Just look at that, can you believe I’ve gotten so far? Well, I can’t. Still pinching myself to see if I’m awake. Boy, what a path that has been!
None of the patterns I tried really worked. I knit some, then frogged some, then knit something else, and none of the attempts looked good. There was one that I thought I might actually wear once it was finished but my tension was way off and it pulled and puckered in an odd way. In the end, I put all my stitch dictionaries and pattern collections back on the shelf, grabbed a sheet of paper and a pencil, and did it all my own way. I drew the wedge frame, starting with nine squares for the nine starting stitches, added one square on either side every eight row, marked a line down the middle „stitch“, and then just started drawing little circles and lines and triangles and adding to them as I went along. Once I felt I had something to start with, I grabbed my knitting needles, yarn balls, crochet hook and stitch markers, and started knitting along to „Downton Abbey“ (many thanks to Netflix for adding the show at just the right moment).
Things I’ve learned this time:
- A provisional crochet cast-on really helps to set the tension from the start
- Increases are best done with yarn overs that are knit through the back loop in the following row. That way, there will be no puckering, especially if you tend to knit tightly.
- Knit slowly. If you rush through the rounds, you’re more likely to mess up your tension.
- Take a break every now and then. Managing two strands of yarn, not to mention the growing sweater, and keeping up with the pattern at the same time can be hard on the shoulders and wrists. Besides, you’ll need another cup of tea every half-hour or so anyway, so you might as well get up and get it.
I’ve got about a third of the pattern I’ve written out to knit. After that, I’ll have to check if the yoke is long and wide enough to seperate the arms. Depending on that, I’ll have to decide how to continue the pattern on the body and arms. I might do different patterns since I’ll have to figure out how to include decreases for the arms. I’ll cross that bridge once I get there.
All in all, this has been a great experience so far, and quite a learning curve. I won’t say I’ve enjoyed every minute of it because I haven’t. Infact, there were moments when I was tempted to give up. Then there was this one moment when suddenly every single piece fell into place, and I was – still am – so happy with what I was making. I can’t wait for the sweater to be done so I can start designing my next one, and at the same time, I want to enjoy the process of finishing this one to the very last yarn end that needs to be weaved in.