Making a Sweater: Swatching

When we last left off, I was getting ready to buy some yarn and create a gauge swatch.  Just yesterday I went to my local yarn shop, Chelsea Yarns, and bought some Blue Sky Fibers Woolstock in Rusted Roof.  I love Blue Sky Fiber yarns and jumped at the opportunity to buy pretty yarn in a rustic orange color.  My friend, who was shopping with me, said orange really suited me, so I went with it. Of course I agree since my Done in Love Pullover was in orange as well.  


For my swatch I used the appropriate sized needle 7mm.  My stockinette stitch yielded 6 rows per inch and 4 stitches per inch. This part of the swatch is the most important as it shows me what my stitch will look like once its finished.  I did block this swatch to get a feel for the yarn after I wet it as well.   After this original swatch, which will be the back and most of the body and arms of the sweater, I created a second swatch to create a decorative effect on my sweater. 


For this second swatch I created, I used a lace knit stitch.  In looking for knit stitches, I stumbled upon the Brome Fields Knit Wear site and found the stitch.  The site is treasure trove of different knit stitches but I wanted an easy and open pattern because I think my pattern will only be on the top half of my shirt and the front only, above the bust line.  (It is my first sweater and I didn't want to overly ambitious).  I do like the look of this stitch but may need to practice some more.  Some other stitches I found appealing included the cables (lots of beautiful cables like this one, or this one) but I decided on an open lace stitch as well as a simpler style of pullover.  My sweater may have morphed into a 3 quarter length sleeve pullover with an open lace stitch front.  I haven't sketched it out yet but need to.  

In addition to these swatches I took my overall measurements from my shoulders, waist, arm length and upper arm, forearm, wrist, bust, etc. The point of all these measurements is to get a good fitting sweater and to then use the gauge swatch as a way to get the right fit based on the yarn and the stitches.  In the new year I will work on those measurements and hopefully put up a new draft of my sweater with my open lace front.  How's your sweater coming along? 

You can read more about my adventure in designing a sweater through this series.