Bye-Bye Summer

I would’ve preferred to write a “Hello, Fall” post today, but instead, and at long last, I am blogging my last two unblogged summer projects, from June. I was so excited about this little ensemble I had dreamed up. In the end, I only ended up happy with one half of it.

pattern: side-zip A-line skirt from Sew What? Skirts
fabric: Robert Kauffman cherry print cotton
notions: rickrack trim, because you know I love it
made: in a couple of hours (or less) one June afternoon
modifications: none. Made this exactly like my orange skirt. Again, I cannot recommend this book highly enough.
verdict: Love everything about it: the style, the fit, the fabric. I definitely see more of these simple little skirts in my future for fall. I get compliments everytime I wear one of these, including from people who don’t know I made it myself and even from people who don’t know me. Not bad for a cheap little cotton skirt that took no time to make. (For fall, I am dreaming in brown corduroy and plaid wool).

pattern: Tempting
yarn: KP Shine Worsted, 8 skeins (with only a few inches left over!), Green Apple
size: small, but with gauge issues
needles: KP Options, size 8
made: June 1 – June 30
modifications: none.
verdict: Love the yarn. Love the color. Love the super-quick, super-easy pattern. Hate how mine turned out. The main thing – it’s way too big:

(please ignore my complete lack of mad bow-tying skillz and my utter disregard for the proper way to thread the ribbon for this pattern – neither of which I noticed till I loaded these pictures in)

I made the size small – finished size of 36″ for my 37″ inch bust. But as you can see in the picture, I should’ve either gone down another size, or gone down a needle size or two, or, I don’t know, double-checked to make sure my gauge hadn’t loosened up once I got going (because I actually did swatch for this; then again, as Miss Approximate, it’s certainly possible that I did not measure the swatch accurately). The only reason the sweater is actually on my shoulders at all in this picture is that poorly-threaded ribbon at the top.

I was so disgusted when this turned out not to fit that all my finishing skills went to crap. I completely botched the first underarm seam. I moved on to the second with the idea that I would do a three-needle bind-off instead and then come back and redo the first seam. But I did the bind-off inside-out, putting the very visible seam on the outside. And I don’t know what happened when I started weaving in ends. I did a truly craptastic job. Everywhere I tried to weave in ended up being astonishingly noticeable. I don’t know what went wrong. When it comes to weaving in ends, ribbing always trips me up a bit, but I’ve never encountered anything like this before.

It’s really sad that things turned out this way, because this pattern has a very special role in my personal development as a knitter. This was my introduction to Knitty and the online knitting world as a whole. I had been toying with the idea of trying again with the needles, having taught myself (poorly) from a book 3 years earlier. One day I was hanging out on the Mothering forums and discovered the yarn crafts board. I asked a question about a simple beginner sweater, out of curiosity, and someone linked to this pattern. I was completely taken with it. I really wanted to become good enough to make that sweater. Off to Knitting Help I went, where things finally clicked for me (two years ago this month). It was nostalgic to me to finally pick up this pattern and make this sweet simple little thing. So it’s a little extra-disappointing that it didn’t work out.

Earlier in the summer, I had the idea that I would take the sweater to my sewing machine and somehow sew darts into it (I love me some darts!) or something to make it fit more snugly. But I kept thinking I needed to fix the underarm seams and the woven ends first, and I just couldn’t bear to look at the thing long enough to do that. I simply lost heart. So it has been sitting at the bottom of my knitting bag all this time, taunting me. Well, no more! I am stashing it away for next spring, when I will frog it and make it into something brand new, perhaps Picovoli. And then I will wear it with my kickin’ little cherry skirt. Because no matter what else went wrong with this sweater, I got one thing spot on.

This combination totally rocks.

11 thoughts on “Bye-Bye Summer

  1. That combination DOES rock. Sorry the sweater didn’t work out for you. The color is awesome and your ribbing looks flawless. Do you think you’ll try it again?
    Great job on the skirt too!

  2. It’s too bad you had issues with the sweater as it does look pretty good with the skirt! Sometimes starting fresh is better therapy than trying to fix.

  3. For what it’s worth, I don’t think the sweater looks bad in the pictures. I’m looking forward to seeing the fall skirts you make!

  4. That combo really does rock! I love it 🙂 And your skirt is darling – also the sweater, I understand the fit issues though. To be honest, and hopefully make you feel a bit better, I think that the Shine Worsted tends to grow (A LOT). I’ve made two sweaters with it – one was absolutely enormous (in part due to my poor calculations metric to US! only in part though!)The other sweater, my gauge was spot on, and it was still too big in the end and needed to be taken in. Don’t give up, your Tempting has tons of potential! The first sweater I cut and sewed the side seams to fit and now I wear it all the time, and the second was a seamed sweater – I took it in at the side seams (in fact, it’s still unfinished, it needs a bit more work!)

  5. I agree, that yarn is PERFECT for that adorable skirt! Sorry to hear about the fit issues with the sweater. It’ll become something great come spring!

  6. Is it that the gauge was wrong, or did the dimensions come out as you expected but they aren’t the ones that fit right? If the latter, that’s a problem I have had for a long time. I always shy away from negative ease in theory, but I’m trying to learn to embrace it because that’s what makes things fit rather than hang.

    The combo is adorable, and I am sure you’ll wind up with a great little outfit sooner or later!

  7. Okay, that last comment and this one are actually from Rachel (of Lickety Knit). I let someone else sign into his Blogger account and now I can’t remember my blogger password (because the only time I use it is to comment on your blog!). Is there any reason you won’t allow non-Blogger comments on your blog?

  8. It is a cute outfit–too bad about the fit! I eventually frogged my Tempting, not because it didn’t fit, but because it was my first sweater and I had a lot of issues with joining new balls of yarn (very messy). I love the pattern though!

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