During #slowfashionoctober, someone (and I can’t for the life of me remember who) commented that there was no greater compliment for a handknit gift than for it to pill. The pilling was a sign of how much the gift had been worn. I immediately thought ‘well, not if you buy the right yarn’ and then remembered my two favourite cardigans are pilling like there’s no tomorrow and I’m still wearing them.
It got me thinking – the vast majority of knits we see on Instagram and Ravelry are new creations, fresh off the needles. What do those lovely knits look like after they’ve been worn for a while? Did the garter stitch section droop? Did that merino yarn pill? Did that dye fade? More so, I thought it was about time we cherished clothes that are looking a little worn in. With all this in mind, I’m introducing: the #mostworn blogalong.It’s a simple concept. I’m going to write about the knitwear I’ve worn the most in the past couple of years in three categories (torso, neck and feet) and take photos of their current appearance. Then I’m going to nominate two friends to do the same. And hopefully they’ll do the same. And their friends will do the same. And so on and so forth. We’ll fill the blogosphere with photos of well-worn, well-loved handknits.
While this cardigan is only five months old, I’ve worn it almost constantly this winter. My home is a typical Wellington flat (i.e. cold and damp) and whenever I get there, I put this cardigan on, either in the place of whatever cardigan I had on or just on top of.
The fabric is dense, with a comforting heft, and the folded-back cuffs give the option of rolling down the sleeves for a little more coverage. The yarn is very soft, so it’s pilled like a mofo. The only way it’s not ideal is the V-neck, which can let in a little bit of a draft, but that can always be fixed with the addition of a shawl. Speaking of which…
Pattern: Samen by Stephen West
Yarn: Um. There’s definitely some Filatura Di Crosa Centolavaggi in there and the another yarn a friend gave me from the Orkney Islands…
Age: 16 months
This was my first foray into a large shawl; I’ve sworn never to go back to single skein shawls. I like a shawl you can wrap around at least twice. This is both practical (less chance of it blowing off) and comfortable (high level of snugglability).
I like the colours because they go with everything and nothing. The yarn from the Orkneys – really wish I knew what it was – is very sheepy and doesn’t pill. By some miracle, the merino hasn’t either.
When it comes to wearability, I love plain socks, finding lace and cables sometimes a little uncomfortable. As for the yarn – this stuff wears like a champ. These are my go-to hiking socks. They’re felting a little at the heel and pilling a tiny bit, but considering what I put them through, that’s nothing.
I think the colour may have faded ever-so-slightly, but they were fairly bright to begin with. I liked them so much, I even made two more pairs!
So those are my three #mostworn. If you’d like to join in and show the world your #mostworn, please do!