Friday, May 12, 2017

Old man sweater

This is the last of my Christmas gift knitting ... finished in April!  Robert had been wanting an "old man sweater" since Christmas 2015, when I made an olive green cable cardigan for our nephew, who was then six months old.  I wanted to knit one for him, but I wasn't quite sure what he wanted, and I definitely didn't want to knit him something he wouldn't like.  When the Interweave Knits Winter 2017 issue showed up, with a feature on sweaters for men, I was excited, and with Robert's cooperation, I mashed up two of the patterns in it to make this sweater for him.
He decided he wanted a pullover, not a cardigan, and we agreed that a shawl collar was required.  This would point to the Donegal Sweater, but he thought the collar poofed out too much at the back of the neck, and he wasn't wild about the stitch pattern - he really wanted cables.  He did like the cable panel on the back of the Belfast Cardigan, although he didn't like the overall fit or styling on the model.  So I replaced the decorative panel on the Donegal Sweater with a slightly adapted version of the cables from the Belfast Cardigan (the stitch counts were only off by one, so that was pretty easy).  I measured a ready-to-wear sweater that he wore a lot last fall and winter to choose the size, and then I started knitting.

Unfortunately, I started with the wrong size needles, so I had to re-knit half of the first sleeve when I didn't get gauge, and I was also knitting or sewing several other things for Christmas, so I ended up wrapping one and a half sleeves to put under the tree on Christmas morning.  I finally finished the sweater in April, and Robert loves it!  He got to wear it several times before the weather warmed up too much for wool sweaters, and every time he wore it he eagerly reminded me that I had made his sweater!  The fit is pretty good - the sleeves are a bit long and wide, but that certainly hasn't stopped him from enjoying wearing it.

Pattern: Donegal Sweater, with modifications
Size: 47"
Yarn: Valley Yarns Northampton, Color #50 Medium Grey, 100% wool, seven skeins
Needles:  US6 for ribbing, US9 for body
Started/Completed: December 2016/April 2017
Modifications: Replaced the decorative stitch pattern on front and back with cable panel from the Belfast Cardigan.  Reduced height of the the back neck shawl collar

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