Friday, October 2, 2009

Something is Very Red

While it may seem as if I have been knitting up another garment every few days, that is not entirely the case. As I have mentioned previously on this blog, I am usually a monogamous knitter. My MO is having one project that is somewhat challenging or large, and one that is easy and portable. I uncharacteristically got too many (for me) projects going and suddenly felt the need to finish them all up. It was time. Some just needed a few finishing touches. The red cardigan, which gave me a few fits, just needed the button band and a button. I knitted that button band 3 times and I'm still not entirely happy with it. The button, which was strategically placed to "lock and load the girls" doesn't do the job. I know how to sew on a button properly and to make a non-shank button have a bit of a shank, but it doesn't hold up to activity. It may need to be moved down about 2 inches. So this part may go back to the frog pond (just the band, mind you), which will be tricky because I have already woven in the ends. Sigh.

The pattern is Wendy Bernard's Something Red, which I purchased on Ravelry. The pattern seems very similar to Mr. Green Jeans, a free pattern on Knitty. I debated between the two and now I wonder if I would have liked Green Jeans better (and not just because it is free). My other main concern about Something Red are the sleeves. Quite a few folks on Ravelry said they did not make the sleeves so deep. I wish I had heeded that advice. Although the sweater isn't uncomfortable, there is a lot of extra ease around the underarms and it looks a bit messy. The extra depth also made the lower part of the sleeves very wide so I had to knit them twice.
Need I mention that YO's on a top down raglan scream "handmade" from the rooftops? Note to self: next time Make 1's.

I also have a bit of an issue when a pattern says "pick up x number of stitches for the button band." It is unlikely that every knitter is going to have the same number of rows on the sweater since torso length varies on humans. I use the ratio of 3 pick ups for every 4 stitches, which is what I learned from Elizabeth Zimmermann who mostly did garter stitch borders. Looking at the photos I realize that something DEFINITELY has to be done with that button band. It really looks sloppy at the bottom. I tried unsuccessfully to hide it with a basket but I suppose it is impractical to try to carry an object in front of me all the time. That would be too weird. Upon further reflection I think the problem is not the ratio of stitches that were picked up along the edge but the fact that the ribbing on the band naturally pulls in. I'm not sure I can fix that and keep the ribbed band. A garter stitch band would behave better but there is no other garter stitch on this sweater. Garter stitch, although my favorite for a band, doesn't seem like the best solution.
I would love to hear your suggestions.


KPiep said...

Wish I had suggestions, but I'm afraid I'm not the greatest help when it comes to sweaters.

It does look nice in the pictures, though!

Ann said...

omg. I too am torn between the two and was just about to start something red. Green it is. Sorry about yours:(

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