Rhinebeck Sweater: The First of Many

You can’t finish, if you don’t start.  With that in mind, I finally forced myself to swatch officially for my Rhinebeck Sweater.  I’d done a preliminary swatch to decide needle size.  It took me a couple weeks to do a real gauge swatch though.  I was a paralyzed by the sheer volume of options available to me!  So many decisions to be made!  Hopefully, you’ll find the decision making process interesting over the next few months because I expect there will be many, many Rhinebeck Sweater posts!

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Rather than focus on the crushing weight of one million knitting decisions, I’m thinking about what I have decided.  The yarn–Miss Babs Yowza Whatta Skein in colorway Bruin!  Who doesn’t love Miss Babs?!?  I’ve had this yarn in my stash for quite a few years, it’s waited long enough!  The needles–US Size 5.  Those were the easy decisions.

The crushing weight of one million knitting decisions is now upon me.  I’ll just change a pattern anyhow, so I’m not gonna bother.  I’m going straight to designing it myself.  I definitely want a zip up, raglan, cardigan with long sleeves.  Everything else is just an option.  The top options right now are cables, pockets and a hoodie.

I played around with the swatch to test a few things out.  Seed stitch won the edge decision easily.  For a quick minute I contemplated texture instead of cables, the seed stitch had me tempted.  Then I remembered how much work that would be so another decision made…my Rhinebeck Sweater is going to have a stockinette body.

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The cable decision is one that’s been difficult to decide.  I’m a lazy knitter.  I will not be doing a heavily cabled sweater.  It’s partially a fashion decision, as well.  The classic aran look adds bulk and I’ve got enough of my own bulk, no need for my sweater to graciously gift me with more!   Taking these decisions one at a time, I’m slowly narrowing myself into the right decision.

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My swatch cables started on a bed of stockinette, a lazy knitter loves all knit rows!  It’s pretty clear why cables are done on bed of reverse stockinette though.  The stitch definition is lovely!  I played around with the height and width of the cables.  To my surprise, I prefer the wider cable on the left.  That’s a 3 over 3 left cable.  The middle and right cables are 2 over 2, one in each direction.   If I wanted a pair of cables, I like the look of a right and left together, but I think I want just one cable.

Now, where to put my cables.  This is the truly crushing decision, the one that’s had me paralyzed.  I think I’ve decided to go with the less is more philosophy.  I really like the idea of a cable running down the sleeve.  I sort of like the idea of a cable running down the raglan line.  I really want to like the idea of a cable running down the cardigan openings.

Less is more.

I think the front cables are out of the running.  The fact that I can’t make a decision is the decision.  If it were right, I’d have figured it out by now.   Sleeve cables and raglan cables…hhhmmm.  Almost.  I contemplated this pairing for a while.  It’s gonna be a bit top heavy though.  Sleeves alone would be a little misplaced.  Along the raglan line only??  hhhmmm.   I think maybe this is the direction I’m leaning.

Phew!  Finally some progress!  I think I’ll do a provisional cast on, I can decide the hoodie issue later.  Maybe it’ll depend on how much yarn I’ve got left, I should have plenty though.  Maybe I need a little decorative something on the back?  Patch pockets or inset pockets?  Vertical or horizontal?  aaacccck!  Still a lot of deciding to be done.  But so far, I think I’m on the right track!

Only 84 knitting days left until Rhinebeck!!

4 thoughts on “Rhinebeck Sweater: The First of Many

    1. I’m rounding up to 3 months, that’s helping me to think I’ve got plenty of time! LOL! Hopefully I’ll cast on this weekend…I’ve been averaging 2 months for a sweater lately, so dare I say…I’ve got time to spare!

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