Thursday, March 4, 2010

FO: Hiroki's Sweater

Anyone who has a greyhound knows they get cold easily. They're very temperature sensitive because they don't have an undercoat (or a very thick top coat) and their skin is really thin.

Often when we have the AC cranked on really high -- which is rare now that Alex and I live in our own place and have the option of saving money on electricity -- Hiroki gets cold and we have to cover him with a blanket. He doesn't mind. He loves blankets. And pillows. And snuggling in small balls in the corner of the couch.

So here's his sweater. He has one of those flannel cloth kind of throw-over coats, but it's not very fitted. And over winter break when we let him hang out outside with us as Alex and I built a brick mailbox for my dad, we learned it's also impossible for him to pee in that coat without soaking the belly panel. Oops.

Greyhounds, however, are slightly more difficult to knit for than other dogs. They have giant chests, enormous shoulder and butt muscles, and come zipping up at the belly to a wisp. Aerodynamics at its cutest.

I thought I'd have to craft something myself, but one of the most popular pet patterns on Ravelry is... just for greyhounds!

Pattern: Side Button Greyhound Sweater by Terri Lee Royea
Yarn: Red Heart Ltd. Soft Yarn Solids in 9523, Dark Leaf
Modifications: I didn't do a very long neck on this. I'd like to say it's so we can use his collar (though plenty of people have made leash holes at the base of the neck) but the real reason is I was just so damn excited to make this I had to get past the neck. Besides... now I can make him a cowl to go with it and he'll be the knittingest dog around.

I also finished the butt shaping differently on this. Some of the pictures of people's projects show a very fitted around-the-butt ending, but as I got to the end of the pattern and it suggested just binding off after some decrease shaping... my butt would've been flat. So I knit a few more rows in the same decreasing manner and then split the stitches evenly onto two DPNs and grafted the two sides together. Now it curves nicely around his rump and will stay put even when he's wiggling around.

Instead of doing the entire thing in ribbing, I put a simple 12 stitch cable down the back. Which is impossible to photograph at any angle in any light, I have discovered. Vaguely visible here.

Belly panel with buttons. Yeah, there's gaps when buttoned, but I think if I shift it to sit a little more properly on his back those go away. You can't even see them unless you're up close. Not that it really matters. Hiroki is none too concerned with fashion, as illustrated by his bald butt. All the cool greyhounds use Rogaine.

And you get a bit of his bum to complete your day. Bald and beautiful.


  1. The sweater is beautiful and so is he.




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