It started 10 years ago, in 2009, in a yarn buying frenzy in the John Lewis Sale. I joyfully skipped to the checkout with 20 balls of delicious black Rowan RYC Silk Wool DK in my clutches.
“That will make Ben a super jumper”, I thought…..
Eight years later, in 2017, my constant waving of men’s jumper patterns at Ben had worn him down. “OK, knit me a jumper – I like that one!”
I was thrilled – this was the beast he had chosen.
Drops 135-3 Dreams of Aran (Aran design jumper not weight of yarn btw)
It looked demanding and had been translated (rather badly) from Norwegian . I wasn’t put off and I was raring to go!
Wot? No Cable Needle?
The first problem was the honeycomb cables and the sheer number of cable “twist” it involves. It’s an 8 row pattern repeat with every stitch cabled on the 3rd and 7th rows. I quickly realised the only way to get this done was to master “Cabling without a cable needle” – once I was over that hurdle – it was looking good…
Oh Dear 🙁
It was all going well until I nearly was up to the armholes…it was looking a bit small. And the stitches seemed tight…
I ignored the Monstrous Beast over Christmas but finally asked Ben to try it on – it was hideously too tight. So Jan 2018 it got ripped out and, after much swatching and gnashing of teeth, started again on 4.5mm needles rather than 4mm. I was most unhappy 🙁
All my enthusiasm had evaporated by this point and I knit several projects while I was procrastinating finishing the big black monster that stared at me from behind the sofa. My fellow “Guilty Knitters” tried to encourage me by making “Finishing the Beast” my New Year’s resolution in 2018.
Pattern Problems 😢
The pattern is written so badly and has a couple of design features I’d change if I was to make it again (that will NEVER happen readers!!)
Firstly, at the hem and cuffs, there are a few rows of garter stitch – sounded a nice idea but it flares badly. I should have take more notice of the numerous notes on Ravelry that say the skipped this part and just made plain rib.
Another problem was the pattern was slammed together in great blocks of text with no paragraph spacing and uses creative punctuation.
I got really stuck on the sleeve decreasing. I had to sit with pencil and paper and play with stitch counts until I came out with a method which gave with the right number of stitches. Several people on Ravelry had issues with this so I’ve posted my solution in the pattern comments – If you’ve come here because you’re struggling with this, here’s the solution
What’s confusing is the phrase “cast off each side“ at the beginning of every row…
(I think) you need to do this…
Starting with 102 stitches…
Cast off 3 stitches either side of the central marker – work back and forth on remaining stitches. Ensure right side is facing. (96 stitches remain)
Decrease 2 stitches at the start of every row for 18 rows (36 stitches decreased – 60 st remain )
Decrease 1 stitch at the start of every row for 12 rows. (12 stitches decreased – 48 stitches remain)
After much more procrastination and a couple more WIPs completed in the meantime, the Sleeves were finished! YAY!
The sleeves are that weird shape because this jumper is actually a really nice shape that was new to me – Saddle shoulders with a long strip that continues across the back to make a yoke. This is what it looks like sewn up…
2019 – Shamed into Finishing 😳
I failed my new year’s resolution to finish this in 2018 – to much laughter at Guilty Knitters – I really needed to get this done. Poor Ben was now occassionally asking me if I’d ever finish his nice big warm jumper too!
I finally got this sewn up and the neck band completed last week. It has been a huge slog and really shouldn’t have taken to long. I am so pleased it is done so I can move onto something more exciting.
All there is left to do now is to show you the lovely Ben, modelling his nice big warm jumper 😀
|Completed Knit |
|Pattern:||135-3 Dreams of Aran by Drops|
|Yarn:||Rowan RYC Silkwool DK|
|Pattern Problems:||Badly translated, insufficient and creative punctuation.|
Garter stitch on hem and cuffs caused flaring – recommend leaving it out and doing plain rib.
|Pattern Modifications:||Made sleeves and length slightly longer (1 inch on each because Ben is long and slim). |
This should have taken 14 balls but ended up taking nearly 19 (good thing I had 20!!)
|Washing and Wearing:||Very warm!|
|Knit It Again???:||Oh No, No, No. NEVER!!|
|Difficulty:||3/5 in reality but 5/5 because of the bad pattern and excessive procrastination.|
|Other Postings Relating To This One:||None|