Well folks, I’ve blocked the Epaulet sweater, and, just as I thought, the sleeves grew. I knew this was going to happen, so it’s not that big of a deal, and really, they were a touch longer than I would have liked anyway. So I took out a few inches, and am in the process of working an I-cord cast off. (I’m doing that blip-less version that I always thought was more trouble than it was worth — still do a little.)
However, the body grew too, which is exactly what I’d hoped it would do. It’s a little bit more of a coat length, though still a touch short for a coat. That’s fine, it wasn’t intended to be a coat, but, if it were to end up a coat, I wouldn’t be terribly upset. I am really thinking of knitted coats now, which is a shame, because there are none in KW. The reason for this potentially being a coat is namely it’s density. It’s a pretty thick piece of knitting, more so than I usually enjoy, which means it’ll make a great fall sort of coat. I may put a soft lining in it one of these days, but that’s sort of filed under the category of maybe now, maybe never. (The sleeves are a touch scratchy, just saying.) It still needs to have the I-cord finished, pockets put in, and buttons sewn on, but really, that’s a few days of work if I can knucke down and do them, which I’ll do, but really, I’m mentally done with this one, it’s been on the needles forever and I’m not particularly fond of it. And it’s not particuallarly form fitting, which means that it’s really not my favorite sort of knit. I like em’ tight, what can I say.
It wasn’t really fun to knit either. The shaping at the top is really the only interesting part of it, but that’s over pretty quick. I remember thinking that it would be hard and difficult to knit, but it wasn’t at all. The directions are really easy to follow, and there is a pretty good drawing. This is one of the things I hate most about top-down knitting, all the excitement comes at the top, and then you’ve got miles and miles of boring knitting before your done. (You also finish with the sweater hanging off of three DPNs, which is a slippery and dangerous business. )
However, in the knitting of this sweater, I also noticed one of the other great things about top-down knitting — the thing where you can use up all your yarn. That was nice, though I’ll still have a bit leftover. (The bit could be added on to the bottom of the sweater, but I refuse to take out the I-cord and fix it.
This is actually the first top-down sweater I’ve knit that I will actually wear in public. I’d done it twice before, no pattern with just a vague idea of how it works. (This may be related to my hatred of it.) The first time I ended up with a dense, but tight sweater. (That may also have been the yarn I was using — a cheap grey acrylic.) The second time, I was again using a cheap acrylic, and stripes, and while I ended up with a wearable sweater, it was ugly and made me look like I was the winner at the Medina County pie eating contest. (And that I’d been practicing for a while.) But now I’ve got a wearable sweater. Amazing what happens when you use a pattern for when knitting something you have no idea what you’re doing.
I’ve also started swatching for the next project. This’ll be a Gansey, which is mostly because I hate knitting Ganseys, and I want to get it over with. This one, even just in the early stages, seems to be a little bit better than the last one, but that it’s saying much. (It just seems more co-operative, whereas the last one fought me tooth and nail, from swatch to the final button band, months later.) However, I don’t know if it’s the 16 inch needle, or the cotton, but this is a touch hard on the wrists. So I’m not working on it a ton, and this will certainly have to be one of those that I temper with something else.
You can’t really see the patter too well here, but that doesn’t mean that it’s not there. It’s Mrs.LaidLaw’s pattern, and while she tells you how to knit the sweater in KW, she doesn’t give you the pattern. She tells you it’s in another book, but I’m not about ready to spend 30 dollars to buy a book, to knit a pattern that I’m not crazy about in the first place. I would have ignored it, but as it turns out, the pattern is in Knit One Knit All. So, I guess I’m stuck with it. Ah well, it’s a lot more fun than I thought that it would be, so maybe, just maybe I won’t hate every second of this next Gansey. Here’s hoping.