Phew, I can post a finished object! The new Valley Yarns catalog is in the store which means it’s also making its way to everyone on the mailing list. In it you’ll find the sweater I mentioned in my (woefully pictureless) last post. This is something I designed and knit for Valley Yarns Sheffield, a gorgeous new yarn with amazing colors that feel new for Valley Yarns–deep teal, espresso brown, etc. This is the Gallery Jacket, named for Arts Night Out, a Northampton institution that I have sadly never participated in (Mexifest ladies, maybe on the 14th?)

Tell me, what is wrong with this picture? Why should you never trust the “I’m just fixing my hair pose”?

Because the great Maggie Righetti says you shouldn’t, in Chapter 1 of “Knitting In Plain English” titled: You Can Always Tell What’s Wrong With a Garment By The Way a Model is Posed, or Slender Five-Foot-Ten Inch Models Look Good in Anything. See for yourself!

The “problem” in this case is the sleeve. I intended this to be a long sleeved sweater (full-disclosure, I was trying to recreate this sweater, purchased at a Marshall’s, no discernible designer) with a modified drop shoulder. I couldn’t knit the twisted ribbing fast enough and was on a somewhat scary deadline for a relatively slow knitter. The twisted ribbing takes FOREVER, but I really think it was worth it in the end.

Back to the point, I decided to pick up stitches and knit down in the round, so that no matter where I was when I ran out of time, I’d a least have a sleeve! I got about 2.5 inches done on both and tried the thing on. Somehow I forgot that the beauty of a drop shoulder is that it forms the top of your sleeve! It looked just fine with the stubby sleeves, in fact, many people thought it would’ve lost cuteness had I continued knitting.

The Sheffield is quite warm so it was actually nice to have a mostly bare arm. I’ve tweaked the pattern and incorporated some decreases to take care of the pooching (technical term?) that occurs under the arm in these pictures. I think that would’ve been weighted down with a longer sleeve, but here it’s a bit obvious. A short row cap sleeve would’ve been nice, but I still have my training wheels on when it comes to designing!

One last note–this was modeled WET–I blocked it about 10 hours after I finished it and in a humid July, the water barely budged. When the sweater dried it looked a lot less saggy under the arm area, I promise. It’ll be in the store and again, the pattern was revised after knitting. I’ll have to test knit a second version when more Sheffield arrives because I really want one of these in my wardrobe.


P.S. The shawl pin in the catalog pictures and the design inspiration picture is the same, made by Moving Mud. I think I might purposely design sweaters that require these, they’re beautiful!

P.P.S. More credits, the most important: these pictures are the product of Penny and David Michalak, a local couple who between them have too many design related talents to list!