8-13-2010: Perhaps it is fitting that I finished this on Friday the 13th! It has been the project from…anyway, it is done and so am I! I spent countless hours finishing this jacket: and I mean countless. I cannot describe all of the steps and missteps that went into the final production, but it is done and I am now at peace. I should say somewhat at peace, because once I actually completed this sweater (and I had to make it in order to figure out how to “fix” it), I came up with all sorts of improvements to eliminate the headaches that I incurred. More on that later.
Here are some pics. The collar is the soul of this design and its downfall. It is a b@llbuster to sew into the garment.
There is supposed to be a folded hem, but I outsmarted myself and ended up having to cut it off. I like the rolled hem very much, so I don’t feel too bad about it — again, this is fixed in my revised plan.
Whisper Cardigan by Kim Hargreaves for Rowan
The buttons are shell and sewn with beads between the holes.
Yarn: Jaeger Extra Fine Merino DK, light gray (no longer available but other yarns are available that are similar) — A
Needles: US 6
Worth the work? — Not sure yet!
Okay, what did I learn? The collar is a PITA and needs revision. Of course, I did not know that going in and would not have known what to do about it at that point anyway. The way the pattern is written, you end up with 5 layers of knitted fabric at the center front of the garment — way bulky and almost impossible to get to look nice. The whole construction of the collar and its attachment to the sweater is bulky.
If I were to knit this again (Huh? Do I look that crazy?), I would knit the collar as a single piece with the front. In other words, the collar would be part of the front and would not need to be seamed. No bulk. No sewing. Use short rows and 3-needle bind off for the shoulders; use short rows and grafting for the back neck join (instead of multiple binds offs and seaming). “Graft” the front facing provisional cast on sts to the bottom of the hemline. Less bulk everywhere.
Larger copy here. I hope this helps others, but to be honest, this is not a project that is upper most in people’s queues as it is a few years old.
Another thing I did was kind of invent a buttonhole (?), at least I think I did. The pattern has a front with a facing that is folded back: two layers of fabric. Hargreaves simply put BHs on each of the layers. They are not attached in any way — I guess you just button through both buttonholes when you want to button the jacket. I wanted real buttonholes that joined the two layers. I know you can graft stockinette buttonholes but when I swatched, that type did not look very good, so I tried something else. To learn about my buttonholes, click Susan’s Stockinette Bound Buttonholes. There is certainly not a lot of use for this buttonhole: it only works when two stockinette layers are joined…but, I think they are kind of cute.
Death by finishing, for sure!!