The Rhyme of the Ancient Christmas Jumper

The Christmas jumper. I finished the jumper almost a year ago, which makes this the oldest finished project ever to make it to the blog. I had taken pictures and written a blog post about it many months ago. But my hard disc drive crashed and I lost all the photo’s I had taken of the jumper (and all my other photos…yeah lets not talk about that). The result was that my jumper lay forgotten in the back of my wardrobe for many months. It would still be laying there if not for a kind reader asking about it (Thank you Sandra!). So drum roll…here it is…

 I’m not going to lie,  I’ve been dreading this post. But I like to be honest, and give you the whole picture. I’m not sure what to say on this jumper, the process was slow, and while knitting it I just wasn’t feeling this jumper. Which was odd, because I had wanted to knit it for a long time, had spend many months looking forward to knitting it and planning the project. The pattern included stranded colourwork, which is my favourite technique and the designer, Susan Crawford, is one of my favourite designers of all time. But still, almost from the start, I didn’t enjoy knitting this jumper.
I wish I could say I had other thoughts on the finished project, but alas. I’m not “feeling” the finished project either. The whole process wasn’t enjoyable for me and when my hardrive crashed and I lost all my photo’s I couldn’t even be sad about it…it seemed liked the perfect cynical end of the whole knitting process.

Let’s go through the issues:

 First, it is way to big. I mean really way to big. It might not be super obvious from the pictures,but I should have knitted it one or two sizes smaller. I mentioned a few times to people while I was knitting it, that it looked so big, but it was my size…and I never had any issues with Crawford’s patterns before so I continued knitting, ignoring the nagging doubts I had about it. It’s not only the size of the jumper its also the sleeves that somehow turned out to long. As you can see above I had to fold back the sleeves to make it fit.

Then there is the fit, which is really strange. The back is all weird. The front is alright I guess. But the back just fits really weird. The neckline is awfull,  all weird and wobbly. This is a problem I could fix, but I’ not sure if the other problems that this FO has going on, motivates me enough to actually do it.

Next up: Box sleeves, they really don’t do anything for me… at all. It was the first time I did box head sleeves on a vintage jumper, and the process of doing it went well, I thought, and the finished sleeve caps look well enough in itself. I’m just not sure what they do on me. Again I could solve this by re-attaching them different but again I lack the motivation.

The silver lining, among all these ‘ughs’, is that I do love the colours together, a lot. I think that part played out wonderfully. I love the navy blue with the red colourwork. If I can’t make this jumper work than I will most certainly make something else with it.

Well lesson learned, next time I will listen to that nagging feeling in my stomach and not knit further. Leave it and start something else, something I am enthusiastic about, and not something that feels like an obligation to me. I think that struggling with this jumper is the main reason why I turned away from vintage patterns for a bit (I’m not sure if you noticed?). It is a shame, but I will probably find my way back to them soon enough (did you hear of Susan Crawford´s vintage Shetland project? *gaspfangirlgasp*). There are some things I could do to solve the issues or make it a bit better. I just don’t know if its worth the trouble. So I don’t know if I will. Perhaps I will just frog it and make something different out of the yarn all together.

I’m actually glad it took me so long to blog about this jumper, because it made me able to look at this jumper a bit more objective. When I go back and read the blogpost I initially wrote about it I see a lot more vicious bitterness. But a couple of months later (and some more succes projects later) I mainly laugh a lot about the whole story.


6 thoughts on “The Rhyme of the Ancient Christmas Jumper

  1. Looking at the pictures it looks quite good on you, but I understand that safetypins aren't that practical to wear all day 😉

    Don't be scared to do more vintage patterns! Just avoid box-sleeves 😛

  2. I totally see what you mean. Either get the courage to perform sweater surgery or frog it, I would say… It is not a terrible sweater, but it deffinatly isn't that flattering like your owl sweater or the one with the boats or… Frankly any other sweater you have made.

    Thank you for having the courage to still post about it. It helps me with dealing with my own sweater who is misbehaving. It is a Celtica of Drops Design, who I've had to change since my measurement are not standard. And apparently I've made the bust size too big, so I've ripped that part now out for the second time. Also the arms are hard to get right, since I wanted them to be different the the pattern. I probably have to frog them and try my hand at the knitted on sleaves By gum by golly tutorial. Otherwise it is going to be ripped and going to be an Owls cardigan or a blank canvas by ysolde.

    Question, while you were knitting your sweater, did you try it on or check the gauge? Don't give up on the vintage sweaters! The ones you made in the past were incredibly beautiful, I'm sure is was just this pattern that was misbehaving.

  3. Augh, it is awful when you spend so long on something and then don't like it – I've had that happen with woollies too.

    Perhaps you could find this one a new home with a larger lady and knit yourself a smaller version.

  4. Ha, that's exaclty what I meant! It's not awful, but it just really doesn't work out.

    I didn't try it on while knitting, because the jumper is made in pieces. I did check gauge and it wasn't a dramatical difference. Perhaps it was just me being stupid and making a size to big or something.

    Jup, it's extra frustrating when you have to resize and that goes wrong. I hope it'll work out, either the tutorial or the re-knit 😉

    I thought about giving it away, but I don't know any people IRL who would like to wear vintage-christmas clothing.

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