Zimmermania, here I come!

The lovely Sarah over at Blue Garter got me thinking about Elizabeth Zimmerman again. I’ve read about her, I’ve heard her spoken of with reverence by a guest host on Cast On, and I’ve searched in vain for her books when I was in the library or Barnes and Noble, but I’ve never actually knit an EZ pattern (or recipe, as it seems more accurate to say). Just as I was starting to think I should get down to actually making an EZ sweater, Sarah and Jess, of Fig and Plum, have started an EZ knitalong! What a perfect excuse! You can sign up for Zimmermania either by emailing Sarah, or by posting a comment at Blue Garter.

The question, then, was what to knit. Well, EZ sweaters seem to have a lot of variations that are perfect for men, and since my husband is ridiculously picky and hard to knit for, this seemed like a good time to offer to make him a sweater. Most of the sweaters Mr. Kninja is fond of are either so dull as to make it a ridiculous prospect to spend time and money knitting them (Mr. Kninja has an especial fondness for Tintin’s sweater) or they’re so complicated as to be a little daunting to imagine knitting, as in the Cosby sweater with a picture of Bill Cosby’s face on the front, and Jello and Coke logos on the sleeves. But a nice raglan sweater would be a pleasure for me to knit, and maybe I could find one that both of us would love.

Enter Brooklyn Tweed. I saw the beautiful seamless hybrid over there and fell hard for it. That purple! It’s gorgeous, and would look beautiful on Mr. Kninja. And it’s not as though it’s easy to find a rich, warm purple sweater for men in every store. I showed the sweater to Mr. Kninja, and to my surprise, he loved it as well – he actually loved the whole construction of the sweater, as well as the color. Sadly, the Revel shade of the discontinued Yorkshire Tweed is sold out. You can still find ten packs of Yorkshire Tweed for $40 on Ebay, but not in the color I wanted. And Yorkshire Tweed is yummy. I’m making Eleanor a sweater in the Oceanic color (one of several projects I forgot to mention in my list of sins), and it is just gorgeous, and so nice to work with. It was hard to let go the idea of knitting this up in a Rowan tweed.

Still, when I asked Mr. Kninja, he didn’t really care about the tweed. He likes the purple and the yoke, and he had a nifty idea for adding a sky blue lining to the cuffs and hem. So I did some looking around and found that Telemark comes in the perfect shade of aubergine. I think I’ll order that, and when it arrives, I’ll try a swatch with a thin strand of a tweedy brown or blue and see if that gives it a slightly tweedy look. I still love the idea of tweed.

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4 Responses to “Zimmermania, here I come!”

  1. Lori Says:

    That is a great sweater, and I love the color, too.

  2. Sarah Says:

    Sigh… the travesty that was the decision to discontinue the Yorkshire Tweed line! I don’t find the Harris tweeds nearly as pleasing. Now you’ve made me go to eBay and wring my hands and fight the urge to buy-up-all-of-it-right-now-because-there-will-never-be-any-more! Brooklyn Tweed’s sweater really is glorious.

    By the by, it’s such fun to see Zimmermania buttons popping up on people’s blogs! Thanks for joining!

  3. barbara Says:

    I have never seen Tweed yarn – how cool? Is there any place to still find it? I love when people mention EZ… her “Knitting w/out Tears” helped me alot in the beginning of my knitting days!

  4. Kristen Says:

    There are still a lot of tweeds produced – Rowan makes a good few – but the Yorkshire tweed is discontinued. But you can find it on Ebay still, and there are still some good deals on the last few packs. A lot of the less expensive brands make tweeds, too, but the Rowan Yorkshire tweed was really special.

    Sarah, I’m especially upset, because Rowan discontinued the yarn right after I received their A Yorkshire Fable as a gift. I love that book, I love the patterns in it, I love everything about it – and nearly all of the patterns call for Yorkshire tweed! I do like some of their other tweeds, and I’m a very thrifty knitter, so I am absolutely not against substitutions, but sheesh! They had a good thing going there, and they threw it away. The Yorkshire Fable book feels like a souvenir of Rowan’s hayday, since nearly all of the patterns are by Kim Hargreaves and Louisa Harding. Jannette’s Rare Yarns has some fanulous deals on ten packs of Yorkshire tweed, but I’m trying not to spend money on yarn until later in the month, and then I’m trying to buy just for projects I know I’m going to do. That sort of means I can’t just up and spend $40 on a large pack of yarn with no plans to use it. And this has turned into a much longer rant than I meant it to!

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