Fanfare for the finished sweater

On Thursday this past week I finished the Bohus. A labor of love it was until it all went dark on me. The collar and the yoke were wondrous and challenging, and I may have worn it out a bit long before it was completed by petting it on and off again whilst knitting it and then again whilst knitting well beyond it.

Begun 12 February of 2010, or so Ravelry tells me (blasted, blessed resource that it is), I set myself to knitting the best part during the 16 days of the winter Olympics — my own Olympian challenge. I meant to finish the yoke by the end of the winter Olympics. Parenthetical aside here: A Bohus is knit in the round from the top down until the yoke is completed, and then the stitches are divided into sleeves, back and front, and those are knit and purled back and forth and then sewn up at the end.

I didn’t finish the yoke until 9 March 2010, and so failed utterly at my Olympian challenge, but that was expected really. I’m not an Olympian by any stretch of the imagination and I do tend to set goals for myself that are unattainable, underestimating my ability to over-commit, but then again I did mean to push myself a little beyond my limits. I remember clearly the meeting in which I finished the yoke. That was the best moment in the meeting, frankly. Yawn. But I’ve digressed.

After the yoke? Blackness. Black back, black sleeves, black front. On US#1 needles. If you’re not a knitter you might not appreciate how fine that is. 2.25mm in diameter, they knit a gauge of 7 stitches or so per inch in this particular yarn. And this sweater, Large Lace Collar (found under Bohus Stickning here and for you Ravelry people, here and here), is knit with SOLsilke Bohus Angora-Merino, an angora and merino mix lace-weight yarn that’s fine, terribly soft, wooly and … absolutely, blindingly maddening in black.

I took long breaks from the knitting of it. I modified the sleeves and waist (not a fan of the 1×1 ribbing in either place). The sewing up of it … let’s just say that before it was done I was sure it would either blind me or permanently disable my neck, or both. Jury’s still out on that second option. But, I finished the knitting a couple of weeks ago, and with an end in sight, albeit difficult to see, I was determined to complete it before my birthday this coming Tuesday. I do remember when I set that goal that the weather was warm and mocking me, making me think I wouldn’t be able to wear it until late next autumn.

But I put my nose to the soft angora/merino grindstone, and here it is, January in March, and I’m wearing it today. Done since Thursday, 24 March, and just about as comfortable as can be. If it’s as cold on Tuesday as it’s been today? I’m wearing it again to celebrate my birth. I am a Sunday child, after all. An Easter Sunday child even. Bonny and blithe and good and gay. And so I shall dress like one. If black can be considered bonny, blithe, good, or gay?


About pattiblaine

Raised under the name of Snyder in the upstate NY town of Vestal, I've worked as a typesetter, a fast food salad bar tender, an art reviewer, a waitress, a part-time nanny, and a very-bad-with-phones temp. Once upon a time I was all-but-thesis toward a Masters in Art History. Now I'm just a mom with a lot of fiber squirreled away throughout the house. We call it insulation. In 2013 I completed a life-long learning program at Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School, and am a postulant toward the diaconate in the Episcopal Diocese of Rochester, NY. In addition to coordinating volunteers for the soup kitchen, I volunteer as a tutor at a deeply impoverished city elementary school, and am a docent at the Memorial Art Gallery.
This entry was posted in Extracurricular, Finished things, Woolly thoughts and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Fanfare for the finished sweater

  1. Lidiya says:

    Amazing. I’d do something that fine and labor intensive. But not in black angora 😉

  2. Sarah says:

    It’s beautiful! Great job!

  3. Christine says:

    Congratulations! If it’s any consolation, it looks awesome in black. I would likely have not finished. Have a happy birthday!

  4. Pingback: Off the needles… and on | Every Fibre of My Being

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