Daily Archives: March 30, 2011

WIP-it Wednesday: 13 of 52

Oh, kittens. Before I get down to my knitting update and what is annoying me, I’ll start with my quilting which is behaving just fine.

First is my Birdie Stitches block for this month.

I ended up altering the embroidery to jazz it up a bit. It didn’t really scream, “March!” as it had been. This is the first time I’ve changed anything, and I’m hoping I’ll like April as-is. This is also the first time I’ve taken so long to get my block done for the month. The reason for this is two-fold. One, I decided to stop giving myself eye strain and ordered some white transfer paper which took a while to arrive. Two, with The Mister gone the first 2/3 of the month, I didn’t feel much like embroidering. Sharp needles and frayed nerves due to crazy children just do not mix well. But hey it’s done.

And I even have the first three months sewn together. I’m keeping up with piecing-as-I-go!

Next up…

My Star-y Log Cabin quilt. I didn’t work on it much this month, but it’s coming along nicely. I didn’t cut any points off of my sawtooth stars. I’m super proud of myself for that! I’m still debating what size this will be, since a few of my seams are very thin and I’m unsure this can take the wear and tear of being a normal blanket. I’m not sold on the idea of it as a wall hanging though, either. I’ve never been big on decorative quilts in my own home. I’ll figure it out at some point, I’m sure.

And now onto my knitting.
Last week without the sleeves, my sweater was looking pretty good. But I started to feel nervous when trying it on. It kept nagging at me and that nervousness turned to agitation.

Is it obvious here yet? As you can see from that little bit of my mouth, I’m not pleased. Can you see how the shoulder seams are outside of where my shoulders are? That it wants to hang off because it’s wide in the neck? Maybe you notice that I’m wearing a long sleeve shirt under this and it’s still doing that….


How about now? (And please pardon my hair. The humidity is making it curl and look dirty. My skin can not take these constant humidity and temperature changes. Makes it CRAZAY.)

I started cursing up a blue streak when I was editing these photos and realized just how much too big this sweater is. Here, I had been thinking it was just a bit too big in between the shoulders in the back, and now I realize it’s too big everywhere but maybe not the bicep and across the chest.
This is what I get for going up a size from what I usually knit. Even though I have a 45.5″ bust, I usually knit a 38″-40″ size. Those measurements work best for my torso and I edit the bust and arms from there. This one is a 43″. I wasn’t familiar with the construction and didn’t want to mess around too much this time around. I did mess with the arm depth measurement. As written, it was supposed to be just shy of 9″, and I stopped at about 8.5″. As you can see, I should have stopped much sooner. Probably at about 8″. My arm pit is NOT down by the bottom of my breast. Had I gone the full 9″, it would have hit my waist, high though it may be.
I often get frustrated with how patterns are scaled. The assumption is that as one gets wider, all of the measurements should be scaled up proportionately, even vertical ones. To make a pattern my size, it’s often assumed that I’m at least 4″ taller then I am. It would be even more if I went by my actual bust measurement–those often assume I’m pushing the 6′ mark. (Let’s not even go into the bust measurement that most often corresponds with my bicep measurement.) Someone on Ravelry had commented that she had worked in the industry–retail clothing, not patterns–and that for sizing they scaled it up so the different sizes nest like Matroyshka dolls. Rather then call in a second, larger model to base the plus sized pieces off of, they continued to scale up. It’s not uncommon for me to try on pants and the crotch is about to my knees.
Pattern scaling seems to work much this same way. Just make the arm hole .25″ to .5″ deeper for each size up you go! Height makes the arm bigger because it’s adding stitches to the count….right? WRONG. Wrong, wrong, wrong.
Anywho, this problem is common enough that Ysolda’s new book has extensive sizing information in it. I remember participating in a survey she did asking for bust size, bicep width, and a measurement to determine the vertical depth of your armpit. She wanted to figure out what kind of alteration information would be most helpful and not surprisingly, there are a lot of large chested, big armed women out there who do not need 9″ deep armholes and are not 6′ tall. GO FIGURE.
(The book is not yet released but is reported to be pushing well-over 200 pages. She wasn’t kidding when she said she wanted to cover the subject in-depth. I’m really looking forward to it and pre-ordered first chance I got!)
While this is exciting, it’s little consolation for my current sweater which will need to be frogged all the way back to the saddles. Those are just fine; everything else is too big. Please feel free to chime in and tell me to get it over with.