Soso's 2 tone vest- pre felting (3)I so much look forward to Friday afternoons, when our “Knitting Exchange” takes place between 5:30 and 7:00(++) at my house. It consists of myself, my sister, Parisa and our teacher/friend Aurelia. We knit and learn, drink tea and cappuccino and exchange ideas. It’s really nice and a great way to end the week.

The hot topic on this Friday’s “Exchange” was my blog. I really wanted to do my first Knitting Post and was fishing for ideas. Thanks to Aurelia, I got one.

So, my first Knitting Post would be the story of how my husband’s vest found its rightful owner.

I don’t really remember what prompted me to learn knitting in the first place. I was about 11 years old and had just learned casting on and basic stitches. I was so proud of my first knitting project:  A vest for myself.  The body was done in a beautiful maroon color and the edgings were off-white.  My mother took me to buy the yarns and she picked the design and instructed me through the entire project.  I know-novice knitters start with something simple, like a washcloth or scarf. I am going to blame this on my mother. She was such a goal oriented individual and a true perfectionist.  I don’t think she really knew how to do things the easy way.  Somehow, I actually enjoyed knitting the complicated vest and it came out looking great. It really did.  I wish I still had the vest or at least, a photo of it.

Many years later, driving back from work, I noticed a new yarn shop. I suddenly remembered how I enjoyed knitting as a young girl and my pretty maroon vest. The next day, I started looking for my old metal needles and found them together with some waste yarns. Hoping I remember at least how to cast on, I picked up the needles, took a deep breath and started to knit. Yay… I did remember clap.

The day after this amazing revelation, I dashed to my tiny neighborhood yarn store with a project a mind: to knit a vest for my husband. Again, I could have started with a scarf, but no, why keep it simple and easy??? Moreover, why stick with one color when you can knit the edgings in a contrast color??? You get the idea … I was turning into my mother smile_cryP1120590

At any rate, I bought the yarns and started knitting with no pattern at hand; just following my instincts and trusting my fingers to know what they were doing. Meanwhile, my husband, Soheil, was getting very excited and impatient.

I finished the back, then the front and they looked pretty good to me. Don’t ask me how, but I actually managed to design and knit the collar to Soheil’s exact specification. By now I was feeling like a genius. It was only when I got to put the pieces together that I realized I was no genius in stitching. smile_confused

I did the best I could and put the vest together. I am blessed with a husband who is appreciative of everything I do or make for him. Not focusing on the inside seams, the vest looked pretty nice. I especially liked the way moss stitches stood out. There was only one itsy bitsy problem: it was a size or so too big! But Soheil liked it and insisted on wearing it right away.

A few years passed by. This past summer, I knitted a felted bag for my sister, Parisa. She is a big fan of felted knits. Last month, when my husband took the old vest out again, it dawned on me. Perhaps felting would make it shrink down to the right size. I had used pure sheep wool in knitting the vest, making it a great candidate for felting.  After taking a few pre-felting pictures and a deep breath; I threw it into the washing machine with a pair of old jeans. I did a quick wash on warm setting, put it in dryer for 20 minutes on low heat and then, I let it air dry.

The Result:

Felting shrunk the length thumbs_up, but only a tiny bit of the width thumbs_down.

Soso's 2 tone vest- pre felting P1120591

Not exactly what I was after.

So I decided to do a “show and tell” during our last Friday’s knitting session and seek advice. As we were discussing the grim choices of unraveling versus further felting, Parisa threw the vest on. Unbelievable! Not only it looked good on her; but also matched her pants.

Soso's 2 tone vest- post feltingSoso's 2 tone vest- post felting (2)

After seeing how great his vest looked on my sister, Soheil agreed to part with it.

And at the end … the vest had found its rightful owner… my sister.

There is always a lightbulb at the end of any tunnel.

As knitters, we are always indebted to good friends and family for their assistance in camouflaging our mistakes.

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