I am knitting. There are still days where I only manage a row or two, but there are also days where I knit quite a bit. I am torn between knitting and working upstairs, unpacking sewing and knitting stuff, and dreaming about more knitting and sewing. But I am knitting steadily, and hope to finish this sweater while the weather is still warm.
This photo was actually taken nearly 2 weeks ago. The piece is larger now, but doesn't really look any more like anything in particular than it does here. Basically I am knitting a summer tee, not particularly fitted, but not particularly loose either. The yarn is Habu Textiles, Tsumugi Silk, held double, in two shades of blue. The color numbers are 44 and 50.
I was basically inspired by this pattern, called Insouciant, by Julie Hoover, but I am not exactly following the pattern. I am using the same yarn, and I originally thought I would make the raglan sleeves, but my own mixed feelings about raglan sleeves are likely to mean that I am actually going to make it with set in sleeves, and a slightly less wide neckline. Because I can't therefore call my sweater insouciant, as I only used this pattern as a jumping off point, and because the colors remind me of the ocean, at least in some parts of the world, I am calling this sweater Stormy Seas. I suppose it is also a fitting name as my own feelings about exactly what I am making can also be called somewhat stormy.
As stated, I started with Julie Hoover's pattern, but I also took my yarn and gauge and my dream of how this sweater would fit and orderd a pattern through Amy Herzog's Custom Fit program. I figured it was worth a try as I needed to remeasure myself anyway, and I hoped that custom fit would give me a head start on the math that I knew would be necessary to before I could actually start knitting. I hoped I might learn something as well. In some ways the Custom Fit pattern, and what I would have done had I calculated the sweater myself, are very similar. I do have a few minor quibbles, a few things I would have done differently, but I am reserving my judgement until the sweater is finished. I think my quibbles are minor enough that the sweater will be lovely regardless, and as I said, I may learn something; those initial thoughts and reservations could be completely off base.
The original pattern (insouciant) calls for 4 to 6 inches of positive ease. That is more ease than I felt I wanted, and looking at the various photos of finished projects on Ravelry confirmed my bias. Therefore although I have a 38" bust, I am making a sweater that roughly corresponds to the 35" size, a size that yields a sweater measuring 39 1/2" at the bust. My final sweater will have slighty more ease through the waist and hips, again conforming to my own bias, that fit through the shoulders and upper torso is critical to the look of the sweater. The length of the sweater, and the armhole depth are the lengths I prefer, as calculated by the custom fit program, although I would have knit them to my own lengths regardless.
Custom Fit, which is designed to make the back smaller than the front, when ordered with my desired fit, produced a pattern that corresponds to making the smallest back (size 32) with a size 38 front, yielding a finished sweater that more or less conforms to the desired (35" size). This also corresponds to the sizes I would have chosen had I done the calculations myself. The methodology for the increases and decreases, and their spacing, is different for custom fit pattern than for Insouciant as written, which makes sense as they are aligned to my measurements.
Amy Herzog apparently does not believe raglan sleeve sweaters fit. I am inclined to agree. But as I stated earlier I am open to the idea of trying a raglan sleeve sweater eventually, and I therefore I diligently calculated how I would do the raglan shaping for my altered pattern. But the more I knit this sweater, the more I think I want a sweater with set in sleeves, a sweater I am more confident that I will like in the end. So it is becoming increasingly likely that my sweater will not look quite like the sweater pictured above. Of course the other advantage of following Amy Herzog's pattern is that I will actually have a better understanding of how her system works, how it differs from what I might have done, and whether I wish to use the service in the future. That sounds exciting. It also feels a little daring, given my recent history of producing less than thrilling knitted objects. But then again, I almost feel like every project is a gamble at the moment, and given the choice between knitting nothing or plowing ahead, I choose the latter.