Photograph copyright Jared Flood 2014
Whee! I can’t quite tell you how thrilled I am to have a design in the Wool People 8 collection without grabbing your hands and jumping up and down… you’ll have to imagine that part. Oh, my brown sweater. Drab as it sounds, that’s how I refer to it amongst the few friends and family who saw it take shape last summer. My knitting sisters, Katrin and Martha, who each put a few long rounds into the body for me while I drove the car to Bainbridge Island and back on a girls’ weekend. (Seriously, we humans can land a probe on a comet somewhere off Jupiter but we don’t have self-driving cars commercially available yet? How is this possible?) My family, who watched the sleeves grow as we all huddled around the television watching World Cup fútbol. My husband, who fielded texts full of unladylike language when I realized I’d made the ultimate careless error, setting aside the wrong number of underarm stitches on one side, a mistake that meant there was nothing for it but to rip 14,000 yoke stitches less than a week before the deadline. (He had no visceral understanding of the tragedy, but knew enough, stout fellow, to be sympathetic whilst volunteering to pick the kids up from school and feed everybody for a couple of days.)
This sweater is born of a decade’s learning and inspiration. Elizabeth Zimmermann is here in the seamless yoke construction. The contrast cuffs and hem are especially for her. The brilliant mid-century Bohus Stickning designers get all the credit for the techniques that make the colorwork sing. I turned to Amy Herzog and Ysolda Teague for guidance on flattering, contemporary shaping of the torso. Jared Flood saw promise in the design and helped me bring it to maturity, choosing the final color palette himself. I’m grateful all around and feel just plain blessed to be alive in the wonderful worldwide community of knitters at this remarkable moment in the craft. Thank you all so very much for the warm reception you’ve given this design.
Now my little brown sweater is out there in the big leagues, in extraordinarily fine company. (I mean, look at this. And this. And I’m totally planning to knit one of these and one of these for myself. Pretty sure Ada and I need matching cabled berets, too.) Treat yourself to a pot of tea and the whole Wool People 8 lookbook if you haven’t already.