Yarn: Rowan Damask, in Serpentine
Comments: This cardigan has taken a year to finish - it sat in hibernation for most of the winter, since I didn't see much point in finishing it until the weather was warm enough to wear it. The pattern is decent - just the back and 2 fronts, since the sleeves are part of the body piece. The instructions for the neckband were a bit odd though - basically, you knit the frill as a seperate piece, and then pick-up 276 (for my size) stitches up one front, along the neck and down the other side - for each stitch that you pick-up, you knit that into one of the stitches on the frill, thereby joining them together. I tried it, but it was too frustrating to go on with. In the end, I just picked up stitches as indicated, and then grafted them together. SO much easier.
As for the overall cardigan, this is one of those projects that I wish I'd had Ravelry for (I didn't join until after I'd knit the back and part of a front). The body on this is very short - It comes to just below my natural waist, and I'm a short person. Here's a photo of me in it, pre-sewing in ends and blocking...
Its not super short, but not as long as I would ideally like it. The blocking helped a little, simply by flattening the ruffle on the bottom, but not that much. (No Hannah, I did not expect it to grow from blocking! :P ) Anyway, it is designed to be worn over something, so its not that big a deal. I just think that I would try to make it longer in the body if I were to do it again. Also, the sleeves are a little narrow (again, they got a little more loose after blocking) - but if you had big arms, I think it could end up too tight for a lot of people. Not sure how you'd make them wider, given the style of the sleeves.
One problem I did have with this project was the yarn. Damask is 57% viscose, 22% linen, and 21% acrylic, and it does start to look it after a while... Too much friction (or ripping out, when trying to make sense of the frill-attaching instructions) on this yarn makes it fuzz - I'm a little sceptical about how its going to boy wear. Also (and more importantly!) can you see the colour difference in the back of this cardigan:
The photo doesn't quite do the colour issue justice, but I think I will send it to Rowan anyway, to see what they say about it. I bought the yarn last year, so its not like I would expect much in return, I just think they should know about it!