I am going to attempt to keep a log of all the items I knit during my Masters program. I am not sure where this will go but I can feel it is relevant to my thesis on slow fashion and sustainability.
Solonge Sweater, Color Blocked Yellow/Grey, 50% Cashmere, 50% Wool – This sweater was knit in the style of my most recent favorite pattern, the cropped, sideways knit sweater. I use to push myself to constantly reinvent the wheel every time I knit a new sweater but I have learned that this is both hard for my customers to keep up with and doesn’t allow me to fully explore the possibilities. I have now knit this style of sweater about 5 times with different details every time. I am hoping to write out the pattern soon and in the meantime I plan to keep exploring different possibilities .
Meeting the Family Sweater, 100% cashmere, Mocha – This sweater was started in September of 2020. When I traveled with my partner to Parksville to meet his mother and other brother shortly followed by his father and his wife visiting us I realized I would be meeting all but one member of my partner’s family while knitting this sweater. The one member I wasn’t meeting while knitting this sweater was his brother who had stayed with us for a night every few weeks as he made his rounds from his work ever since my partner and I started seeing each other. I am abundantly aware that I am having an important experience with every stitch I create and I am hoping to find ways to express to others more how much of our life story we capture in the clothing we create. I am hoping this will bring an enthusiasm and appreciation to each of our garments and hopefully create a culture of slow fashion. This pattern is done in such fine yarn and such fine needles I am not sure if anyone else would be interested if I shared the pattern. Also I have been wearing it and the yarn is starting to pill as cashmere often does due to having a short staple (fiber length), especially with lower grade cashmere which this might be. This sweater will have to remain full of stories.
Touque from hand spun alpaca/yak/wool/silk and Neck Warmer from Noro silk/wool/cashmere/mohair – These pieces aren’t very special to me. I knit the touque twice. The first time I made it it stretched out too much and wouldn’t stay on my head. This is a problem with expecting any pattern to work out the first time you produce it – you never know how the textile will act once it has been made. Making a larger garment could add weight to the fabric making it pull more on the body horizontally, the stretch could have unexpected consequences or, in this case, the single ply hand spun yarn just kept on stretching as the material it was made out of didn’t have as much ”memory” which is a term we use in describing how capable it is of going back to it’s original shape. The second time I just knit the same pattern on smaller needles and now it is borderline on the tight side. I am expecting it to stretch out. The knit looks a lot better tighter too and the fiber is quite warm.
The neck warmer I knit out of a few leftover balls of Noro yarn is beautiful but it is nothing I really need or want. It is not especially inspiring or creative but it is lovely and practical. I knit it quickly in classes as an attempt to turn leftover yarn into something beautiful I can put in my store for someone to love and enjoy. We are going into spring right now so this won’t make it into the store until next fall.