Oops! Super-Sized Toddler Sweater

You may remember this sweater and its issues. I started knitting it 5 years (!) ago in what I thought was size 4T for my then-2-year-old daughter. When I ran into problems with gauge, it went on the shelf until last fall, when Little Miss found it and begged me to finish it for her.

Well, I finished it. Only, as you see, it fits me rather than my daughter. Guess the sizing was off even more than I thought!

It’s the first sweater I’ve ever knitted, and even with the sizing craziness and various other flaws, I’m still pretty proud of it.

My daughter has been a really good sport about it. She knows it’s hers as soon as she grows into it.

I like the back the best:

This sweater pattern (free on knitty.com) actually does come in an adult size version, but I’m glad I didn’t start with that, since I don’t think a husband-sized version would get used very often. I don’t fault the pattern, just my understanding of gauge.

In other news, I’m combing through my photos from Spain to share with you soon, and next week I’m participating in Meg from elsiemarley‘s Kids Clothing Week Challenge, which is like a big online sewing-for-kids party.

I haven’t been feeling very inspired about cooking lately (though I did have some awesome food in Spain which I’ll tell you about), so let me know if you’ve tried any great vegetable recipes lately. It’s just the beginning of white asparagus/ strawberry season here in Germany, so hopefully that will inspire me.

Also, slogging away at revisions on my novel manuscript. Off to go slogging.

Wayward Knitter Pays for Her Follies

What do you do when you run out of yarn in the middle of a knitting project? It’s the sort of thing that happens to someone like me, who knits by the seat of her pants, without a whole lot of knowledge or regard for things like gauge. You play, you pay.

This project that didn’t go as planned, to put it mildly. I started it for my daughter when she was two. I was trying to knit  a size 4, because I thought it would take me two years to knit my first sweater.

While I was knitting it, three things became clear:

1) If it wasn’t pink, she wasn’t going to wear it.

2) If it didn’t feel like Old Navy cotton pajamas, she wasn’t going to wear it.

3) I had miscalculated gauge (or something) by a long shot, and the body of the sweater was so big it might even fit me. And, oops, there might not be enough yarn for arms. And double oops: the yarn was now out of “print” so I couldn’t get more of it. Yes, I recently tried ebay. No dice.

Not quite able to rip it out, I put it on the shelf. Fast forward five (yes, five!) years later. Suddenly Little Miss is interested in colors like green. She wears wool sweaters. She finds the abandoned project in my knitting basket and professes love for the color and softness of the yarn.

“Mommy, please, please, will you make it for me?”


The arm problem is still here, but rather than settle for a vest, or shortened arms, she wanted to pick out an alternate color for the arms. We had the best time at the yarn store downstairs, setting out yarns on the weaving stool and carefully choosing buttons.

I explained the whole dilemma to the store owner in German—-so proud of that accomplishment! I love having a friendly acquaintance with the neighborhood shop owners, especially when they even remember your mother who visited last summer.

I was a bit surprised when Little Miss picked out the gray (!) rather than a multicolored Noro I had been eyeing. Hopefully she’ll actually wear the result.

Thinking of making a band or stripe on the gray arm (in the teal color—I do have some left). What do you think? And as the shop owner pointed out, I could also add some ribbing on the bottom or neck in gray. But I may need some help from the more experienced family knitters for that.

I’m writing this post in the hopes that you’ll spur me onward. Off to go knit…

Oh by the way, the pattern is Haiku from Knitty (by Kristi Porter), and I do not place any blame on the pattern for my problems. It’s actually really lovely to knit. A perfect first sweater and fast-going even for me, the perpetual advanced beginner. But, you know, get someone to help you with gauge if, like me, you don’t know much about it. The pattern isn’t written for a particular type of yarn (love the flexibility) which means you need to know your business in the gauge department.

Stay tuned for an upcoming interview with the lovely and talented Sarah Towle, app author.