It’s grey and damp here, which is pretty much perfect weather for keeping your head down and knitting. Oh hang on, who am I trying to kid? Any weather is just perfect for knitting in my book. This may be the only advantage of being the sort of person who feels cold year-round.
With sadness about the fatal fire at work, I confess that I’ve been craving mindless stitchery as a wee break from that crazy-but-monstrous crochet project. I needed to switch my brain off and work someone else’s pattern. So I returned – not for the first time – to my jumper-of-doom. This is a project that I started well over two years ago, just before beginning this blog. But having billed the blog as knitting and crochet for the home, all work on making clothes was paused. The poor jumper has languished in a corner of my bedroom for most of the time since then. In my defence, I should point out that it’s a s-l-o-w knit, worked in yarn thin enough for sock-knitting, and using waffle stitch. If you’ve not yet had the pleasure of waffle stitch, let’s just say that there’s a lot of flicking back and forth between knits and purls. It’s slow. Very slow.
I shouldn’t be mean about this jumper (transl. for non-UK: ‘sweater’). It’s a brilliant free pattern called Thermal. I chose it because all those yarny blobs are supposed to trap insulating air against your skin, which sounds very appealing in this chilly house. (Ice on the inside of windows has been known, although not during the ridiculously mild winter that we’re currently experiencing.)
The last time I showed you this jumper, I was labouring on its sleeves in an Escher-like parody:-
But now, I’m making some serious progress. It’s come even further since this photo was taken:-
This is a lesson in how not to make a jumper. As the knitting sat neglected, I got involved with other projects, and borrowed needles and stitch markers from this piece. A wise knitter, one with the forethought to realize that I might not be back on the job any time soon, would have made a note of the needle sizes when I removed them. But I am not a wise knitter. Let’s just call the wildly fluctuating gauge a design feature and move on, OK? Also, the first half was worked with wooden KnitPro Symfonies and the second half using carbon fibre KnitPro Karbonz: my rap sheet with the Knitting Police is starting to look bad.
I’ve written before about how, despite attentive swatching, this jumper was coming out way too baggy. It’s supposed to have negative ease, not hang like a curtain. Again, a wise knitter would merely have sighed, unravelled several tens of thousands of stitches, and started anew with unfailing dignity and patience, possibly comforting themselves with a cup of tea along the way. Pah, my dignity is lost somewhere in the bottom of my knitting bag amongst the scraps of yarn and the tape-measures. So I poured some wine and went for the scissors. And then I conducted some slightly manic sewing. I know it’s bad bloggy form to recycle content, but here’s a reminder of the carnage at the crime scene:-
Anyway, I seem to have got away with this cut-and-shut job. Let’s just call the bulky seam down my left side extra insulation, OK?
It’s nearly done. In a few days’ time, I shall be warm. Especially down the left side of my body. And I’m feeling sufficiently restored to get back to the crochet design craziness. Thank you for your patience.