Recently, The Yarn Harlot wrote about contracting the most wished-for syndrome available to knitters, Finishitis, or the desire to clear out the cavalcade of UFOs from the knitting basket. I have to say, while I am not doing "spring cleaning" again, where I didn't cast on for a month, I am trying to clear the decks before the new baby comes. We'll call it the knitters' version of nesting.
I'm pleased to say that I have used stash yarn for its intended purpose. When I walked into the Brooks Farm booth last May at Maryland Sheep and Wool, I saw two skeins of their Solana that I thought would be perfect for a sweater for Henry. Solana is a heavy worsted superwash, that, amazingly, doesn't feel like a superwash. It has spring and bounce and energy, unlike so many superwash yarns.
After some questioning of the recipient ("Do you want this sweater to go over your head or button up the front?"), I cast on using Ann Norling's Top Down Sweater for Children. I can say without reservation that this is a terrible pattern, and I'm embarrassed, having recommended Ann Norling patterns for years to customers. I've knit others before with no problem, but this one is a dud. The proportions are completely off, and the sleeve directions in particular make absolutely no sense, and, in fact, are apt to make someone new to top-down construction or seamless knitting run screaming back to her pieced Debbie Bliss patterns. It makes the construction of the sweater much harder than it needs to be, and after I realized how screwy the pattern was, I simply knit a top-down sweater, thankful that I knew the basic principle.
I am not crazy about the flashing down the front, but the recipient actually likes it and asked to wear it to school the day after I finished it. So despite a shaky process, I call this project a success.