Let's start with the pics and then I'll tell you about my findings:
|While it looks better on me, what with me being a real person, it's too wide in the shoulder... Remember, this dress form is wider than me, and you can still sort of see it. Mind you, on me, the front comes together in a nicer way.|
|Here's that join that traumatized me. In the end, it's not noticeable to others. I'm going to see if I can provisionally cast on these stitches in my next attempt. If it doesn't work, at least I will have tried.|
|Overexposed to show the detail...|
|This is the true colour. Look at those adorable buttons. I got them with Mardel in NYC last year...|
|I hand-sewed silk petersham ribbon to back the button holes and the buttons. What a production... (see below)|
- It's a lovely cut.
- The yarn worked really well, even though it was a light worsted rather than a DK.
- My many sizing alterations and, ahem, experiments, seemed to work pretty well.
- It's not hard to make once you know what you're doing.
- I had awesome help from everyone - thank you!
- Those short rows were mind-bending until I figured them out.
- I learned (the hard way) that you need to end the upper back and upper front pieces on the same row (right at the underarm join), or you're pattern will be uneven. Oh well - it really is not noticeable unless I point it out.
- This thing is too big in the shoulders. Next time I'm going to take 12 stitches (about 2 inches) out of the upper front and back to get the cap to sit right on my narrow shoulders. I will add those stitches back at the underarm join when I start making the body of this top down sweater, so that I don't lose necessary width at the full bust. I don't think, given the construction method, that I can do this any other way. But if anyone can identify potential challenges with my proposed work around, pls. advise!
- I had enough yarn to lengthen the body slightly more, and to lengthen the sleeves. Next time (I'm going to use exactly the same yarn in a diff colour so that I don't have to rescope sizing), I will add about an inch to body and to sleeves.
- I really do not like that join at the shawl collar. I don't know if provisional cast on will solve the problem. It will remove the horizontal seam, but it may not fix the half-stitch off challenge.
- I did not start the first few rows of the through-the-back-loop rib very elegantly. It does show on the finished product (not that I'm going to highlight it for you). Alas, that's a learning curve element that will not be repeated. I more than got comfortable with the rib stitch in the course of making this sweater.
- The instructions were not particularly helpful - and I identified an error that cost me a few hours in ripping back the left-collar. Directions instruct one to short row on the inside of the collar instead of the outside. Note: I find knitting instructions to be suboptimal at the best of times. I think it's more about the convention and my lack of experience than about the instructions themselves.
- Lord, this was a production - and not one that I can guarantee will really add much to the finished sweater. I mean, it's not like there's so much weight on the (short) button band that everything's going to stretch all to hell...
- ...Except, in trying to get the sweater under the needle on my Singer, I had to stretch that band all to hell. Here's hoping that some steam and reblocking will tighten the whole thing up again.
- To its credit, the machine did not mess up the buttonholes - and this sweater plus ribbon is about as much bulk as one could insert under the needle under any circumstances. (The buttonholer imposes some restrictions because you can't lift it up very high.) The pile of the knit rib made things particularly challenging.
- The reason that the buttons are not perfectly aligned on the band is because I had very little option to maneuver things once I eventually positioned the band under the needle. I actually used a piece of plastic to help slide things around. You can even stitch through it, but I didn't find it necessary with the Singer. It didn't struggle with the buttonholes at all (this machine is STRONG).
- There is nothing quite so stressful as applying a make or break technique to your garment at the last second. This was a very good learning experience, but I wonder if I'll use it again on this particular sweater.