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Five Things: The Nay Sweater

Five Things: The Nay Sweater
April 30, 2014 Mary Jo


Ah yes.  We have arrived at number three of Five Things:  Finished Objects.  Let’s begin.


I’ve called it The Nay Sweater (as opposed to yesterday’s Yea Sweater) because its incarnation here is a short one.  I shall be frogging it soon (ripping it out for you crazy non-knitters) and crafting something entirely new with it.


Others may refer to the sweater pattern as the Solstice Cardigan by Cecily Glowik MacDonald.  Aptly named, the soft hue of the Quince and Co. yarn is a dead-ringer for the lovely light cast in a December sky moments before a snowstorm hits.

As I celebrate both Solstice and that enigmatic purple hue, the pattern was a great fit for me:  I put the yarn on my Christmas list several years ago, received it, began the project, then threw it into a knitting black hole.  This past winter prompted a retrieval of such projects, and it was with great excitement and anticipation that I lent an arm to this WIP and made it a priority.


What a lovely collection of stitches it has – twisted stockinette, seed, regular stockinette, a faux cable.  I remember how the complexity of it boggled my not-very-experienced knitting mind when first I began to knit it years ago.  (January 29, 2011 I see, back when I still updated my Ravelry projects.)  I had to rip some of it out to get back to a point where I could continue without error as I picked it up again this Winter.


But I stuck with it and, much faster than I would have anticipated, I completed it some undisclosed time after mentioning it here.

It had all the makings of a wardrobe staple, this sweater.  Perfect color, perfect warm-layering-tool, perfect identity-boosting handmade gem.


It’s just a shame that I made it for someone else’s body, someone far smaller than me.  A weird bunching in the armpit area, the refusal of the collar to lay right, even after modifying it  — disassembling the collar seam and the gratuitous addition of buttons (great ones, too) — all were incontrovertible evidence that the sweater can not remain as it is.  I had too much invested in it to not be able to wear it and wearing it as such would make me look like a clown.

So, to be clear, great lovely pattern and yarn, foolish newbie-knitter with careless abandon when selecting the proper size.  Wanting never to fall into this pit again (of despair), I’ve turned my attention to a few resources for proper measuring and size selection:  Knit to Flatter by Amy Herzog, which I’ve only slightly dabbled in, and Little Red in the City, by Ysolda Teague, which I’m heartbroken to find my library does not own.  Can anyone vouch for this one?  I’m hesitant to jump in without having it vetted, though I did pull the trigger on this sweater pattern, which I’m hoping will be a good introduction to the concept of Proper Fitting Knitting.  Hee.

As for this particular yarn re-imagined, I’ve got my eye on hacking something like this sweater which is a h-u-g-e mental leap, given that it’s exactly the same color.  Snort. Why not just re-knit the Solstice in a more reasonable size, you ask?  Pilling.  I’ve reached the (inevitable) point in my fiber palette maturity of realizing that softer does not always equal better.  This Quince yarn is milled from sheep who eat clouds (so, so soft) and hence is not appropriate for the friction-absorbing workhorse sweater I’d like to wear most days of the week, unless I’d like that sweater to look like I wear it most days of the week.  Follow me?  A stunning revelation, this fiber palette maturity, which coincidentally seems in sync with my beer palette maturity, just recently informed that IPAs are the new Brown Ale.  For me.

A thrilling series, this Five Things: Finished Objects.  Catch them all here:

Tunic Time

Tunic Time


Solstice Garb

The Nay Sweater

The Nay Sweater

The Yea Sweater

The Yea Sweater


The Epic Winter Quilt

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