There’s not much I can say about the Hourglass Sweater (from Last Minute Knitted Gifts) that hasn’t already been said. It’s simple, comfortable, and surely destined to become a wardrobe staple. After the usual Finished Object hemming-and-hawing, I’m pleased with mine:
Pattern: Hourglass Pullover from ‘Last Minute Knitted Gifts’ by Joelle Hoverson
Yarn: Malabrigo Worsted (in ‘holly hock’); I alternated skeins every 3 rows to prevent any pooling from the semi-solid kettle-dyed skeins
Needles: 4.5 mm circulars.
Size: Between the 37″ and 41″. I aimed for 39″ based on my gauge swatch (aw, lookit, I even swatched like a good knitter should…) and this worked out well.
Modifications: Although this is a fairly uncomplicated pattern and could use a variety of ubiquitous yarns, it is also a pattern that rewards attention to your own body shape. If I’d made the pattern exactly as written, it would have been too short and sat too high on my hips. As I often do, I added an inch in length before and after waist shaping to get the shape to match mine more evenly.
The other key ‘fit’ issue is the shoulders. A very brief search on Ravelry will turn up no shortage of finished Hourglass sweaters whose necklines turned out too wide. My sister warned me about this possibility as well, as she had made this piece last winter, so I took this to heart and worked a few more raglan decreases along the yoke. I also spaced out a few of the decreases 2 rows apart instead of just 1 row apart, since my row gauge was coming out a bit tighter than what the pattern intended (this is so rare for me as to be almost unbelievable, usually I have looser row gauge than whatever the pattern wants).
However, in the larger sizes it seems as though the opposite approach is required – that working a few decreases more often would result in a better fit. So, your mileage may vary.
In the book this is identified as a ‘More than twelve hours’ project, which I would laughingly label an “understatement”. Although it is a fairly quick knit as far as sweaters are concerned, it’d have a hard time fitting this into a weekend. All in all I think I even managed the bulk of the work in about 2.5 weeks, but then was stalled at the end by going away on a trip and then getting side-tracked. The finishing is quite minimal as it is worked all in the round, so once you’ve done the knitting, all that remains is a bit of sewing up hems and the underarms.
This is going to be my ‘backup’ Rhinebeck sweater in case of disappointment with my intended Rhinebeck project. I’ll get to that one next post!