Few years ago I knitted the best sweater ever. Except that it had a ton of little things I felt could be tweeked to make it even better. It wasn't perfect but it was the best sweater in the world.
How: Circular needles 3.5 and 4.0 mm
From: Tukuwool scraps and Pirtin kehräämö Kampalanka, 319 g
Every once in a while my brain needs to take a holiday and work on someone else's pattern. You know, knit without thinking. Except that if you know me, you know that's never really the case.
So I needed little mindless knitting and after staring at my Tukuwool leftovers for a moment I developed a craving for another 3 in 1 - this time in Finnish wool. It would be so great: the pattern calls for five colors and my scrap yarn basket was full of Tukuwool Fingering, some Kässäkerho Pom Pom Suoma Single and other Finnish yarns. I've made the sweater before so I knew how much I would need each color. So I grabbed the kitchen scale and sat down on our living room floor to figure out the yarns. I tried out all possible combos but in the end I ended up choosing five colors of Tukuwool Fingering. For the first hem, I chose Ruura and Rae, for the middle sweater I went for Selja, and for the main sweater I chose Auri and Uupo.
If you're not familiar with the pattern you should know the measurements are a bit off. The first time I made this I started working on size M - even though my measuments are closer to L. And both me and Hubby could fit in that sweater. So, I unraveled that and worked the sweater in size XS! In the end it fitted me nicely except that the sleeves could've been a bit looser. So this time around I cast on for size S. Though, I didn't stop to consider that Tukuwool is a more airy and fluffy than my yarns last time and now the sweater is a bit too loose. The sleeves are still a bit thight.
The sweater is worked bottom-up. First, you make the stripy hem. That's shaped with short rows which can be a bit of a pain with striping as you constantly have to remember to carry along the other color to have it in the right spot. Then, you cast on for the middle sweater. That one has a stockinette stitch hem that's meant to roll and the first two sweaters are worked together before continuing with the solid color middle sweater. Finally, you'll cast on for a third sweater, join it with the middle sweater and again, shape with short rows while working stripes.
In the original pattern, both the middle and main sweater have a stockinette stitch edging but I modified the main sweater to begin with few rows of garter stitch to make it different from the first two. I also modified the stripes to be 4-2 stripes instead of 2-2 - again to differentiate it from the first sweater. This made working short rows even more irritating but modifying things to be harder seems to be my thing.
Once I finished the short rows I wanted to throw the sweater in the bin. Never ever before have I had any trouble combining any Tukuwool colors together but for some reason this time the greenish yellow Uupo made the sweater look dirty. I cooled off for a couple of weeks and then ripped out Uupo and replaced it with this lovely orange Repo. Much better!
Once I got past the short row shaping (again) the sweater was coming along really fast. A bit too fast even. At this point I started to notice that my gauge was off since the sweater was looking way too tall. I didn't want to rip it back but I did have to modify the sleeve caps to make them fit with my gauge. More mods in the horizon. So much for that mindless knitting.
The sleeves I worked as instructed - until it was time to join them with the body.
If you take a look at my first 3 in 1 you'll notice that the neckline looks a bit different. In the pattern, there's just few purl rows before changing from one color to the next. It bothered me last time that the sweaters really look like layering pieces at the hem but not as much at the top - and it would be easy to modify. Of course that meant a lot more bind off - pick up and knit. But it was totally worth the trouble. It looks awesome and truly like three different sweaters.
The last challenge was the main color Auri. As my gauge was off I run out of it. First I replaced it with another Finnish yarn which happened to be exactly the same color (they're both spun at the same mill too!). But I lost at yarn chicken with that one as well. Finally, I had to work the last few rows with Auri in Tukuwool Sock. It's thicker yarn but you don't really notice as it was just last few rows. And I'm super happy I got to use up old scrap yarns.
It turned out not be easy, relaxed and mindless knitting. Not even close. Though, I should have known as that's what always happens when I decide to go for easy knitting. But I really, really love the sweater. It was well worth all the trouble and it looks so good.