Last Sunday I went to see Eclipse with my friend and regular movie-buddy Kate. I thoroughly enjoyed it. I am not a Twi-hard by any stretch and I don't particularly relate to any of the characters, but if you made me choose I would have to go for Edward (I can't resist a man with sideboards - lucky for me my fella wears them!). I have always loved vampire stories starting in my teens with the original novel Dracula, moving on through the Anne Rice vampire chronicles and I am currently reading the Vampire Academy Novels - so vampire movies are always on my 'to see' list. Plus I love the clothes they put Alice in,! Isn't this coat/smock from New Moon cute?
But the point of this post is not a movie review but a cardigan review. Yes, that's right the Dressage Jacket is finished and has had it's first public wearing.
Sublime aran by Sirdar. The colour is 'wicker'. This yarn feels beautiful to knit with, very smooth and soft, and no splitting. However, there is something you should know. When I blocked the pieces (soaked them in tepid water with wool mix, gently lifted them out and rolled in a towel then patted to shape) they GREW. A lot. The technical diagram for the cardigan shows a finished length of 49cm, I admit I didn't measure before blocking so it may have started out a bit longer than this but after blocking it is now 69cm! it also grew in width but it's hard to measure with the rib. Let's just say before blocking I was thinking it might be a bit tight and now I certainly don't have that concern. If I were to do this over I would knit a reasonable sized swatch, measure it, block it and then measure again. You might find you can go down a size.
I also ran out of wool which was frustrating. Fortunately the yarn shop I bought it from still had some of the same dyelot in stock so it all turned out well, but it is really expensive yarn so I did feel a bit ripped off! For the record I have never run out of wool before, I usually have a good amount left over so if you are a tight knitter you may want to consider having an extra ball as backup.
Dressage from the Third Sublime Aran pattern book. I knitted the smallest size and find it a little big. For reference, my high bust measures 87cm and my full bust measures 91cm. I chose the 84cm size because I prefer my tops to be fitted fairly close. Winters are mild here and I usually only wear a long sleeved t-shirt underneath at most, so I don't need to allow room for bulky under layers. The size is comfortable it is just a little less closely fitted than I would like, but it's just as well because with the extra length I need extra room to go around my hips! The sleeves are quite long, they come down over the back of my hands and aren't snug enough to push up, but I can live with that. Look at the fit on the model and compare to how it fits me. You can bet she doesn't have a 91cm bust and it looks tiny on her!
Image from here.
On the back I made an alteration for my short upper back by working short rows just above the waist. I've never done this before and it worked pretty well, at least I don't have a huge fold of jumper in my lower back as I usually do!
I am very pleased with this, I used high quality yarn (a real splurge) but it was worth it. The design is modern and smart but also comfy casual at the same time. I did read somewhere that this yarn pilled with only light wearing but fortunately I have not noticed that yet, and I will be very p***ed off if my $180 cardigan doesn't wear well. Some care will be needed when washing it, lest it stretch even more. All in all though I can see myself wearing this a lot in winters to come.
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