Experimental knitting

What the hell is experimental about knitting?  It’s a pullover for heavens sake.  Ooh wacky.

Ah, but look a bit deeper.  It’s a top down, set in sleeve knit simultaneously sweater.  Wha?  Splain it to me Lucy.

Well I was faced with a bit more time off than I expected due to a VERY unfortunate sickness I picked up in my travels.  It was so unfortunate that I went to the doctor for some massive drugs to set myself right.  Modern medicine worked, so knitting happened.

When I felt well enough, I picked up my Knitting From the Top and while leafing through saw the top down set in sleeve chapters and thought I’d go for it.  I’d done top town raglan cardies, pullovers, hats and socks but never a set in sleeve from the top town.  Interesting.

KFTT is a must have in my opinion if you’re a sweater knitting person.  My problem with the book is that you’re constantly flipping to other chapters  because the directions are more anecdotal than logically linear.  These are not blind follower instructions.  So I read the chapters through, used many bookmarks and made notes (that’s a first) and began.  I unravelled a UFO in garage storage in a nice chunky weight for instant bang for my knitting buck.  Luckily it’s a nice soft cormo that I think my sister and dyed up ages ago and am now putting to a proper use.  You know I love cormo.  I knit up a big swatch and made my calculations.

My progress has been swift (thanks to 3.5 st/inch) and there really is no better way to understand this top down process than to just do it.  You start at the shoulder with an invisible cast on and do short rows.  The sleeves are picked up after 1/3 of the armhole has been knit and then you continue on from there in the usual top down fashion.

My aesthetic plan for this sweater is pretty modest.  I want it to end up as a big comfy sweater that can be worn in place of a sweatshirt.  No fancy patterns or geegaws, just stockinette with ribbing at the end.  A good rustic sweater that will get used.  That’s the plan at this point.

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11 responses

  1. Oooh – that’s been on my to do list for a while, as I am not a huge fan of how raglans look on me. I’m looking forward to seeing how it works out for you!

  2. I entirely agree about Walker’s book … it’s fantastic and I wouldn’t want to do without it … but it’s not as easy to use as it could be because of all the chapter-jumping.

    Worth it, though! Your sweater’s looking just FINE … which is how I hope you’ll be feeling any day now.

  3. KFTT is the book I used when I made my DH’s sweater, lovingly nicknamed the “Sweater from H@#$”. Barbara Walker’s instructions are very good – my following of them and putting it all together left something to be desired. However, it ultimately was a successful sweater and one that I learned a lot from. And as it was my very first knitted sweater ever, I’m glad I persevered! Yours looks great!

  4. I love that book, although I haven’t used it as much as I’d like, I’ve had chances to pick and choose from different techniques here and there.

    You’ve reminded me that I’ve been wanting to knit myself a big, comfy sweater for a while now. Considering the luck I’ve had recently with my other knitting, I think this might be the answer to my current problems.

    Gorgeous color. What yarn?

  5. Sorry to hear that you’re under the weather. I’m battling the sinus infection from hell myself & all the drugs in the world aren’t enough for me to consider knitting. I’ve got the BW book, but never studied it. I’ll have to do so once this throb dies down.

  6. Agree with you wholeheartedly about that book being a “must have” (and about the non-linear instructions!). It’s good to see how the simultaneous set-in-sleeve looks in-person rather than just a line drawing and it does seem to be turning out nicely.

    I hope you feel better soon (if you aren’t already).

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