Friday, April 20, 2007

Red Sky at Night

I'm no sailor, but the sunshine sweater was a delight to knit!

I was attracted to this pattern because it was a top-down knit with very few seams. I also liked the panel design on the front with the off-center opening. I'm a big fan of the euro-style sweaters with a skewed opening. I assume that they have a european influence because I first saw these designs while traveling through Paris. I was in love with this fleece coat:

I borrowed it all week because the weather was much colder than I expected, but I was also in love with the funky design. After that coat, I've been on the hunt for sweaters, coats, and sweatshirts with this style.

~~Pattern Modifications~~
I followed Amanda's pattern just as it was written, I'm lucky that we seem to be about the same size!

Although, I realized that I have to keep my long-torso in mind because it may require me adding length as I see fit and I may have to start the was shaping a little lower. One that note, I also realized that my waist "shape" is basically to go in along my lower ribs and then to stay skinny for quite a few inches. As a result, I did modify the sunshine waist shaping slightly. The pattern calls for a few rounds of decreases (an inch apart), followed by a few rounds on increases (again an inch apart). After doing the decreases and then one increase I tried on the sweater and realized that I didn't have to do anymore increasing because of my skinny waist.

My one other change was unintentional - I think my collar is slightly shorter than Amanda's, but I like the sweater both ways!

~Yarn and Blocking~
I used KnitPicks Wool of the Andes in the Iron Ore Color. I wanted a deep red, but without hits of pink or purple. I choose the color by looking at the KnitPicks Catalog, and unfortunately either my eyes or the picture were off. This yarn definitely isn't as deep of a color as I wanted, but I'm still happy with it.

From my experiences with blocking a few other items, I sensed/hoped that the yarn would lengthen a bit when I blocked it. Assuming it would, I knit the sweater so that the ends of the arms and waist were a slight bit shorter than I wanted for the final item. I took a risk here, and really I didn't use a specific conversion to determine exactly where I should stop.

To block, I soaked the sweater in warm water with some Johnson's baby shampoo - I think I saw this tip on Eunny's blog. After soaking, I pulled the sweater out of the water and was happy to feel that it was really stretchy in my hands (so I knew the wool had the 'give' I wanted). I then pinned the sweater to some towels and left it on my table for a couple of days to dry. This worked perfectly! The length of the arms and torso dried to just the right size.

And viola!

~Now What?~
Well as I mentioned, I've started Glee. Again, I was drawn to the neck-down, seamless patterns. No seams for me! I figured before I start designing my own patterns, I should do another practice sweater. This pattern has no waist shaping, so I'll add some, and I'm going to knit some longer sleeves, probably down to the elbow. After Glee, it's on to some of my own euro-style patterns that have been floating around in my head!

1 comment:

Amanda said...

Katie, I love how Sunshine knit up in wool...The color is beautiful!
That coat is to die for!