Normandie: Test Knitting…Failure?

Back in October, I agreed to do a test knit for Normandie by Gabrielle Danskknit. It is  a kid’s sweater, and I volunteered to do it in size 9/10. I thought it would make a great gift for my oldest son who is tall and slender, which doesn’t always fit the mold of children’s sweater designs. I thought I had enough time to get it done. Well, I did have plenty of time but I used it poorly.

I started the sweater at the beginning of November just like I was supposed to. Simultaneously, I was working on Josephine’s Fichu, which had its own set of problems (inadequate yardage, a missing pattern, and the famous fix 2,000 stitches back). While I was dealing with the drama of the Fichu I neglected to knit through the sleeves of the sweater. EUGH!

I finished the Fichu and looked for the last hank of yarn I needed to complete the sweater and couldn’t. It had taken a vacation. In the myriad of hiding places in my house, I let it. I did nothing for a week so I could regroup. I mean, I had just spent two weeks looking to buy an extra skein of yarn and the pattern that had disappeared; I was not in the mood to scavenge for more meandering yarn. Then, what do you know? I found the missing hank in my newly labeled “Worsted” yarn bin, and not in a clear plastic bag like I thought. This is what happens when I try to get organized.

Due to the disgustingly busy schedule I keep this time of year, I wasn’t able to finish the sweater for another week: a full two weeks past the deadline. Technically, that child’s sweater took me six weeks to finish, which is waaaaay too long for something that small. Okay, it’s more like a Woman’s size XS, but still, it’s too much time.


Normandie Sweater Test

Overall, I liked the sweater pattern. I wasn’t too keen on seeing the arm shaping happen in the six inches leading to the underarm, but it looks good. It’s not too snug, and Turtle hasn’t complained about it once. He says it’s itchy, but it’s wool. C’mon. Knit in the round from the top down with a twisted rib at the hem, cuffs, and collar, the modification possibilities are endless. A lot of test knitters created a contrasting stripe in the middle of the ribbing, which was nice. The example given had a main color for the stockinette body and arms, and a two-color three-stripe contrast for the ribbed stitches. The basic shape and pattern is solid, and it fits my tall slender kid’s body shape, which is all I can ever ask of a pattern. Given the chance, I’d like to do another pattern by Gabrielle. I’ve taken a look at some of her other designs and I like her aesthetic. The pattern is available for sale right now. I suggest buying it if classic slim-fit designs make you happy.


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