Spring fishing

Published on Tuesday March 6th, 2007

It springeth!

daffodil.jpg maple_buds.jpg magnolia.jpg

And in Portland, days like this in the month of March are the result of divine intervention. I snatched up the camera and went hog wild. And then I sat out on the deck and finished the Fishtrap Aran, because I knew it could be weeks before I got such another opportunity to bundle Mr. Garter into it and capture the momentous occasion on film.



Elizabeth Zimmermann’s Fishtrap Aran, the January project from Knitter’s Almanac

Ancient Brunswick Ballybrae Blainin Tweed, resurrected from a 30-year-old project of Mr. G’s mom’s, plus some Rowan Yorkshire Tweed DK for the collar lining and zipper facings. Psst, want to see?


(Apologizes in advance for any retina damage caused by Mr. Garter’s T-shirt. My man likes a little color.) The zipper is not original to the pattern, but I decided it would look more youthful and fresh on my hubby than a button band. Plus, it was a challenge: I’d never sewn one in before. Of course, cardiganizing* the sweater in any fashion was going to reveal the private insides. Not that Fishtrap’s insides are unsightly, but you all know what the back sides of cable patterns look like. I felt they could use a little tidying, and I definitely didn’t want my less-than-Victorian handstitching skills to show around the zipper. Grosgrain ribbons are favored by many for zipper facings, but they don’t seem all that manly, somehow, and they stiffen the edge in a way that I worried would compromise the fluidity of the knit fabric. So knit facings it was. And i-cord trim to hide the zipper from the outside. Oh, let’s have some more pictures.

FSA_backhoe.jpg FSA_andromeda.jpg FSA_bw.jpg FSA_pose.jpg

Mr. Garter gets a little twitchy during photo shoots, but as the recipient of a such a nice sweater, I thought he owed it to me to submit to my every whim a few pictures. Okay, maybe thirty or forty pictures. He got a little goofy on his catwalk, as you can see. Doesn’t he look like a beefcake in his handsome cardi, though?

It’s a snug fit, as he wanted. He particularly specified that the body should not hang like a tent, and that it should fit closely at the hips. I went down a needle size for the first ten inches or so to ensure that this would be the case, and I think it was the right move. I’m particularly pleased about the sleeve length, too. Mr. Garter has very long arms, but I stayed the course. Actually, I’m particularly pleased about the whole darn sweater. It was a lot of work, but it was worth it.

Do I get a w00t, honey?

* Thanks to apparently blogless fellow Zimmermaniac MeowGirl for introducing this great verb into the knitterly lexicon.

49 Comments to “Spring fishing”

  1. Kristen Comment Says:

    Oh my goodness! I’m so pleased I decided to check in just now. That is one GORGEOUS sweater, and it suits Mr. Garter perfectly. You two are a very handsome couple. I’m so impressed with your knitterly perfectionism. I tend to fall down on the little details, but that Fishtrap is gorgeous in every respect.

    I would gush more, but I fear that typing the word gorgeous fifty more times will sear out the eyeballs of anyone who posts after me. Great work, Sarah, and a huge congratulations on finishing!

  2. nikki Comment Says:

    Wow. What an awesome sweater. Your husby is one lucky man.

  3. tiennie Comment Says:

    Wow! That is one beautiful sweater. It’s gorgeous on him! Amazingly fantastic job Sarah!

  4. loribird Comment Says:

    I’m sure you get several wOOts! You did a fantastic job, I’m so impressed! (Now to not let my husband see the sweater you made, or he may get jealous…)

  5. Guro Comment Says:

    Oh my goodness, that is so many nice things at once; nice cardigan (ok, I’ll call it breathtaking), nice pictures and nice man!

    And I’m so glad I stumbeled across your blog, it’s a good one!

  6. Emma in France Comment Says:

    That looks great! I love the way that you’ve made such a classic pattern look so up to date!

  7. natalja Comment Says:

    Amazing work. And I cannot believe that you have never sewn in a zipper before! The lining looks perfect. How did you do this? Is there anything we can learn from you? Please, please give us some tips!

  8. Seanna Lea Comment Says:

    Gosh this is a terrific sweater (and it looks very nice on him to boot). I haven’t made a sweater yet for my hubby, but I keep thinking about it. He’s losing weight, so I might want to wait until his chest measurement is a little smaller.

  9. Mandy Comment Says:

    Wow! I love it, and I love that it was the reason for the wonderful Zimmermania. Also love that you recycled the yarn. How resourceful! (Can I possibly say “love” again?)

  10. Shumei Comment Says:

    Gorgeous sweater! And gorgeous hubby, too! Wish mine will let me knit him one!

  11. minnie Comment Says:

    mrowwwwwwwr. that sweater is delicious! and mr garter isn’t too bad either, lol. i liked the last pose, it was so 70’s.

    i really need that book

  12. john Comment Says:

    Nice job! (on the sweater)….

  13. laura b Comment Says:

    Awesome! Looks like all your hard work paid off!

  14. brooke Comment Says:

    A beautiful work of knitting! It’s gorgeous!

  15. stacey Comment Says:

    you should get about 40 woot’s for that one! love the facings – much more flexible and manly than ribbon….what an excellent job!!! He looks smashing!

  16. gleek Comment Says:

    simply fantastic!! it’s gorgeous, really. all of the little details really paid off. huzzah for mr garter! he’s a true sport for all of those pictures 🙂

  17. Lisa Comment Says:

    Mr. Garter looks mighty hunky in that sweater. 😉 Nice job. You really paid attention to all the details and the sweater came together beautifully, despite the zipper-drama. Mr. G is one lucky guy 🙂

  18. Ingrid Comment Says:

    Good job…Mr Garter is one lucky guy! You’ve gone to a lot of work to get the details just right and it paid off.

