My Ravelry notes for this project remind me that I started Two Hearts on 2 June 2015. That was quite a long time ago! After knitting half the front, I put it aside because I had no energy for concentration on complex cables at the time. However, now that I do have energy to do things that require a bit more brain power, I felt it was a good time to finish it in time for next winter!
And so here it is, all finished and ready for its bath!
I’m quite pleased with this pic because it captures the creaminess of the Romney wool and the softness that will develop slowly but surely as I wear this sweater during winter.
There were a few things about this project that were very interesting. The first is that I learned how to fix a mis-crossed cable many rows down without having to drop all the stitches back to the row I made the mistake on. This was an excellent thing to learn! It doesn’t work for all mis-crossed cables, but for this one, the fix was perfect. You cannot see where the mistake was now, and even I cannot tell or remember. The article explaining how to do that is here (I used Method 2).
One major mod I made was to make the back in plain stocking stitch. The cables create a dense, heavy fabric, and I felt that if I were to knit the back in the same cable pattern, I’d feel like I was wearing armour. I’m glad I made that call. It took a few tries (despite calculations before hand) to get the number of stitches right as I had to decrease the amount of stitches knitted in order to match the front (cabling really pulls in fabric width and requires more stitches than stocking stitch for the same amount of width).
During the finishing process, I found that the bind off on the tops of my sleeves was way too tight – I could stretch the sleeve fabric to the length of the armhole, but not the bound off edge! I figured this would not make for a pretty armhole/sleeve join, so I remedied that by ripping back and reknitting a stretchy bind off. This allowed the fabric to stretch out properly and fit the armhole like it was meant to. I hadn’t thought about using this method before but I shall definitely keep it in mind for future!
I posted a quick pic of the difference on Instagram at the time. You can see how there is a significant difference in width from the same number of stitches obtained from using a different bind off method (the new bind off the sleeve underneath).
The only other ‘issue’ encountered when knitting this sweater was that I initially knitted the neck roll too long (pattern said between 5 – 10cm, so I took the medium road and knitted 8cm). I discovered that an 8cm/3.25″ neck created quite a fat roll and did not look nice at all. A quick rip out back to a 5cm length, and it looked a lot more balanced!
I’m still not entirely sure I am happy with the neck. I realise that I accidentally used 4.5mm needles on the neck instead of 4mm, and it has made the roll more floppy than the sleeve and edge of the sweater. I think I may still rip it out and do that bit again.
Finally, on the yarn I used. This is a ‘non-commercial’ yarn, in the sense that it was spun in a boutique mill and I suspect, the wool even came from a single farm as it was labelled Romney Lambswool. Unfortunately, the people I bought it from are not in business at the moment (Blackhalls). The wool was only minimally processed before spinning, which meant that it was very greasy. It took five washes, two with very warm wool wash, to get the rinse water clear… but it has turned out gorgeous! Free of the lanolin weighing it down, the finished garment is much lighter, with a beautiful bloom and liveliness!
I don’t think I’m going to get too many issues with pilling on this yarn.
I had major issues getting satisfactory modelled photos of the sweater today. It is a cooler day than we have been having this week, but still far too warm to wear a woolly, cabled sweater. I gave up!