A glimpse

Published on Thursday September 24th, 2009


It fits. The sleeves are a bit narrow and will be revised before I offer this pattern, but it works for Mr. G. We will have a proper photo shoot this weekend if time and lighting allow, but this little hint shows off the bits I’m most proud of anyway. See the shoulder gussets that allow a comfortable fit around the neck without having to slope the back or front at the shoulders? This unusual feature is what attracted me to the sweater in this historical photograph from Gladys Thompson’s excellent Patterns for Guernseys, Jerseys & Arans:

Runswick_fishermanTempting as it is, I probably won’t require my beloved to don a sou’wester
and smoke a pipe for the official photoshoot.

Nor am I certain my considerable attraction to him could sustain a gnarly neck beard,
so we won’t be going for that authentic touch, either.

I love this book for its treasury of sweater designs and careful attention to the differences from one little cove’s worth of knitters to the next, and also for its photographs of crusty old fisherman. This is only one of the fabulous portraits it offers, although Gladys writes that it’s her favorite. I couldn’t tell, though, what might happen at the back of that particular old sweater, so I had to devise a way to raise the neckline at the back, as you see above.

See, too, how the maple leaves are changing. A last gasp of summer came through in the guise of a blustery hot wind that littered the sidewalk with roughly four thousand treacherous gum nuts from the hundred-year-old trees in front of our house, so it’s officially raking season. I’d like to pretend there’s another month to go before we really reach leaf fall, but I fear for the neighbors’ ankles. Our sweet gums are fine handsome old trees, but they are more accomplished than any other tree at protracting the drop of their pretty, star-shaped leaves over many months and then continuing to bombard unsuspecting passers-by with their spiky seed pods even after the leaves are gone. This year I see they are celebrating their centennial by growing a number of large clusters of conjoined pods, like gum nut rat kings, which will prove especially uncomfortable if they drop on people’s heads. You may wish to wear an old-timey felt hat for protection if you’re strolling in the neighborhood… fair warning. Luckily, I own several. I may need to knit a few more.

Thank you all for the excellent resources on intarsia in the round that flooded the comments! Special appreciation to Rodger, who tipped me off to an excellent book that was already right under my nose. I took Priscilla Gibson-Roberts to bed (um, you know what I mean) that very night to read up. I have begun a swatchcap to practice my Invisible Join 1. (I tried Invisible Join 2 at first, but it quickly got the better of me and left my circular needle locked in a contorted figure 8. I am sure this is my fault and not Priscilla’s, but I was too tired to work out what I’d done wrong.) We’ll evaluate the results together in a couple of days.

16 Comments to “A glimpse”

  1. Lissa Comment Says:

    Hi S:
    So glad the sweater for Mr. G worked out – see, blocking can forgive so many (knitting) sins! YAY.

  2. Kristen Comment Says:

    “gum nut rat kings”

    Vivid! I love this, and want to work it into conversation now.

    The sweater is gorgeous. That’s my favorite shade of Rowan tweed right there, and I love the shoulder details!

  3. Julie Comment Says:

    oh wow, it looks amazing in the sneak peek!! I’m glad that it worked out.

  4. Daphne Comment Says:

    I will be down in a few weeks and possible even ride along your street; luckily I will be wearing a helmet.

    The sweater is beautiful!!

  5. Lynn Comment Says:

    Love the color. Love the tweed. Can’t wait to study the cables at the top of those sleeves in greater detail. (Fall ?= cable season)??? I suspect my next big project will be cabled; it’s been awhile since I did that hoodie for my youngest.

  6. fleur Comment Says:

    Great sweater! Congratulations!

  7. Lisa Comment Says:

    I really like how you adapted the gansey pattern and the shoulder detail looks interesting. I’m looking forward to seeing the pattern.

  8. Denise Comment Says:

    Thanks for the peek. The sweater looks amazing. That shoulder shaping…
    Thompson’s book is a must have. And that gnarly beard isn’t so bad. Think of it as functional, kept the neck warm on the high seas.

  9. Seanna Lea Comment Says:

    The sweater looks really nice (a lovely glimpse). I hope the sweater for my husband comes out so well (and I’m working from a pattern, so I don’t have to worry about math issues… just gauge)!

  10. Debby Comment Says:

    Wow! I’m so glad the blocking helped and I can’t wait to see it modeled. Good luck with the intarsia in the round! Someday I want to make a late 80s sweater with intarsia rosebuds, so I’m going to follow your blog closely for tips. 🙂

  11. theLady Comment Says:

    Hmm, that looks more like claret than purple. Burgundy? Nice! As to facial hair, my only question is why!? why do they do it!? I am currently suffering through a mustache phase. Ugh.
    Looking forward to your intarsia insights.

  12. whitney Comment Says:

    The sweater looks great! I really should pick up that book, one of these days, given my gansey obsession.

    I’m actually quite fond of my husband’s beard, but if he let it turn into a gnarly neck beard like that one, I might not like it quite so much!

  13. mamie Comment Says:

    i can’t wait to see the full sweater…so glad the blocking worked. one smart guy, that mister of yours. i love how he knew what to suggest. i actually borrowed that same book from the library once, but alas, we have not the inclement weather required for such knits.

  14. Susie Comment Says:

    Love the color. Can’t wait to see the whole thing.

  15. EM Comment Says:

    Love the color. Can’t wait to see the whole thing.

  16. Fiona Comment Says:

    You may be interested to know (then again maybe not) that the old gentleman in the photo wearing the sou’wester was a member of the Taylor family from Runswick. The last of them passed away in the 1970s but prior to that they were one of the two main families that lived in the village for over a century.