Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Cornish Fisherman's Gansey

New years Day, I cast on for a Cornish Fisherman's Gansey as described by Mary Wright in book. This gansey was pattern was selected because swatch testing indicated that the "Lizard Lattice" was the warmest stitch pattern, and it was a common stitch pattern for contract knit fishermen's ganseys.

My Cornish Gansey was finished last week. It is shown here modeled by my climbing buddy, Bob Williams.

Of course, it was filthy after some 130 hours of knitting and frogging. It was knit on steel needles. Half way through, I gave the needles I was working with away, and the replacement needles that I pulled out of the stash had to be polished. I guess I did not get those needles real clean after polishing, and that contributed to the filth on the sweater. Anyway it needed a full wash before blocking.

The gansey is quantitatively different from any other garment that I have ever worn. It is a very clever design. It is comfortable in a temperature range between 40 F and 60F. At higher temperatures, or when I am more active it automatically vents and remains comfortable. It is basically windproof up to about 20 knots. At 990 g it is twice as heavy as most of my medium weight synthetic technical pull overs and in the weight class of my heavier multilayer garments which run about 770 g. I have scheduled a head to head test in the snow.
The body of the gansey was knit using traditional steel gansey needles. These needles are 18 inches long and are 2.3 mm in diameter (US size 1). Five needles are used in the knitting. Below is a photograph of me knitting 16 inch needles, showing how the held and flexed during use. with longer needles, the knitting sheath is slid a couple of inches back on the belt.

1 comment:

Shell said...

GORGEOUS sweater! I'm impressed that with all that work, it only took you a couple of months!