It’s not the most skilled knitting I’ve ever done, or the best-designed garment I’ve designed, or my first time steeking, or the biggest thing I’ve made, or the fastest. It’s not the most of anything.
Except: It is the most I’ve made for another person.
Knitting for others can be (ahem) difficult. Even if they pick out the yarn and the pattern and seem incredibly enthusiastic … the finished object might not match expectations. Swatches lie, yarns misbehave, and optimism overtakes reality. Sometimes we forget that our physical form is not exactly that of the lithe 15-year old in the pattern photograph. You know. Normal things.
So here, I did all the right things. I involved my gift-ee in the process. We talked about yarn weight; she chose the colors; I knit up swatches; I measured and consulted and made her try on half-finished sleeves.
All this took months. From yarn choice to casting on was two months, at least. Plus another few
days months for knitting and reknitting and reknitting, and …
… and still: it didn’t seem very long.
This sweater was my constant companion for half a year. Even before I began knitting I was designing, planning, thinking about shoulder seams and how many steeks I could fit into a single garment (three), and what about the buttonbands, and how am I going to manage the hood. And when knitting began, I carried yarn and needles to my job and knit there.
After a while it grew enormous. Then I took it to my sign language class, where I worked on it beforehand, as my friends and I chatted in English. (It is impossible to hold a conversation in sign language and knit, simultaneously. I have tried.)
I knit in fast-food booths — on sofas — on long car trips — in a rocking chair while the cat slept on my lap … and it didn’t become boring.
And all that’s left is to weave in ends.