Long time in the knitting (started over a year ago), I finally finished Redmond’s Birthday Jumper a few weeks before his actual birthday. The pattern is Jo Sharp’s ‘Men’s Alpaca Sweater’ from Knit issue no. 1 and the yarn is her Alpaca Kid Lustre (30% Superfine alpaca, 40% kid mohair, 30% merino).
I remember being quite careful with the tension squares but in the end I think I used needles (3.25mm) that were too small. The measurements of the finished pieces are about 2cm less in width than specified. Perhaps my knitting tension actually changed over the course of the year. I could probably go up to 3.75mm next time.
This is by far the biggest project I knitted so far (I had no idea men are so much bigger). The small needle size made it even a more drawn-out venture. Plus the monotonous stocking stitch a mile long meant that it was difficult to sustain interest and the project was made in fits and spurts. Once the front and back were finished, the sleeves were surprising quick in comparison. Having thought that I would not do a man’s sweater again, of course now having finished it, I am eyeing ‘Men’s Ribbed Raglan Sweater’ in Knit no. 1.
Redmond is very happy with this hand-knit. He says it’s very warm, so much so that he has no idea what the ambient temperature is while wearing it. (Although I think the 40% mohair makes it a little bit itchy and needs a long-sleeve base layer.) I have started knitting a longer version of the Ultra vest for him as he fears that he will wear the jumper out (you can see in the photo at the top pilling is already occurring due to heavy wear).
Here’s a photo of the family in hand-knits on the occasion of Redmond’s ’32nd’ birthday — I hope the sight of us is not reminiscent of the scary photo Alex posted at the beginning of this blog.