A Tale of Two Sweaters
...and two sisters who knit (one of them is knitorious). ; )
My sister Sharon bought a kit to knit a sweater for our mother for Christmas about 10-15 years ago. I don't know the pattern name or who designed it, but perhaps it is in her archives somewhere and I can come up with it -- or perhaps one of you will recognize it. You know, I don't think Sharon ever knit a dishcloth or a scarf or even a simple cardigan or pullover -- it seems like she picked up the needles and started to knit a tour de force (or three) right from the start. Besides the cardigan modeled above, she knit one with navy blue wool cables sprinkled with multi-colored intarsia chenille leaves, and a cotton intarsia fruit cardigan, and started an incredibly complicated wool and chenille smoking jacket before putting down the needles -- despite my frequent urging to take them up again, they've been down for a while now and there's been talk of giving me her (vintage) stash.
There was a lot of yarn left over from the kit -- one full skein of each color of the lovely Donegal Tweed, plus a few extra, small balls. One thinks that there may have been a mistake in the original kitting-up. She no doubt made one of the largest sizes -- and still, a lot of extra. She does knit quite tightly -- the intarsia areas, in particular, feel almost as if they're woven and there is no give in the knitting whatsoever, plus there's been a little felting, which is a good thing, in a way, because otherwise this sweater would be incredibly huge and the sleeves, already too long and rolled up, would hang to my ankles.
Over the years, the left-over yarn traveled from Wisconsin to New Mexico to Ohio to Kansas and back to Wisconsin -- it was good yarn! -- and it eventually came into my possession where it continued marinating in the living room. Then Alexandra Virgiel had a pattern called Fibonacci published in Magknits, and I knew I had a project for that yarn! Reading about the Fibonacci sequence in The DaVinci Code was one of the tidbits that stuck with me from the book, and the idea of a Fibonacci-inspired sweater just tickled my fancy.
A top-down raglan on circular needles, however, did not tickle me at all! I did some swatching, and figuring, and charted the colors and sequence and row count using an Excel worksheet, and cobbled together this and that from that and this, and, voila!, with a lot of wishful thinking and spurred by curiosity, I set out to knit a cardigan in pieces. It was love from the first -- beautiful yarn, gorgeous inspiration, color and pattern...
Pattern: My own, a cobbled-together cardigan in pieces, with indispensible inspiration by Alexandra Virgiel's "Fibonacci."
Yarn: Seven hanks of Donegal Tweed (one in each color) plus a very small ball of nearly every color. Colors: 801 (Tan), 802 (Gold), 803 (Bright Green), 840 (Dark Red), 880 (Rust), 893 (Orange), and 894 (Dark Green). I have a small bit of every color left except for the dark green.
Needles: US 8.
I splurged on the buttons -- they were $5 or $6 each -- but they're so perfect for this sweater, and I got the yarn for free!
Started April 7, 2006; finished September 9, 2006.
I will, forevermore, look at leftovers and oddballs from a slightly different perspective -- one that's more full with possibility.