My precious Pearl

At last, at last, my precious Pearl is done. I could hardly believe it when I finished the last 2 pieces (I knit both the sleeves at the same time, racing against my fear that I wouldn’t have enough yarn).

I am pretty much in love. Love! There are some minor things I’d probably change, but overall, LOVE! So you’ll have to bear with me, there are quite a few photos…sorry about that!

Pattern: Pearl Buck Swing Jacket, by Kate Gilbert. First published in IK Winter 2005, then in IK’s The Best of Interweave Knits: Favourite Designs from the First Ten Years. It’s a favourite for good reason – classic elegant design with fabulous features and the cleverest pleat construction (which I’ve blogged about here). I think if I were to make it again, I’d probably make the body slightly longer (particularly as the back, with the pleat, is a bit heavier and pulls the fronts up a bit during wear), and I’d think about making the sleeves longer.

I do love a 3/4 or bracelet length sleeve though, and I think the overall look is better with the sleeves shorter than the body. I also love the horizontal ribbed edging – very easy and effective – 2 rows purl, 2 rows knit, ending on 2 rows purl, before starting into the stocking stitch sections.

Yarn: Jaeger Extrafine Merino DK in 994 Peacock. I think I used 12 balls, although I bought 13 (or maybe 14). In any event, when I had only the sleeves to go, I had 4 balls of yarn left. As the sleeves are quite bell-shaped, I was worried I wouldn’t have enough to finish them, but I made it with a ball to spare – phew. This is gorgeous yarn, sadly discontinued. Very similar to Filatura di Crosa Zara, another favourite of mine. Soft and with a lovely twist, it makes plain old stocking stitch look something special.

Sticks: 4mm KP Harmony Options. Loved knitting this yarn with these sticks!

Time: Well, if you include dreaming time, this project has been on the go for some time. It is one of the first things I decided I wanted to make when the world of knitting blogs opened up to me, and I trawled eBay and destash listings (this was before the wonderful world of Ravelry) until I got a second hand copy of the IK in which it was printed. (Not sure why I didn’t just buy it new, direct from IK…). I actually started knitting it on 24 May 2008, and finished it on 29 April 2009 – just under a year!

What I learnt: I spent a long time blocking the pieces – I wanted to make sure that, as far as I could, I pinned them to the schematic measurements, and more importantly, that each piece was the same size as its equivalent (both sleeves, both front pieces), and that the size of each matched each other – ie that the back and fronts were the same length, that the yoke was the same distance across as the pleated piece etc. It was really worth it. I also pinned the pleat into place, which of course meant it took an age to dry – but again, worth it.
I also took extra special care with the seaming. Even got out my little Vogue quick reference book to refer to. And I think it shows!

I’m pretty darn happy with the seams, if I do say so myself! All that lovely knitting and gorgeous yarn deserved some good seams!

Mattress stitch, how I love thee!

The fronts, of course, curl. But I’m ok with that, as the real action is in the back.

And because it is a swing thing, I had to swing for you:

Weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee …

eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee …

eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee …


Hmmm, giddy now…


Filed under FO 2009, Pearl Buck, stashbuster

38 responses to “My precious Pearl

  1. oh she’s fantastic. Definitely precious. It’s so worth taking great care isn’t it? It really does show. The drape and fit and everything is just delightful. God I love that colour. She really was a long time in the making, wasn’t she? Well done, my dear. She’s fabulous.

  2. Beautiful. I love that you had to race against your fear of running out of wool – cause we all know that works – well, we’ve all done it! 😉 I’m so impressed with your extensive finishing efforts and yes those seams do look beautiful.

  3. had to come back for a second look. I do love that pleat so much!

  4. It is gorgeous! I love the fit and the style and the colour and how clever you are with mattress stitch!

  5. I was only looking at that yesterday considering making one – so it is great to see it done – and it is fabulous isn’t it?

  6. You are just so outrageous! ;-)WeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeLeeeeeeee

  7. beautiful. The pleat is just simple elegance in a nutshell, isn’t it?I’m very impressed with those seams, too!

