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from the knitting failure archive

15 February 2012 33,592 views 8 Comments

Last winter and spring I expected to be blogging a lot more while Stitchy and I were touring with the trunk show for Knitting it Old School. Except then I didn’t blog much at all and consequently missed posting a bunch of FOs. I have one particular FO that I’ve been sitting on not because I don’t like it, but because it’s really not my best work at all. Nobody likes to talk about their failures, right? This one isn’t a giant failure, just a failure to listen to instinct and experience.

While we were in the first round of edits for the book (in 2010!) I cast on for St. Moritz, by Snowden Becker. It’s one of my favourites from the Knitting it Old School
book, I love that scoop neck. I didn’t have yarn in the stash even close to gauge, so I subbed in some Elsbeth Lavold Silky Tweed. Different weight, different gauge. Because we were so deep in editing, I figured I needed something mindless to work on, so I omitted the lozenge stitch as well. (Cue ominous music here)

And work on it mindlessly, I did. It’s a top down raglan, which has the benefit of being able to try it on as you knit so you can get a perfect fit. Did I do that? No, no I didn’t. (more omnious music. DUH DUH DUUUUN) I knit to pattern and mindlessly kept knitting until the body was finished a few weeks later. Then and only then I tried it on. Huge. Giant. WAY too big. I heaved a heavy sigh and put it in a time out for close to a year. Last January I pulled it out, tried it on again and had conveniently put on some weight (ha!) so the fit was slightly better. Might as well finish it, right? It just needed sleeves and a collar!

[flickr id=”5512717211″ thumbnail=”medium_640″ overlay=”false” size=”medium” group=”” align=”none”]

[flickr id=”5512718057″ thumbnail=”medium_640″ overlay=”false” size=”medium_640″ group=”” align=”none”]

So in March of 2011 finish it I did. I photographed it, wore it once to an event and it’s been sitting in the trunk show suitcase ever since. I’ve lost the book editing weight since then and that sucker doesn’t fit at all now. Sadpants. I really should rip the whole thing and reknit it with the lozenge pattern and 3 sizes smaller, but I’m not quite ready to face it. Until then, I’ll just slap a big fat FAIL sticker on it and chalk it up to being mindless.

[flickr id=”5513311636″ thumbnail=”medium_640″ overlay=”false” size=”medium_640″ group=”” align=”none”]

Seriously, look how giant!

[flickr id=”5513310152″ thumbnail=”medium_640″ overlay=”false” size=”medium_640″ group=”” align=”none”]

Details are all here on Rav. Sigh.


  • Julia said:

    Caro, I know I’m a different demographic and all, but I honestly don’t think it fits badly at all. Understand, I don’t like negative ease much. Perhaps it’s because I find on me it’s a bit too unforgiving. This is a gorgeous sweater and I would love one just like it and with the identical fit as you, right now. Really, it’s just lovely. I realize I lack hipness, but I know a nice sweater when I see one.

  • Caro (author) said:

    I should mention that at the time of the photoshoot I did my best to hide the size issues. I know it looks like it fits in some of these, but trust me, it’s huge! :)

  • PixeKnits said:

    I liked the look of the fabric on your version of the sweater better than the ones featured on the Rav pattern page. IMHO, leaving out the lozenge stitch allows the detail of the collar, cuff and bottom band to show through rather than distracting from it.

  • Preita said:

    I’m going to blame this on the silky wool because even though I think I should love every sweater I’ve tried to knit from it they all come out too big and sloppy and just not right. I keep trying though. I think it’s a great color on you and the idea is wonderful but it’s always sad when a sweater doesn’t turn out.

  • mintyfresh said:

    You really did a good job of making it look like it fits, but the bottom line is if you’re disappointed with it and don’t wear it, then it wasn’t a successful FO. And that SUUUCKS.

  • thea said:

    Agreeing that you did a good job hiding the issues (but I am not surprised that you knew how to do that!)

    However, the yarn is so beautiful on you that it does need to be something you’ll wear someday – I say frog eventually, when you’re in the mood for mindless knitting again! And then reknit.

  • Kristy said:

    You know, I’m OK with that happening sometimes. You could have been mindlessly playing some online flash game instead. Sorry it didn’t work out, but I thought the all-stockinette version of this sweater worked out pretty well.

  • Siew said:

    Its always so disappointing when something doesn’t turn out the way you want it to. The yarn is fabulous though and I have to say, the owl necklace that you have on is even better! Where did you get it?

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