Can you believe I knit this?
In slightly less than two months no less, even though I had to knit two samples for Interweave Knits at the same time and practice an insane amount for a driver's test, which I passed on the first try. I am still amazed.
This is Genevieve's Graduation Sweater from Kathleen Taylor's book Fearless Fair Isle. When I said I would love to knit a sample for it, I thought I would get - I don't know - mittens? A hat? And then I got an e-mail saying I'd been assigned this and (another amazement) did not have a heart attack. See, I've known Kathi for a reeeeaaaallly long time, and I remembered Genevieve's Graduation Sweater from when she made the one she actually gave Genevieve. It is a very special and meaningful knit and I didn't know whether I could pull it off.
Well, I need not have panicked. Kathi sent over the draft chapter on introducing Fair Isle, complete with all sorts of advice and instruction, and by the time I cast on I felt like a pro. Normally this is the last kind of project I would ever call 'travel knitting', but I traveled with it everywhere and never had a problem following the charts.
And what charts! Complex though the design looks, you almost never have to carry a float more than five stitches, so it's effortless. To say nothing of the thrill as I watched the boxy shapes on the paper chart transformed into gentle curves in the fabric.
I took a few pictures of the process so Kathi could tell me whether I was doing it right - I wanted her sample to be perfect - and I always was, just from following the pattern.
If you look closely at that last picture, you can see the stitching there where I folded down the neck in anticipation of picking up stitches, another thing I didn't know how to do properly until I read Kathi's draft chapter.
Here is my favourite picture, taken just after I cut the steek. I love the design on the exterior of this sweater but I find this interior shot breathtakingly beautiful:
If you're new to Hugs and are so inclined, you can read through the posts I wrote while I was knitting this last spring - they are all tagged Big Project Small Needles.
It was a great experience, and I can't wait to get my hands on the patterns for the other projects in this book.
* * * * * *
Edited to add:
Whoa! I published this and then dashed out the door for much of the day. What a nice thing to come home to all these lovely supportive comments - thanks guys!!