For Lloyd’s birthday in 2012 (yes, 2012), I told him I would knit him another sweater. At the time we’d misplaced the first one and I figured that once prelims were over I’d have lots of free time. So I sat down and knitted furiously for a while – until we found the original sweater in a box we hadn’t unpacked since we moved. I’d discovered in the meantime that the great notes I’d left myself told me nothing about how I made the sweater the first time around. I decided to keep with the project so that I would have actual instructions the next time I wanted to make one.
The original sweater I knit a few years ago.
Well, between school and other projects and being social, it took a bit longer than expected. When I made the first sweater, I had a full time job that was limited to 40 hours a week and I lived by myself so I would come home most days after work and knit for a couple of hours. I assumed that it would take roughly the same time to knit the second sweater and, buoyed by my fast initial progress, grossly underestimated the time required.
By Lloyd’s birthday 2013, the sweater still wasn’t finished and I felt that I ought to give him some sort of warm shirt. We’d been talking about the idea of t-shirt weight hoodies for a while so I made him a Zelda inspired hoodie.
The hood was a bit deeper than necessary.
I went through several sleeve iterations on this one, but it turned out well in the end. I also learned a new skill: embroidery. Rather than a logo on the pocket, I embroidered a gold triforce. Technically a logo, but it doesn’t indicate the maker.
At Christmas, I was still knitting and beginning to feel a bit embarrassed about it. I had made the bold claim around Thanksgiving that it would finally be done by Christmas. This time I had forgotten that I had yet to make Christmas presents for anyone. I was taking careful and detailed notes of the pattern I had developed based on the hoodie pattern in Stitch ‘n Bitch, but that wasn’t the part that was slowing me down.
I finally finished on New Year’s Eve at about 9 pm – just before we went out for the night. I’m not a fan of New Year’s resolutions, but I am a fan of not stretching projects to a third calendar year.
It’s finally done!
Our assessment of the finished sweater is that the hood was much better than last time since it actually worked as a hood. The sleeves are way too wide, a fact I suspected after making the Zelda hoodie, but I had already finished one so it was already too late. But the sweater is warm and awaiting the cold(ish) nights in Sunnyvale.
- Numbers lie. Always do a reality check before assuming that number I wrote down is definitely right and I should just go with it. This is what happened to the sleeves.
- Use the engineering standard for estimating time for projects. Maybe then I wouldn’t have declared it would be done multiple times before actually completing it.
- Don’t start new projects until the old ones are finished. So far, so good, but it’s only been two weeks since I finished the sweater.
All in all, this project was a success and certainly an interesting experience. I enjoyed making the sweater (yes, really) so much that I’m planning on making myself a sweater – a thing I have not yet attempted. Let’s hope it doesn’t take me as long to finish the next one.