Jules, designed by Louisa Harding. Design available for download on Rowan website. Knitted in Elann Den-M-Knit, 16 balls, ecru color, using US 3, 4, & 5 needles.
Project Notes: This was my first adventure knitting with denim. My wondeful MIL picked out this sweater because she loved the heart cable blocks detail. This was definitely something I would never have knit on my own, but her reaction was great, and she does love the garment. Knitting with denim is a challenge since you have to knit all the pieces longer than necessary to account for the 15-20% shrinkage, but the knitting does look lovely once washed and shrunken. Any unevenness disappears, and it makes a soft, yet firm fabric. It also makes it difficult for a fitted or tailored look, hence the boxy shape of this drop-shoulder sweater -- again, something I never would have chosen for myself, but great for a sweatshirt-type sweater.
This shrinkage factor sort of stressed me out, but I just tried to use these tips, found on Polly's blog. So I knit the pieces and washed them prior to seaming, but wasn't sure what to do to add the neckline. I had to seam a shoulder before picking up the stitches for the neck. After contacting Polly and Kay, I got conflicting, but very helpful and kind advice. Kay said she thought I would be OK without pre-shrinking, Polly suggested I knit and prewash another swatch, and unravel that yarn to knit the collar. How nice that these complete strangers, fellow knitters and bloggers, chose to help me out and give me such thoughful feedback. So, of course, I took the path of less-work-and-finish-quicker and went ahead and added the neck in regular yarn, but I did unravel my swatch to do the final seaming.
UPDATE/EDIT: I realized, too late, that publishing someone's private e-mails verbatim without permission was a boneheaded, newbie blogger thing to do. I think I just got excited, corresponding with such wonderfully accomplished bloggers. I apologize in advance, and thanks again to Kay and Polly for their gracious advice.
From my last post, you know finishing this sweater was definitely touch and go for a while. But on Saturday, I sent MIL, FIL, Mr. Science and the kids out for a few hours in the morning so I could properly finish the garment uninterrupted. I was quite a pleasant experience, with coffee, my finishing bible by Nancie Wiseman, and the wonderful company of Brenda Dayne.
The side panels of this sweater are in moss, and I had never seamed moss stitch before. I found that if I did a normal ladder stitch, picking up the purl bumps on the edges, it created a nice clean looking seam. It did not, however, create an uninterrupted moss stitch panel. I think if faced with seaming moss again, I will make a stockinette selvedge, to create a neat, uninterrupted moss fabric.