Thursday, December 2, 2010

Designing My Own Sweater

I like the idea of "designing" my own sweater/cardigan. However, doing this from scratch, scares the beejeezus out of me. I don't know why. I design my own costumes that I sew. Designing my own knitted garments shouldn't be that difficult.

After all, it's taking drawing, figuring out the measurements, multiplying measurements by your gauge...then making it fit. That's not so hard right?! (yeah, right...)

I've already quasi-designed my friend's wrist-warmers as winged the pattern for my Top Down No Gauge Stocking cap. That's designing, right? So, how much more difficult to do that for a sweater? The logical part of my brain, says, it can be done. The knitting part of my brain? Not so much.

And I really would like to use my handspun and use it for something unique that's to me. I don't have enough for a full cardigan, but I have enough to make nice colorful accents. (I've often seen this question a few dozen times on Ravelry --"what do I do what the small amount of handspun I've made?")

So, what I've been doing is looking at various patterns of cardigans that I like for inspiration. I'm looking at design elements and what would work with a limited amount of handspun.

I have about 475 yards of rainbow handspun that I did for Tour-de-Fleece that was both Navajo-plied and barberpoled. And I have some black Cascade 220 that should go well with the colors.

RainbowTDF: Rainbow Barberpole

At this point, I'm looking at creating:

I started the sleeves this week. I cast on about 48 stitches for each sleeve and am knitting in the round.

Bits & Pieces

I'll continue knitting these until it reaches the desired length, then start in on the body. Right now, it almost seems a bit "too" big, because currently all the sweaters/cardigans I have been wearing are very fitted. But it has the correct amount of ease I want, and is similar to a number of "outer wear" sweaters that I have. Luckily, if it's slightly too big, washing the Cascade will make it shrink about 10% (from previous experience)