  8. Wowie! Absolutely stunning! I’m gonna go back and look again.

  9. Truly a stunning sweater. Your attention to details really paid off. Every little thing about it is beautiful.

  10. Well, maybe I need to change my mind again! I do still have the yarn. It’s lovely and I’m so glad it met your expectations.

  11. Your Pearl Buck looks fantastic, I’ve always liked that pattern too. You should be very proud, love the swing shots too!

  12. Oh yes – that is simply gorgeous!Love the colour and the decorative pleat just makes this jacket. Looks pretty fabulous on too.I guess congratulations are in order!

  13. I love yout twirl: it shows of Pearl perfectly. Such lovely details-is that a diamondy pattern at the side seam??? What a wonderful Jacket!!

  14. absolutely magnificent! thanks for sharing – especially the swing! : )Alesha

  15. amy

    That is one gorgeous pleat. Beautiful color and yarn, too. Isn’t it wonderful when a long-dreamt-about project lives up to expectations?

  16. That is so gorgeous, well done! LOved the twirling shots too.I remember when you posted the pleat photos way back 🙂 Isnt it great when a dream project really does turn out to be a dream. Well done

  17. Well done – very professional blocking and seaming

  18. I’ve like this sweater for a long time, but always worried that the front edges would curl, do they?Yours looks absolutely lovely, and have got me thinking about it again….

  19. It is utterly lovely -Looks beautiful and the seaming is gorgeous!and so lovely on!

  20. Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

  21. Ann

    Gorgeous & I love the color & the pleat at the back. You have done a beautiful job.

  22. Bec

    I don’t know if this should make me depressed that my Pearl Buck is still not finished after two years or chuffed that it took a REAL knitter like you nearly a year, putting me right on schedule!Only one sleeve and one front, and the finishing, to go… Maybe by 2015?(Really dropped by to say Buffy is the only real vampire story for me too, from Busy Brain’s blog)

  23. This is gorgeous! The drape of the fabric is lovely. Great job!!

  24. Yay for you – she sure does have some gorgeous swing. Beautiful, beautiful – and well done you for not rushing at the end.

  25. My goodness, you have been busy. Your pearl is a piece de resistance if ever there was one. She is quite stunning, and looks very good on you. The colour, the pleat! Ah, beautiful.

  26. Precious indeed! I love it with the skirt and boots and the details are just beautiful. [If you’ve already left, have a lovely time. We’ll catch up upon your return.] x

  27. Beautiful in every way. What a lovely colour! And your seaming is something else. Well done!

  28. I love the swingy action! 🙂 You look fabulous, you!Great job on the blocking and seaming! It’s definitely worth it to pay extra attention to the finishing. And I love that yarn too! I scored some on a ravelry destash, it’s so squishy!

  29. Oh, well done!A friend in my knitting meetup group made one of these last year, and she did the same swing-around thing.

  30. Lin

    Its just so lovely, a wonderful look on you!

  31. Fabulous jacket – it suits you so well. All the time and care that you put into it have really paid off.

  32. oh wow! that looks great! i love the detail – pleat and cables – in the back. looks really good on you. nice styling too with that denim skirt.

  33. That’s just about as perfect jacket as i’ve seen. The feminine details. It’s gorgeous. Go you!

  34. Ha – you giddy chick, you! It looks really beautiful, no wonder you love it so much. Fabulous job!

  35. Em

    She’s gorgeous! All the care and work and craft you put into the knitting and the finishing shows, and she fits you so nicely! Good timing, too, getting her finished as the weather cools down. May you two be very happy together!

  36. Wheeee!That pattern is one of the first ones that caught my eye when I was getting back into knitting in 2005, and it made me buy my very first Interweave Knits magazine! Given how beautiful yours looks, I must put it onto my queue :)Very impressed by those seams. Good job!

  37. I keep coming back here and seeing your gorgeous pearl buck – and your spinning thing is so cute – but post again RoseRed, I say!Reading the comments I see you are away somewhere. So have fun, get rested and enjoy yourself.And post again already!

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