Picking a perfect knitting pattern can be hard work. Do I want cables or lace? Pullover or Cardigan? It is a delicate balance between choosing something that will be interesting for you to create, and creating something the recipient will actually enjoy wearing. You can narrow your choices down if you already have a yarn, but then if you don't find something you love in that category you start looking for something, anything, in any yarn, any shape, any pattern, that a 9 year old girl might deem worthy to put on her body. A girl who, if allowed, would just wear her favorite sweatshirt and jeans every day of the week. She owns many sweatshirts, and more jeans than what safely fits in her drawer, but these specific items? They're special. And she would wear them ever single day. What to make for Bird that will be compare?
After, and I am not exaggerating here, HOURS of Ravelry searching I finally decided on a pattern for Bird's Weasley Sweater.
Fiona's Top. It was a cute vest/smock type of pattern meant to be worn over another shirt. But the pattern only went up to size 6. Bird is on the petite side, but she still needs at least a size 8, if not larger for some room to grow.
It just so happens that I own a version of this sweater meant to be knit for a Build-A-Bear. I bought it for Pork Chop years ago. She has a half-knit Build-A-Bear size sweater in her closet somewhere. I don't know where she gets that from *whistles innocently*
I decided that since I was going to have to do some adjusting of the pattern to make a Bird size sweater, why buy the Human pattern, when I can just adjust the Bear pattern that I already own.
Cause I likes to live life on the edge.
And I'm cheap.
Throwing caution to the wind I used worsted weight yarn instead of sport weight, and size 6 & 8 needles instead of 2.5 & 4.
Boldly I cast on.
Without a gauge swatch.
That's right. No gauge swatch! I did no additional math. I did no measuring. I did no planning to see if this was going to work. I just cast on and knit.
I am a Knitter, hear me ROAR.
And magically it worked. The yarn played nicely with the pattern. It is draping beautifully. I even know it fits because I tried it on her (I told her it was for my friend's daughter who is slightly smaller than she is, and I wanted to check the fit. She suspects nothing!). The lace pattern is easy to memorize, so I could read while I knit (all of this year's Weasley sweaters have been brought to you by the Outlander Series. I'm on book 4). I have a mental plan on how to handle the increases for a human and not a bear.
It is a perfect knit!
Only the voice in my head tells me she will not love this knit. What she likes to wear are hooded sweaters. What she would wear over everything she owns is a bright pink hooded sweater like the Kerra For Kids pattern that just screams her name. She would like the pink lacy smocked top, because it is pink and I made it for her. And she would wear it if I pulled it out of the closet and reminded her she owned it. But she would cherish an obnoxiously pink hooded sweater.
I'm declaring defeat.
As soon as I am done crying I will frog my magically perfect knit. There is no point in knitting something she will not love. I'm going to buy the Kerra pattern. And cross my fingers and pray I have enough yarn to squeak out a Bird size cardigan. Or that I can get my hands on more of this yarn. But since I bought it at Big Lots last spring I'm not really feeling hopeful about that. They don't tend to keep a consistent stock of yarn. I'm sure that is part of a conspiracy against me, but so far I can't prove anything. Those sneaky S-O-Bs. *shakes angry fist at Big Lots*
Here's hoping I don't trade a perfect knit for a knitting disaster. I'll keep you posted.