This is one sweater that knows how to have fun.
Pattern: Tulip, from Rowan Magazine 41
Yarn: Rowan Damask, color 47, 10 balls for the 39″ size (modified)
Time Elapsed: Nearly an entire month!
Modifications and Notes: I added around 3.5 inches to the length of the body, which led to waist/hip shaping, and I also changed the sleeves from cap to set-in. This was the first time I’ve tried a major restructuring of a pattern, and it definitely caused some hair-tearing moments–particularly with the sloped wrap neckline, which I had to rip out three times. But now that the sweater is done, the only thing wrong is that it’s not warm enough to wear it!
I loved all of the clever touches throughout the pattern. The scalloped edging along the bottom of the sweater and sleeves is created by turning the left-hand needle counterclockwise every 6 stitches. Beautiful, and easy! The ties are 1×1 rib instead of icord, so they have a stretchy belt look, which I really enjoy. The neckline gets the same trim as the bottom edges, except that it’s turned inside out.
A word to those who wish to knit this, though–the way that neck trim is attached is extremely fiddly. You cast on a bajillion stitches, work the twist edging, put the WS of the edging to the RS of the sweater, and pick up through both the sweater’s neckline and the trim stitches, sort of like a 3 needle bind-off. Then you cast off knitwise. It creates this darling little line of knit stitches running perpendicular to the edge, but it wasn’t easy to do.
Rowan is one of my favorite knitting magazines, but I usually find myself thinking about how the sweaters want to be worn by a tall, willowy woman with small breasts. Since I am none of those things, too often the latest Rowan is more inspiration and daydream-fodder than useful pattern source. But Tulip is just great for me. The color change in the Damask nicely camouflages any flabby tummy issues, the wrap style is great for a fuller chest, and the whole thing can go nicely from casual to dressy. The yarn feels silky and soft without being too fussy, as well.
All in all, four thumbs up. It makes me feel like dancing!
(As usual, for more wacky photos and commentary, see the FO page.)