My latest sweater has had a little bit of an adventure. I bought the yarn (a gorgeous pink called peony) from Eat.Sleep.Knit. back in June after finding a discount code in a site-wide scavenger hunt. The yarn is Manos del Uruguay’s lovely Gloria in a beautiful color called Peonies. And that’s why I’m calling this sweater Nichols. Peonies are my favorite flower, and in my hometown of Ann Arbor, there’s a delightful treasure for peony lovers. It’s a beautiful place called the Nichols Arboretum-or as it’s more commonly called The Arb. Within the Arb lies one of my favorite places in this world-the Arb’s Peony Garden. There are few things that I love more than going to the Arb on a late May or early June evening to explore the peonies.
I knew that I wanted to make a sweater with this yarn, but I had other projects on my needles when I bought the yarn. In early September, I “finally” cast on. I knew that I wanted to create something basic and classic. I was also deeply in love with reverse stockinette at the time, and I wanted to let the color (so gorgeous!) do most of the work. I also wanted to work with a ribbing pattern that I got to knit with when I knit Vaila ages ago.
So I cast on for a bottom-up pullover. I included the ribbing that I love so much. And then after a few weeks, I put it aside to work on my Tensho pullover. But when that was done, I took the pink pretty back out and worked on it a bit more…until I started working on Lillet. When I finished Lillet, I started working on another project that’s still a WIP. The pink pretty stayed in a bag-until the polar vortex hit the Midwest.
See..the WIP is a cropped cardigan. It’s lovely. But I couldn’t justify focusing on a cropped anything when I was looking at a week of days with high temperatures of negative Fahrenheit. So I pulled out the pink pretty and put the cropped cardigan back in one of my knitting bins. I told myself that every day that I had a snow (or ice or cold) day, I could work on the pink pretty. No snow day, no pink pretty.
Well, Monday was a snow day, so I worked on the pink pretty. Tuesday, I had to work, BUT I knew by the time that I got home from work that I didn’t have school on Wednesday or Thursday due to distressingly cold temperatures, so I let myself work more on the pink pretty on Tuesday evening. I worked on it on Wednesday and Thursday. And on Friday, with another day off due to excessively cold weather, I finished the pink pretty. And now it’s back to the cropped cardigan.
If you’re wondering how I made the pink pretty, I’ll give you a basic rundown. I used size 9 needles for the ribbing and size 8s for the stockinette. I used the cast on directions for Vaila because I knew that it would work for me. The ribbing of the sleeves and body are the same length; the ribbing on the neckline is only about nine rows. I didn’t want a cowl neck on this sweater; I just wanted a plain crewneck. I worked the body with a bit of waist shaping, but the sleeves have no shaping. I wanted something simple and cozy. I put some short rows in the yoke because I wanted a crew neck feel; I didn’t want a boat neck, which was where I felt that I would have gone if I’d left out the short rows.