I have been working on a top-down raglan sweater with my handspun yarns over the past couple of weeks. I was inspired to knit a top-down raglan after taking Stefanie Japel's workshop at TNNA last month. I spent the bulk of last afternoon and evening watching the Academy Awards and working on this sweater. I can't think of a better way to spend a lazy Sunday afternoon.
The yarns that I am using for this project have been on a long journey (see my January 2008 post about some of the yarns I am including). I originally cast on for a Fair Isle vest on March 1, 2008. I didn’t like how it was turning out, so I frogged it and began to knit a top-down poncho-like garment on March 6, 2008. During March 2008, I worked this garment until I was about 4 inches from the cast-off edge, and then I put it aside so that I could focus on preparations for my April 2008 wedding. In early February 2009, I found this project in the bottom of my WIP pile and decided to finish it. So I did. And then I tried it on. The poncho was lovely, but it was clearly much too large for me. There was another fatal flaw: the entire garment, including the bottom edge, was worked in stockinette stitch, causing the poncho to roll severely toward my neck. After thirty minutes of wearing it, it had morphed from a lovely poncho to a very large and heavy necklace.
I was quite discouraged at this point, so I put the garment down for a few days. During this time I spoke with my good friend, Emily, who convinced me that I must make something worthy of the handspun yarn. At this point I was able to muster the courage to rip out the poncho, and immediately cast on for the top-down raglan sweater. Fortunately, this effort has been a success so far!