Christmas Extended

There was one last bit of Christmas knitting lurking behind to show you. It lurked, but in a discreet and appropriate fashion, because it just wouldn’t be right to show it to you before it had been gifted to its recipient, and we finally had occasion to do so last night. Some new friends of ours had a baby in December. (Very nice friends, and probably not just because they’re Canadian. Though I can say truthfully, this project was planned before we first dreamed of our visit to Canada.)

I am usually so swamped that I have to guiltily pass up baby shower invitations and forego tiny knitted gifts. It’s just too much, as much as I want to swathe all my friends’ babies in knitted hugs. But this time I was sneaky. Well, sneaky with my own overwhelmed psyche, anyway. I already had this nice cotton yarn that had been itching to become the “Noah Sweater,” a sweet little pattern from What to Knit when You’re Expecting by Nikki Van De Car. It’s a nice book, but it’d just sat on my shelf, and was horrified when I paged through it a few months ago and realized that N has already grown out of the given sizes. “It’s a good thing that other people are still having babies,” I said to myself. If babies stopped coming, yeah we’d all be extinct in a hundred years, but more importantly, these cute patterns would never get knit!

I wasn’t able to make Christine’s shower for other reasons, and I decided I could sneak it into the “Christmas knitting” pile without technically adding another project to my to do list. It got shuffled to the back of the Christmas queue, since we wouldn’t even been in the same state as our friends for the holidays, but it was perfect plain zen knitting while recovering from the Christmas crazies.

Pieces blocking on the TARDIS towel. Not that this particular baby needs any further infusion of nerd juju.

The pattern was “Noah’s Sweater,” knit in the largest size. There is something quite against the grain about knitting a raglan in pieces, given the knitting world’s current obsession with seamless knitting. But I love the two-tone look, which I associate with baseball for some reason. Very sporty. And I may hate machine sewing, but sewing up knitted things doesn’t bother me at all. Perfectly executed mattress stitch is a joy to behold, I always say.

(Be advised that there are a couple typos in the pattern, in which you are given two measurements for length. One of them is impossible, so it’s pretty obvious. You can find the fixes through ravelry. The stitch counts are all fine, and everything lined up perfectly for the many wee seams.)

On a sweater with such plain knitting, it’s those little details that become so striking. Matched M1 increases on the sleeves. One wee neck button. There’s a “just so” to it. Baby D, of course, will show his appreciation for such perfect details by exploding a poop on them. As is right and just.

You may have noticed, I’ve developed a rather severe case of loose purling, making every other row much looser on these flat-knit pieces. The angled lighting in these pictures shows up just how distressing it is. I’m blaming the fact that it was cotton on wood needles. If it becomes a trend, I will have to intervene. Or knit more of those seamless, in-the-round sweaters, I guess.

think the yarn was Cotton Classic by Takhi Stacy Charles, but I can’t be entirely sure. I am sure it’s 100% mercerized cotton. It’s top-of-the-line stuff, even though the best I can say is that it’s not horrid to work with. I will never really like cotton for knitting.

At least it’s theoretically machine washable. I wasn’t happy with how insecure the ends were, though, I superglued them. That might have been dumb. All you people who like mercerized cotton, what do you do with your ends?

I hope baby D and his parents enjoy it for the five minutes it will probably fit him. He’s freaking adorable, impossibly jowly, long-awaited, and well-beloved. And maybe he’ll wish us luck for our journey next week to his home country…

3 thoughts on “Christmas Extended

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