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  • GUSSETS THAT ROCK! Anybody (OK anybody other than me) can make some plain old boring kind of gusset–we want GUSSETS THAT ROCK! Really, rilly elaborate gussets. Gussets that inspire a swoon. Dad-worthy gussets.
    I would go further into the topic of gussets except that I need to go light a candle, sacrifice a goat, tie three dog hairs with a cat hair, and find a lucky penny in order to make sure your READING TONIGHT AT COLISEUM BOOKS 11 WEST 42ND STREET, NYC AT 6:30 goes well.
    Not that I worry or anything.
    Bummed beyond words that I can’t be there with you guys.

  • oh, don’t let my dad see that or he’ll be begging for one. I vote for the quietly being. Cowboys don’t do cables, the only thing Irish they like is the whiskey 😉

  • I vote for the quietly being version. Theresa is correct that cowboys don’t necessarily want the attention, but I’d also like to add, quietly, that you don’t want it to seem to imply that said cowboy is bigger around the middle than warranted, such that you had to “widen” his sweater.
    Or maybe I’m just thinking that that’s what it would scream if said gussets were on MY bod!
    I dig kitchener stitch, by the way. I can’t do it without total silence and a photographic tutorial in front of me, but the result is absolutely magical. I always emerge from the sewing room going “Look, everybody! Look!” at the invisible perfection of the join.

  • Might as well try it, right?

  • That sure is a dad-ly sweater. Is your dad a cables sort of guy? I vote for quiet and strong. Maybe more ribbing for the gussets. And good luck tonight, not that you’d need it.

  • ROCK! Gotta have the cables. How else are you going to get through the mind-numbingness of knitting them? Rock them OUT!

  • Okay, I’m new at this, found your website late last week in a jet-lagged insomniac stupor in Singapore (can’t remember how I found it), but in my non-sleeping, have managed to read all of the posts since July 2003 in 6 nights. (I know that doesn’t get me a state fair ribbon, but maybe a strand of kidsilk haze tied into a bow).
    I’m truly inspired by both of you (considering I’ve been too lazy to cast on 87 stitches for the back of a halter top) and vote for quiet gussets–that’s what my dad would like.
    I’m sure to be back when I return to NYC and can’t sleep again. Happy knitting.

  • i think simple moss stitch gussets would be nicer. the fabric will be flat, w/o the bulk of a cable. i can’t wait to see the sweater finished!
    i’ve never back stitched a sweater in my life… (and i’ve knit rowan)…. ooh, but now i’m thinking a cabled rib — 2×2, with a twist on the right side on every 4th row!

  • Mason-Dixon Knitting: Where Works Of Art Are Created By Consensus.
    Aw heck, Kay, we know you’ll just do whatever you want anyway, but I vote for letting the gussets just “be.” Sounds more in keeping with your dad’s personality.

  • I’m thinking quiet moss stitch gussets for the Cowboy Dad. But perhaps, when the snow blows and the wicked wind whistles* across the prairies (with the minus wind chills- BRRR!!!), just perhaps, the Cowboy Dad might appreciate a quiet, gray, gloriously cabeled headband/ear-warmer that can be worn unobtrusively under the winter cowboy hat. Can Cowboy Mom measure Cowboy Dad for the perfect fit? You can send a diagram and she can fill in the relevant figures (my mom used to do that when my college girls were small and she found the perfect velvet or fancy fabric and wanted to make holiday glam-ware. Having the “heirloom” dresses has saved me from many a holiday sewing nightmare! Miss ya Mom!)
    *sorry, fits of alliteration come over me and I cannot resist

  • I would love to see what you could do with a few gussets, given the time and the gumption, but I tend to agree with the others. Most men do have the “No color, no pattern” leaning, so they should probably be rather than rock.
    Although it breaks my heart to say that.

  • Dad should Rock but with toned down gussets. Cowboys should walk softly and carry a big stic, they have a rep to uphold.

  • I’m a moss stitch gal, myself. This lovely stitch befits the quiet dignity of the Dadly Sweater. I’ve recently decided to add a little moss stitch stripe along the drop shoulders of my own Dadly Enterprise. But I think you should absolutely knit up some rockin’ cabled gussets for a sweater for yourself.

  • I love reading your blog, but I often feel like I’m the jock sitting in the back of algebra class. I have no idea what a gusset is, I admit shamefully. I suppose I’ll have to wait and see.

  • My vote is for quiet and sturdy all the way.
    P.S. Who went and scheduled the Reading while I am stuck in the Middle of Nowhere, MX?

  • Sorry about that, here’s a definition for gusset:
    “a piece of material inset to strengthen or enlarge a garment”.
    That’s the kind of gusset I was talking about, not “a piece of chain mail covering a place unprotected by armor plate”!
    Although Dad would probably enjoy chain mail gussets for his places that are unprotected by armor plate. Seeing as how he’s descended from Vikings and all. xoxo Kay

  • Strong Silent Gussets. Ya don’t want to take away from Strong Silent Dad’s Rock-Solid Nature.
    Beautiful sweater, Kay!

