The Alec XL sweater which I made with Rowan Pure Wool Worsted Superwash in the Green Wash color way is blocked, dry, and good-looking. Knitting this sweater could have become the bane of my existence because the wearer — my partner — was very impatient to see this done. If I ever knit another sweater for him — that is, if he’s lucky enough — I won’t tell him that the project in front of me on the needles is his. He will find out when it’s completed. If I worked on another thing that was not his sweater he would ask me why I wasn’t working on his sweater. Anyway, I’ve said it could have become the bane of my existence which means it did not. That’s because it was so much fun to knit. I truly love this pattern. I love it so much I might marry it. Since I’m already married, though, I’ve made plans to make two more for myself with more Rowan Pure Wool Worsted (not superwash).
The detailed photos below explain why I want to marry the Alec XL sweater pattern.
Let’s discuss the left-hand photo first. See how nice the button band looks? I don’t think it’s all thanks to my masterful knitting (although I’m pretty good). The button band is very carefully planned so it looks like that on purpose. The designer included it in the knitting of the sweater itself, not as something to sew on afterwards. The way it is included in the knitting is very clever. In the same photo you can see how nicely the collar is planned, too. Again, not my idea. The designer gives good directions for some very quick and simple short-row shaping in the back so it looks just right. Also, check out the stitch pattern. It’s a two-row repeat. That’s all. This is not an invention the designer came up with. Barbara Walker documented it in A Treasury of Knitting Patterns and it’s called “Grecian Plait Stitch.” The interesting thing is how it looks different “upside-down,” which the designer did indeed play with on purpose, including it in a top-down construction. If you move your eyes to the right-hand photo you can see how the choice of raglan increases was very tasteful. The placement of the garter stitch border on the collar is absolutely essential too, not only to keep it from curling up but to decorate it nicely, also.
The sweater just looks great when you wear it, when you sprawl it out on a table, or even when you neatly fold it.
Alec XL does get some help from some very light blocking, though. This is especially true if you choose the garter stitch option for the hem and cuffs. Without blocking they flip upwards. The same is true for the collar, which is quite unruly without some wet blocking.
So, yes, I want to marry a sweater pattern. It’s just perfect in every way.