Fine, Let's Go Save France...

November 18, 2012 - 8:55am -- swingbug

I've got a stack of finished fiber that I haven't blogged about yet; reader be warned. I eventually will tackle the write-up of the quidditch robes process, but right now that project and I are taking a little time apart. I need some space.

So let's talk about knitting.

I picked up a pattern for a hooded sweater vest in Interweave Knits summer edition last year. Now I know what many of you may think when you hear the words "sweater" and "vest" used together in a neighboring capacity. Something like, "Hey swingbug, could you get any geekier?" The answer, of course, is yes. But I would like to dissuade you of this notion that a sweater vest must either be for a Big Bang Theory look-alike party or Great Uncle Murray's Christmas best. Knitters know the truth of this item of apparel and its beauty.

You don't have to knit sleeves.

Anyway, I found the pattern, found the yarn, knit the vest.

Now on the model this item looked kind of sporty. Stories that start with "On the model it looked..." rarely end well, do they? I pulled mine over my head, looked in the mirror, and thought... Joan of Arc.


Not quite what I was going for. Not altogether a bad thing--I mean, this is me, right?-- just not what I was going for. The project has many good points, I think. I love the particularly clever decreases that form the shaping in the back, for example.  But there's something about the way it sits on the shoulders and how the panels on the bottom flare. I just sort of feel like I should be marching into battle or something every time I put it on. Merino is hardly plate mail, I know. But I'm suddenly very grateful that when standing in front of the rack of Madtosh Vintage many months ago, I went with the purple and not the steel blue.

I called a knitting buddy and we looked it over.

"Turn around," she said. "Turn around again." She surveyed the garment. "You know peplums are very 'in' this year."

"They were also very 'in' in the 15th century." (For boys, anyway.)

"Well, you could..."

"Yes, I thought of that, but then..."

"Hmm, yes, I see. You might also try..."


"Hmm. I like it. I say you just go with it."

"Alright. I'll go with it."

When in Rome, right? Or medieval France. Whatever.

The pattern is the Amelia Hoodie from Interweave Knits, Summer 2011. The yarn is Madtosh Vintage. All the knitty-gritty details on my Ravelry project page. (If you knit and you don't use Ravelry, then you also don't use the internet so we're not really having this conversation, are we?)

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Submitted by Brenda on

I do see the Joan of Arc aspect, but that aside, it is very striking and pretty simultaneously, which is not an easy combo to accomplish. It also looks like it was fun to knit.

Submitted by Alliee on

I like it. The back, hood, color and fit. . . all good. I like it even more with the puffy sleeves, but it works with cap sleeves as well. The only thing that seems odd to me is the bottom. How about fringe? Or crocheted lace for three inches that pull it in? Or mabe another row of rectangles. . .
Did I ever tell you about when I got to be Joan of Arc in Shaw's play?