  19. rfg Comment Says:

    Wow, that is a gorgeous sweater. Seriously impressive. I vowed never to go near the Fishtrap again after the hat, so I’m extra impressed you powered through an entire sweater.

  20. Bliss Comment Says:

    Woot! I love the way you made this your own. It is often said that the details are in the finishing, and what makes one sweater look “homemade” and the next a work of art. Your extra time on finishing details was well worth it – this is a true masterpiece, and the model is a keeper, too.

  21. Shana Comment Says:

    Whoa!! I am in awe. Fantastic job.

  22. Elli Comment Says:

    Lovely, lovely, lovely! I love that fishtrap design and it looks exceptionally nice as a cardigan. Great finishing details too!

  23. j a r e d Comment Says:

    the impecable finishing really sets it apart! beautiful work.

    how much ease did you leave?

  24. MeBeth Comment Says:

    It’s absolutely beautiful and the fit is perfect. I’ve been wanting to start this sweater for a while now, and see the finished product is even more motivating!

  25. Veronique Comment Says:

    Wooooot! It looks perfect!
    And I’m so jealous that you get spring before us. We woke up to snow this morning. *sigh*

  26. Emily Comment Says:

    Your fishtrap looks awesome! Mr. Garter should consider becoming a professional sweater model! I’d love to hear how you did all the facings. I ususally just fold my steek sts back and call it good, but I like how you camoflauged the zipper. I am also jealous spring hath arrived in Portland as we in South Dakota are still digging out from the biggest blizzard this area has seen in 10 years!

  27. Shamaree Comment Says:

    It looks smashing on your man. You deserve a nice dinner and an evening doing something fun with him in his sweater.

  28. Nonnahs Comment Says:

    Gorgeous! I love the cardiganization! 😉

  29. Sandra Comment Says:

    oh, wow! that sweater is a stunner! all of your hard work has paid off. it fits him perfectly!

    and look at your man, being all GQ. hubba, hubba!

  30. Nicola Comment Says:

    That is a really lovely finished project! The more I read about Elizabeth Zimmermann the more I want to find out more and maybe eventually try one of her projects.

  31. Nanc Comment Says:

    That looks fantastic! You did one heck of a job on this sweater and your honey DOES look handsome in these pix. If he doesn’t give you that Wo0t, then you may have to withhold sweater-love from him for a season.

  32. Mia Comment Says:

    I miss you guys so much, and I wish I could see the sweater in real life. Maybe Mr. G will have to bring it to MA for the wedding??!! Lovely work, as always! xoxoxo

  33. Elysbeth Comment Says:

    Nice detail work. And I like the history of it all, his mother’s yarn, your work and love, his input on the sizing.


  34. Daphne Comment Says:

    He looks good, the facings look good, the magnolia makes me want to do nothing but look at flowers all the time. The sweater is GREAT. Very nice work.

    Now the funny thing about my photographer is he’s an impatient subject and makes lots of funny faces when in front of the camera. Your photo shoot is very good, well worth the 30-40 shots, imo.

  35. melissa Comment Says:

    wonderful sweater and great photoshoot!

  36. Ruth Comment Says:

    Fabulous sweater … it looks great on hubby, and your finishing is wonderful.

  37. Debby Comment Says:

    Mr. Garter looks great in his new sweater! I am amazed at all the careful detailing you put into this. But does it have pockets on the back for the powerbars, etc.? 😉

  38. filambulle Comment Says:

    Gorgeous cardigan, and gorgeous model!
    I am sure that my man would like to be as well dressed as him.
    And the cardinazing is soooo well done. i am impressed! Bravo!

  39. katie Comment Says:

    What a handsome guy, and bee-yoo-tiful sweater! It’s amazing. Great job!

  40. Katy Comment Says:

    WOW. That’s amazing. Count me in as another person super-impressed with your finishing–would love to see more pictures!

  41. Kelly Comment Says:

    Wow, a truly amazing sweater! I think the finishing (albeit time consuming) really polishes the sweater. It looks like it will be a nice jacket for the spring months, too.

  42. Karma Comment Says:

    Beefcake! Snort! Yes, he does look quite handsome in his fishtrap cardigan. What a great shape for him. You did a beautiful job. The contrasting facings give it a professional finish. And re-using vintage yarn from his mother? That’s so special!

  43. Sue Comment Says:

    Wow that is one nice cardigan, and it looks very stylish too. I am sure your hubby will be wearing it a lot, and looks very proud of your craftmanship too. Love it!

  44. schrodinger Comment Says:

    “Pretty pleased with it”?!?!? You should be downright bloody chuffed with it! It’s absolutely fantastic, great job.

  45. jess Comment Says:


    that was the sound of me hitting the floor. it’s gorgeous, and worth all your labors – what a lucky (and beefcakey) husband!

  46. amanda Comment Says:

    absolutely beautiful! i love all the detailing. well done sarah! hubbie looks so fetching!

  47. Craptina Comment Says:

    Your skills are stunning, the results are no lie. Those little details take forever, but they are always worth the extra effort; peace of mind for the knitter and a sound garment for the receiver. Excellent job!

  48. carrie m Comment Says:

    fantastic work! i’m so impressed. it’s modern and stylish yet old-fashioned and classic — what a great combo.

  49. kaitlyn Comment Says:

    i am late to the party, but your sweater is gorgeous! Can’t wait to hear about the process. Also glad to know that I am not the only one that can’t resist semi-humilating photos of the husband.