Brica is zipping along this week - with only 30 more rounds to go to finish up the shoulder area - or not - because that shoulder shaping is always a little dicey. Making the neck opening, the sleeve length, the shoulder depth and the stitch count all play nicely together requires serious Knitting Math. The hope is that - even though I began the every-other-row sleeve decreases as soon as I switched from the sweater body decreases - the sweater still has enough shoulder depth to fit comfortably over my body's shoulder depth. If not - I will know soon enough - and have to rip back to that point and knit a couple of rounds with zero decreases. Eh. One hates to frog a sweater this close to being finished, but one does what one must.
I'll make my neck opening calculations using Ann Budd's book of basic patterns. I believe I'll start the neck opening at 7 inches since I'm worried there aren't enough sleeve stitches. If I decrease at the sleeves every other row all the way to the top I'll end up with a pointed sleeve cap. I really need to have about 4 stitches centered over the top of that sleeve to make a nice rounded shape.
I'm going to do a steeked neck opening too - so I can do all that short row shoulder shaping in the round. I've done it back and forth - but even as a combination knitter my flat knitted purls are slightly bigger than my in-the-round knit stitches. There will be a demarcation line and it will be noticeable. How wide that neckline will be depends on how many stitches it takes to do the cathedral cable. I've forgotten. I did all those back in October.
Ah well. This is why top-down construction is so much faster. You get this tricky part done right at the beginning. There's no temptation to set the poor garment aside while you worry over your lack of Knitting Math Skills and dread the thought of all those hours of knitting turning into something that doesn't fit or looks horrible on you.
Still and all, I Shall Persevere. After all, I have done this successfully before. And Brica is too pretty a sweater to let it languish any longer. Besides - I have all that yarn clamoring upstairs for their turn on the needles. Just wait till you see what I have cooked up for that Cascade 220!!
So it's off to the knitting couch for me, calculator in hand. Ta!