Things I Did Not Do in November

Apparently, November is the month that people sign up to do all kinds of intensely-focused projects. Not me, man. November was full enough – a shawl, a wedding, a weeklong conference. So as much of a joiner as I am, I did not do the following things:

1. Blog every day. Obviously.

2. Write a novel. Though I did get started on a major writing project. And steadfastly avoided a much smaller one that I’m actually under contract for (and which is due in about 6 weeks).

3. Write a dissertation. Primarily because, you know, I’m not a doctoral student.

4. Do all of my holiday preparations. Because y’all, really, that would mean no last-minute deadline-induced adrenaline-soaked panicked frenzy. And you know how I like a good panicked frenzy.

5. Knit a sweater.

Oh, wait, I did do that one.

pattern: Gathered Pullover, Interweave Knits Winter 2007
yarn: KP Telemark, Delphinium Heather, 8 skeins plus roughly 1 yard. Yep, that’s right. 843 yards for this sweater – that’s a $16 sweater. And another $10 of leftover yarn since in an uncharacteristic move, I erred on the side of overbuying.
needles: size 7, circs, brand unknown, borrowed from a friend when I couldn’t find my Option tips (and size 7 dpns for the sleeves)
size: small (36 1/4″)
started: 16 November
finished: 1 December
(so technically I didn’t actually finish the sweater in November, but since I did finally finish my Lace Leaf Pullover on November 15, then let’s just call it even, shall we?)
modifications: added one inch of length to body, otherwise no mods – should’ve probably added another inch or two to give the fit I usually prefer on my long-waisted body

Mmmm, cable-y goodness.
My first real cabled project – a nice, easy introduction. I have to say I’m a bit obsessed with cable motifs now.

This neckline is interesting. After knitting the V-neck, you then go back and pick up stitches and knit a half-inch flat, then seam. I considered knitting it in the round to avoid the obvious seam, but I decided to knit as written (in case knitting it in the round would cause it to roll). I think – even with the visible seam – it’s a really lovely neckline.

There was a lot of discussion on the Ravelry boards about modifying the placement of the cable motif in order to have the sweater gather in under the bust (as this gathering is the only shaping of the sweater). I knit as written, as I really did like the fit of the sweater as pictured in the magazine. The gathering happens right across the bustline, which then creates a gentle empire waist. I don’t like it when an empire waist looks maternity-ish, but I like it very much when it means by least-favorite body part is rather camouflaged. I do like the fit of mine, but the truth is, there is a lot of extra material here:

I’m still learning about how to play with negative ease. The size I knit gave me an 1.75″ negative ease. The next smaller size (the smallest listed) would’ve been a 32″ bust – that’s 5″ negative ease. I was scared to go that far (and since I don’t commonly wear an XS, I figured that was a reality-based fear), though I still wonder if it might’ve worked. I have toyed with the idea of sewing some darts in the back, because you know I love to sew darts. Is it possible with a knitted sweater? Perhaps I’ll find out for myself. Obviously another option would’ve been to add waist-shaping as I knitted.

Though I didn’t officially sign up for any November projects, I apparently have signed on for the supposed current trend of not posting WIPs. I’ll blame Ravelry. I never mentioned this knit here (mind you, I have blogged precisely one time since I cast on for this number), but I talked about it plenty on the Interweave Knits group forum on Ravelry, and posted WIP pics on my projects page. It turns out that Ravelry is seriously cutting into my other online pursuits, including blogging and reading blogs. Maybe next November, someone will come up with with NaPoWIPMo (National Post WIPS Month) [If so, you read it here first!]. h

I may be a bad blogger in the WIP department, but never let it be said that I don’t go to great lengths to get pictures. Front yard, mid-afternoon, freezing cold, two different photo shoot sessions, no coat, just me and my tripod. Yup, that’s me. Willing to brave extremes of weather and neighborly humiliation, just to bring you multiple shots that look almost exactly the same. [for full set, see here]

Still I’m a happy girl.

