Pattern: Juno, from Rowan 40. A HUGE shout out to Silvia over at silverknits for mailing me her copy of Rowan 40. I am so grateful for the kindness of other knitters. Silvia, I am mailing your magazine back with a surprise this week!
Yarn: Rowan Yorkshire Tweed Aran in Wild Plum, just a wee bit over 6 skeins. The pattern calls for 2 strands of Wool Cotton held together, but if you've seen other FOs or checked out the Ravelry project pages, you wouldn't think it. Ever since Vanessa at Coloursknits debuted her Juno, in which she substituted the Yorkshire Tweed Aran, everyone else followed suit. This is an example of why I am so thankful for blogs and other knitters who share their experiences. The Tweed is a perfect substitute and makes for a beautiful (and less expensive!) sweater. Buttons are from Joann's, $6 for 8 of them.
This only took about 6 weeks to knit, while working on other things. I could have knocked it out in a month for sure if I hadn't been distracted by other knits. The body went really fast (the back only took 2 days), but the collar took much longer. I ended up doing 13 repeats of the cable pattern. Once I got the hang of it, it went faster, but it was slow going in the beginning.
Modifications: I did make several modifications to the pattern. Other knitters had noted that they were unhappy with the boxier shape of the body, so I cast on the numbers of stitches in between the 32" and 34" size and worked some waist shaping. I also made the body longer, about 15" before the armhole. I followed the pattern as written for the armhole shaping. For the sleeves, I cast on 34 sts and increased 1 st at each end every 12 rows until 52 sts and then followed the pattern as written. I followed the instructions for the button band and collar as written.
Verdict: Um, I LOVE IT. Can I marry this sweater? I've never made a sweater that knit up so quickly or fit so well. I did my best to knit up the sizes of the back, fronts and sleeves that are best for my body, but I think I lucked out that this yarn behaved and stayed on gauge! The collar is really unique. Even my mom asked, "You didn't knit that, did you?"
I really like the color of the yarn. It has little flecks of hot pink and green and red in it, so I have many options with the color of my layering tee underneath. Here I've got red. Yesterday I wore it with a hot pink and today I'm wearing it with a purple (yeah, I've worn it 3 days in a row!!).
What else can I say? I celebrated a birthday yesterday so Juno was a fantastic birthday surprise. I also got 2 really awesome knit-related gifts from Bill, which I'll share with you in the next post. In the meantime, be thankful for the gift of knitting and everything and everyone else in your life you have to be thankful for. Happy Thanksgiving!