Sunday, October 19, 2008

attack of the cardigan

I rarely have a true knitting disaster, which I guess is lucky, although I like to think that I'm just good at being careful. I also usually enjoy salvaging portions of an unlikeable project, and long time readers will remember my penchant for dismembering fair isle sweaters and then using their guts for smaller fair isle projects.

In fact, the more I think about it, the more I think that this might be the first time that I've knitted something as large as a sweater that was so awful, so truly bad, that if the yarn was any less special, this whole thing would be in the dump.

And so, meet my Tangled Yoke Cardigan.

The back story is that I acquired 8 skeins of wool, marked only with "4 ply" and "Color: Hathor". The gauge and yardage was equal to Rowan Felted Tweed, and I thought this would be a great time to use up this yarn on a Tangled Yoke Cardigan.

Now, if you read any of my earlier posts, you'll see that a lot of the time, I drastically alter patterns. This is because I am shaped funny, like all of us in the world. I am usually in between sizes, and also like to work with less ease than what is usually called for. For some reason, none of these facts occured to me when I started working on this cardigan. This is perhaps due to the fact that I was on massive amounts of antibiotics, decongestants, and over the counter sinus relievers for the entire time that I was working on this sweater. Or, it is just because sometimes I do silly, silly things.

So, I didn't alter the pattern. I didn't bother to make sure that those sleeves were actually going to be a good size for me, and when the neck came out looking rather large, I still didn't stop. In fact, I didn't stop until after I had knitted the ugly neck border (my yarn was too thin for the project, really, it looks fine in the photo and other people's cardigans), after I had finished picking up the gazillions of stitches and knitted the button bands, and after I had woven in every single end.

In other words, I actually blocked this disastrous thing and tried it on before realizing that at some point in the past few weeks, I had totally lost my mind. Maybe it doesn't look so awful on the table, but trust me, it is bad.

Depression. The cardigan has been resigned to a spare cardboard box. I need some cooling off time before I can frog this thing. I was recently encouraged to try my hand at designing, and the yarn from this might be turned into something that I'll actually make (and maybe not screw up) myself. At the moment, though, we're both in time out.

Lessons learned:

1. Just because the sweater looks lovely on the model, does not mean that I am the model and have the same measurements as her.

2. Don't substitute a non-felted tweed yarn for Rowan Felted Tweed. It will just be too thin, even if the gauge appears to be the same.

3. Friends don't let friends knit when they're taking prescription cold medicine.

Oh, and P.S. To add insult to injury, this sweater is so ornery that the color won't even be photographed. The second picture is the most accurate, although I think it's still a little more purple in color.

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Blogger Knitting Painter Woman said...

Please accept my condolences. For what it's worth, I'm about to frog sleeves and neck of a beautiful cashmerino aran sweater I knit for my son. Problem: Didn't realize that the shoulders dropped at least 4 inches into the arm area... so this looks like it was knit for a gorilla. And not until too late, did he say he wanted the neck loose. pffffffffffffb.

4:23 PM  
Anonymous knittingtx said...

How very discouraging. I have definitely ignored that little internal voice I like to think of as my knitter's intuition and have then dealt with similar disasters. At least in knitting, unlike in life, it's usually fixable in some way or another. Sigh.

4:38 PM  

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