I don't know what I would ever do without ravelry to remind me when I started my more longstanding projects. Take my stripes! sweater, for example - thanks to rav I know it's been about 11 months since I first cast on.
The minute I saw my friend Whitney post pictures of the stripes! prototype on flickr I knew I HAD TO HAVE IT. I love Whitney's classic style and clever details (stripes! has a twisted German cast on that creates a ridge of "purls" before you start the corrugated ribbing and a jogless jog up the center back where the end of the round is). I was pretty much on the next bus to the LYS to buy yarn. Then I saw Mai's test knit of the design and was absolutely dying. I really love the colors in noro yarns, but the long color repeats and thick and thin texture can be hard to work with, and stripes paired with an earthy neutral colored yarn like cascade eco wool is pretty much the perfect solution.
I knit up a swatch and cast on for my own stripes! right away. I was cruising right along until I got sidetracked by design work. Stripes! languished in a bag in my closet for months and months until I pulled it out again shortly before my exams. That was a moment when for whatever reason all the other projects I had on the needles involved either stranded colorwork or math, and as much as I enjoy those things (yes, even math) I needed something that I could work on at the end of a long day. The body of stripes! was just the ticket, so I cranked that sucker out. There was another brief stall when I ran out of kureyon (I had bought the bare minimum, as I recall, so totally my fault) and had to order one stinking skein.
That last skein got me through the rest of the yoke and the collar and I was DONE! After a good thorough blocking (that eco wool really needed some full submersion action) I put my finished sweater on and I've hardly taken it off since. I'm pretty sure this will be a winter standby. And really, I wish I knit more sweaters. Perhaps that can be a goal for 2011. For designs I tend to stick to small things, like accessories, but as far as sweaters go, I wear the few ones I've completed all the freaking time, and I love them.
As for this sweater, this is the first bottom-up yoked sweater I've made! I enjoyed the yoke a great deal - there's nothing like getting to that point and realizing it's all decreases from there on out! So while Whitney's pattern includes both a regular old pattern and a tutorial where she explains the anatomy of a yoked sweater and walks you through running the numbers to get the exact fit you want, I just stuck with the pattern. One thing I might think about for future sweaters is the yoke - while my stripes! fits great around my belleh/bust areas, there's some extra material in the yoke, which I believe is due to the fact that I have pretty small shoulders for my frame. I'm not too sure how to modify that kind of thing in a pattern, so some research will be involved next time. In the meantime, I'll be wearing my stripes! every day day.