In Which the Pirate Goes to Washington DC.
There I was, at the National Museum of American History (one of my all-time faves) and there it was… THE SWEATER. Well, one of many sweaters, anyway – but it’s The Sweater that was donated to the museum. It’s been rotated out of display for a while, but there it was…
Mr. Rogers’s sweater.
I took some more pictures, of course, because one doesn’t get to see such an iconic piece of knitting very often. Here’s a closer view of the collar and zipper. I couldn’t tell what the zipper was made of, but the Smithsonian’s website says that it’s metal. The collar looks as if it’s folded over to make two layers:
The cuffs are turned up just slightly:
This sweater has set-in sleeves with a cable down the side, though some of the others he wore on the show had raglan sleeves with ribbing. Some of them had pockets, too, unlike this one.
Some things I noticed and found interesting: First, it was a bigger gauge than I was expecting, and the zipper pull is relatively large. I wonder if that’s for ease of grabbing while on camera! The cables turn the same way on both sides of the sweater, which really surprised me… and one of them seems to have a slight mis-cable in it, which just goes to show that nobody’s knitting is perfect. Even Mr. Rogers’s mom’s knitting.
Thanks for posting these fantastic close-ups! I’m surprised it doesn’t look at all worn or pilled. Could you tell if the yarn was wool or acrylic?
Hi Ozzie – it definitely looks like acrylic, and the Smithsonian’s website says that’s what it is:
He had a lot of these sweaters, and I’m sure some of them only saw very light use on a tv set… but vintage acrylic wears like iron! :)