Monday, March 26, 2007

Poll: WSBK?

I have 2,200 yards (2,000 meters) (2 kilometers!) of navy blue fingering-weight wool, which I bought with plans to knit the wrap sweater Arisaig. (Remember the sweeve I made?) Well, I've lost interest in that. No particular reason -- although I do suspect that I wouldn't get a ton of wear out of it. So I've been looking around for other sweaters designed for fingering-weight yarn, and I've decided that there aren't enough! Thanks to cosmicpluto Laura, however, there are these two fabulous patterns: the lace cardigan Serrano and the waffle-stitch pullover Thermal.


There are also some very nice patterns in a pattern booklet that I have: Lux Knitting Book, published in Toronto in 1938. In fact, there are two cardigans and four pullovers that I want to make. Two of the pullovers are Pacific and Atlantic:


But of course, there is also the problem of sizes with vintage patterns. Each pattern is given in only one size, and no schematics are provided. The Pacific pullover, for example, will turn out with the following measurements: bust, 34 inches; waist, 26 inches; sleeve seam, 18 inches; side seam, 12.5 inches. [The pattern includes a skirt, though, so the waist measurement may be only for the skirt and not the sweater.] Wait, I'll get my tape measure... OK, here are my measurements: bust, 37 inches; waist, 33 inches; and my sleeve and side seam requirements fit the pattern. Hmmm. So I'm bigger than the ideal Lux lady, and I have no discernable waist. Another pattern, Jasper (a "pullover cardigan"), specifies that the bust measurement is 36 inches after blocking; no waist measurement is given. (Maybe an inch of negative ease would be perfect?)


If I really want to knit one of these vintage patterns, I suppose the thing to do is to read all of the instructions and try to come up with a basic schematic based on numbers and increases and decreases given. Then I should be able to see whether one of them could be made to fit me without too much fussing. But of course, I want to knit now, and I don't have much spare time these days (and won't till late May), so maybe I should put off any project that is too ambitious and just work on one of Laura's ready-made patterns instead.

What do you think? WSBK? You can simply vote, or if you have other suggestions for fingering-weight sweaters (or if you think I should stick to socks until I've finished the three 25-page papers I have to write in the next month), leave a comment instead. Thanks in advance!

03/29/07: Poll closed. Thanks for voting! Final results are posted here.

32 comments:

Daphne said...

I vote for Atlantic. I love all the vintage patterns -- okay, I love all the patterns you've chosen -- but I think Atlantic will be super flattering no matter what.

But also, you can knit Wicked in laceweight yarn -- would that work? http://www.zephyrstyle.com/catalog/item.cfm/2367447/3974522

Nadia said...

As someone who has a seven pager due in eight hours and has yet to start it, I highly recommend the Knit Instead Of Write Path. Sure you'll fail, but you might have failed anyway. This way, at least you'll have a gorgeous sweater and that's what counts.

Sarah said...

Thermal! I really want to knit Thermal. Now I'm remembering the green fingering weight I have and wondering if I have enough of it... which means some serious estimating since the labels have long since disappeared (seriously, this stuff's probably 20 years old or something, used to be in my blind, deaf yet still fantastic knitter great aunt's stash)

Corvus said...

Oh, those vintage patterns are gorgeous! I'd vote Thermal for ease, but if you want to tackle all the work of figuring out how to modify the pattern then I'm going to vote for Atlantic.

Heck, I want to make Atlantic. I'm going to have to look around for that book.

Stacey said...

Looks like Thermal is in the lead! I love it!

kate said...

I like the vintage patterns, Atlantic and Pacific, but Thermal would be my second choice. What's the gauge like on those patterns? Is your yarn slightly thicker? You might not have to do any recalculations if your gauge is different and you want a little more room.

Veronique said...

Those vintage patterns almost make me forget the 2 cute CosmicPluto designs... And if Jasper's measurements fit you perfectly... Why is no one voting for Jasper?

Jas--per!
Jas--per!

miss ewe said...

I like both of Laura's sweaters. I'll bet Serrano would look gorgeous in navy.
Also, this one won't use up all your yarn, but the Goddess sweater is gorgeous.
http://www.stitchdiva.com/ProductInfo.aspx?productid=SDS-035

One other option? Run through the streets of Montreal stringing out the yarn behind you and see if 2km of yarn is really 2km...

JustApril said...

I really like Atlantic. That 40's style - dunno, something I really like about it.

