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78 Comments
  • Love the sweater, the photo shoot, and most of all, your return to blogging. I think you are right in that the gauge of an oversized sweater is critical (that is, that it be small). It makes for a whole lotta knitting, but isn’t that why we do this anyway?

  • I don’t know which one is more beautiful the model or the sweater. The fit is so flattering and I look forward to knitting one for myself.

  • This is a great sweater, Kay, and you look lovely in it.

    LoveDiane

  • You’ve convinced me. The whole package is lovely.

  • Lovely sweater (and added to my Ravelry Favourites) and lovely modelling of it! I’m mentally going through my stash to see if I’ve got anything that would work.

  • Looking fabulous, fabulous. I love that sweater and the way it fits. I made a pullover I haven’t even blogged, from the spring, that uses Madeline Tosh Sock, and I have to tell you, that stuff is so gorgeous. I think it would float and drape and swing and whatever the hell you wanted it to do. Knits up on a 3 like Madtosh Merino Light. Highest recommendation: *** worth a detour.

    • I get so confused by yarns that are not Rowan Denim. The MadTosh, especially, seems to come in many variations on similar weights. Sock yarn it is.

  • Of all the lovely, wondrous and inspiring knits featured on this blog, this is my all-time fave. Love it! Love the model! Must now rush off to Relax.

  • Looks great. Relax has been in my ravelry faves for a while, this might just inspire me to knit it…..

  • love the sweater and the styling. I noticed a bit of faux seaming on the pattern. hmmmm maybe in a chartreuse.

  • Well, you already this, but I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this sweater. I love it more than Smoulder, as well as a whole bunch of other stuff you knit. I looks sosososososososo good on you, colour is just perfect, fits like a glove. Can I have it? Please?

  • Love the sweater…it looks wonderful on you!! I made my Hitofude out of MadTosh Merino Light and I also love how it skims.

  • Face facts: we all turn into our mothers. I wish I was accumulating white jeans instead of the nagging genes I’m collecting. #Don’tFightIt

    PS – welcome back – missed you both

  • Love the sweater. Love the model! It is nice to see how something looks on a real person. Teens make everything look good. That’s not a bad thing, but perhaps you should begin a new phase-teen models only if item is made for a teen! I have lived positive ease too. You are beautiful.

  • Love the sweater! It looks fabulous on you.

  • You look like a million bucks!

  • Glamorous!

  • Sweater love!

  • “a tender moment with the wall” – snort!! It’s a lovely, must-have sweater and your highlights are fabulous.

  • So great to see you back here! I am knitting Relax now in the same yarn and it is slow going but I am optimistic based on your beautiful pictures. Hope I don’t throw it aside when the yarn for my next Riddari arrives in a few days.

    • Lock up the Riddari yarn! Seriously. Give it to someone and don’t let them give it back until you’re done.

  • Gaa-gious! And the reasons given for your love are the reasons I am batty over Veera Valmaki’s “square and stripe”! Large sweaters often swamp me in an Omar the Tent-maker vibe. Not nice. s&s is just so flattering and easy to wear. Also, FYI, I did my s&s in a very large size to accommodate the Rowan Felted Tweed I insisted upon using and the drape is fine. So go for more twist and be happy (just don’t knit over-tightly as that always makes for board). Happy knitting – jdu

  • I LOVE the jumper… but oh my, how much do I love the skyline view from your building?? That is seriously amazingly awesome. Welcome back to blogging, by the way. I’ve missed you guys 🙂

    • Scottie Jill! Long time! Hope you are well. I should go up to the roof more often, to see that view.

      • Yes, thank you, all well here in NZ and looking forward to summer!

  • Love it, it looks great. How is this different from Boxy? I made two of those out of Madeline Tosh and love them.

  • You look gorgeous! And as I have looked at that sweater and thought “no way will it work for me” but I will rethink it in light of your beautiful version.

  • Glad to see your blog active again!

    Re the pilling issue on sweaters, I’ve been trying BFL and finding it wears well so far. Just sayin’.

  • Nice fit and Cute!!! Now I want one of those, too!

