I finished this sweater during the summer, and it was inspired by a vacation trip that Tony and I were planning to Egypt. I know, I know - Egypt is hot. In fact parts of Egypt are unbelievably hot (Aswan hit 120F while we were there, if you believe the tour guide, whose grasp of Farenheit was tenuous at best). And while Cairo and Alexandria probably get cool enough to wear a sweater, I have no idea what sort of garmet, traditional or otherwise, modern or ancient Egyptians might wear. So, there's nothing authentic here.... it was just inspired by some by ancient egyptian tomb art.... like this:
There's some interesting stuff going on in the sweater. Whether you like it or not, the bottom band of alternating colors "big bamboo" stitch was a bit of a challenge. Because it's part intarsia and part stranded, I knitted that part flat on a long circular needle, and then joined to begin knitting in the round.
The body of the sweater is knitted in "circular smocking stitch" (many of the stitch patterns are from the vogue knitting stitchionary), which has diagonal stranding on the front side of the knitting. There are two bands on the arm ... the lower one is in a "wovan rattan" pattern, and the upper one in diamond brocade. The guage is different for the wovan rattan, so I had to increment one third of the sts before it and decrement them after it.
Because I couldn't figure out how to knit the wovan rattan in the round, I knitted the sleeves flat from the cuff up, and then joined at the top (after the second blue band), and finished knitting in them in the round.
The faire-isle pattern of the yoke is of my own design, and meant to evoke the Egyptian tomb painting. The sleeve stitches are picked up with the body and knitted in the round for the yoke using the Bauhaus style. The neck is a hemmed neck (so doubled).
Because I was using 4 colors at some points, maybe you wouldn't technically call this faire-isle. The yoke is knit stranded, and I could get away with that many colors because it's DK weight yarn (Webs Valley Yarn Northfield, 70% merino, 20% baby alpaca, 10% silk).
Although it's difficult to see in these photos, the "belt" at the bottom also has a lace pattern (lily of the valley) in the center front. The "belt" is actually supposed to represent the wrap the egyptians would have used around their waist, and the "buckle" where it would have been tied.
I like the sweater, but in retrospect I think the lower part, although unusual and interesting, is a little much - it stands out a lot (too much i think), and the belt & buckle look wasn't what I was really going for. If I had it to do over again, I would find a way to tone that down or simplify it a lot.
About the construction, I only have two issues. The first is the ribbing at the cuffs isn't long enough or elastic enough. If I did it over again, I think I might have done a hemmed cuff with this yarn.
At the yoke, because I was twisting the yarn with almost every color change and when there was a streak of too many sts without a color change (like you would do with intarsia, even though I was knitting stranded, because there were so many colors), that caused some tension issues with the yellow transition to the tear-dropped shaped blue elements across the chest. Some of the yellow sts are a little bunched up.
And yes. Of course. Now I can walk like and Egyptian. Ok, ... you have to be of a certain age to get that :P.