19 thoughts on “Things I Did Not Do in November

  1. This is on my “hmm, maybe” list. I noticed your pics on Ravelry. It looks great. I don’t know how you knit sweaters so fast. There are so many I want to make, but I’m so bogged down with other things…

    PS I just bought both my boys kids’ digital cameras for Christmas. Thanks for the inspiration!!

  2. loving the cable motif on this.

    and finishing a whole sweater…I’m really impressed. I’ve only ever finished a scarf : )

  3. I’ll say it again, I love this sweater on you! Yay!

    As for your thoughts about ease… I think you chose the right size for your bust, and that’s where you’re getting the negative ease. But since the sweater is pretty much knit as a straight up and down tube, you have more fabric at the waist. So you could have done waist shaping or back darts as you knit along. That would change the silhouette, though, and you wouldn’t have the empire effect. If you are interested in sewing in darts after the fact, you might browse around Bonne Marie’s blog ( for some tech advice.

    Probably everything I just said, you already knew! I love it as it is on you. xoxo

  4. Lovely! I love the sweater and the color. I wonder why all the shortness in hand-knit sweaters? So many of them require a shirt underneath if you don’t want to show your belly. You’d think they’d just add a few more inches in the pattern.

  5. I love both of your sweaters! I have still yet to start, much less finish, a sweater for myself.

    I’m chiming in late here, too, but I have to say that your Gothic Leaf Stole is among the most stunning FOs I have ever seen. Absolutely gorgeous! Your photo shoot with the stole and the dress and the setting and you so beautiful, I went back and looked at the photos a bunch of times.

    On WIPs, I’ve been trying to cut down some on computer time so my blogging has become a bit less frequent, thus I rarely make time to write a post just about WIPs. It doesn’t bother me at all to post about unfinished knitting, I just don’t get to it as much as I previously did. I do, however, like to include my process along with other things on the blog, so especially when I’m having to work through math or modifications or some other technical issue I do try and post about it, in the hopes that it might help someone else dealing with a similar situation some day.

    Sorry about the long post!

  6. i just came from del’s gathered pullover! another gorgeous creation!!! love the color!!! i REALLY love that cable!!!! one day i’ll be a garment finisher…. maybe. 😉 hope you and yours are having a wonderful holiday season!!!!

  7. The cable section is gorgeous! Congrats on finishing a sweater so quickly. I’m a very new knitter, so no sweaters or cables just yet… (I followed you here via a link on the Ann Arbor Ravelry forum.)

  8. This sweater looks fantastic on you! The color is spot on, the shape looks good, maybe the ease issue isn’t so noticeable when you aren’t gathering for a look-see? And the price, the price!?! Good work!

  9. I so have to make this now–I’ve seen a few that have knit up quickly, so that’s a plus! I love the way it looks on you, even if it is a bit roomy. You can’t tell!

  10. What a lovely sweater! Beautifully knit, very flattering 🙂

    And, you must be f-f-freezing!!!

    That Ravelry, it is quite the distraction isn’t it!

  11. It looks great! For a quick fix, you could knit straps with the extra yarn, sew them to the side seams, and tie in back.
    I often knit the back of a sweater a different size than the front. Then do additional decreases in the armhole to make the shoulders the same width (measuring out from the center neck). It takes more fiddling with sleeves though. An easier way is to knit the back the smaller size, but do increase darts (vertical) as you go up the back to get to the same width as the front. Lots of options.

  12. Crap. Blogger changed things up and I don’t like it. I wrote a whole long comment and it disappeared while I tried to figure out how the hell to “sign in” to comment.

    Anyway, I think what I said was that the sweater looks great, but I totally think you should try out darts. Even if it doesn’t work, it will have been an interesting experiment.

    I also think I said that you certainly had a plenty productive November! Enjoy your freshly knit sweaters.

  13. I’m so impressed at your sweater knitting speed, and it looks so great too – I think I’m definitely inspired to cast on for another now 🙂

  14. I love these photos, as I’ve already mentioned. The sweater looks really great, despite the additional ease. I was just flipping through that Interweave again and realized that the sweater is from this issue–I like it much better now that I see it on you!

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