Monday, October 15, 2007

Finished: Silky Wide Collar Cardigan

At long last, the silky Wide Collar Cardigan, she is done. This one was quite the adventure. And by adventure, I mean ultimate test to a knitter's sanity. On the verge of giving up knitting entirely, I somehow managed to come out of this battle of perseverance with a pretty, pretty new fall cardigan.

Finished: Wide Collar Cardigan
Pattern: Jo Sharp Knit vol. 3
Fiber: RYC Silk Wool DK (14.5 balls of Porcelain)
Size: 35 3/8" bust (Medium)
Needles: size 6 Lantern Moon ebony straight needles
Date Started: July 2007
Date Completed: October 2007
Modifications: My gauge was looser than the pattern calls for, so I knit one size smaller than I would have had my gauge been accurate.
Notes: I simply cannot express enough that, while not the cheapest yarn on the block, RYC Silk Wool DK is well worth every cent you spend on it. The stitch definition is impeccable. The knitted fabric is heavenly--shiny and pretty, snuggly and soft, and so warm. And not the teensiest bit itchy like our good friend the tweedy wool can be. And pilling after a good wash? Nope and nope. Smooth, shiny and flawless. I will be investing in more of this stuff very, very soon.

Aqua silk wool + marble of fancy Philadelphia Mercantile building = prettiest FO photo shoot ever.

I am happy to report that my skepticism of the final fit/wearability of this knit was entirely unfounded. The wide collar does not tug uncomfortably on the back of one's neck, the collar flaps don't beat wildly and uncontrollably in the wind, and having no front closure on the cardigan is not utterly annoying and fiddly. The shortness of the garment is a little odd for me, mostly because I am tall and I'm not used to wearing "cropped" things, but the style of it actually works, because I tend to layer super-long shirts with shorter jackets, so I think I can pull it off. And, seriously, it feels like I am wearing a blanket--which is a sensation I am willing the throw fashion out the window for. Mmmmmm, blanket-y goodness...

Love the extra long ribbed cuffs, too. Heh, speaking of ribbing...

Ah, yes, the ribbed wide collar that would not end. It really, truly was painful to knit the wide collar portion of this otherwise easy-as-pie cardigan. Let's just say that it will be a very, VERY long time 'til I can bring myself to knit another scarf-like object of any kind. That said, the wide collar is the best aspect of the cardigan... it really is cushy and snuggly and makes the cardigan very cozy! (and warm).

See how preeeetty? Sweater with a built-in scarf. Ingenious.

And that's a wrap. A pretty, pretty, snuggly wrap.

Also, Grizzly Bear? So very, very good live. And live in a church, no less. (yes, that *is* the inside of the church the show was in. super-awesome. i'll be seeing Yo La Tengo there this week. super-duper awesome. sit-down shows in churches rock.)

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Anonymous kim said...

That is so beautiful! It looks every bit as gorgeous as you described -- and so stylish. The color is lovely too. Am I fawning too much?!

4:05 PM  
Anonymous Sarah said...

Your endurance through all that ribbing is impressive, as is the finished product. Just lovely!

4:08 PM  
Blogger The_Add_Knitter said...

What a stunner! The color is fantastic on you, well done!!

4:22 PM  
Blogger E to the M said...

It is so beautiful and sounds like it was well worth the pain as well. Knitting Philistine 1 - ribbing 0..ha!

4:29 PM  
Blogger Margene said...

What a truly stunning jacket! I bought the book and now I know that will be added to my must knit list. Cozy and luxurious is how it looks to me!

4:29 PM  
Blogger Specs said...

That really does look wonderful. Well done there!

4:36 PM  
Blogger Bertha said...

Whoa. Talk about fiberlicious, that is so gorgeous it doesn't even need to be presented as food! I could never knit all that 1 x 1 ribbing

4:37 PM  
Blogger Stella said...

Your perseverance is almost as impressive as the sweater itself. I don't generally wear cropped things either, but i'm SO wishing i had a silky scarfy snuggly cardigan on right now.

Awesome photoshoot, too.

4:39 PM  
Anonymous tiennie said...

That is very pretty! It looks lovely on you!

4:43 PM  
Anonymous nova said...

That cardigan is what rocks. Fantabulous. Totally worth the time-suck of knitting the ribbing.

4:55 PM  
Blogger Kristy said...

