The Sweater I Never Intended to Knit

Where have I been? Not quite sure, but I have a new project to show off:

Garter Yoke Cardigan, from the Winter 2008 Knit.1 magazine.

I had absolutely no intention of knitting this sweater, but now I’m almost halfway done with the body (that picture’s from last week). To explain how I broke so radically with form, we need to go back to the last day of Fall semester.

I had gone yarn shopping. After all the stress and sleep deprivation of the semester, I had about enough emotional energy to lie in a dark room with a rosewater compress over my eyes, but I felt the need to celebrate my new-found freedom.

Instead of going to my usual yarn shop, I went to the one in the next town up. Slightly pricier, it seemed like a better choice for a semester’s-end treat. The trip started out OK: I browsed, finding some special skeins. Then decided to ask what I thought was an innocent question: how does Merino Kind wash?

I should’ve realized my error when they fetched The Owner. I explained what kind of sweater I wanted–an EZ cardigan with just a little bit of Fair Isle about the yoke. She assured me Merino Kind washed beautifully, and even showed me a sample sweater. And then I asked about colors–meaning “I have a thing for brown–could you special order some?”–The Owner matter-of-factly informed me that brown was not my color. This nice purple, however, would look lovely on you. And then she began to put together a color scheme for me.

In the time it took me to 1) get over the shock of being told that the color of half my wardrobe was “not my color” and 2) realize that this yarn was far too smooth for the steeked cardigan I’d wanted, I had enough purple to knit a sweater, plus coordinating jewel tones for the yoke. All my critical thinking skills (not to mention the will to resist) having been exhausted days before. You’ve seen the result:

Afterwards, I couldn’t convince myself that I’d ever be caught dead in a purple fair isle cardigan (dim memories of the 80’s haunted me), and I spent the next week wondering how I could possibly relegate a sweater’s worth of jewel-tone yarn to the depths of my stash and still be able to show my face in this yarn store again.

It didn’t seem possible until Christmas day, when I found the newest Knit.1 in my stocking. The Garter Yoke Cardigan had a classic shape, it didn’t have seams, and it was knit out of a yarn in a comparable weight to Merino Kind. That’s all I needed to convince me to cast on.

I’m still a little unsure of how this sweater will coordinate with all the brown and other earth tones in my wardrobe. However, I am determined to finish it by the end of this week. The yarn store’s a good one, and I want to be able to show my face there again.

One response to “The Sweater I Never Intended to Knit”

  1. What a story! I love brown too. It was kind of rude of her to say that it wasn’t your color. Anyway, I hope you have a good experience with knitting your sweater, no matter what. I’m looking forward to see more 🙂 Happy knitting!

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