This Kettlewell jumper is the happy product of an impulse yarn purchase at the all-too-enticing Oxford Yarn Store in April. It’s knitted in reverse stocking stitch, using Rowan Purelife British Sheep Breeds Chunky, in mid-brown Jacob colour, which is a lovely, sheepy yarn, and very pleasant to knit with. I cast it on straightaway, as soon as I got back from the shop. I finished knitting all the pieces on my commute by the end of July, just before going to Shetland for the In The Loop conference, but didn’t seam them together until October (and to tell the truth I didn’t seam most of it myself at all, as you may already know if you read my confession), or complete the finishing touches until November, and by that point I had to incorporate moth repair into the process, as the blighters had nibbled the neck edge in the intervening months. Then what with the dwindling light levels of late, I didn’t manage to photograph it until today, as either the weekends have been too gloomy and unsuitable for photo shoots, or I haven’t succeeded in getting dressed before sunset (ahem). But hey, did anyone notice how I started and finished this whole project within seven months? As the self-professed queen of all things slow, that’s a wild success in my book!
It is a tiddly bit on the short side, and my mother says I should undo the ribbing and make the whole jumper longer, but I don’t want to. Partly because when I wear it with high-waisted skirts I don’t think it’s really a problem, and partly (mostly?) because I am downright stubborn and when I think something’s finished I don’t like to find I’m wrong. I am also a strong advocate against my mother’s unhealthy unknitting habit, so I suppose I am just putting my foot down out of principle. Additionally, foolish me made the sleeves ten rows longer than the pattern, because I didn’t take the actual position of the shoulder seams in relation to my shoulders into account when doing my calculations; but that’s fine, as I like having long sleeves that I can hide my hands inside when it’s cold.
I think it’s definitely safe to say that Kettlewell was a general overall success, with or without some minor setbacks depending on who you talk to. I’ve received several very kind compliments on it (though if one were feeling mean-spirited, one could say they don’t all count, seeing as I have a cheeky tendency to point out the fact that I made my jumper myself to my lucky companions, and wait for them to say how nice it is…), and I wear it all the time. It’s so wonderfully warm, it’s my new absolute favourite garment. May many more snuggly handknitted jumpers follow this one, is what I say.