Friday, March 6, 2009

Slowly Taking Shape

Well, Christmas is coming right along. An early start? Oh, no, no, would that it were so! It's last Christmas that I'm still working my way through. My tall-elegant-mom's fluffy mohair sweater is finished and delivered (to satisfyingly happy effect), and my good-humored brother's socks-in-progress have been rescued from the fate of contrasting toes by the lucky find of a matching skein. But it's my trim-athletic-dad's sweater that I'm mostly clicking along on lately.

It's been slowed down by the occasional interruption; here an urgent hand-spun vest, there a knit-less trip out of town, and even a few days of stomach bug (yuck; that one temporarily took the charm right out of knitting). But it's still chugging along.

Here, have a peek. After a couple of all- stockinette sweaters, I'm really enjoying these nice chunky cables. The yarn is a hearty one, Rowan's Scottish Tweed, in the Aran weight.

Dad's sweater is not going to be any one particular pattern. I had him look through a couple of books at Christmas-time to show me what kind of sweater he would like. After I got an idea of his preferences, what I came up with is going to be a distant cousin to the "Cable Jacket" pattern in Knitting for Him, by Martin Storey and Wendy Baker. (That's a lovely book, by the way, with a lot of nice, masculine sweaters that are classic but with interesting details. And, as in any Rowan book, you could lose yourself in the photographs, set in this case against the rugged seafront backdrop of a small town in Devon.)

It's a distant cousin to the sweater in the book because I'm departing from the neckline, collar style, shoulder style, cable layout, and a few other things. Though you can't see it in the photo I linked in above, the original has an asymmetric layout of cables that is just not the look I'm going for. But I love the basic cable pattern (a classic) and the pockets!

Of course, after making all these changes, I'll have only myself to blame if the end result doesn't measure up to what I'm envisioning. Or more realistically, I could end up doing some re-knitting and re-styling to make things work out, because I really want it to be nice.

I'd hoped to be further along by now (in March, for heaven's sake.) But I'm making good progress. I've got the back, both fronts, and part of one sleeve done.

At this rate, I shouldn't keep trim-athletic-dad waiting too much longer for his sweater. Or myself, anxiously waiting to see how it turns out.

Oh, the suspense!


Bess said...

Oh Oh! It's lovely!

Robin said...

Glad I'm not the only one!! I've finished the MIL scarf and DIL socks but oh if I could only get them in the mail!!!

Anonymous said...

Oh it looks like its gonna be great!

Christina said...

It looks great.
I love that book (published as Classic Knits for Men in the UK). I have already knitted two things from it, and am working up to a third.
For some years now I have had a man's sweater-worth of Rowan Magpie Tweed Aran (I accidentally bought double the amount I needed some years ago - old pattern and confusion with 2oz and 100g skeins). The jacket I like is the Shawl Collar Jacket - but it's for a chunky yarn... So I too will be using some combination of it and the one you are adapting.
Very best of luck - it really looks great - Aran patterns can do no wrong for me... although sometimes they go wrong for me....

cathy said...

Oh, that shawl-collared jacket is a beauty! I'll be very interested to see your version. :)