Tuesday, August 29, 2006

I have a problem. My wrists hurt. And I blame the acrylic.

See, the other day Gertrude came home from preschool and pulled a piece of construction paper out of her My Little Pony backpack. On this piece of paper, she had carefully inscribed a string of crudely formed letters.

I looked at it. It appeared to be written in Russian.

"This is wonderful writing!" I exclaimed.

"It's a note," Gert said. "I had to write it to myself so I wouldn't forget."

"Oh? What does it say?"

Gert pointed and read, "Bring... sweater."

I don't know why, but I found this to be unbearably precious. The idea of little Gert sitting in a chilly preschool classroom and being prompted to take pencil to construction paper, asking a nearby grownup how to spell these two key words that would remind her to bring a sweater on the next day of preschool... that's too adorable!

This instantly reminded me that I have yet to knit Gert a mommy-made sweater that A) fits her and B) is not itchy.

The first sweater I ever attempted for Gert was neither A nor B:

cally sweater

This sweater taught me an important lesson about gauge. I bet you can guess what that lesson was.

The second sweater I made for Gert was such a failure that I never even attempted to photograph it. It was a green, white, and blue striped top-down raglan. In addition to the colors being all wrong, the sleeves were too short, the body was too wide, and worst of all it was itchy.

In sharp contrast, the sweater I made for Matilda was a complete success. It's just that now she's a middle schooler who is too fashion-forward to wear a handknit sweater that wasn't handknit by underpaid Guatemalans for a runway show.

kait sweater3

Gert's note to herself renewed my desire to make her a successful sweater. Together, we went downstairs to the yarn studio. I showed her all the viable sweater yarns and we narrowed it down to two pinks -- one option was a stretchy pink wool blend, and the other was pastel pink acrylic. I will say one thing for acrylic: it's soft. And that's exactly what Gert fell for. She held it against her cheek. She rubbed it on her arm. She declared it soft, fluffy, pink, and perfect.

We tucked an intermediary store-bought sweater into her backpack and I got to work on designing and knitting the perfect Gert sweater.

You know. Because I can't ever do anything easy like use an existing pattern. This one has to be Gert-perfect.

And that means Cables.

Cables + Acrylic = Dammit, my wrists hurt.

I should really take a break from it, but the classroom is chilly...


Lois said...

I hope a pattern will appear soon :-)

I have a DGD that loves pink and "needs" a sweater too! - She's 5...

Lois in MA

Aunt Murry said...

I have a couple of sweaters that my mother made me. Although they no linger fit, I will be damned if anyone else will have them! I hope Gert feels the same way about her sweaters!

spaazlicious said...

"now she's a middle schooler who is too fashion-forward to wear a handknit sweater that wasn't handknit by underpaid Guatemalans for a runway show."

[snerk! right on, very funny def. of "fashion forward" (or should we say "fash-on" Old Navy style?) thinking]

BTW, I love your blog name.