They say that the third time is the charm, but thankfully, knitting Gedifra 848 from Highlight 061 a second time was all it took to get it right. The first version came out nicely, but after wearing it for a few hours it had stretched so totally out of shape that it was embarrassing. The problem was the stretchiness of the yarn, Gedifra Top Soft. It is a combination of Viscose, Polyamid, and silk. Very soft. But it seems to get softer and stretchier after blocking. So this time I used size 8 needles and knit very tight. I did not get gauge and thought I was going too far the other way, but after blocking—violà! Of course I haven't given it a true test yet. I only wore it for a few minutes while my daughter took this picture.
It knit up fast this time. It took only two weeks. Knitting any project the second time is bound to go faster. I just followed my previous notes and was able to watch several DVDs (Persuasion, The Prime of Miss Jane Brody, and A Room with a View—all great movies) while working. It's so hard to judge if something is going to fit until the very end after sewing the pieces together, weaving in the ends, and most importantly, blocking. It's too bad you usually don't have the luxury of doing things twice due to the time it takes to make something and the cost of the yarn, too.
I'm having just such a problem right now with the Helon Dress, a crochet project. I have finished the back up to the armholes. When I started it, it looked like it was going to be way too big, so I started over and decreased the number of pattern repeats by one. Now that I have gone past the waist, it seems too small. Will it stretch when I block it? Should I go back and start over again? Should I just crochet the front according to the pattern and have the front slightly larger than the back? Things to ponder... which is one of the reasons it takes so long to get something done.