  • The sweater is fabulous! I am so happy that you are both blogging again! You have been missed.
    I keep hoping for a rundown on the colors you used for those wonderful riddari sweaters.

  • The boxy, the tender, the dropped shoulder, the highlights, and, yes, the white jeans – it all works so well. Beautious, Eileen Fisherish. Others have raved about this pattern, now I’m convinced.

  • A grand sweater and a stupendous view. You will have to have all your Finished Objects take the trip to the rooftop.

  • Loving it all, even the pairing with the so-called mom jeans (but what do I know? I’m a mom and then some). I think straight white jeans look slightly glamorous, as in “I have people to take out my stains”

  • Gorgeous sweater! Clicking on the photos gave me a better look at the sleeve construction; this is the most flattering dolman I have ever seen. Eileeen Fisher-ish in the best way (not the shapeless shmatta way, oh no).

    In blogging-trend news, I predict gorgeous Manhattan skylines will now replace rustic wood fences. It’s about time, too.

  • Lovely sweater, and I think you are correct in how it seems to put any unneeded fullness at the back and sides rather than making it look like a maternity top (or the “empire waist” the one host of the US version of “What Not to Wear” seems to favor no matter how much it makes it look like she’s 50+ and expecting!).

    And, in light of that, the “mom jeans” aren’t so bad after all. At least when worn with that sweater.

    • OMG the Empire waist is an abomination on me. Haven’t even tried one on since high school. In Jane Austen’s time I would have had to stay home.

      • Honestly, I think the Empire waist is an abomination on any woman who is not pregnant. Almost every time I see a woman wearing one, I wonder how much more time before she’s due to deliver. Still, the right Empire Waist can be very flattering on a preggers woman if she has the right body type. Too bad that it seems to be very tricky to get that combination right. All too many times, there’s too little or too much fabric gathered up front and far too little in the back (and most of that making the butt look ginormous)!

  • Welcome to the club, Kay. I knit three of those sweaters and then went on a 12-step program of Knubbelchen knitting to try to cure the addiction. Comfiest things in the world to wear! Enjoy…

  • The model is also radiant & so obviously happy with her new finished top. Gorgeous!!! Xo

  • I’m just so glad you’re back.

    Awesome sweater. I’m all about the cowls right now though for Train Knitting (I’m bridge-and-tunnel these days).

  • You look like you’ve lost what, 10-15 pounds? I think the pants are very flattering, same with the sweater. As Billy Crystal would say, Dahling you look mahvelous!

  • LOVE! I have not been knitting sweaters being confused about how the pos-ease actually works. Did you knit your “regular” size and the p/e built in to pattern made it the size it is? so flattering and lovely!
    SO GLAD you are back!

    • Hi Joellen,
      See my replies below about how I did it. A lot of guesswork, but guided by past experience. I still couldn’t quite believe I was knitting a Small, but the math worked. I didn’t swatch because I figured with that much ease, a little more or less wasn’t going to make much difference.

      • Thanks for reply….in the meantime I did order the pattern and contemplated sizes but glad to now have your base size defined. That helps with the choice….as you say even the xs looks to be large-ish. But I will follow your lead….you set a great knitting example!

        Can I say it again? SO GLAD you guys are back!

  • Kay … imagine RELAX or BOXY in a lace yarn vibe … you got yourself LOLA … go see on ravelry if you haven’t jumped on the Plucky Knitter bandwagon and experienced their Plucky LACE … isss GORGEOUSSSS … kiss Olive on the nose!

  • Love, love, love this sweater…and you look amazing in it, Kay!!! I’m a solid size 10 and whenever I try anything “oversized” or “relaxed” fit in ready-to wear, I look pregnant and definitely many pounds heavier. Do you know if there are any specific body “types” that look better/worse in this style? I’m thinking of the “knit to flatter” information that’s out there, but I’m not familiar with any of it. I desperately want to cast on right away, but I’m afraid of the outcome regarding the fit after all that knitting. I would kill to look like you do in it – you truly look amazing (love the skyline, too!)! I would be very grateful for any guidance you may have to offer – and are thrilled that you’re blogging again!!! I’ve knit so many wonderful things after reading your blog – thanks so much for sharing and inspiring so many of us!

