Knitting was not something that I wanted to like. I took my first class because I didn’t want my friend to be by herself, and I fought with the needles every single second the first few times I was there. But I persevered and created a most hideous scarf. Later, I made a “charming” sweater for a bear out of kitchen cotton, and then I set the needles aside for a few years and forgot how to purl. But one thing led to another, and soon knitting became kind of an obsession. Had you asked me after that first ugly scarf (and truly, I can’t impress the ugliness enough) if I would ever make a sweater for a person that involved fit and patterns and decorative cuffs and crap, I probably would have laughed hysterically, and that’s what happens when you get obsessed with something. You begin small and then move onto something much larger, usually something that you have no business trying.

The leaf detail is repeated on the cuffs

The leaf detail is repeated on the cuffs

So Sprig from Botanical Knits, Vol. 2? It’s not that it was too complex for me to take on. On the contrary . . . I’ve knit patterns with far more complexity. But it was challenging in regards to time and construction. With time, I had a deadline that I kinda, sorta met. My friend, Joann, who also happens to own my local yarn shop, asked some of us to knit samples for her for the book’s trunk show (seems that the publishing company could get her a trunk show of samples but only eight months after the book is released . . . marketing synergy!) by mid-June. I missed the deadline by five days, which doesn’t sound like much, but I was disappointed that I couldn’t get my crap together and have it done by June 15. But the construction of the garment was the real kicker. For the first several rows, I really didn’t “get” how it would come together, but eventually, it started to make sense. You cast on like normal, but instead of joining in the round the way one would normally do for a raglan sweater, you knit back and forth for about twenty rows, increasing one side slightly more than the other. Doing so gives one side an ’80s vibe with a lower shoulder, but the real beauty starts to take shape with the bind off for the sleeves. There’s a pretty leaf detail (probably why it’s called Sprig) that’s repeated on the shoulders that comes with an i-cord edge. The only mod that I’ll be making is to redo the cuffs with slightly longer sleeves when I get the sweater back from Joann. Because I was five days late and redoing the sleeves before I took it in for display wasn’t in the cards.

It was too hot to wear a 100% wool sweater.

It was too hot to wear a 100% wool sweater.

Pattern: Sprig from Botanical Knits 2

Needles: Knit Picks US 6

Yarn: Cascade 200 in Cedar Green

Modifications: None, but I do plan on redoing the sleeves to make them longer; right now they are a little less than 3/4 length, and I think I want them to the middle of my forearm.

PS – Happy birthday to my younger sister, Erika! I’m thinking that we’ll have to celebrate when I’m in Ohio right smack between her birthday and my youngest sister, Bridget.

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