Hi, all! Did you miss me? I had to take an impromptu break from the blog for my own sanity and yours. The stress level around here has just been skyrocketing, and not just because the wedding is in *glup* five weeks. I did not tell you when it happened because it all happened so fast, but I got a promotion at work. I have been a full time employee in one department for a few weeks and I've got to say that I have not gotten nearly as much knitting done as I did when I was a part-time employee for three. But I did finish something this week, and so I have scurried back to give you all pictures and the gory gory details.
Right up front I want to say that Allyson Dykhuizen is an excellent pattern writer and that Umbre Lovre was a joy to knit. Any temper-tantrum that I threw during the knitting of this sweater was completely due to user error -- I can say that now that I know it is still wearable.
If you know of this pattern then you have seen the beautifully stylized photos from Holla Knits. The model looks smashing in her white pants and tastefully oversized top. In reality, this is how it looks on me:
I knew going in to this that I'm not a big fan of positive ease. I like sweater dresses and tunics, but they are usually zero ease or have some waist shaping to them. When I first finished knitting, I threw on the top in a fit of enthusiasm only to realize that I looked like I was wearing a nicely knitted potato sack. At this point I may have had a slight explosion. Ok, maybe not so slight. I ended up yelling at Chris about something completely ridiculous and then sat mournfully staring at my knitting, trying not to cry. I actually tweeted Allyson who reminded me that blocking makes fabric look so much better, and she, of course, was totally right.
I am actually surprised that this ended up such a lovely garment. See, I knit the size 36, which is 6 inches of positive ease on top of that 36 inch bust. Well, and this might not be ladylike to divulge, when last I measured I am a 35. And it seems like that one extra inch may have made a significant difference. Now that I know this, if I was to ever knit this again I would knit the size 32 and just have less blousy top.
Another mistake I made was to start the armholes way too early. Like halfway through the garment early. This may have accounted for most of the yelling and crying about how I was going to wear this on my honeymoon and I spent so much time knitting it and why doesn't anything turn out right anymore? But after blocking I took some yarn and seamed them up to a more suitable depth. This created some interesting pleats on the side, but with a belt you can barely even tell.
On the whole I am really proud of this top. It is the first striped garment I have ever knit and I did enjoy pulling out multiple balls of yarn to shock the guys at work. I am still planning to take it on the honeymoon, but it has also become top contender for rehearsal dinner outfit. I think belted with a black skirt and flats it will look really nice. The jeans obviously did not work out so well, but I also think it would make a great hippy-esque outfit with some leggings for days when I just cannot bear to wear another tshirt.
For more FOs, go check out the group over at Tami's Amis!