Sunday, July 01, 2007

Drop Stitch Tank fini

I'm so very pleased with myself that I finished this sweater yesterday. I have to admit to having somewhat cramped hands today, but a finished project! wahooooooo.

I think this top is quite lovely (although buying into the anorexic dictates our culture upholds I think I like it a bit better on the hanger than on myself).

Those of you who have been reading know that I struggled mightily with determining gauge for this sweater. I was a good girl and checked my SS swatch for gauge using the US 7s called for by the pattern and thought I was set. After casting on a knitting half a pattern repeat, I quickly realized the sweater would be giant on 7s (much larger than the schematic the pattern pictured). So I did some swatching in pattern with 5s and even 3s. The 3s looked most close to gauge on the swatch but I just couldn't believe that I should drop down that far from the recommended size needle.

After some very helpful feedback on the Fitted Knits KAL (thanks much to Hattie, Shanon O., Suzanne, Marion, Bobbi, and Kendyl), I decided to go with the US5s. I knit almost a third of the front on needles this size before becoming concerned that it might be too small and restarting on 6s. In hindsight, the sweater on 5s probably would have been a slightly better fit than this compromise on 6s. On the 6s, the sweater is still a bit loose (although not terribly so, it does provide some looseness to cover the stomach and hips without pull) and came out much longer than I thought (although I believe I followed the pattern exactly with regards to length).

Gauge just kills me... I don't know if I'm inept with a ruler or if the knitting goddesses just want to taunt me!

All and all, having finished, I'm quite happy with the sweater. It's definitely not something you could just run down to the store and pick up!

Drop-Stitch Lace Tank from Fitted Knits
by Stephanie Japel
Cascade Pima Tencel (50% pima cotton, 50% tencel)
6 skeins, a sagey green (color 8437, lot 4457)
US size 6 (4mm) and 5 (for neckline) circulars
started swatching and trying out other size needles May 28, 2007
cast on with US6s, June 4, 2007
finished June 30, 2007

Knitted for 28" size (my bust is 34"). Modification include knitting on a different needle size to obtain gauge, knitting into the back of the stiches surrounding the dropped stiches as recommended on the KAL, and doing one addition set of pattern repeats (12 rows) before dividing for the neck (ala Bobbi, to have less of a neckline plunge and to eliminate the need for buttons). Be sure to check for the errata with this pattern before starting.


Bear Knits said...

This looks great on you! I've added it to my to-do list.

Michelle said...

Love the sweater! It looks great on you! I too am often teased by the knitting gauge godesses! It makes me crazy!

Bobbi said...

congrats on struggling through the gauge process and getting a finished project that looks great on you.

Octopus Knits said...

Beautiful -- great job!

knitfaced said...

The fit looks perfect on you! Lovely colour too :)

I can totally relate to your gauge issues, having just started this myself. Getting gauge in stockinette stitch is one thing, but in this pattern? It's sooooo ridiiiiculously stretchy, the swatch is a different size each time i look at it! I've started and restarted about 3 times, and I'm still not at all sure it's going to turn out a sensible size! ah well, fingers crossed...

nants said...

You shouldn't have given the "looks better on the hanger" another thought because you look absolutely smashing in your handknit, just positively smashing. Looks like it was tailor made for you - and of course it was. Congratulations on your fine work, and never again doubt how well it looks on you.