The Sweater Curse

The Sweater Curse

Ah, the dream of knitting a beautiful sweater for your boyfriend. It starts with a romantic outing to the yarn shop, with loving gazes over the yarn selections. It continues with his awe-struck thank you and heartfelt appreciation when the sweater is complete. The grand finale is his glowing pride; he wears the sweater everywhere and tells strangers on the street how his wonderful girlfriend knits it for him.

Is the story true or fiction? The legend of the dreaded sweater curse tells the truth. Ask any knitter and she will tell you it is bad luck to knit a sweater for your boyfriend. The relationship will end before you can bind off your last stitches.

A member of The Daily Knitter staff recently attended a local Stitch N’ Bitch meeting to pop the question. Is the sweater curse still alive? The answer was a resounding yes. And we had to ask the gals to speak one at a time in order to catch all of the stories. Here are two of the best yarns we heard.

Amber said she believes in the curse, but uses it as a relationship litmus test. She can tell a lot about a man by how he reacts to her sweater gift. In her past three romances, she knitted a sweater for her boyfriend, and the man was still in the picture at the sweater’s completion. That’s the good news. The first sweater was a cabled fisherman’s wool pullover that took her two months to finish. Amber was thrilled to give it to Jason and he was thrilled to receive it.

He wore the sweater the next week and then she didn’t see it for a while. A few months later, she arrived at Jason’s townhouse a bit early for a date. He wasn’t home from work yet, so she walked around the back to have a seat on his patio. As she sat down, Amber noticed a dog bed by the back door belonging to Jason’s yellow lab. Guess what was lining the dog bed? Yep, a cabled fisherman’s wool pullover hand knit by her.

Jennifer had a story to tell us from the other side of the fence. She has been knitting since she was nine years old and is known as the knitter in her family. Every year at Christmas, she happily bestows a year’s worth of knitting to friends and family. During the holidays last year, her older brother Jonathan gave her a shopping bag filled with two crudely knit sweaters, two scarves, a hat, and an afghan.

Jennifer became ecstatic thinking that Jonathan had taken up knitting and wanted to share his first knitting projects. Turns out all of the items were knit for him by ex-girlfriends. He gave Jennifer the gifts so she could unravel them and reuse the yarn.

Truthfully, we heard many stories of love found in a hand-knit sweater. Sandra knew Bret was Mr. Right when he loved and often wore the sweater she knitted for him. Even though the collar wasn’t perfect and the yarn made him sneeze. So perhaps the sweater curse isn’t so much a curse as it is a knitter’s comfort for why a relationship ended before the sweater did. At least you got a sweater out of it.

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