Pattern: Little Majolica from Interweave Knits Fall 2006. I was aiming for the smallest size, but because of the gauge difference in the yarn that I used, I followed the instructions for the middle size.
Yarn: Moda Vera 100% Merinos Fine, 3 balls of pale green and 3 balls of deep brown.
Needles: 3.00mm (neckband), 3.25mm (hem and cuffs), 4.00mm (body and sleeves).
More photos on flickr.
If you’re making this, check the errata. There’s supposed to be an extra row that’s not included in the original chart. I realised this when comparing my knitting (after I finished the back) with the photo in the magazine. But I decided that it doesn’t look too different, and that it’s not worth ripping back.
In the middle of making this, I started worrying that I would run out of the brown yarn. When I bought the yarn, I wasn’t planning on making this particular project, I was going to make a scarf, so I only bought 3 balls. The pattern specifies 3 balls of each colour, although that was written for a bulkier yarn. Still, Annette is petite, and it would still work out, I thought. By the time I got halfway through the second sleeve, I only had half a ball of the brown yarn left! There’s no way I had enough to finish the sleeve AND the neck band. This yarn had been discontinued at Spotlight, and there were no more left in store. So I contacted Becky-Dee, who had mentioned to me that she had several balls of the brown yarn left over from another project, and we agreed to do a swap. In the meantime I kept knitting with the yarn that I had left, and you wouldn’t believe this, turned out I DO have enough yarn. (!!) With about a couple of metres left over. Oh well! Better to have too much yarn than to run out I guess! At least now I can still make a scarf as Becky-Dee sent me 3.5 balls of the yarn 🙂
Some thoughts on this project:
— Colourwork / fair isle is not really that difficult. It is slower for me, because I can’t get the hang of holding a colour of yarn in each hand (which is the way to go to knit fast with colourwork). I can only ever hold the yarn in my left hand, so I pick up and drop the yarn strands as I need them. But after a while I got used to it and I got a little faster. And I tried to keep my tension even, “tried” being the operative word 🙂 My knitting is not that neat! But thankfully, the magic of blocking covers over a multitude of wonkiness 🙂
— I’ve worked out that I don’t hate seaming. It’s actually quite nice to see the project coming together. But oh I hate weaving the ends in!
— Having said that, seaming this thing was hard work. You see, this sweater/jumper is made up of colourwork pieces knitted flat, and when I knit colourwork flat (as opposed to in the round) my edges get a bit… messy, with two strands of colours being carried around the selvages. At first I tried to work the seams one stitch in, as I usually do, but it turned out that this made a very loose seam, and you can see holes through the seam. Not good! So I had to do the seams two stitches in, and that seems to do the trick.
Overall, I love the result. Hopefully it will still fit Annette next winter. Colourwork looks great, but I’m not sure if it’s really for me… I guess it’s good to get it out of my system. I would still consider knitting colourwork in the round though (as I did enjoy knitting these), something I don’t have to seam. I like the look of this and these. Perhaps even steeking someday, dare I say? Well that’s for another day… 🙂