It’s February and winter has decided to descend like a vengeance on my house. I dislike being cold and I have several new knitting projects that I’m excited about. Alas, they are months away from completion, which means that I have no me made sweaters to ward against the cold. Well, except the mostly finished cardigan that I abandoned last March in a fit of pique over the sleeves. So in the spirit of clearing out UnFinished Objects (UFOs) from my crafting headspace, I decided to pick up the sweater again and fix the problems that made me put it down in the first place.
Right now I have two sleeves in and just need to finish out the front edge ribbing to have something useful and warm. Wait, that’s a lie. I have one good sleeve and one bad sleeve that will be ripped out and reknit in the next week or so. Can you tell which one?
Yeah, so that left sleeve is really, really tight. And stretched out. And just generally a no. This is definitely the downside of the plethora of patterns available on Ravelry. Some are great, some are awful, and I don’t have the skillset yet to figure out how to tell the two apart. You would think that with each pattern page having links to completed projects that more information would be available, but loads of Ravelry denizens choose to put little or no information on their project pages. It’s weird because the website is an amazing resource overall, but for individual patterns there tends to be less user feedback than is available for sewing enthusiasts on Pattern Review. In the time since I’ve started this project, a couple of people have noted that the sleeves run small, but frankly, as written, they’re a mess. I don’t really like to say that because hey, this pattern is from an indy designer and I shouldn’t expect perfection. But is it really unreasonable to have sleeves big enough to fill in the entire armscye?
Well, as you can see, I guess so. I won’t even pretend to know much about knitting and what goes into creating a good pattern, but I do know how clothing should be put together, and a sleeve circumference should not be smaller than the armscye into which it is set. The left sleeve is 48 stitches picked up, which was too few stitches to work with. I usually aim for a 2:3 ratio of stitches picked up to the edge being picked up, but to make this work, I had one stitch to every 2 along the edge and in spots one stitch to every 3, hence the holes where you can see my skin underneath. I bought a book on knitting top down sweaters with useful charts and measurements and then figured out that I needed 60 stitches for my arm to fit. Lo and behold, it was also an appropriate number for picking up the stitches of the armscye and hence, we get the right sleeve, which doesn’t look like an overstuffed sausage casing. Also, the reference book had a better sleeve cap shape, but I count that as just a bonus.
Anyways, it’s nice to see the end in sight for a project that I should have finished last year, and I’m hoping to take that momentum into a coat I started over 3 years ago that’s over halfway complete. I would not hold my breath on that one, though.