Thursday, October 6, 2011

K'done: Safire Cardigan

Done for over a month. What can I say - I am not very prompt with the picture-taking.

Pattern: Safire, by Hilary Smith Callis
Yarn: Naturally Pride, in Cashew
Needles: 4.5 mm / US 7 for stockinette, 4 mm / US 6 for ribbing

I ordered this yarn about a year ago - thanks, Elann! - and was a bit ambivalent about it once it arrived. I wasn't sure about the colour anymore, and it sat in my small stash, never really speaking to me about what it should become. Then one day I was looking more closely at the Safire details on Ravelry, and I saw the recommended gauge (21 sts to 10 cm / 4") and a small part of my brain wondered if I might find that a bit dense with worsted weight. I started worrying that I might never ever actually do up the sweater, and then a very pragmatic part of my brain pointed out that I should try it with DK weight. I like DK weight knit up at 20 to 22 sts to 10 cm / 4". It should work. This logical part of my brain then reminded me that I had this particular yarn in the stash, and that it would make for a very neutral layering piece that should be polished enough for work.

Sold. I dug out the yarn and cast on. Just shy of a month later, I was done.

I didn't do much in the way of modifications. I may have lengthened the ribbed portion of the body - my Rav notes don't say I did, but I feel like I did. I went until I had eight buttonholes. I did lengthen the sleeves, knitting the ribbed portion until I had 12" of total sleeve length from the armscye. Picking up stitches for the neckband took a few tries - the first time, I had far, far too few stitches, then the second time I had the wrong multiple of stitches. Third time was the charm. I also started obsessing about rowing out with this sweater. I've never ever noticed any rowing out with my stockinette before, but I thought that I was seeing it with this one. I can't even count how many times I stopped and just spread the fabric over my lap and peered at it from various angles, trying to see if I was getting those stripes of uneven stitches. I suspect it may have been just a trick of the yarn, though - this yarn has a crepe texture to it, which makes it look sort of nubblier in the unblocked fabric. To my eyes, everything smoothed out nicely with a light blocking.

Considering my not-terribly-excited start with this yarn, and how long the pattern sat in my queue without really calling my name, I was pleasantly surprised at how much I like the finished object. I've worn it to work four times already, in a little more than a month - that's roughly once a week. It's just so freaking cute. I can hardly stand it.

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