Earlier this year, my mum asked me to knit her a cardigan. She’d spotted one she liked in the selection put out by Bendigo Woollen Mills and knew the colour she wanted. Although we ordered everything almost immediately, it took a few months for me to clear the decks and get started. That was mid April. In my mind I always knew I’d want to have it done by the time my parents visited for my birthday in mid July, but what I didn’t predict was how much time would be needed to do all the finishing!
The knitting was simple enough – all stocking stitch and moss stitch, in pieces, which made for nice bus and night time knitting between other smaller projects, over a couple of months.
Getting it to the point of finished took me the better part of a weeks’ worth of long days last week, during which I wasn’t at work. Thank goodness! It’s what made it possible to meet the deadline. And meet it I did, literally getting it done at 4pm the day before she arrived!! Here it is. At last. Happily modelled by my mum, Wendy, while I visited my parents this week.
One of the nerve wracking things is that my mum has been working hard at losing some weight this year and in the time between starting the cardigan and finishing it, she trimmed down a fair bit. I was worried it’d be swimming on her. As it is, it works well as a lovely, warm winter jacket.
She wanted it to be a longer piece, for added comfort and warmth so the length is great on her. I look at that photo and think of the days spent seaming and finishing that moss stitch collar. Mum, I was so happy to make this for you but if I never do a moss stitch collar with endless short rows for shaping, it’ll be too soon!
See how it’s done up with a shawl pin? I had, for months, had a large button in mind. One with a black and white print on it. I felt certain it would be the right fastener. Then I tried and I felt unsure. In a panic last week I turned to twitter and everyone who responded to my poll, bar one or two, said no. The button was too out there for a middle aged mum. My mum found this hilarious and actually decided the ‘out there button’ was exactly what she wanted.
We sewed it on and then thought no, maybe not, because we saw then that the shawl pin was actually perfect. I had it with me in my work bag only by chance and I was happy to donate it to her. She likes the way it holds the cardigan securely and looks a little different. Doesn’t it look great?
This really was a significant undertaking – the first pieced cardigan I’ve done in a long time. I used just over 800g of Bendigo Woollen Mills Rondo (which is an 8ply pure wool) in Lime Zest, a colour which I was unsure of at first but which grew on me and which really pleases my mum.
I know that every time I see her in it (which won’t be often since she lives nearly three hours away) I’ll be reminded of the week I spent racing against time to get it finished for her and I’ll feel it was time very well spent.
The pattern is PT8303 available as a leaflet from Bendigo Woollen Mills.