Knitwits Yarns knitwitspenzance.co.uk
Many customers say that finishing their knitted items is the bit they hate the most - the sewing up, the picking up of stitches for collars or buttonbands, the choosing of buttons. All elements are critical and doing any element badly can ruin all the hours spent knitting to our best ability.
My latest sweater involved a highly unsatisfactory picking-up of stitches around the neck. The yarn is Stylecraft's Vision and is self striping:
and, by the time I'd dutifully picked up the 153 stitches around the neck the yarn had changed colour so that when I knitted back on the next row the result was half a row of red before a chunk of green. I thought I could live with it, I knitted a couple of rows of rib, I slept on it, re-assessed it in the cold light of day and then ripped the whole collar out and started again. Turns out, I couldn't live with it after all!
Sewing up needs to be done slowly and carefully for best results (I nearly always use mattress stitch). In fact, I would say I always use mattress stitch except when sewing up stripes when the nature of the stitch means it's very hard to get the stripes to match. I finished my sweater last night and I have to say I'm pleased with it:
(See the collar - now imagine it with a little stripe of red before the green - it wouldn't have worked, would it?). It's always a worry as to whether stripey yarn and cables/lace are going to work but, in this instance, I think they do. Here is the picture of the pattern, in a different colourway:
The pattern is absolutely straightforward except for a tiny bit of shaping whilst also knitting lace on the sleeves but this is made easier as the cable panel helps to keep track of where you are. My only problem would be that I think the yarn quantities may be wrong. I knitted the smallest size and used very nearly all of the 4 balls. The next size up also says it takes 4 balls, which I think is highly unlikely.
I have to say I really like it - but perhaps I'm biased!