The 4-year sweater

In 2 months, this would have been called the 5-year sweater. I checked and I started knitting this lovely on January 5, 2015. Why did it take so long? Well, there are a few reasons for that. Some have to do with technical issues with the sweater – namely that it requires seaming and I really detest seaming. (Kind of weird since I love to sew, but it really is different.) The major problem, though, is that I am a much bigger fan of starting projects than finishing them.

This sweater marks a change in my knitting. I had mostly done small projects before this one. It was actually the first sweater I started. Since then I have completed four or five others. None of the others required seaming.

For those of you that may be interested, this is a custom fit pattern from Amy Herzog called Courant. These patterns are really great because you put in your exact measurements and your gauge(!) and it gives you the number of stitches and rows to make a sweater just for you. You have to make a large swatch like I have shown below so that you are sure of the gauge. That’s a good idea anyway. I once heard a teacher say that we always make swatches – sometimes they are small ones before starting a project and sometimes they are full sweater sized! I don’t swatch for shawls because why would I, but for sweaters I do. I have a pretty loose gauge (I use size zero for socks…) so it’s important. And, it really does fit perfectly even though it’s been 4 years since I started.

swatch for hand-knit sweater

I do think I will add a couple of inches to the length. I wasn’t sure how to do that because the bottom is a cast on edge, and I really didn’t necessarily want the ribbing section to be lengthened, but of course some other knitter has figured this all out for us. Several lovely generous knitters have put up YouTube videos and here is the one that I think I will use.

The yarn is Malabrigo Rios, colorway Cumparsita. To demonstrate how long ago I started, at that time, I didn’t know that with tonal yarn you really need to alternate skeins so that you don’t have an obvious difference when you change skeins. So the back is kind of weird, but I don’t see that, do I? Good lesson! Also, I seem to have two full skeins leftover so I can make a hat and mittens to match if desired. I have gotten better with yarn purchasing over the years.

I am so happy that I finally finished this sweater. It’s so warm that it’s really only for the truly cold weather but I will be happy to wear it then. Hopefully it won’t take me another four years to lengthen it!