Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Olive and Jade

This project plan began when I decided I'd like a cotton sweater to go with with my summer weight olive khaki pants and shorts. I liked the idea of a classic Breton striped sweater in olive and a contrasting colour, so I thought I'd make one in that style.

I searched Ravelry for a suitable striped sweater pattern and settled on Nothing But Stripes!, designed by emteedee, which is an interesting contemporary take on the Breton stripe sweater and looked great in all the project photos I looked at. I visited Toronto's Romni Wools store to shop for suitable yarn, and was happy to find yarn that was just what I wanted at a bargain basement price in Romni's actual bargain basement: 200 grams of Schachenmayr Catania Solids in 253 Jade, and 200 grams in shade 414, which doesn't seem to be listed on either Ravelry or the Schachenmayr website, but is a deep olive.

And here's the result, paired with a light khaki skirt I made some years back. The olive khaki pants and shorts I have are darker in tone and will work better with the sweater, but I can't put them on my dressmaker's form.

A sweater that I should have been able to make in under three weeks ended up taking nine for reasons that were my own stupid fault. First I assumed that a size 38 German was equivalent to a size 38 in inches. It so wasn't, and I got as far as the chest before I realized it. I had to rip it all out and start again in a size 42. Then I realized as I was nearly done the body that the sweater was going to be far too long -- I should have done the math on the stripes. I had to rip back nearly to the beginning that time, and begin the stripe pattern with two rows of the olive instead of just one.

It was around this point that I also realized that I hadn't bought enough yarn to make the larger size. I went back to Romni Wools where I bought two extra 50 gram skeins of Olive and one extra 50 gram skein of Jade -- it was the last skein of the Jade that they had, and I could only hope I was going to have enough yarn.

Then when I was nearly done the first sleeve, I realized it was going to be too short, and I had to rip it out, calculate what the stripe pattern needed to be to make it the right length (I had to add *two* "8 rows of Jade/8 rows of Olive" stripes), and reknit it that way.

Then too, soon after I began work on the first sleeve, I realized I had made a mistake with the increases on the yoke. It had come out too short compared to the measurement on the diagram pattern, and I added an inch which proved to be a mistake, as that last inch was created by the stitches cast on when the body was connected under the armhole. That inch I had added made the yoke too long and the body too short, which in turn made for an awkward-looking fit. At first I couldn't face the idea of ripping out nearly the entire sweater yet again and I thought I could live with it, but after I finished the first sleeve and tried the sweater on, I realized I couldn't. I ripped out the sleeve, and ripped out the body back to the bottom of the yoke, and reknitted it yet again. This time I managed to get it right. You can imagine how many extra ends I had to deal with when it came time to finish the sweater, but I just got on with it and got it done.

I think I essentially knitted this sweater three times over. Fortunately, after all of that, I do quite like the sweater.

And I had just 40 grams of each colour of yarn left, so I had bought the right amount of yarn for my sweater too. As this project was made with new yarn, that's a stash increase of 80 grams.

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