Liesl: finished! Maybe.

Posted on by MK Carroll

Could it be?


After months of marinating, I finally finished Liesl!


Let me be a smug cheeseball for just a moment more...


...and I'm spent.

I'm going to stress that the issues I have with the finished sweater are all due to choices I made. I like the pattern layout and the way it is written and many, many knitters have successfully knit a Liesl.

In my case, the choices I made included using a vintage wool (Pingouin Fleur de Laine, not sure how old but I'd guess at least 30+ years). It's nice enough yarn, but it pre-dates the lovely merino breeds available today. It's not terribly scratchy, but it is scratchy enough so I won't wear it over bare arms again. I am also seemingly unable to count to four, a necessary skill for this lace pattern. This has become a running joke for the Aloha Knitters. "Nice enough girl, such a pity she can't count past 3." There is at least 2.5 sweaters worth of knitting in this as a result. Did you notice I still have the lifelines in the photos? Then I hit the first sleeve (right) and raging frustration ensued. I finally got it done and then shoved it in a bag and out of my sight until recently. The left sleeve had to be ripped back a few times, but I got it going smoothly last week and got it done in a final burst. I think there's something about the way I picked up stitches that threw things off; what worked for me was starting the round with *k2tog* twice, *yo, k1* twice, following the instructions in the * * and then ending with *k2tog* twice, *yo, k1* twice. Notes I'd scribbled on my pattern indicated that the swatch grew, so I had knit the body and the sleeves shorter than I wanted the finished results to be (and didn't weave in the ends, as you can see in the photos). After washing, the sweater grew to just the right length, but it's also looser than I'd like (which may have something to do with my losing about 30 lbs. between casting on the neck and binding off the second sleeve).

Then while trying it on again and admiring my work, I realized that the first sleeve had at least one mistake in it. On closer inspection, more than one. I am not posting photos, not yet, anyway. I plan to wear it a couple of times, and then if it makes me too crazy I'll rip back and re-knit that sleeve. I had also planned to dye this sweater, either dark blue or dark red, and I am leaning towards blue...and not chancing a dye debacle until I figure out if I am okay with this sleeve (right now I am not okay with it).

Pattern: Liesl, by Ysolda Teague
Yarn: Pingouin Fleur de Laine, 4.5 skeins
Size: 46" (if I did this now, I'd go down to at least 38")