Thanks to everyone who searched under couches and in cupholders. Turns out I did leave it at Breezy Willow, for some necessarily obscure reason, as I didn’t knit a stitch on it while I was there. It’s back, it’s safe, it hasn’t been eaten by farm animals (a sheep eating alpaca fiber… irony? poetic justice? farce? I’m not sure).
One of my co-workers may have suggested that I avoid further work-in-progress absentee-ism by storing my projects around my neck. I did fleetingly consider this idea, as a knitted i-cord attached to either end of a ziplock project bag resting on my chest is at least a unique mental image. But the result would be somewhere in between a plastic dentist’s bib and librarian glasses – except much heavier – and would be ungainly at best. I will just have to trust that this experience heightened my project location awareness.
Anyway, this sleeve chose to go missing at a convenient time, as we had run into a snag in our relationship. It didn’t have to retaliate by running off for a week, but now I realize it was for the best. Time apart has allowed us to come to terms with each other and work out some solutions.
Here’s what happened: I had just finished the sleeve, doing my little bind off at the underarm, despite the fact that it looked a little short. It was the length the pattern recommended, and I wasn’t about to argue for more work. I was ready to cast on the second when I remembered – this sweater has a unique little cuff with a thumbhole in it that is a bit out of my husband’s fashion comfort zone. I planned to omit it, replacing it with more sleeve, but forgot that this little cuff was picked up and knit down the sleeve afterwards. So yeah. If I want to replace it with more sleeve, I should have done two more inches of sleeve before starting the increases. In other words, there are two inches missing from this piece of knitting, two inches that belong at the beginning of the work.
I have several options on how to solve this. The first: rip the whole thing back to before the decreases and do it right from the get-go. If you know me, you know this is not going to happen. The second: add two inches on the topmost, wider portion of the sleeve; the sleeve will be baggier, but longer. Okay, but not awesome for tailoring purposes. The third: pick up stitches at the cuff and just knit more sleeve downward. Not a bad plan, but that would leave a bit of a ridge. The fourth: unpick the cast on and knit downwards. Okay, but the ribbing would be half a stitch off, which might be hidden by the variegation in the yarn, but I would see it. The fifth: Cast a new cuff and knit two inches. Unpick the cast on of the old cuff. Carefully (and cleverly) graft the extra two inches of cuff to the unpicked cast on. Properly done, this method would be completely undetectable and would not involve any more knitting than I would have done anyway, just some fiddling.
I don’t think you’ll have trouble guessing which one I picked. The new cuff is cast on, and it’ll be a major test of my grafting skilz to get this thing attached. Wish me luck.