Thursday, April 23, 2009

The Perfect Fit--Or Not

The greatest challenge in making a garment is finding (or creating) a pattern with the perfect fit. To that end, this knitter has struggled. In off-the-rack clothing, I struggle to find my size (anywhere from XL to 2XL). If its not a specialty shop, sometimes its just hard to find my size. Or if the shop does carry my size, the fit is questionable, the style is unappealing OR the cost is just too damn expensive. It's just hard being stylish if you're fat (yeah I said it: I'm fat. Wanna make something of it?). What to do? Make my own sweaters that would be stylish, cost effective and fit properly. (The cost effective part comes from using acrylics and other unholy fibres--hence my name acrylic-girl--so if you're a yarn-snob, you might as well just leave right now to avoid any gnashing of teeth and eye-rolling).

Rewind: about a year ago, I started knitting Stefanie Japel's Short-sleeved Cardi from Fitted Knits. I just loved the pattern. Inspired by other knitters' projects on Ravelry, I plunged in and cast on. Now here's where the newbies are separated from the more experienced: the latter would consider the implication of negative vs positive ease, especially given that the lower half of the cardi was heavily ribbed. Clingy ribbing and rotund bodies do not necessarily mix. But in my misguided attempt to ensure fit and my inexperience with the concept of ease, I flubbed. Yes, I tried on the sweater and it fit well in the upper body. But I neglected to consider that the comfy upper body would clash with the clingy ribbed bottom (not to mention that the ribbing hit me in the abs and bottom in the most unflattering way). I forged on, in complete denial, hoping that in the end the button band would somehow fix everything .**shakes head in shame**

Fast foward: while I worked on other projects, the sweater sat around for a year, abandoned but not forgotten until just a few weeks ago. I picked it up and finished the second sleeve. Then I tried it on and new eyes saw the problems that my old eyes could not see. The fit was not right. The fact that I'd lost about 25 lbs since last year didn't help either (Don't worry. I'm still fat, but now I'm also healthier).

What did I do? Rip, rip, rip . . .

But all is not lost. I only ripped out the ribbing. I'm just gonna continue in stockinette. It'll be a cosy sweater rather than a sexy clingy knit (my most sincere apologies to Stefanie Japel 'cuz the fault lay in the knitter, not the pattern).

On the plus side, I do have neat little square buttons. :)

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