Sunday, December 20, 2009

Through the Cracks

I did actually mention that I was making this top, but I failed to report when I finished it. It's been done for many weeks now, and I've worn it often.

Pattern: Plain and Simple Pullover by Vera Valimaki
Yarn: Knit Picks Gloss sock yarn in Woodland Sage, frogged from my Thermal.
Needles: US 2 and US 1
Modifications: I didn't pick up as many stitches around the neck as the pattern said. Mostly that was from laziness, but also this yarn drapes like nobody's business, so the smaller neck circumfrence was a really good move.

I do actually like this top, but I'm not thrilled with it. Mostly this has to do with the yarn, not the pattern which I find very wearable. I'd definitely make another in a different yarn. Gloss has some problems, which I consider to be pretty important. It does not hold its shape at all, it is pretty splitty, it does not frog especially well (the yarn fuzzes up and is prone to breaking), and any garment knitted in it gains substantial length when washed. This last reason is why my Thermal had to be frogged - a top that was maybe a bit short after knitting was suddenly halfway to my knees after washing. I took this into account when knitting this top. For the body to the underarms, I knit 14". After washing it measured in excess of 18". I also knit the armholes and inch shorter than I normally would. They lengthed to the correct size later.

These tendencies also do not lend themselves very well to a big fold-over neckline. The neck is floppy at best and a bit gaping. I also got right sick of knitting 3x3 rib and stopped before I probably should have.

The one comment I have to say about the pattern is that the instructions for which button band goes where and where to sew on the buttons are not super clear. From the designer's pictures, it seems that the button holes should go on the front and the button band on the back, but the buttons continue along the front edge of the fold-over neck. Instead of switching a button hole band to a button band halfway through, I just decided to have the buttons on the front edge and the holes on the back, meaning that the back laps over the front.

I'm likely to knit this again sometime, in a better yarn of course, and when I do I'll make just one more modification besides a longer neck, which is to make the sleeves a bit shorter. This is not a huge deal, just personal preference.

There have been a lot of little knits happening around here lately, but my knitting mojo has been in a bit of a funk. A design I started is not going to work out, and I see very little point in knitting things that aren't going to be used. I have plenty of hats and mittens for myself already (as do my immediate family) but hats and mittens seem to be what I can handle right now. Lots of experimentation happening, and planning for the coming year....


Kara said...

I love the neck!

ithaca_chick said...

I really like that sweater!