This summer I went totally ga-ga over Hannah Fettig’s Rocky Coast cardigan. So much so that I knit it twice within the span of three months. As my knitterly friends can attest, that’s a lot of time to devote to working on just one pattern. So what possessed me to do it?
I blame it on the yarn. It was all the yarn’s fault.
Yarn #1: Jamieson’s Shetland Heather Aran
For the first version of this cardigan, I used a solid Aran weight Shetland wool–totally not what I set out to buy.
At the time, what I was looking for was a wool blend with lots of subtle, elegant drape. Something like the Organik yarn used in the pattern. It only took one touch to know that this Shetland didn’t do drape; it didn’t do subtle, either. This yarn is bold and crunchy. It asks you for your number first. It yells at football players on the television and throws pretzels at the screen. Then it offers you a beer and invites you to put your feet up on the coffee table.
The yarn shop lady talked me into it. Like a good yenta, she listened to my description of the type of pattern I was planning to knit and the yarn I wanted to find, then divined a perfect and completely contradictory match. I pinched a bit of the Shetland between my fingers and asked, plaintively. “Are you sure?” “Oh yeah,” she assured me, “it’ll make the cables pop.”
Boy, was she right.
I’m a bit bashful to admit that by the time I had finished this cardigan (in fact, before I was half-done) I had already purchased the yarn to knit another one. I liked the pattern, but really , it was all about the yarn. Having knitted the cardigan in the sturdy Aran Shetland, I was hungrier than ever to see how it would knit up in the yarn used in the original pattern.
Yarn #2: Organik by The Fibre Company
I knew the yarn I wanted wasn’t available locally, so I hopped online. In record time, a wonderful, squishy package arrived in my mail box.
Now here’s the really impressive thing: I put that yarn away for two whole weeks. I didn’t even let myself look at it until I had finished the Shetland version of the cardigan. After that…
Time elapsed from Shetland bind-off to Organik cast-on = 10 minutes.
I just adore the way this cardigan knit up in the Organik yarn; it has all the drape and elegance I could wish for.
After this cardigan came off my needles it almost didn’t need to be blocked!
So…….do I need two nearly identical cardigans in my wardrobe? Even though they’re just the sort of odd-couple pairing who would fight and then become bosom friends in a teen novel?
Heck, no! My closet is too small for that.
This sort of situation is just what family birthdays are for. One day soon, someone special is going to get a wooly surprise.