Lace Saddle Tee by Lisa Rowe FO

Colour: Powder Blue #1401
Needles: 3mm straights
Start: June 14, 2010 Finish June 24, 2012 (2 Years??! Yup.)
Modifications: Moved all side shaping in from edges to below bust points on front and equivalent distance in from sides on back
Waaaaay back in 2010 when I started on this I was fresh off taking 3 classes on fitting your knits (Robin Hunter at the DKC Winter Workshops, Anne Hansen at Purple Purl and Veronique Avery at the DKC Frolic Workshops.) all within a few months of each other. (Given how many classes were being offered at the same time on this topic it must have been something more than just I wanted to learn about!)

Over the course of the hours and hours of instruction in each of those classes I learned how to...
  • Asses my own shape. Honest, accurate personal measurements are a must!
  • Select knitting patterns that suited my shape. Again, honesty - using existing commercial pieces from my own closet, asses what works and more importantly, what doesn't!
  • Alter and then execute those patterns in a structurally correct way. Math, math math!
So I chose this project hoping to bring all those pieces together in a successful aka wearable, flattering garment and in so doing build new knitting muscles to make me a stronger knitter.
And look what happened! I flexed my knitting muscles - both mental and manual  - and it worked out!

The most significant change I made to this pattern was to move all side shaping in to just below the bust points on the front and then match that treatment on the back. 

See them running up the left side of the sweater front from about 2" above the waist band to the fullest part of the bust area?
The photo above shows the shaping either side of the actual side seam.
Then I decided to try to make a feature of the shaping rather than try to hide them so I consulted with Montse Stanley and came up with a pattern of alternating left and right leaning increases. It reminds me of a little stalk of wheat.

All that took about a week and then it was on to the fun part in this pattern, the saddle shoulders of leafy patterned lace.
I finished the first sleeve sleeve lickity split - completely wrong mind you - but I was clever (I thought at the time) and made it work - resolving to simply match the error on the other side..
At the time, Rue over at Tinks and Frogs who really was clever, told me to get right to that other sleeve before I forgot all the details of how sleeve #1 got done.

Instead of heeding Rue's sage advice I left the sweater in a bag and went and got a poodle puppy that effectively wiped out my knitting time for the next several months during which time I predictably forgot what I did with sleeve one.

After trying repeatedly to sort out what I had done the first time, in the end I knit sleeve two correctly then ripped sleeve one out and did it again - according to the pattern instructions this time and easy peasy, Bob's your uncle, this quick knit was done in two years, almost to the day!

Once done though, boy was I happy with the result.  I wore this knit a lot this summer and every time I pulled it over my head I did a little mental happy dance thinking of the corner I turned with it.

Taking a class to learn something is one thing. Going home, persevering and putting that learning into practice is really the thing that makes me a stronger knitter - This time in terms of getting a better fitting FO.

Buoyed on by my success the next sweater I tackled would be a mass of cables that I planned to fly through. Of course the knitting called me to account. My next challenge would be maintaining flawless tension.  But I'd mastered that years ago...or had I? Details on that sad tale (with the a happy ending!) in the next FO post chez Sel and Poivre.

Thanks for dropping by today!


Sandra said...

that's always the greatest challenge - taking what you learn in class and actually using it in real life. I've got about a 50-50 track record with that...

Brendaknits said...

Your 'wheaty' shaping lines are great. How clever. A great unvention. I like the centre front shaping lines too. It makes the sweater look much more tailored I think. LOL re the sleeves. That is exactly what I might have done.