Stacy Knits

Ramblings about knitting and whatever else crosses my mind

Monday, May 30, 2005

The lovely Apricot Jacket and my not so lovely knitting

It's a good thing I love the finished product as much as I do because if I didn't, it would have ended up down the disposal days ago. Everyone and their mother has made this Jacket, and 95% of them have complained about the pattern. Here I am to add to the chorus! It's horribly written. Are all Rebecca patterns like this? This is my first.

As a public service to the self esteem of other knitters, especially those that may be joining the Knit Along at Craftster, here's my Apricot Jacket back timeline.

1. Cast on. Rib, rib, rib for about 7" (I'm shortening it some from the pattern because I'm short). Start knitting from chart.

2. Someone must not get the concept of an edge stitch because if she follows the chart with her ribbing, it's gonna be off center a stitch. For someone so anal about symmetry, at this gauge, that ain't gonna fly.

3. Contemplate ways of increasing or decreasing to get it centered. Determine nothing's saving this. Rip out 7 inches of ribbing.

Ripping in progress
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4. Here we go! Cast on again. We're ribbing, we're ribbing! Start the chart. It works!!! It's even! Pop open a bottle of champagne!

5. Work first 8 rows of pattern. Look down to admire work and see a big uh-oh. Yep, I K2tog instead of Sl1, K1, psso. Too anal to let that go. Rip out almost 8 rows, back to mistake.

See my mistake? More ripping.

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6. Work first row of pattern. Forget to work first row of stitches in stockinette. Did it in pattern. Rip out row.

7. Now we're flying!!! From here on, hopefully no ripping! That's a lofty goal given my past Apricot history but hey, it sounds good! I'd hoped to get a little more done over the long weekend but I didn't spend much knitting time and what I did spend was done rip, rip, ripping. Luckily, it's a quick knit! Here's what I managed to get done (and a great example of "why block").

Pretty in pink...

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I present to you a completed Apricot left front. I finished this last week with fewer big rip outs than the back piece. It took some time to figure out exactly why I was to knit 8cm after the shoulder bind off but once I realized it was for the neckband, I was able to do it and bind off.
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Not so fast! Apricot, we have a problem. See it?
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I purled there when I should have knitted. It's near the beginning of where the pattern begins but I didn't catch it until almost done. Would the average person pick that error out? Nope. If it was on the back piece, would it bother me much? Nope. But where it is on the front, everytime I look down to admire my lovely cardi, that's going to stick out like a sore thumb. I will likely frog the piece to that point and redo it. It only took a couple of evenings and I don't have to rip back all the way so I'm not particularly distraught.

Errata for the pattern is on Rebecca's website. Don't expect it to help all that much, just clear up some crazy numbers! It's really helped me so far to look at other completed Apricots. Becky's is great because she has pictures of each piece. She also gives a tip to place stitch markers around the center 22 stitches because once you reach those after repeating rows 1-8, you'll begin rows 9-10. The pattern's pretty vague on this. Shocking, I know!

Starting with a smaller piece is a good idea too, to get an idea of how it's supposed to look. Karma started with a sleeve.
I started with the left front. On second thought, I'm not so sure it helped because I still had to rip out a ton on the back piece I worked on second!

The moral of the Apricot Jacket story is to go into it knowing you're probably gonna have to do a lot of pattern guesswork on your own. If you're comfortable with that, go for it. Don't get too frustrated with ripping out row after row because it's all part of the process. It's a fun knit and is going to be a great learning experience in doing what feels and looks right rather than blindly following the pattern.

Compared to my last few garment projects, Lucky on size 2 needles and others with size 5's, this on size 7's is flying along so all this ripping back isn't phasing me at all!


  • At 1:37 PM, Anonymous Skylar said…

    Geez, how frustrating! I am so glad I decided NOT to hop on the bandwagon for this one. I can't deal with tough patterns. I like challenges, but at least write the pattern well, you know? I mean, it's bad enough I have to convert stuff from right handed to left handed and I tend to take on several new skills at the same time in a major project. No practice dishcloth knitting here...

    Great job though. And I am in love with the color!

  • At 7:47 PM, Blogger goodkarma said…

    Your final, super wonderful sleeve looks incredible! I think it's worth the trouble, especially because of the fat gauge (quick) and the end result (sweet). Yay!

  • At 5:55 AM, Blogger winnie said…

    hi stacy

    good job on tackling this vaguely written pattern. i broke down and bought a copy too..but i've never knitted any rebecca patterns and so i am lost on the "edge stts". what the $#@!? so.. um.. for the back piece beginning, is it k1, k1p2...and end in p1? or should that end in another k1? huh? help.


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