FO: Willard Pullover


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Can you tell I’m very excited about my first ever sweater? I am so happy with how this turned out! It’s very warm + soft, fits a lot more nicely than I thought it would and I am so sad it’s already too warm in Lisbon to wear it.

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A couple of notes on this sweater:

a) The pattern is the Willard Pullover by Hannah Fettig;

b) The yarn is DROPS Lima in Rost (for the fair isle) and Off White for the rest;

c) Measure your upper arm circumference and see if it matches the one in the schematic. I completely failed to do this, and was about halfway through the first sleeve when I realized it would look huge on me. I ended up decreasing 10 stitches, but the end result didn’t look as nice as I would have like. If I were to do this again, I would have kept the same number of stitches but used a smaller needle;

d) Before blocking, the sleeves were fine, but it was really noticeable that they were much tighter than the body, so I blocked them quite aggressively;

e) I skipped 2 or 3 rows of ribbing on the sleeves simply because I like them a bit shorter;

f) I bound off both the sleeves and hemline using Jeny’s Surprisingly Stretchy Bind-Off. A regular cast-on was too tight on my waist, and it caused the sweater to bunch up and look awful;

g) Markers between decreases cause a slight hole that is very noticeable in light-coloured yarn:

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All in all, I’m pretty pleased! The colourwork isn’t perfect and there are teeny tiny bumps everywhere, but I really like it. It’ll be perfect for next Winter. Knitting top down is kind of addictive, and I see a whole lot sweater-knitting in my future.

P.S.: The Ravelry project page is here.

P.P.S.: Simply because I always find this very useful when deciding which size to cast-on and am looking at other projects on Ravelry: I have a 91cm bust circumference (~37 inches), and did the third size on the pattern (104.5 cm = 41 1/4 inches).

A few WIPs

Quick update to let you know what I’m working on at the moment — I’m finished with the body on the Willard Pullover and have knit the first sleeve. Hurray! I ended up redoing the hemline since I used a regular bind-off and hated how tight it was.

Ravelry project page.
Ravelry project page.
Ravelry project page.
Ravelry project page.

I actually knit the sleeve 1.5 times. I was working a 72-stitch sleeve, as my size required, but when I tried it on, it was way too big. So I decreased it to 62 stitches, and it fits much more nicely now.

Ravelry project page.
Ravelry project page.

There are a couple of structural problems with this sweater, though: the decreases on the sleeve are very noticeable, as are the places where I did increases in the yoke. And, as I’ve mentioned previously, the floats on the fair-isle bit are a bit too loose. However, I am chalking all this up to experience and this being my first sweater. It’s still very warm and soft, which is I what I wanted, and it will provide a welcome burst of colour in my other black-brown-burgundy Winter wardrobe. Perfect timing now that Spring has officially arrived.

I finished the first sleeve yesterday, groaned at the thought of having to knit the second one, and picked up my Cranberry socks to work on for a bit.

Ravelry project page.

I’m about halfway through the heel flap, and they’re looking super cozy. This is the second pair I’ve knit using Schoppel-Wolle’s Admiral 4-ply, so I know they’ll become very fuzzy and pill a bit after a day on your feet — it is very thick and warm, but I just wouldn’t recommend this yarn for cables or intricate patterns, as I think they would end up engulfed in fuzz.

Ravelry project page.
Ravelry project page.

On the reading front, I’ve put down Yasunari Kawabata’s Snow Country for a while. I’m reading this one in Portuguese, so I don’t know if it’s a translation issue or what, but I’m not feeling very gripped by the story. Or the characters. Or anything, really. So, I picked up Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire, by Amanda Foreman. I watched the movie adaptation of this biography a long, long time ago, but I was recently re-watching Marie Antoinette and was suddenly very curious about the friendship between these two women.

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This book marks a momentous occasion for me, because I’ve discovered that I can knit and read at the same time if I’m reading on my e-reader.

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My reading really has taken a toll ever since I took up knitting more seriously — which isn’t a bad thing, because that means I spend more time creating than consuming, but I have so many books I want to get to, and audiobooks sometimes just don’t work for every book I’m interested in. I’m already 50 pages into it and so far, it’s being very good. I’m very fickle about biographies — sometimes they’re great, narrative and interesting, and sometimes they’re like eating dry flour.

What about you? What are you working on? Have you read this book, or any other cool ones recently? Let me know in the comments below!

An Introduction?

Since this is my first post, I feel like I should write up a small introduction of who I am. But then again, eh. The tl;dr version — I’m 21, live in Portugal, love to knit, read and want to brag about the things I do on the Internet. For the last year I’ve been trying to lead a more sustainable and minimalist way of life.

That being being said, I’ve begun building my own wardrobe — no more acrylic sweaters from H&M that are super cold but still cost 40€, no sir! Up until this point in my life, I’ve mostly knit a bunch of socks, a lace cowl for my mom, a scarf for my boyfriend and a couple of hats for me. But I’ve been so scared of knitting sweaters. A month or two ago I was listening to the knit.fm podcast, and they mentioned that knitting top-down sweaters was the gateway to sweater knitting. And so it is! I cast on the Willard Pullover by Hannah Fettig about a week ago, and I am about halfway through knitting the body. This is my first sweater, as I’ve mentioned, but it was also the first time doing stranded colourwork, and also my first attempt at magic-looping something. After reading some comments on Ravelry that recommended keeping the floats super-duper-loose, I did so. They ended up a bit too loose, but I’m being very forgiving of myself, it being my first try at it and all.

So snuggly.
So snuggly. Ravelry project page.

I’m using DROPS Lima in the Off White colourway for the main colour and Rost for the contrast one. The yarn is very good, 65% wool and 35%. It’s very warm, has a bit of a halo, but isn’t super itchy. I’ve found that DROPS yarns are either great or horrible, so I’m happy with this one. It does, however, come all the way from Peru, and the very, very low price tag makes me squirm a bit — but it was the only one which ticked all the boxes (wool and alpaca blend, dk weight, being pretty).

DROPS Lima.
DROPS Lima.

I’m also working on a pair of simple socks for me. I’m using Schoppel-Wolle’s Admiral 4-ply in the burgundy colourway, bought at the lovely Retrosaria. These are simple socks with a *k3,p1* ribbing all along the leg and instep. I finished a pair a couple of weeks ago using the same pattern (but in dark green) and yarn for my boyfriend, and they were so warm I immediately cast-on a pair for myself. And then I abandoned them completely for the pullover. Socks are by far my favourite thing to knit — useful, gorgeous yarns and patterns, and quick! But I knit about 5 pairs in a row and then suffered a huge burn-out.

That little white thing in the cuff is an elastic thread I always knit together with the yarn (just so the socks stay up and don’t slip down to your ankles).