Saturday, January 12, 2008

FO: Kochoran Coat

Here is it, all finished! My rescue yarn arrived earlier this week, and I knitted up the collar, sewed on the last button, and wet blocked it yesterday.

Details

Pattern: My own. The body is worked in stockinette with two wide cables on the front and two more on the back, with another running up each sleeve. The ribbing and collar are worked in rice stitch. The collar buttons up to cover the neck. the body was worked all in one piece with set-in sleeves. I used this method because I did not want to try to match Noro stripes at the seams, especially since the fronts are narrower than the back, which would make for wider stripes in front. The drawback was that the body became extremely heavy while knitting and made my wrists and hands ache. I only wish I had added pockets on the sides. I'm sure there is a way to put them in now, but I know it would involve steeking, and, well...

Yarn: 11 skeins (100 grams each) of Noro Kochoran in color 001.
This is a very dense, heavy, soft blend of wool, silk, and angora. This is a bulky weight yarn. Do not believe the label, which gives a gauge of 4.5 stitches to the inch. I got a gauge of 15 stitches to four inches while swatching, and a post-blocking gauge of 14 stitches to four inches. (The finished coat came out a bit--okay, a lot--larger than I had planned.) The yarn is fairly rough in the skein, but softens as it is worked, and even more after washing, as the angora develops a lovely halo over the fabric. Wet blocking makes a huge difference. Before blocking, the coat was much shorter and wider--so much so that I was not really pleased with the shape. After blocking, the body grew about four inches in length and became correspondingly narrower. The sleeves grew about two inches in length, which is why they are a bit too long in the pictures. I am happy about the drapey, oversized shape, although it was an accident, but if you're using this for a fitted garment, wash and measure your swatch before casting on.

Needles: Size 9 Knit Picks Options 32" circular

Buttons: 8 polymer clay toggle buttons in a grey/white combo, which I made to match the coat. It was an experiment, since I've never worked with clay before. I couldn't find any buttons that I liked locally, and I was shocked at how expensive they are online. During a trip to the local craft store for another project, I stumbled across the clay aisle and thought, "Hey, I'll bet I could make buttons." Five dollars and an hour later, I had a matched set of buttons to match my coat. I will undoubtedly be using this method more in the future.

18 comments:

Angelika said...

Nice coat. Are you finishing up UFOs or are you just knitting this that fast? Too bad you only get a couple of days of good use out of that one in SoCal.

marit said...

It looks great! Thanks for the tip about the buttons! I might try that sometime.

sophanne said...

That's just damn amazing. And you're tall.

note to self- make clay buttons.

melissaknits said...

I love it. I am such a noro ho!

Hey, this weather here is lovely! 65-70, sunny, breezy...I could stay for the rest of the winter. Except that a shuttle is coming at 4am to take me to LAX!

Tammy said...

I am utterly, speechlessly impressed. And homemade buttons to boot. I'm not worthy.

Tracy said...

FABULOUS!!

Well done....love the buttons, good thinkin'!

Lydee said...

You are a wonderbot (the girls and I have been watching Robots), a creative genius. And you are in your gorgeous garden again...I am so jealous :) Your sweater looks beautiful; love the clay button idea!

Sharon said...

Wow! The coat is gorgeous. Have you thought about submitting your design for publication? I think you should be paid for your ideas, and I know that loads of knitters will want to make your designs!
ps--would love a X.C.U. (extreme close-up) of your hand made buttons.

Donna said...

Very very nice. Now I see where all the extra yardage went. Congrats on a gorgeous FO.

julia fc said...

Isn't kochoran lovely? I do leave a little angora trail behind me some times, but I love to wear my Earnshaw pullover.

11 skeins for that whole coat? You must be tiny. My Earnshaw took almost 10.

Linda said...

Very nicely done! And a great tip about the clay buttons.

The_Add_Knitter said...

Rock it, girl!! What a huge accomplishment...has Noro been redeemed in your eyes now? BTW, I sold my LH Kimono on Destash, thanks for the encouragement!!

Romi said...

WOW! It's gorgeous. :)

patrice said...

Wow - that is really beautiful! And I can't believe how fast you must knit ... and I'm so sorry it's warming up this week, but next weekend will be cooler. Maybe you can become sort of vampirish and only come out at night so you can wear your fabulous coat or Sable sweater more often.

Kim said...

OMG, beautiful sweater coat! And you made the buttons too. So crafty.

Patty said...

Amazing! Love the design - I agree with Sharon that you should be looking into publication, my dear! Curious minds want to know: exactly how long did it take you to knit this? I want to know how fast you really are...I'm a bit afraid...

How is the dear Molly? I think about her most every day.

Karen said...

It's lovely! If I tried to make a sweater coat that long, it would take me years and years!

Dr. Steph said...

That coat is awesome. It's -10c (-22 with the windchill). I could totally use something like that.

Well done.