Out of the darkness a gentle whisper floated and fluttered around my ears, the soft tonal grays in eco-stitch’s hand dyed yarn spoke softly, “sleeves.” I wisped it away. Then the light blue joined in the refrain, “wake up, I’m not done.” But my sleep was sweet so I dozed on. Undeterred, the volume rose and rose until the bright aqua gave a resounding shout shocking me awake. The sample cried forth from the blocking table and the left over yarn echoed from my knitting bag. “Sleeves, sleeves, sleeves. I need SLEEVES! I want sleeves. If you please, I’m not finished yet.” The beautiful linen tank was full of discontent. “Get me off this blocking thing and back on the needles where I belong!”
After many sleeve experiments I learned a few more things about working with linen. One lesson was that this linen doesn’t like to relax and just go with the flow. So if you do the standard pick up 2/3rd of straight stitches on a top down sleeve you will get puckers around your arms left, right, and center!
However, if you pick up every RS row and then work decreases in the sleeves in conjunction with the short rows you get a beautiful smooth edge around the arm opening and sleeves which fit comfortably without being large enough for 2 arms in one sleeve.
It may have taken a month longer, but I’m so pleased I listened to the story this yarn had to tell!