Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Cable-wise, but not Cashmere

I learned to knit in the early 1980s. As the years went by, it became harder and harder to find good yarn. I took a 15 year knitting hiatus.

Then I went to visit a friend on maternity leave. Her baby had come after the due date, so she had time to knit two sweaters for him using patterns from Wee Knits, the cutest knitting book I had ever seen. I had to make the hand sweater. She loaned the book to me as she doubted she would be able to knit and handle a newborn at the same time. The hand sweater came out a bit too short for Iris. I went to the library and found a Debbie Bliss book with instructions for a cute sawtooth edging to add length. Iris looked adorable in it.

I bought more wool-ease yarn from Joann's and knit the Cable-wise Cashmere sweater from the Knitter's Stash. That is a seriously great pattern. Look at the staghorn cables on the front

and the back.
Isn't the sleeve detail lovely?
I wish I had used something between the spendy Cashmere called for by the pattern and the cheap wool-ease I used. It would be a perfect everyday sweater in my favorite everyday yarn, Cascade 220. The acrylic in the wool-ease blend makes the sweater slightly clammy on humid days. The wool in the blend is also scratchy. A quality wool doesn't cost that much more. Don't make beginners' mistakes.

Someday, I will knit the pattern again. And maybe the hand sweater, too. I gave the first hand sweater to my friend's son at her memorial service. I wanted him to have it, in memory of the afternoon we spent together, cooing over our babies and our knitting.

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