Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Knickerbocker Tee

I did it! Three wearable sweaters for the Summer Sweater Knitalong!  Actually, I only did it because it looks like there's going to be an extension, but still... yay!

All of the cheering is appropriate because I'm wearing my Indian football tee.  Don't I look completely natural, here, as I cheer, silently, for myself with dog hair on my freshly blocked sweater?  Oh well, after re-knitting this to correct my mistakes, I feel like I made a winning touchdown.

I grew up in a football family in a Texas town where allegiance to the high school football team is akin to cult membership.  So, of course, I wasn't into football.  I only remember going to a couple of games in high school.  But now I live in a band geek kind of family and find myself wedged between screaming fans in the stands at every home game.   Of course I ask dumb questions and find I'm watching the band throw a rubber chicken around and the people fussing around me more than the game, but it's fun.

Since it looks like my son will be going the same marching band route, I thought it was time to have a football sweater.   When I saw Allyson Dykhuizen's Vintage Inspired Baseball Knits I knew the Knickerbocker Tee would be mine.

This sweater makes me think of my eighties school photos-  painter pants, Puma knock-offs, and a raglan shirt that says something like "You toucha da shirt, I breaka ya face" across it.  My mom was horrified by that class photo, but I think she'd approve of this sweater.

I love the raglan t-shirt look and short row hem.  It appeals to my tomboy sensibilities.

I've mentioned that I botched this once already by having a sloppy gauge.  It was finished- I mean totally done- and I washed it just to find it was ginormous.  It's a real tale of misery so I won't rehash.

This time around I think I did it right:

I knit a size 32" knowing my gauge was off and that it would grow with washing,
I moved down to size 0 needles to actually, really and truly, be off by half a stitch every inch,
I stopped every few rows and checked my gauge like a freak,
I was careful not to knit too tightly on the hem row where the folded edge is knitted together with the next row so it wouldn't pucker,
I used a different type of increase: k1, m1l, knit to 2 sts from the end, m1r, k1,
I followed the short row wrap directions exactly rather than just fudging it so it looked nice and neat,
I worked jogless stripes on the arm,
I added an extra inch and a half to the length of the body because Stroll Sport seems to be springy and I didn't plan to block for length at all,
and I did not, in any way, stretch this thing as I washed and blocked it.

It did grow a bit, but by knitting an extra small size that barely fit me, I ended up with more of a small/ medium.  I considered using duplicate stitch to add school initials, or a big "I" for Indians, but opted to quit while I was ahead.  I can always add them later.

My feelings about the Stroll Sport yarn are complicated.  When it works, it works really well and I can wash and dry this sucker.  But when I don't anticipate a little growth, it flops hard.  If any of you know the secret to easy knitting with this superwash yarn, please give me a clue because I'm about to use another sweater's worth of Stroll Tweed for Ravello.

This is what we do in the stands to "Geronimo's Fury": make a tomahawk with our hands and hack  while chanting a gutteral, dirge-like chorus. No lie.

I will be indulging my inner 7 yr old tomboy (as usual) and wearing my football tee with purple and white Pumas if we can just get some cold weather...

More on this knit here: casting on, almost finished the first time, and my mishap.
Also on Kollabora, Ravelry, and Flickr


  1. Give me a "M" Give me a "I" Give me a "C" ....! Great sweater. I have 3 sweaters that need the sleeves to be lengthened because I'm a really slow learner when it comes to superwash wool. I'm just about to cast on the Ravello in Stroll Tweed. What colors have you picked? I'm going with flagstone, oyster and firecracker.

  2. It turned out fantastic!

  3. Well done you for doing it again! Qudos :)

    I am returning to the land of rugby and I never paid much attention, except to the handsome men in tiny shorts. I will knit and watch - but I'm not sure that I'll get a black rugby shirt on the needles. It wouldn't be half as stylish as your football sweater :)

  4. Love how it turned out! Much classier than a classic team jersey!

  5. Nice sweater, and well done after all the difficulties (I know it can be frustrating). I think this style suits you very well and you look lovely in it.

  6. Awesome tee! Congrats on finishing THREE sweaters for SSKAL!

  7. Oh yay, we'll be doing this together! I'm using firecracker, Baltic heather, and Prussian in that order from the top down. It's a different color combo for me, but I'm trying new things here and there so... I have used other superwash wools that didnt seem to grow with washing like the Stroll. Whatever, I'm just happy to see tweed on my needles :)

  8. Thank you, Heather! I'm so glad I redid it. This is how I learn everything crafty- the hard way.

  9. Oh, don't speak too soon! A knitted rugby shirt may be in your designing future :) If you did, I'd make one :) . But thanks, Libby. There's another pattern from this collection that looks like an old school varsity sweater that I've been eyeing. It's amazing how many more people I know want handknits when they see them in team colors.

  10. Thank you, Meg! I have to agree. Now I can't wait for a cool Friday night to wear it.

  11. I appreciate that, Elena. It is easy to wear, even beyond the ball game.

  12. I know! That's crazy. But I've been a little stressed out lately, so I think the late night robo- knitting was perfect therapy. And thanks, Cassy!

  13. Thanks, Katie! I'm so glad I hacked that hair off. It's appropriate to wear this sweater with the same haircut I had in high school.

  14. that looks so comfy and great on you!

  15. It is and thank you, Britt!