Friday, December 7, 2018

Dear Abby, Should I cut the sweater or stretch the husband?


Dear Abby,

I have just finished knitting the main body of the sweater for my husband.  He is 6'1" and kind of enormous. There are a lot of stitches in this sweater.  By nature, I'm a selfish knitter. I so admire all the women who want to express their love for their family and friends through knit wear, but, I confess, I  just want to make myself beautiful clothes.

Since learning to knit a year ago, I have found myself dedicating most of my time to knitting while ignoring some of the more mundane tasks of life, like washing dishes, cooking, paying bills or talking.  I thought I might be able to justify my neglect by knitting a sweater for my husband.  (Really, Honey, I'm doing this for you.)

And so, for the past two months, I have spent my evenings knitting my husband a cardigan.  I can't say that I haven't enjoyed the process, but knitting for the man is slightly challenging.  You see, he's quite finicky about his clothing.  Some might even call him a pain in the ass, but I call him discerning.  Knowing how difficult  thoughtful he is regarding what he wears, I included him in on the process.  I let him choose the pattern and choose the wool.  I knit one sleeve first and when he felt it was a bit too snug I ripped it out and knit it again.  I also distinctly recall asking him about the length of the sweater.  I knew it was a long sweater,  and I remember him answering, "it's fine, it's fine, whatever"  In fairness, he may not have been entirely awake when I asked him that question, but he did answer me.

Last night, after binding off, I had him try on the sweater.  It fit perfectly. It is a long sweater, but it's SUPPOSED TO BE A LONG SWEATER.  He said he loved it.

Well, this morning, before I had my first sip of coffee, he casually asked, "Hey, could you make the sweater shorter"  No!!! I can't make the sweater shorter!   Why not?  Because it's knit from the bottom up and I'd have to cut the damn thing and knit down and that's terrifying and that Bloody tubular cast on took me two days and almost killed me and it's in moss stitch and I can't, I can't, I can't!!!  He did feel badly for asking, but now the wheels have been set in motion.

I have started watching Youtube videos on cutting your knitting with vague thoughts of divorce wafting through the back of my mind. I had heard about the legend of the boyfriend sweater.  Don't knit your boyfriend a sweater because that will be the beginning of the end. But after 16 years of marriage I thought I'd risk it.

My question, Dear Abby, is, do I put this sweater that still needs button bands and a collar into a bin and never finish it?  Do I finish the sweater as is and resent my husband for the rest of eternity for not wearing it?  Do I leave my husband for a 6'4" man or for another 6'1" man who likes long sweaters?  Or do I get over my fears, learn how to cut my knitting, and try to  be one of those people who don't make their husbands feel eternally guilty for asking me to do something really scary before I have had a cup of coffee.

O.K., I think I have answered my own question.  Youtube to the sweater/marriage rescue.  Thanks for listening.

Signed,

His first and last sweater in Lunenburg