This is an absolutely terrible photo of me but I wanted to share this bad enough that I asked El to take the photo.  Not that El can't take a good photo but she is not a knitter and I told her to focus on the sweater. And she did. 

So, Voila!  Today I finished the first sweater I have ever made for myself.  It needs to be blocked to even out the stitches but I kinda like the organic look to it.

This is a totally handmade sweater (ok, technically the sheep made the wool).  It started out as a couple of bumps of roving that I bought at MDSW in 2011.  It sat in the closet for several months until I could decide what I wanted to do with it.  I finally found a pattern I liked but even though I swatched and the swatch was dead on, the actual yarn didn't work out to gauge like it should have.  I blame that on it being handspun and not as perfectly even and measurable as mill spun yarn.

It took me a while to decide which needle size I needed to get the fabric I wanted for my workhorse sweater.  I finally started the actual knitting last May on Memorial Day weekend.  I worked on it on and off all summer and this past winter realized I was not going to have enough yarn.  I frantically contacted the original vendors but after a year and a half, they could not help me.

I thought of Joan at Cupcake Fiber Co.  I love her rovings.  The colors are great and they are so well prepared.  I sent her my swatch and asked her to match it or make it coordinating/contrasting.  She sent me a box of roving that added a nice contrast.  Since the pattern is for a yoke type sweater, I just decided to do the yoke in the contrasting color and it worked out really well. 

Pk made the buttons out of wood.  Each one is a bit different but they all go together. 

This is a heavy sweater.  I used 3.5mm needles on a worsted weight yarn to make it dense like a jacket.  I wanted it to be an outer-wear type sweater.  One I can wear to work as a light jacket in the spring or in the winter when I need something warmer inside.

I am very happy with the way it came out.  Em said "it suits you" and I think she's right.   It certainly fits perfectly. 

And it only took almost 2 years........

And since Em got these for her birthday, I can show you the salt and pepper mills Peter Kevin made her for her birthday. 
They're made of spalted ginko.  It means that the tree got a fungus that worked its way through its circulatory system making the dark designs.  Peter Kevin took the wood and put it on the lathe and shaped them and then drilled out the insides to make room for the grinding bits.  Then he polished them up until they feel so smooth in your hands that it's almost as satisfying petting them as petting some yarns. He did an amazing job.  Now he wants to make some pens.....there is no stopping a craftsman when he/she learns a new skill.


amy said…
It's done! Congratulations! It looks super warm and well made. I love the buttons. And the pears! Beautiful. They do indeed look wonderful to hold.
Bells said…
You've done it!! It's wonderful! Great effort! Great result!
Kaye said…
It turned out great!!! I love the PK-made buttons on it--perfect!!!

And now I know what "spalted" means. Ha ha!
Galad said…
Love how the sweater came out, including the buttons! All of your efforts really paid off.

Olivia said…
Funnily enough, I see pears in those salt and pepper mills too! They are beautiful.

I am full of admiration for all your work on your sweater, it looks fabulous (like it was made for you, of course!) and I love the variation in the button colours.
DrK said…
what clever creative people you are. both things are gorgeous, and perfect reflections of their makers. beautiful!
Saren Johnson said…
Everything is amazing!!

The sweater is totally you.
Rose Red said…
I think a completely handmade cardigan is an amazing thing. I love the contrast yoke, and that PK made the buttons. Perfection.
Roxie said…
Your cardigan is a work of heart! How totally beautiful. You so deserve this. Bravo, brao, and Kermit the Frog arm-waving Yayyyyyys!

The mills are awesome. I can see that boy investing in exotic woods to see what a zebra wood peper mill looks like. How about Purple heart?

If he masters pens, sock needles are not far behind.

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