  • I can’t wait to see this all sewn up and modeled – wish I could be there in NYC tonight! Finally read your piece and loved it loved it!

  • Quiet, no nonsense gussets. Can’t imagine that someone who fancies flannel and thermal underwear would prefer something wild, especially in a comfy brown sweater.

  • I think I need to say “simply be”. Unless…you have another place to put a cable; a collar, perhaps? Because a very good rule is “three is a design element”. One looks like a mistake, two looks like an afterthought, three looks right and balanced.

  • Another vote for gussets that just are. Strong, silent, gussets. Subtle, yet strong.

  • Are you planning to do the gusset inserts in one piece each or two? The time I had to make gussets to salvage a little cardi for my mom, I made what turned out to be two elongated diamonds with the off-center tips at the sleeve meets body line. Can you picture it? If your gusset is going to be a panel all the way down the sides, you would make two pencil shaped inserts. If I was you, I’d rock them out ala REM as opposed to Motley Crue. Am I making any sense for a change?

  • Here’s a surprise from me: ROCK! ROCK! ROCK!
    I’m seeing more of a Big Bob Mitchum sweater here (as opposed to FredBLANDMcMurray) and he needs something a little more dangerous than moss stitch.

  • Be. If your Dad is anything like my Dad – Be. Besides, cables might clash with his hat.

  • While I can clearly see I’m outvoted, I vote for understated rocking. Sort of a soft-rock kind of rocking. A quiet cable, perhaps, but understated; no celtic knots, no branching trees, just a single cable or a pair of cables bordering, perhaps. I’ve decided recently that unobtrusive rocking is the key to fixing all of my sizing errors: the hat I whipped up last night for a coworker is too short (What? You mean our heads aren’t the same size? Then why did you say you have a “normal” sized head?!), so I will quietly rock a simple cabled band ’round the bottom. Not muzak, mind you, but understated, everyone-knows-the-words rock.

  • Be. Be. Be. Simply be !
    Gussets,being hidden under the arms,need to be unobtrusive.
    It’s looking fantastic. I’m deeply impressed by the vast quantity of stealth knitting you’ve been doing.

  • I think plain gussets are called for by this type of sweater, but this is not why I comment.
    I comment because, primarily out of laziness, I find my daily blogreads by clicking on them from the list in your sidebar. I never added them to my favorites, just relied upon you.
    Did I miss something? Where did they go?

  • I think they should just Be. The cowboy hat rocks enough all on its own.

  • No vote, only commentary today. Smart of you to wait to see the Pa and then gusset. and also, eschew the back-stitch! I won’t, I will not, I won’t back-stitch (unless I really really need a strong seam). I mattress all the way, and ignore certain other habits of Rowan. However, I am dealing with 1,000,000 ends with a tomorrow at five pm deadline so ask me about them again then.

  • would dad like gussets that rock? Maybe you ought to consider welts instead. (Of course I am tainted by a family of men and women that like dark colours knittedin stocking stitch in fine yarns who would shudder at the thought of anything like cables will send them running to a dark corner.

  • Gussets that rock… but without cables- since that might be irritating under the arm.
    How about a woven-looking stitch? something fabulous… yet flat!

  • (Hi Stacey–don’t mind me–just a programming note: At the moment all our links exist, as they always have. It’s just they are preceded by every single Snippet we have ever written. A little glitch which we hope to have fixed soon. In the meantime, enjoy the walk through memory lane as you scroll and scroll down.)
    Still hoping for a gusset reminiscent of, say, Janis Joplin, I hope you’ll come see me at

  • This is dad…the gussets should just be….moss stitch all the way.

  • ….makes me yearn for the T.V. days of mr. rodgers’ neighborhood. his mother made all of his sweaters, and he cared for them so lovingly. sob…..

  • Oh my gosh, I thought for a minute you were knitting that sweater for MY dad and his flannel shirt. It’s a major consideration and you’re right to be cautious about clamping the bits together before you know if it’ll fit or not.
    I’ve never grafted or steeked in all my bow-legged days. Are you going to throw me out of the lounge for that? It’s okay if you do, since it’s your lounge, but just let me grab my marg first . . .

  • I say rock ’em cowboy. How’d the readin’ go? I wish I coulda been there. Cassie was there in my stead, I hope. She was supposed to give you an explanation about my day and Why Norma Is Fading Away To a Mere Memory of The Former Norma. It’s the weather. It’s all about the weather. Oh, yes, and the age. And the hormones. And the age. And the forgetfulness. And the pathetic knitter under her afghan, wearing a hat, sweater, long underwear, wristers and three pairs of socks while knitting in her HOUSE. Yeah, that was me. Today. Bleh.

  • a reading? why wasn’t I informed??
    heads are gonna roll!
    ps. I vote for plain and simple

  • Cables all the way. But simple ones. As fellow commenters have said, more soft rock than anything else.
    I hope the reading went well!

  • Hmmm. That’s a quandry. My first thought was that the moss stitch would go better with a cowboy hat, but then my mind went: cables=rope=lariat=cowboy and now I just don’t know. Whatever you do will be lovely.

  • ROCK. But since you be rockin’ I doubt there’s a difference!