Fourth Edition is taking part in the Knitting & Crocheting Blog Week, and you can read more about that blog project here. As I wrote yesterday, my grandmother has been knitting me jumpers and cardigans all my life. My all-time favourite jumper was one she knitted me when I was eleven. I chose the colours myself - forest green and dark red - and I wore it until my gran decided she had better knit me another one. Unfortunately I did not get to choose the colours second time around as I was living in London, not rural Denmark, and I ended up with a beige/fawn combination which I loathed.
Last time I went to visit her, my grandmother had uncovered the pattern she had used for the two jumpers. The apple does not fall far from the tree, because Gran had obviously modified the pattern. Instead of a cardigan knitted in pieces, she had knitted the jumper in the round with subsequent steeking and whatnot.
I want to knit that jumper. I want my forest-green/red jumper back and I have the pattern right here in front of me. It is a 24-stitches/37-rows repeat, and fortunately I have Gran's marginal notes so I can follow her math. I plan on knitting it in the round as well, but I am not sure about the sleeve construction. Should I steek for drop-shoulders? Should I attempt to re-chart the pattern for a round yoke? I know I will be wanting a high-turtleneck.
Gran used postal order wool (I still remember pouring over shadecards with her). The actual pattern calls for a yarn which is miraculously still available - Sandnes Garn Peer Gynt (and rav link). It is a standard double-knitting pure wool yarn which should be easy to substitute. The real concern is if I can get the colours I want. Jamieson & Smith seem an obvious choice, but I'm also wondering if I should go for a slightly different look to my original jumper by choosing Rowan Felted Tweed (Rage and Pine would look so very lovely together).
Why is this an inspirational pattern for me? I know I have the skills to knit this - but I am actually a bit afraid of undertaking this project due to its many layers of meaning. By undertaking this project I will be admitting that Gran is no longer able to knit me a jumper and that I am, in a sense, "taking over" from her. In fact, I am now knitting her things, not the other way around. By knitting this jumper I am also reaching out to my own younger self - that young girl who feared so many things and felt so horribly out of place. And I am attempting to replace something which meant a great deal to me and I am afraid that my recreation will not measure up.
Who knew that sticks and string could be so .. meaningful, eh?