Let there be much rejoicing: I have a Finished Object!

Pattern: Flicca, by Anna Bell

Size made: Small

Yarn used: RYC Soft Tweed, color 005 Twig, approximately 14.5 skeins

Needles used: US size 10.5/6.5 mm

Date started: September 28, 2008

Date finished: November 19, 2008

Mods:

  • Knit about 2 extra rows on collar before starting short rows; knit another 4 rows or so after completing short rows.
  • Lengthened the ribbed buttonbands to match the deeper collar
  • Knit longer in 3×1 rib than I should have (15″ instead of 12″) and knit the 2×1 rib section to 22″ instead of 24″.
  • Crocheted along the back neck and partway around the armholes for stability, rather than sewing in a ribbon
  • Made the sleeves narrower by starting with 2×1 rib instead of 3×1 rib.

Notes:

(heavy sigh.) Somehow I thought the size 10.5 needles would make this knit fly by, but it turned out to be a big slog of a sweater. It took me a month and a half, including some good long blocks of marathon knitting–this is much longer than average.

Late last night, I finished seaming it all up and weaving in the ends, put on the finished sweater, and had that terrible sinking feeling that comes from realizing you have spent a month and a half lovingly handcrafting a garment with all the figure-flattering qualities of an inflatable sumo wrestler costume or caribou suit.

In its favor, it is nice and warm, light for its size, and really cozy. I haven’t blocked it yet, partly because it won’t fit in the sink and I’m going to have to fill up the washing machine to soak it, and partly because the idea of cuddling up in it and wearing it to work all day today was so appealing. I’m assuming that the messy appearance of the ribbing will improve somewhat once I’ve blocked it.

Also, despite the instructions to the contrary in the pattern, and the prospect of carrying around a gigantic pile of knitting for longer than necessary, I think I should have modified this to be as seamless as possible: the fronts and back in one piece, the sleeves in the round, raglan decreases a la Craftoholic, and the buttonbands and collar all in one piece. The seams are so bulky in this yarn that they don’t hang nicely.

The shawl collar is knit separately from the front buttonbands and seamed to them at the base of the neckline, which is nice in the sense that you never have to deal with too many stitches on the needle at once, but the problem is that the collar keeps flipping over so the seams are visible (and they are right in the middle of the chest; you can see the collar seams quite clearly in these photos). Knitting the collar in halves and seaming along the back of the neck probably would have worked better.

Given the generous sizing, I’m glad I didn’t buy toggles or buttons to fasten the front. I think the most attractive solution for keeping it closed may be to sew a button to the side, just under the bust (where I’m holding the edge in the photos) and crochet a little button loop on the opposite front.

Anyway, I’m DONE! Finally! And that means I’ve completed half my goals for NaKniSweMo (National Knit a Sweater Month: I’m knitting along with the Stash and Burn groupies) and now I just have to finish one more sweater in November. Easy, right? I just have to pick something the size of a normal sweater rather than the size of a queen-size duvet.

More gory details about exactly how long each piece took me and how much yarn I used for each piece are on my Ravelry project page.