Tuesday, February 12, 2013

FO: Maternity Nanook sweater

Are you ready for pictures of the tiredest pregnant woman ever?  I could hardly summon the energy to open my eyes.  It's getting to that point in the pregnancy where I wish someone would just order me on bed rest.  And I still have eight weeks to go.  Wah, wah, wah.  

So I may be feeling a little sorry for myself, but my whiny state has provided an excellent opportunity for wool to display its magical, healing properties.  When I put it on for the first time, I think I actually, physically, felt better.  It was so comforting and squishy and welcoming.

I'm not sure I would have knit this one if it weren't for a baby belly the size of Pluto.  I've liked this design for a while, but I usually knit things with a little more structure.  I'm glad I did, though, because it's incredibly comforting, and I think it will be fun once my girth is less ... girthy. 

As we were taking these pictures, I realized my husband hadn't said anything about whether or not he liked it, and he usually is quick to volunteer compliments on my makes.  So I asked him what he thought, and he said, "It's a little floppy at the top.  I'm not sure what it's supposed to be doing."  I'm not sure either, but right now I don't care.  I just like that I can wrap it around myself and snuggle up. 

Laughing at my "floppy top" sweater.

Pattern: Nanook by Heidi Kirrmaire.  Super well-written and clear.  I still need to add a button, but I might wait until I'm not pregnant anymore and add it then. 

Process: Once I got past the arms, it was a bit boring.  Despite feeling like this knit was unending, it actually took me less than two weeks, a sweater record by a long shot.  I think it felt like forever because it just got so heavy and bulky on the needles. 

Yarn: Northampton by Valley Yarns.  A worsted weight wool.  Very comparable to Cascade 220 or Wool of the Andes.  Not a luxury yarn, but still very nice.  I'd happily use it again, especially if I can get it on sale.  I think I paid $4.19 a ball, so at 5 balls, this sweater cost $21.  You can't beat that. 

New techniques: The pattern called for lifted increases, which were new to me.  I loved them!  The left and right versions were easier for me to remember than the typical M1L and M1R.  I can never remember which one is which. 

Instead of binding off the sleeves in the K1, P1 ribbing, I used the Kitchner stitch.  I put the knit stitches on one needle, the purl stitches on another level, and then grafted them together.  This makes for a very neat edge where the stitches look like they just curl around to the other side.  Binding off in binding can sometimes fan out, and I wanted a tighter, neater look.