Merry Christmas, Ollie!!!

My mom recently adopted a dog, Oliver (named after the famous orphan). This is HUGE news. My mom has ALWAYS wanted a dog. Her husband thought he was allergic (since he’s allergic to most everything else), but then he recently had some tests done and found out he wasn’t, and they went out and found Ollie the next day.

Somehow or other she asked me to knit a BRIGHT dog sweater for him, and even though she knits, I happily obliged. I sketched out a few ideas for color combinations and stripe patterns, but then I saw this mosaic on Flickr by Pam (FlintKnits) and the image HAUNTED me. I knew I had to use those colors.

I was originally going to use the free dog sweater calculator, but I wasn’t confident about the measurements (since I didn’t take them, and let’s face it, he’s a dog), but then I found this free dog sweater pattern by DROPS design and realized my mom’s measurements fit perfectly into the middle size. So I just decided to go with that, since I didn’t really want to calculate 8% of 17cm anyway. ๐Ÿ™‚

I knew something was wrong with the pattern from the beginning. For some reason, the original sweater was shaped like this:

but I knew I wanted it to be shaped like this:

but I knit the whole thing up anyway. Then I CUT IT IN HALF (thankfully, I did not photograph this step), threw away the bottom, picked up all the stitches, and re-knit the bottom again.

I didn’t measure anything, but just kind of guessed at how wide a dog’s tummy is. Then I cast off those stitches and continued knitting up the sides, decreasing 1 stitch towards the middle every 2 rows. I did this for a couple inches until I reached my original length. Then I went and picked up ribbing along the inside and knit that up for an inch or so. And then I picked up stitches for the buttonband (after reading this article on Knitty).

I’m soooo pleased with how it came out, even though I was stressing out a bit about the stripes not lining up in the front. I think this just adds some “visual interest” (my new favorite euphemism for mistake) to the sweater.

(I used to freak out about sewing up seams, but ever since I took a finishing class with Janelle, I’m sooooo much more confident in my sewing. I still wouldn’t say I love it, but I LOVE how a good clean seam makes the finished product look so much more *finished.*)

I love this thing so much, I’m tempted to keep it for myself, but I know there’s a little puppy out there who could use a warm sweater before braving his fist Chicago winter.

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4 Responses to Merry Christmas, Ollie!!!

  1. Olga says:

    Vanessa, thank you so much for the details, it is really awesome one! I bet Ollie will love it!

  2. Alice says:

    I love it too! The colors are perfect. You are so brave to just cut the sweater like that, WOW.

  3. Janet says:

    Lucky Ollie! The sweater is adorable and I love the colors you chose. When does Trixie get HER sweater? ๐Ÿ™‚

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