    • Maureen,
      I really learned the hard way, by trial an error, and with the help of trying on a lot of oversized things at Eileen’s Haus of Hausfraus (Eileen Fisher, I mock because I love). I learned that for me, a swing shape, aka a trapeze shape, that flares out at the sides and in the back, works really well, especially if it hits at the hipbone (place where hipbone is buried). The long things, even if they have waist shaping, just don’t do a thing for me.

      What I specifically did for this sweater: I knew I liked the shape, and I was wondering which size to knit so that it wouldn’t be as big on me as it is on the tiny-looking model in the pictures. I measured a sweater that I wore a lot last winter (an Eileen Fisher sale grab), and when I compared it to the measurements of the pattern, discovered that I needed to knit a small or even an XS. That doesn’t leave much room for people who are smaller than me to customize the fit. I’m around a US 10 (this afternoon).

      I generally don’t do well with “knit to fit” or “knit to flatter” patterns as I find they have more shaping than I like, or negative ease.

      • Gotta add, the sloping shoulder in Relax takes bulk from the underarm and side of bust – this is a good thing.

        I too want to make more of these – too too comfy and becoming. jdu

        • Yes! Thanks for pointing out this shaping. That helps me make the decision to try Relax, instead of similar sweaters that are more square at the top.

  • Kay,
    Great to have you and Ann back!
    Did you choose the size to knit based on your measurements or larger? Did you do any modifications?
    Love your shoes too!

    • Hi Barbara,
      See my reply to Maureen above. I laid out a sweater that I liked and measured it and used that to guesstimate what size to knit based on the measurements given in the pattern.

  • Love the photos and the sweater and color as well. I really have to look up this pattern. Drapes so well and very flattering. I love the 3/4 length sleeves. My arms are big and I have a hard time finding something that works. I have the lovely grandmothers that gave me their arms LOL. Thanks for showing us. Really Lovely!! I have been one of your fans for a long time!!

  • I’ve looked at that pattern before, but clearly, it wasn’t being modeled by the right person. Now I am convinced, it should be in my wardrobe! Thank you Kay!

  • Thanks for your reply, Kay – I’m very grateful for your time, talent and expertise! You’ve convinced me…I’m off to do some Madeline Tosh shopping this weekend…and to get some highlights in my hair! I can’t wait to cast on…great knitting for some movie watching and football games! Thanks so much – I’ll be sure to toast you with your beverage of choice when she’s finished…she truly is lovely!!!

    P.S. What yarn did you finally choose for Karen’s KAL (Amanda)? Just a little curious since I suggested that you go to your LYS for the project! Happy knitting!

  • P.S. Just looked at Relax on Ravelry…did you knit the eyelets? Thanks!

    • Yes, I knit the eyelets. Hard to see them but they are there.

  • Love the knit. Love the blog activity.

    I’ve signed up to subscribe But the posts don’t come and I’ve checked the spam folder. 🙁 I don’t have a microsoft office account so I couldn’t send an email and I don’t know how else /where else to ask for help. Otherwise, I’ll keep checking the old fashioned way, you guys are totally worth remembering on my own ( I mean that in the best possible way!)

    • Lisa, I have had the same experience of subscribing, but not recieving the notifications. I, too, simply continue checking “the old fashioned way”. Actually, I think it doesn’t matter because this is the one blog that I would still be checking even if the notifications were coming through.

  • Oh, you’ve nailed my positive ease issues! I finally learned that I don’t need much postitive ease at all. Your sweater looks marvelous, and now I want to knit one, too. Off to investigate the pattern, then to multitask lovely stockinette with a book. Thanks for knitting and modeling!

  • Wow, you guys are back. Yay! But who knew? Good thing I checked. I thought the blog was just done.

    You know that thing where you “enter your email address so that you never miss a blog post”? It doesn’t work….

  • You look amazing. Did you see EF is reissuing the 1984 Boxy sweater? Come on, Eileen!

