Knitting Machine Blue Jacket (2007)

Pattern:  DAK-based interpretation of Jean Frost Tremont Jacket
Yarn:  Halcyon Zephyr Wool 2/18 (wool/silk blend) and Superfine Merino 2/18, knit together
Method:  Machine knit with crochet trim
Completed:  June 16, 2007.

I was inspired by Jean Frost's "Tremont" jacket, but a) wanted to do the bulk of the knitting on a machine and, as a result, b) wound up with yarn of vastly different gauge.  The Jean Frost jacket is knit at something like 20 stitches to 4 inches; this knit up at something like 30 stitches (and 49 rows) to 4 inches.  The difference in yarn composition and finer gauge does mean that this is more drapey than the original jacket.

As with "Tremont", the trim is crochet.  I did a row of single crochet and then a row of reverse single crochet around the front opening (button bands, were there buttons) and neck.  Then, I started at one side seam and did a row of single crochet around the whole sweater -- bottom edge, around the opening & neck and back to the seam.  I figured that's probably about 2.5m.  Next, a row of double crochet clusters, and finally another row of single crochet.  Same finishing on the sleeve ends.  (The "Tremont" pattern uses "bobbles" instead of the double crochet clusters, but I'm not a huge bobble fan, and they turned out to be virtually impossible to construct with 2 strands of yarn working as one (getting the working 2 strands, and ONLY the working 2 strands, through 7 stitches (14 loops) ... no.).

As noted in the yarn description above, this is knit with 2 strands simultaneously -- one each of a wool/silk blend and a superfine merino.  See below for pictures.  They are both dyed with the same colour (apparently), but the different yarn compositions cause them to take the dye up in dissimilar ways.  Then, just knitting them together as 2 strands fed into the machine, there's a lot of variability about which one shows up in front -- this is what leads to the stripey effect.  I'll confess I was hoping for more variability -- some more randomness in which appeared in front, and less stripey.

The stitch gauge turned out to be pretty much what I'd gotten off my tension swatch, but the row gauge was off:  I'd gotten 38 rows/4 inches on the tension swatch, and this is more like 49 rows/4 inches.  A big difference!  However, it was at least *consistently* different (so all matching pieces are the same length), and the biggest effect is that the jacket is shorter than intended.  (It was meant to be a short jacket; this is just pushing it more towards "bolero").   I think the sleeves worked out to be an okay length because the neckline is more open than it's supposed to be, pushing the shoulder seam down.  (As for the neckline -- probably too many stitches picked up for the crochet edging?).

Jacket front
Back Modelled
Jacket back
Detail and Scale
Detail:  crochet trim; the 2 strands of yarn used together for the knitting and crochet; stripey effect from that constructioin; finger for scale (small stitches!).
What?! ;-)