Beautiful job! And congrats on getting through all of that collar. I'm glad it was worth it in the end :)

5:06 PM  
Anonymous melissa said...

yay! sometimes i think the knits that give us the most grief, end up being the best ones ever.

you look fantastic in your purty new sweater! enjoy it!

have fun at yo la tengo in your autumn sweater. heh.

5:16 PM  
Anonymous Mom said...

What can I say.
The perfect sweater
in the perfect yarn
knit to perfection.
Looks stunning on you.

5:18 PM  
Anonymous naomi said...

That came out very well!

And thanks for the heads-up on the Yo La Tengo show.

5:19 PM  
Anonymous Nora said...

I agree with mom - perfect in every way!

[And I'm happy you made something from the book.]

5:24 PM  
Blogger Lola and Ava said...

WOW! That looks exquisite (especially the color - lovely). Glad you stuck with all that ribbing as I would have chucked it. My favorite photo may be the last one . . . as equally elegant as the ones at the museum.

5:34 PM  
Anonymous kris said...

so beautiful, megan! what a great job! lovely colour (and i'm very very tempted by the yarn). a definite success!

have fun at yo la tengo; it will surely be fab!

5:46 PM  
Blogger smelk-o-matic said...

Soooo pretty! Fantastic.


5:48 PM  
Anonymous Erin said...

Love the color and love that collar. It does look very warm and comfy. Nicely done.

6:31 PM  
Blogger femiknitter said...

Lady, this rules. I love the shape, the collar, the color, everything. I'm totally going to queue this pattern in Ravelry.

6:34 PM  
Blogger Michele said...


it does look really beautiful on you.

6:41 PM  
Blogger Kara said...

The wider, the better I say! I love the hybrid of cardy and perfect!

6:44 PM  
Anonymous heather said...

what a great project - the yarn + color + pattern work great together. Glad that it also has wear-ability as well! Enjoy it.

6:47 PM  
Anonymous jess said...

I love it! it looks great, and like it was well worth it! scarf-attached? sweet!

I'm amazed the silk wool doesn't pill! duly noted!

[as for another knit that was an knitter's sanity test, check out Laura's Morrigan! You guys are amazing! :) ]

7:26 PM  
Anonymous claudine said...

Oh that is GORGEOUS, Megan! Definitely looks stunning on you. And silky wool... Mmmm....

7:35 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

Three reasons why I can't believe I am leaving you a comment:

1. That sweater! That color! So pretty! So jealous!
2. Excuse me, Grizzly Bear AND Yo La Tengo?!? Some people get to see all the good shows.
3. You are a Red Sox fan. 'Nuff said.

You know that this comment is no less than 67% joking, right?

7:45 PM  
Blogger Alison said...

Mmm, wearing a blanket. This turned out so well and looks great on you -- but really, I can't get past the colour. I love this colour! I don't even need anything more!

7:47 PM  
Anonymous Mintyfresh said...

Megan, it looks so awesome! Love that you went on location for the photo shoot, too.

Look out for my Ex at the Yo La Tengo show, and send "she's so over you" vibes his way! (I'm just assuming that if they're performing at the Church, he'll be there.)

7:50 PM  
Blogger TinkingBell said...

Soooo beautiful - love the colour and drape - I'm in awe of your tenacity - looks just great!!

7:53 PM  
Blogger JulieFrick said...

cracking up over minty's comment. gorgeous sweater. love the photoshoot and especially the long, long cuffs!

7:58 PM  
Blogger Ashley said...

I am still completely unable to get myself over the color. It is unbeliveably perfect in every way. That is all.

8:40 PM  
Blogger Cirilia said...

Oh oh oh. Sit-down shows. Knitting and good acoustics! Perfection! I saw Grizzly Bear a few weeks ago and they are grand indeed. They also didn't do an encore, which was so cool, I hate that little ritual.

The jacket is gorgeous. Here's to tall ladies in cropped cardigans!

8:47 PM  
Blogger Christy said...

Stupendous! It looks incredible. Fashionable & Cozy ?! Those two aren't BFFs very often.

9:09 PM  
Anonymous KarenJoSeattle said...

Beautiful and classy. I definitely need to get some of that RYC yarn. Thanks for the yarn review.

10:58 PM  
Blogger DesertRat said...

What a gorgeous cardi! The yarn was a perfect choice for that design. Speaking of the yarn, my bank account does not thank you for that yarn review (though I do :) ). I was already eyeing that yarn for a sweater (pattern TBD), and your review pretty much cinched it--I've got to get some of that stuff ASAP.