  • This looks great on you. I now buy only garments called “Boxy” or “Swing”—marketing euphemisms for ‘This’ll glide right over anything that’s unaccountably adhered to your person since high school.” Hoping for the same effect with current project, the similarly shaped “Seven Stripes,” also easy subway knitting.

  • Love it! Why is it that the most perfectly wearable knits are the ones that are the least fun to knit?

  • Your wonderful sweater and even more wonderful photos made me realize I might have a blog post coming on “why real people ought to model their own sweaters”. It’s a beautiful sweater, it looks great on you, and I can imagine looking decent in one myself — something I couldn’t do if it were modeled by a young waif. Actually, to be honest, I could imagine. I would just be wrong.

    I wonder if part of the flatteringness of this pattern is the relatively small arms. They do fit. The Eileen Fisher sweater in the new Vogue has similar proportions. But worsted yarn, so even in its Fisherness, I am skeptical of it looking good on ME.

    SO good to be seeing Mason Dixon back in my blog feed. Thanks for coming back.

  • You look gorge. So glad to have you back, I was so sad and scared that I’d have to start using my twitter to keep up with your happenings.

  • Relax is fabulous. My Madelintosh version is the current the favorite-sweater-ever. I drove out to Webs last week with the intention of buying more Madelintosh and was smacked in the face by a swatch of Debbie Bliss Fine Donegal–so Relax Redux will be knit in it.
    I’ll be damned if 15 balls of Rowan Tweed Aran didn’t also made it into my basket. I am weak.

  • You are such an enabler, Kay! Of course, I followed your instructions and immediately ordered MadTosh yarn to make this sweater (I had already seen and bought the pattern). I cannot wait to knit it and wear it. Thanks!

  • It’s beautiful!

    (The jeans are not so terrible, either, but what do I know? I’m a mom –)

  • OMG, you look so fantastic! I wish I looked as good as you do that sweater and the white jeans (from one middle-aged woman to another).

  • I love the sweater, the model and the photo shoot. While I love Ravelry for its offerings of designs, I find it tiresome that the models are thin and so young. At my age, I don’t want to look like a stuffed sausage on legs given all the designs with negative ease. I want positive ease that looks comfortable, sophisticated, and beautiful. The Relax design accomplishes all! Thanks for the post Kay and for the gorgeous sweater!

  • I have 4 skeins of Cima Shibui yarn that I was looking for the perfect project for. I think this is it. I swatched, and I’m off. I just have to hope that at 328 yards/skein, I have enough. I imagine that I’ll be shortening the body a bit. I’m a petite thing.

  • Oh my gosh, I’d lost hope! Thank god I checked the blog just for old times’ sake… I’ve seen that style sweater and wasn’t sure it was for me, but I’m convinced! Those are perfectly great white jeans–wear them with pride. So great to have MDK back!

  • Your Relax looks wonderful! I have made two of them, in fact, they are both featured on the page you linked! I’d like a third, in a charcoal gray … maybe bring up the neck or add a cowl collar for winter…

  • Well, in all the craziness that is my life, I missed the last three blog posts – after being so vigilent all summer for bloginess… Love the sweater, looks like something to go in the queue!

    Looks great on you, and they did a good job on re-pointing that wall!

  • Thanks for sharing such a great pattern. I have cast on and already have a question: the instructions are written so that the “right side” will not show the mini seed stitch pattern at the hem. The picture of the model wearing the sweater shows that patterned hem on the outside. Which did you do?

  • I am in the middle of making Relax right now! (Almost done with the front. Lots of stockinette.) I’m using KnitPicks Lindy Chain, because I live in a hot climate and rarely get to wear wool (even though I adore how the MadTosh looks). I’m a little nervous about how it’s going to turn out – I went down one size, figuring that between the finer yarn and being a tight knitter, that would do it, but I still worry it’s going to be too big. (I tried making Boxy, which I love on everyone else, but it was just too much fabric once on.) I suppose if worse comes to worst, I can through it in the washer/dryer and shrink it up a bit. Yours looks lovely and a great size! I think the dolman sleeve is key to managing the volume.

  • ….dangerous that you are back. I see you have knitted something and I HAVE to get on board. I now have my MT in hand, all un-skeined, swatched and ready to cast on tonight…..