Sunday, July 3, 2011

Around the River Bend

Those of you who follow my blog may remember that I've been navigating my way "around the river bend" in my dillydally knitting life!  The back post can be found here.  I did feel a huge amount of trepidation when I began this journey ... the inspiration began with a trunkshow I attended in February while in Anchorage.  I bought the pattern, with the intention of recreating their sweater in yarn from my local yarn shop, The Net Loft.
It had a cable bodice, short sleeves and was not fitted ... after reading through the instructions multiple times ... I began to have doubts.  Still ... I forged forward and bought beautiful, hand dyed yarn by Three Irish Girls.  But my doubts concerning the pattern continued to grow.

I knew Sister DillyDally would want something more fitted and after discussions with her over the phone, I decided to switch it up.  I had never designed a fitted sweater before, but had knit them using published patterns.
It was time to get out the graph paper, calculator, pencil and gigantic eraser! ;-) This is the fun and easy part of the process.  A friend I teach with, has a ready made sweater that has parts of the style I was seeking.  Unfortunately, I didn't take a photo of it.  But I used the elements from the ready made sweater to create percentages for the one I was designing.

I was "mostly" comfortable with designing and knitting the body of the sweater.  However when it came to "set in" sleeves ... I not only felt anxious ... I was in a panic!  I remember the horrors of sewing in my first "set in" sleeves in a garment for 4-H ... multiply that terror by 100 and now you know how I felt as I began sewing in the sleeves of this sweater.  I called my knitting buddy for reassurance and support ... yes ... I needed a life jacket!
The good news is ... they fit!  Yes ... I did the happy dance ... many times!
In some ways I like the back more than the front ... guess I'll just make sure Sister DillyDally walks in front of me! ;-)
Occasionally the dillydally winds blow in a direction that forces me to challenge myself ... often I respond with resistance ... it is easier and more comfortable to stick with what I know.  Following those "bends in the river" can be unsettling ... I never know what lies ahead ... success or failure.  A while back, when another dillydally windstorm had blown me in a different direction,  a good friend asked me if I liked everything I made when I took those kinds of risks.  I answered her honestly ... "No, but I absolutely love the journey!"  No matter the results ... I learn the most on those kinds of adventures!

Fortunately, I am happy with the results from this trip around the river bend ... and I can't wait to see Sister DillyDally wear it!  I hope a dillydally windstorm is headed in your direction ... grab your life jacket and enjoy what you find around the next river bend!


  1. I saw it in real life at the NetLoft...absolutely stunning! what a great job not to mention, great Mom! She will love it...Happy Summer!

  2. Thank you for letting us feature it on display at The Net Loft. It is absolutely lovely. I even did a facetime conversation with my mother in California and she LOVED it. She loves that scroll work in the design and the color, and of course the shaping. It was so fun oohing and ahing it with her as I showed it to her via my computer. It was our virtual show and tell and your sweater was the object of our attention. It's beautiful. Well done!