Anonymous said...

I like them all, and this one, too:
http://www.magknits.com/Nov06/patterns/rossnyev.htm
Alison in Mpls.

Seanna Lea said...

I'd stick with socks for the next couple of months. It will be late May before you realize it, and a sweater like Serrano (or the vintage ones) will likely be wearable for a wider range of the season(s).

If you can set up a schematic like the Japanese patterns, then it might not be so hard to find and manage all of the numbers that need to change.

Chris said...

I voted for Serrano - it looks like the perfect thing to wear over a tank in the summer! I would definitely avoid any complicated mechanations until your academic life calms down!

Mandy said...

Have you checked out some of the beautiful patterns Jaeger has for 4ply yarn? You can check some of them out at theknittinggarden.com and englishyarns.co.uk. :)

vanessa said...

i selfishly vote for thermal, so i can see how yours turns out before i decide whether or not to knit it myself :)

Jessica said...

I think Atlantic looks great. Rowan always has lots of pattern knit in 4-ply. I've always wanted to knit Isla. There's it's a twin set. They have a nice vintage look to them.

xtina said...

My two top votes are for Serrano and Pacific. I officially voted for Serrano but then felt bad for old Pacific and needed to voice a comment. I think it would be pretty easy to tweak it size-wise. I'll see if I can scrounge up any other rad patterns using fingering weight....

Ronikins said...

hmmm, it's a tough call. Love the vintage patterns and would love to see you do them, but with little time to prep- it could equal disaster. I wouldn't want to see you go for it, have life take over and not finish it. I vote for doing both! (I know, I'm mean) vintage patterns...but later. So my official vote is Serrano (although I love Thermal too)!

And because this isn't long enought ;), I love the Magknits pattern that someone else linked to above.

Kim said...

I'm collecting knitting acroynms and abbreviations - WSBK is What Should Be Knit, right? Did you invent that? I haven't seen it before.

Polly said...

I vote for Jasper. You can buy a cute thermal anywhere but a vintage sweater would be so cute and unique. And don't worry about your waist measurement, I think the 26" waist was measured way above the bellybutton, not where we'd wear our pants today!

chez shoes said...

Serrano! I love love love that sweater.

Marie said...

I voted for Thermal since it seems very you and might be great for your build. It would also look great in blue. However, spring is almost here and socks might be a whole lot easier on the little grey cells right now. You sound like you need some stress-reliever knitting that can be picked up and dropped at will.

nicole said...

I say Thermal because I really want to knit Thermal and don't have the yarn for it, so won't be knitting it any time soon. In second place I like Pacific.

nicole said...

P.S. I like the Rossnyev Cardigan, too. I think it might be better in the variegated than in a solid.

lyssa said...

You know that if you had all four of those sweaters in your closet, you'd be wearing Thermal right now. Just give in and knit it.

jodi said...

My goodness. It never occurred to me to consider yarn yardages in kilometres before. Now I'm obsessed with the idea of measuring the total kilometres in my stash.

Anonymous said...

Kim Salazar at STring or Nothing / Wise Needle recently re-engineered a vintage man's vest pattern for her husband. It might be worth reading up on how she did it if you are serious about one of your vintage patterns.

anne said...

Selfishly, I want to watch you knit the vintage sweater. But out of concern for the welfare of a fellow grad student, I lean toward Serrano because it involves less complicated re-jiggering of math, waistline, etc. Oh, I love Serrano.

Mandy said...

I vote for Serrano...I think it will look great in navy and it will be a nice spring/summer sweater!

Sarah said...

I'm working on some intense academic stuff too, but I'm also knitting Thermal and it's going great. I loev it. Once you get started it's a lot of knitting and not a lot of thinking. Just what we need right now!

Alison said...

I like the vintage patterns, and with one of those, you wont turn up at a knit gathering to find someone else wearing the same sweater. You might not have to adjust the pattern much if your wool knits to a different gauge anyway - but I favour the "wool stretches doesn't it?" approach to sizing anyway.

Sandra said...

Alison,
Hello. I am a vintage pattern knitter and have not had any problems converting the patterns.

Sometimes just a change of needles changing the gauge will do the trick.

I have to admit though that converting patterns whether it is for size or gauge can be time consuming.

"Tranquil" is on my list to be started Mid-April will send photos of my progress.

Kristi said...

I love those patterns especially love the vintage patterns. Wearing that would bring out your inner Lauren Bacall.