Facing facts

This is the post in which you really get to see inside this particular sausage factory.  Because this is the post in which I explain that things have gone wrong.

My gut should have been a good guide on this one.  The false button band on Sunniva showed signs of rebellion from the start.  But I thought I fixed it and much of what looked off seemed like it would probably block out.  Blocking is awesome!  Blocking will save us all!  And after all, there were a lot of little wonky looking stitches that really did block out.  So blocking was going to solve all my problems, end war around the world, and usher in a new age of peace and prosperity.

Except that it didn’t.  The sweater was hitting around my hips last night and I decided to take it off the needles to try it on and see how far it had to go.  And while I was at it, it was as good a time as any to block it out and see if the stitches decided to fall into place like good, compliant little minions.

My stitches are not good little minions.  No sir.  They are wild, free, and crazy little subjects who have no respect for me at all.  They did not lie down quietly when I came in with the blocking riot police.  Let’s take a closer look at that middle panel, shall we?

The stitches on the right side of the panel look great.  They are obedient.  The leftist stitches are not made in the same mold.  They have to be able to spread themselves out and express themselves.  Unfortunately, what they are expressing is, “I’m a sloppy mess and I make everyone else look bad.”  Look at the rest of those stitches!  The uneven parts evened themselves out and submitted to the blocking, knowing that resistance would only lead to trouble.  But the bad stitches on the left of my false button band ruined it for everyone else.  I see no choice but to rip and start over, rethinking the best way to manage a false button band.

That’s all the bad stuff.  Well, that, and the fact that I’m not sure the false button band really calls to mind a button band, though it does look rather like my drawing, and I think that I may need to add a little structure by going down a needle size.  There is good stuff to counter some of the bad.  The first good thing is that math fu is on.  I’m so happy with the shaping and sizing on this sweater.  Although there is positive ease throughout the sweater, it looks really fitted.  It feels comfortable, but wears to show off the curves, which is great.  I modeled the shaping after a favorite shirt, and I think that was the way to go, because I adore the basic look and fit of this sweater, even as I’m realizing that the feature that made it special doesn’t really work.  (Bah.)

My camera was really not cool with me trying to get pictures in the bathroom mirror, but here’s a very blurry modeled shot, so you can see that, even unfinished with curly edges, this sucker fits, and fits well.

That’s pretty rad.  It really does look how I wanted it to, other than that pesky band.  I love the color, I love the yarn, I love the way both knit up.  I love the way it feels when worn.  There’s a lot of good here, and a lot to make it clear that it wasn’t all a big waste of time.  But there is a lot of time devoted to this sweater that will have to be ripped.

And I guess that’s another advantage to having planned two versions.  Because I’m not going to rip this one right away.  I’m going to let it sit for a while in time out while I mourn it and plan for the corrections that will turn it into The Most Awesome Sweater Of All Time And Space.  And I’m going to start over with version two, the three quarter length sleeve version in magnificent red violet, after fiddling about with gauge and new button band ideas.  I definitely want this to be simple to make, so I am trying to ignore my idea about picking up stitches after the fact and making this weird rolling sort of band.  Swatching time.  This thing isn’t over yet.

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9 Responses to “Facing facts”

  1. knittersplayground Says:

    It’s still beautiful and a perfect fit always makes things better!
    Idea maybe on the false button band – i know it doesn’t always help to hear what others say, but maybe sometimes – instead of keeping the purls always reverse stockinete, maybe making them garter instead would help? less pulling in on the stockinette part of the garment….maybe?

  2. thea Says:

    Hey your sausage factory sounds a lot like mine!

    Amazing how the stitches can come up with new and crazy things you didn’t forsee, huh? Trial, error. And the promise of it being OK enough to still play with…. Soon, lesson learned and an amazing design, I’m sure.

  3. Kiwiyarns Says:

    I love your sweater dress. I think it will look great when it’s done.

    On the left hand side, I have the same issue. I read somewhere recently that there is a fix to this. It’s apparently not an uncommon phenomena. BUT, I can’t remember where I read it, and what the fix was as it wasn’t troubling me at the time. I should have bookmarked it. It think it was the Yarn Harlot, but am not sure.

    It’s something to do with doing a twist into the left stitch or something like that. Anyway, just a suggestion to look it up on the net – you might find the answer you are looking for. 🙂

    Keep up the good work.

  4. Emily Says:

    Oh lady, I have been there!

    Have you tried just knitting the first st on the left side through the back loop? Sometimes that fixes this issue for me.

    But the shaping here is looking fanTAStic! Very flattering indeed. You will end up with a couple of lovely sweaters when everything is sorted. 🙂

  5. Kristen Says:

    Oh, wow! Both of you mention just doing it on the left stitch, and that makes perfect sense and never occurred to me. I get so obsessed with mirroring that the obvious solution never presented itself. I didn’t even try that with my later swatches. I’ll give it a shot – I won’t get to the center panel for a bit yet, so I have some time to mess about with ideas. Thanks!

  6. orata Says:

    Did you see Techknitter’s latest post? her solution #4 sounds really interesting!
    http://techknitting.blogspot.com/2010/03/uneven-knitting-part-3-fixing-loose.html

  7. D Louise Says:

    That piece has a lot going for it, especially including the perfect fit. As long as you’ve set it aside, check out what the Techknitter at http://www.Techknitter.com has to say about that wonky column of stitches. She has several VERY interesting remedies.

  8. Zoey Says:

    Maybe TECHKnitter’s post on loose knit stitches in ribbing will have a solution for you? !http://techknitting.blogspot.com/

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