Saturday, November 22

my first knitted design

This summer I got a hankering for a knitted t-shirt. Not the Hanes type, more the skater type, wool with short sleeves worn over something with longer sleeves. I already had a pink sweater tee, a vintage thing bought at a thrift store, which I liked to wear under a cardigan on really cold days.

The problem was that I couldn't find the right pattern. I had decided to use one of the giant balls of yarn that I got in Denmark (and of course there wasn't that much of it) and I also wanted it to look slightly feminine and fashionable. Nothing was out there for the weight of yarn, yardage and style of my sweater. And so I decided to design one myself. The yarn was a DK or worsted (though listed as fingering in Ravelry), and I made a swatch of various lace designs from Barbara Walker, hoping the yarn would tell me what to do. There were weird color gradations in the swatch that I hadn't anticipated, and when I washed it it softened and bloomed considerably. I decided on a top down pattern, so I could try it on while I knit, and an all over lace design.

When I wound the yarn on Tony's winder, I discovered that I had about half the yardage that I thought I did (the label only told me the weight), which meant that I needed something else to fill out my sweater, since I didn't want a cropped T. This led me on a bit of a search, and I finally settled on some naturally dyed yarn from the Hope Spinnery, which I bought back when I visited the shop in August. And then I cast on and knit.

It actually wasn't so hard to knit, once I'd figured out my measurements and what direction I was going in. I added short rows on the back and on the sleeves to make the whole thing sit a little more comfortably. At one point I thought I'd run out of yarn mid-torso and have an overly wide lavender band at the bottom, but that didn't happen. I also added a partial trellis and pear pattern down the side, to both add a little extra interest and to hide where the two sides meet up. Overall, I'm very happy with the result. I realize that the yarn is a little funky, but oh well. I like it, and it reminds me of my trips to Denmark and Maine, and that makes me happy. (I was actually with my friend Laura when I bought both, and so the sweater reminds me of her, too.)

I'm already getting a lot of use out of it. It's exactly what I wanted.


meg said...

yay, it's beautiful! The trellis pattern is brilliant.

Anonymous said...

This is a wonderful garment through and through! Great going!

A Walsh said...

me love!

Lauren said...

Beautiful job and congrats on doing it without a pattern - that's always so satisfying! I love the little trellis and pear down the side...

I've been thinking about a short-sleeved knit for the last few months, too, but I'll bet that desire will fade as it continues being cold!

Mary Jane said...

It is beautiful! I love the 2 colors. It is so much daintier than I thought it would be. I love it!