11:22 PM  
Blogger Daphne said...

Can I trade lives with you for a very short period? I just want to TRY the cardi, I swear, and it's just been too long since my last YLT show.

12:04 AM  
Anonymous kelp! said...

Yay, success! It turned out wonderfully, I'm sure it will keep you good company when the weather turns cold. Words cannot describe my love for that color - you're making me want to expand my already gigantic sweater yarn stash!

12:12 AM  
Blogger Elemmaciltur said...

Congrats on such beautiful job! Well worth every knitting moment!

4:18 AM  
Anonymous Beth said...

This is really a gorgeous sweater!! And such a great color - something I wouldn't think to pick out, but it looks great on you!

6:47 AM  
Blogger bockstark.knits said...

wow, you are just a super knitter! it's fantastico!

7:32 AM  
Blogger Liz K. said...

So. Beautiful. And very sophisticated. You finished your ribbing! Yay!

9:01 AM  
Blogger gleek said...

hooray!! you finished it and it looks awesome! so comfy and stylish. can't be beat!

9:03 AM  
Blogger Stacey said...

beautiful - i love the color and the slight sheen. looks extra cozy. the sleeves are great!

9:39 AM  
Blogger Desiknitter said...

Beautiful, just beautiful. It looks great on you, and the pictures are gorgeous.

12:15 PM  
Blogger barefoot said...

Stumbled upon your site today (love the name) and am totally wowed by your finished cardigan. Beautiful color and photos -- I'll have to take a look at that pattern for myself...

3:40 PM  
Blogger Alotta.knittin said...

That cardigan is absolutely BEAUTIFUL! Must have!!!

4:07 PM  
Blogger Kirsten said...

That is one beautiful cardigan, and the fact that it makes you feel like you are wrapped in a blanket makes it darn near perfect!

5:58 PM  
Anonymous Sarah said...

It *is* a really pretty photoshoot - I love me a sculpted lion. Yours looks rather lean and hungry, and is probably contemplating whether all that silk/wool ribbing would stick in his teeth. Beautiful work on that cardi, and big props for superhuman endurance!

8:13 PM  
Blogger zoe said...


11:15 PM  
Blogger vera said...

When i read the "on the *verge* of giving up knitting entirely" comment i almost snorted the tea i was drinking out my nose! Dude, i WOULD have given up knitting if i had gone through the crap-ola that you did to get that gorgeous piece of knitted beauty finished. Hmm, don't ever let me knit this pattern...
(Love the pictures by the way. And the cardi- if that wasn't obvious.)

3:16 AM  
Blogger Oiyi said...

It's wonderful. The knitting is beautiful and so is the color.

12:48 AM  
Blogger Haley said...

what a lovely sweater that looks great on you! glad you persevered.

3:17 PM  
Anonymous Katy said...

Whee!! Utterly worth it!

6:06 PM  
Blogger Mozilla said...

wow! I love the color!

8:05 PM  
Blogger nicole said...

Wowy wow wow.

I want to knit this soooo badly. It's perfect. The colour, the yarn, the perfect execution, the fit.

Way to go!

8:08 PM  
Blogger Brenda said...

Well done! Beautiful sweater and photos! You met the ribbing and it is yours.

8:13 PM  
Blogger Leah said...

It's stunning!!! Quite fantastic!!

10:46 PM  
Blogger schrodinger said...

I'd say that ribbing was totally worth it too, it's gorgeous!!!

12:25 AM  
Blogger Sarah said...

It is beautiful and it is done.

8:06 AM  
Blogger carrie said...

a total winner, all around. great color, great drape. bravo!

11:32 PM  
Blogger Amy said...

God, it's so perfect! I was taken with it in the book, too, and now my resolve is firm. Someday, I'll make it and get through all of that ribbing!

(Sorry I didn't see you at Rhinebeck, if you were there.)

6:08 PM  
Blogger Poshyarns said...

This is absolutely perfect, it drapes so beautifully and the colour is gorgeous on you, it was well worth the pain, honestly. And you know, knitting large portions of ribbing is probably a bit like childbirth, eventually the painful memories will subside and you will find yourself casting on for something ribbed....

5:43 AM  
Anonymous jessie said...

Congratulations. That is indeed simple and beautiful. The color is gorgeous.

5:43 AM  
Blogger Katie said...

A-MAZ---ING...really, i don't know what else to say!

1:05 PM  

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