I did it!
From my blog (woolinsunshine.blog spot.com):
I started knitting the Venus Pullover in February after finding the yarn at 50% off. Trust me, for Rowan yarn, 50% is as rare as as me leaving work before 7pm. There's a story here, actually - the issue of Knitscene this pattern premiered in was the first knitting magazine I ever bought, when I first experienced that "holy crap - other people knit too?" moment. I fell in love with this pattern immediately but the yarn (Rowan Holiday) is both extremely hard to find and uniquely constructed (it looks like a lopsided ladder). I didn't want to risk substituting another yarn and have the project fall apart, so I sidelined it. Then two years later I'm at Unwind's annual Superbowl yarn sale and voila - Rowan Holiday! So I bought a bunch and started knitting!
The cold hard facts:
This was a fast knit, and because of the one-piece construction I really felt like I was making progress. I had a few hiccups involving stitch count, but that was it. Seaming was a breeze (I don't think I've ever typed that sentence before) and I've worn it three or so times to work. I both love it and feel iffy about it. It's not quite what I expected, and from up close the stitch pattern looks rudimentary and silly. If I were to knit it again I would probably make up my own stitch, just to punch it up a bit. I shortened the pullover because I'm short (and with the four extra inches suggested by the pattern this thing would have hit me above the knee - eek) but I shortened it a bit too much. I think it needs another inch but I'm far too lazy to un-bindoff and fix it. I also increased the slope under the arms - the idea is for this to be loose and comfortable, but I might have taken that a bit too far
The first time I wore this I had an, um, interesting problem. The boat neck, which I love, stretched to an unreasonable length. I was walking down the street trying to keep my sweater from slipping off my shoulders. Not cool. So I found some cotton in corresponding colors and crocheted a line all the way around the neckline. Works like a charm! It's loose enough to convey the drapey Venus goddess nature of the design, but tight enough to actually stay on my shoulders.
The yarn itself is incredibly splitty and frequently annoyed me, but it's a great yarn for California - not too hot, not too cold. I won't be wearing it this weekend when it's forecasted to hit 95, but I'd say you could wear this baby anywhere from 65 to 85 degrees and not get annoyed at either end of the spectrum.
Well that's it! Not quite the stunning creation I thought it would be, but I have to say I love it.