Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Who said you had to follow the pattern?

Are you a knitter with slight masochistic tendencies? Then I have the pattern for you!! Jaeger's Rosita. But, if you truly want to torture yourself, don't just stop with the pattern - no, modify it!! Change the yarn, change the gauge, and heck, make it into a cardigan!

Rosita - a better self portrait

This sweater had been calling to me from the cover of Jaeger 35 for well over a year. It's a gorgeous lace pattern and a beautiful sweater. What's not to love? This spring I finally chose my yarn, Cashcotton 4ply, which I thought would be softer and "friendlier" than the called for Jaeger Siena. I was probably right, except for some major gauge issues. No problem I said! I'll just make a smaller size.

Then there were the pattern issues. It turns out several lines of the 28 row lace pattern repeat had errors, lots of errors. No problem I said! There's a similar lace pattern in one of the Barbara Walker treasuries. I'll just borrow a little from there. (Thanks Barbara!)

Did I mention I've got short little arms? Like a T. Rex. Whatever. I can modify the sleeve increases to accomodate. Wait, wasn't there a gauge problem? Going down a couple sizes won't work on the sleeves - both sizes call for the same number of stitches. Okay, let's just mess with that one a bit too. I majored in biochemistry, surely I can figure out a little math.

And who really wants a pullover lace sweater anyway? Let's make it a cardigan! Do the neckline decreases on the fly, and I'm sure it'll got smoothly. What's the worst that could happen? Oh wait, the shoulders need to be wider on a cardigan than a boatneck pullover. Oh, let's just fudge that one, and not tell anyone, okay?

Three and a half months go by and you end up with post-it notes all over everything like this:
Rosita's high-tech tracking system
But between those post-its and a magnetic chart holder I was saved from any serious harm. (My magnetic chart holder is my new best friend. Love it. So much.)

Time to seam everything up, and then you realize the pattern didn't call for any selvedges. In fact, the yarn-overs go right to the edge. How are you going to sew up this one? Backstitching it is! (Gross, but effective.)

And there you have it, a cardigan that kind of, sort of, resembles a sweater Jaeger designed at some point.
Rosita - done!



At 11:53 PM, Blogger Antyjen said...


Did you know that THE Annelie gave up knitting this sweater? After seeing your post-it-notes I know why.

It's very cute nonetheless, the yellow is soft like the creamed butter and sugar mixure you can't resist when baking cookies (just did it, Saturday night, baked cookies that is). But it's also a bit crazy too eh? The yarn harlot told us obsession is normal, so be it.


At 12:36 AM, Blogger dinahsaurus said...

That "I-Conquered-a-Jaeger-Sweater" look is totally fake on that model on the pattern book. Yours has all the appropriate "Ha Ha-- I-Didn't-Let-You-Crush-Me" smugness of a truly great knitter. That is an amazing sweater. I like the cardigan conversion, too. You obviously rock.

At 9:58 AM, Anonymous Daphne said...

Wow, I can't believe it, but you actually just talked me out of trying it myself! It's SO PRETTY. But I think I'll go back to my lacy mohair cardigans. I need to finish the brown one and design the Perfect One in another color.

At 4:54 PM, Blogger Duchess said...

Speechless. . .
In awe. . .
Bow my head in reverence. . .
It's stunning.

At 6:25 PM, Anonymous Shiari said...

Oh Gosh. Oh no. I just started this sweater, and I'm on row 3 of the pattern and ready to chuck it. I came across this blog when I googled "jaeger rosita corrections"

somehow, it's reassuring to know that another, way more experienced knitter, had troubles with this pattern, and that those problems aren't all my inexperience and blunders! (or yours, apparently). I dont' know that I've enough experience to figure this one out... and it's so pretty!


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