Wednesday, April 13, 2011

striped sweater: the beginnings of a new pattern

i'm starting a new pattern. even though i've had bad luck ever finishing a pullover that doesn't require stickman arms to wear, i'm going to actually create a pattern. it's easy though because 1) it doesn't have sleeves, and 2) it's boxy so it has no shaping.

i've been really wanting a striped sweater, but the one i already started is made from alpaca and is long sleeved. i need something to wear NOW. and i happened to come across this madewell sweater, and it's the perfect inspiration. and i can knit this up for $35, instead of $125.

i carefully looked everywhere for the perfect yarn. i debated cotton/silk blend for the summertime, and ended up going with 100% cotton, simply cotton worsted yarn from knitpicks, in prussian heather (which is much darker in person than on the site) and camel heather. i really want a luxurious feeling yarn with an incredible drape. i went with this one because of the amazing reviews, beautiful drape after searching for finished project photos on ravelry, and it's worsted weight. oh, and the price is pretty great.



while i was waiting on my yarn to arrive, i sketched out some diagrams, looked up comparable yardages, and researched hems and collar finishes. yesterday, the yarn finally arrived, and because i promised my co-worker/friend, bobbi (who is a much better knitter than me) that i would be VERY DILIGENT in my making my swatch, i've swatched up the yarn here in size 8 and 9 needles. leaning more towards the 9s.



i thought i was ALL set to start on this thing, but now bobbi is making me block this before starting. after reading up on the science of swatching, i'm now committed. i'm not letting this thing hang from a hanger for 2 days though. when it's dry, i'm gauging it. more to come soon!

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12 comments:

April said...

How cool! I love making my own things, but I have no patience for knit and crochet - I think I'm too intense because my hands cramp up after a few rows, haha! But I have great respect for those of you who can. :) Looking forward to seeing the finished product :)

Ashley said...

Thanks for that link! I'm such a bad little swatcher, but I envy designers who are diligent enough to make little swatches and hang on to them//post them in their design books.

Someday...

In the meantime, I shall read about that science of swatches :) How is that yarn, by the way? I'm looking to experiment more with cottons.

Nikki said...

I love that madewell sweater. Can't wait to see what the finished product looks like.

My Mom taught me to knit once, and then I got lice and we had to put everything (including what I was knitting) into plastic bags for a month. I never picked the needles back up. Gross I know ;)

acommonthread said...

@april - yeah, i think it takes a while before your hands develop some muscle memory and relax a little. it's definitely addicting once you make it over that!

@ashley - yes, i envy them too. i think i'll be ripping out my swatch as soon as i figure it all out though! i live in NYC i've got no place for swatch books!

@nikki - that is hilarious...i was so not expecting that. you probably have the best excuse for not knitting, ever.

acommonthread said...

@ashley - oh! just saw your question about the yarn. so far, i am loving it! i've only knit up the wee little swatch, but it's sooo velvety. it almost feels like a luxurious wool. so far so good....

heather yalin said...

ooh, i can't wait to see the finished project!

Evelyn and Flora said...

Kudos to you for starting a new design! I've always wanted to design my own patterns but i honestly have no idea how to create a pattern,haha. I just love knitpicks yarn and that color you picked is gorgeous! I can't wait to see how it all turns out :)

Blace said...

love this yarn color. thank you for your comments on my blog. i love yours...will follow.

kayemkay said...

Wow. I had no clue there were so many steps to knitting.
Can't wait to see the finished product. :)

LatteLisa said...

Thank you for visiting my blog and commenting. I'll definitely follow yours because it's on my plan to take up knitting. One day I will ;-)

Emma said...

Oh, I hope you'll share the pattern with us when you're done! I absolutely love the look of this. WIll it be knit in two pieces, or in the round up to the shoulders?

acommonthread said...

@Emma - absolutely. i'm *almost* finished now, so i'll be posting it within a week or so. it's knit in the round up to the arms, then flat.