I’ve been knitting too long to make such a basic mistake.
My sister-in-law Meghan asked me to make a cardigan for my beautiful niece, Stella. They’re going to be going to a wedding in mid-October, and Meghan wants Stella to wear her birthday dress. However, the birthday was in August, so the dress isn’t going to be warm enough. Meghan wanted a white sweater, and she wasn’t sure she’d be able to find one.
I went through my collection of electronic baby cardigan patterns (and hit up Ravelry for a couple more), and sent Meghan pictures of all the ones I had patterns for that I thought would work. “You can knit all of these?” she emailed me back. Sure, I told her…but not all at once! After some thought, she chose the adorable Eyelet Yoke Cardigan by Lion Brand.
I headed to Knotty Girl to see if I could find a suitable yarn substitute, only to find that Ann carries Lion Brand Cotton Ease. There was only one problem; she only had one ball in white. So I bought it and decided to start knitting the cardigan while Ann ordered some more.
Experienced knitters are probably already shaking their heads.
It didn’t take me long to use up the first ball, which took me through about 2/3rds of the sweater–up to where the yoke started. The sweater is stockinette stitch with a seed stitch edging, which knits up very quickly, and I was really liking how it was looking (even though with the way the sweater is put together it’s a little hard to see what it’s going to end up like until it’s done). Then the additional balls of yarn came in to the shop (several days earlier than expected), and I was reminded of the lesson many a knitter had learned the hard way:
It’s the dye lot, stupid.
The new white dye lot did not match the old. It’s not a big difference, but white is not white is not white. Fortunately, I knew there’d be no problem whipping up a complete new cardigan with the two new balls of white yarn I bought…but I didn’t want my previous work to go to waste.
So I decided to pick up some more yarn in a different color and finish off the cardigan with a contrasting yoke. I picked a couple colors I really liked and asked some of my fellow Knotty Knitters for their opinions. Together we settled on a subdued leaf green that contrasted wonderfully with the crisp white. Then I sat down and looked at what I had done. I’d already finished the first eyelet row, and I’d ended on the wrong side of the sweater. That meant that if I picked up where I left off, the first eyelet row would be white, and there’d be a line of white through the beginning of the green, showing where the color change occurred. I debated ripping back to before the eyelets, but decided I liked the look as it was. Since the eyelets are boarded by garter stitch rows, the nubs of white showing through the green fit right in.
In only took me another day or so to finish knitting the sweater. I’ve put it aside to do the seaming later–I do need to get Stella’s cardigan done–but what once was a potential reject project has been saved to be a very cute sweater for Lexie.
Right now, the seams are only pinned together…but I can tell that Lexie’s new sweater (appropriately named It’s the Dye Lot, Stupid) is perfect for my little girl.
Still…next time I’m checking the dye lot.