Elise always has something on her needles. Watch her progress on models for The Busy Needle, as well as on her own projects and designs.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Norah Gaughan's Eastlake Sweater

On Wednesday (July 3rd) I finished the gauge swatch for Berroco's new Inca Gold yarn. Yummy stuff to work with. Great stitch definition. While the people at Berroco reached gauge on a size 7 US needle, I needed a size 6 US to reach the same specifications.

Gauge is important. ALWAYS make a gauge swatch and block it! I cannot tell you how many disasters it will avert. If I had just jumped into the Eastlake sweater on size 7 needles, it would fit me... but only if I gain 20 lbs! (Not something I'm planning to do!)

Anyway, one of the first things I noticed is that the directions for the front of the pattern do not tell you to switch to the larger size needles (as it does on the back after knitting 1" of ribbing.) And yet the measurements for the top of the bust are the same for the back as they are for the front. Sounded suspicious, but Norah Gaughan often thinks so far outside the box that I have learned to ask questions first, before hollering that something is wrong.

So I thoroughly read through the rest of the pattern, searching for some clue, but could find none. I did find, however, that the instructions for the Eastlake Scarf don't tell you which size of straight needles to use. (The pattern materials indicate two sizes of straight needles and one pair of circular needles are needed for the sweater and scarf.)

As a yarn shop owner, one of the wonderful things I can do is call the folks 'who know' at Berroco and ask specific pattern-related questions. I did that first thing this morning. They said, "Hmmmmm... We'll call you back, hopefully today, probably tomorrow." I really appreciate the fast turn-around. The Berroco folks are ALWAYS helpful and great to work with.

But then, Berroco stands behind their products, unlike some other yarn companies. It shows in Berroco's customer service, and it makes all the difference when I purchase yarn for the shop. It is also first and foremost in my mind when I choose to make shop models, as well as when I pick yarn for my own personal projects. Okay, I just realized I sound like a commercial! And, NO, I don't get paid to say this. LOL!

When I hear from Berroco I'll post their response. I'm sure they'll also put it on their website under Pattern Corrections. (The Pattern Corrections link is at the bottom of their home page.) My suggestion is that you ALWAYS check this link before starting your Berroco pattern.

In fact, you should always check ANY pattern company's website for corrections before starting your garment. It could save a lot of hassles. While I wouldn't have expected to find pattern problems with the Vogue Cover Sweater I just finished knitting, in fact the schematic for the left front has errors on it, and there is an error in the pattern itself. Everyone makes mistakes sometimes.


Bubbychucks said...

Hello Elise ;)
I'm very close to knitting this design.. but wondered.. do you think it would be easy enough to lengthen the distance between the scoop neck and start of the horizonatal band, so as to make it a true empire waist.. I'm tall- 5'9 1/2.. and if I knit it as is, will end up with the band at the least flattering of places.

Elise said...

Yes, it should be relatively easy to lengthen the bodice. Measure your gauge swatch vertically so you know the number of rows per inch that you are knitting. Calculate the number of inches you'd like the horizontal band to be dropped and multiply this by the number of rows per inch. (I.e., if you want to add 1-1/2" and are getting 6 rows per inch, you'd add 9 rows (6+3) above the vertical band.) If you don't want to lengthen the sweater - and, at 5'9" you may like the added length - then you'll have to subtract this number from the bottom section. Make sure you do this on the front AND the back!)

Unknown said...

Hi elsie

r.e eastlake sweater

I am about to jump into this sweater and saw your blog post. Thank you!,
Did you ever hear back about this issue? i saw the pattern corrections online but was not sure they addressed this issue.
Sincere thanks

Elise said...

My apologies, Kirsten! I haven't been on the site since my mother passed in December and just saw your post. The wonderful people at Berroco have posted all the corrections for this pattern on their website. Hopefully you've knit it already and will enjoy it again in the fall!