I have made very few sweaters for myself. There have been numerous sweaters for babies and children, and every winter I have a plethora of hats, gloves, cowls, and socks to keep me warm, and I do have several shawls and one cardi. But I’ve wanted a simple pullover sweater, something casual and comfy that can be layered or worn in its own – without causing me to melt (I run warm). When Tin Can Knits came out with their Flax pattern I was drawn to it, but just can’t wear a sweater knit up in worsted weight wool…
Enter the Flax Light. Knit in sock yarn, it promises to be both light and warm, durable but not scratchy. Very washable, too. I began searching for the perfect yarn.
I knew I wanted a semisolid in a neutral color, but not white and certainly not soul-crushing black yarn – and I’ve been drawn to greys lately. I picked up a couple skeins to test at Madrona last month.
And then I was in a LYS and decided to check out their sock yarns to see if any would fit the bill. Ya know, since I was there. The biggest problem with knitting adult-sized sweaters is that you need a lot of yarn – for the Flax Light that means two thousand yards of it – which means the yarn is going to run well over a hundred dollars (twice that if you want something a little fancy). I didn’t really want to spend that much, but sock yarns give you the most yardage for your money, so I took a look.
Lo and behold, they had exactly five skeins of a lovely tonal grey, all with the same dye lot, which equaled enough yardage. I hemmed and hawed, because each skein was $23 (plus tax), but I had a gift card so one of the skeins would be free – and with that logic, I headed to the register.
The friendly cashier looked me up in the database (any LYS worth its salt has one and awards some kind of loyalty points), and casually asked if I’d like to use my store credit.
I didn’t hesitate or ask what it was for, I simply said yes and also handed her my gift card. And I think I did a pretty good job controlling myself when she announced my grand total: $28 and change. That’s right, I got a sweaters’ worth of good yarn for less than thirty dollars. I practically skipped back to my car.
I cast on a few days later with the recommended needle sizes, and amazingly enough I’m getting gauge (of course I didnt do a gauge swatch, don’t be silly). At six stitches per inch, this is going to take me months to make but so far I’m very happy with the results.
Besides, if it turns out horribly I can just frog it and make more socks.