the model.

Here's the diagram of the construction.

Here's my mom. Please ignore the mid-remodeling wallpaper :P

The top is absolutely PERFECT in fit -- she loves it, and she can comfortably move her arms all around without bunching or riding up -- which is a miracle, considering that neither I nor the finisher put it together using her or her measurements (whatever they were). Don't try this at home, kids. Still, these particular fit problems weren't really due to not modeling it on her; this was the least fitted part of the sweater's "tailoring." The collar could be folded down, but she actually kind of liked it standing up.

We just needed the bottom part to lay equally well... yeah, not so much.


Hey, nice bellybutton!

As you can see, the fit is so nice on the back. When it comes to the cardigan fronts, though, it just puffs out and folds under.




In these pictures, she's pulling it a little to try to flatten it out. The finishing lady sent me an e-mail mentioning that it might need to be blocked more, but I still don't think that'll fix it enough.



So the way I see it, I have a few options.

1) Ungraft the vertical back seam, pull off the button band on the bottom, and see if widening the vertical area a little and making a longer button band loosens it up. The button band is 230 rows long; the directions said to stretch it before sewing it on, and the cardigan edge was 250 rows long. Still, I gave it to the finisher live, with the instruction that she could make it longer if necessary. I guess she didn't think so.

2) Picking out live stitches upside down and turning both the back and front into straight, more standard-looking cardigan backs and fronts.

Any other suggestions or thoughts? Merciful heavens, but this depressed me.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Bits and pieces

First, big ups to Arcadia Knitting, 1613 Lawrence Ave. in Chicago. I'd been there before, as it's near my brother's apartment, but I found myself hanging out there for longer than anticipated when, after stopping there for 10 minutes last Sunday, I found that my car did not want to start. My brother and I hung out for over an hour while waiting for AAA, and they couldn't have been nicer. They even speak Spanish and have Spanish magazines next to their couch. Two thumbs up for them.

I picked up a couple skeins of that Kaffe Fassett sock yarn in bright blues and greens (ya think?) for the Mexicali baby Ole cardigan I've wanted to make. I hope that'll be enough.

The cardigan for my mom is coming along very well. I think it's partially out of seething fury for my ex-boyfriend, who brought it up as an example of things I don't finish. Well, a) it's not your business, and b) that unpainted office, Goodwill decor, non-running car and invisible wine rack of yours say you might want to back off, buddy. I think I'll send him a picture of my mom modeling the finished project with a caption saying SUCK IT.

Bitter much? Naw.

The second sleeve is finished and I'm on to the first button band. Oh, how I love k1p1 ribbing. OH WAIT, NO. I pulled out a couple dpns because they were the closest size 5s lying around (it's only 16 stitches wide), and I remember yet again why I don't use straights. I'll see if I can find a size 5 16" when I get home.

Anyways, I have this first button band, then a matching one with buttonholes (both about... hmmm... a yard long), then the collar in k2p2, and that'll be it. I went on a fruitless button search at the Sow's Ear last weekend, but when I stopped to ask my mom if she had any preferences, she recycled a set of bronze ones from a sweater she'd planned to get rid of, and they work beautifully. Yay!

I plan to send it out for finishing because it's got a weird configuration. Not only does the front loop around to become the back, the back armhole area is 15 rows shorter than the front. I looked and looked at the pattern, checked for errata online and brought it to my executive consultant, but we both agreed that I was spot-on in construction despite this weird design. I am told, however, that the suggested finishing lady is a whiz with seaming, so I have high hopes that she will be able to figure it out.

Of course, completion depends upon the extra three balls of Silk Garden #203 arriving this week. I don't understand how I can knit tight enough to require extra, yet have to go down two needle sizes for gauge.

Will update with pics when I have at least one button band done.