So, here are a few photos:
Pattern: Thermal by Laura Chau
Yarn: KnitPicks Gloss
Needles: US 2.5 / 3.0 mm
Start to finish: October 2007 - March 2009 (yes, it took me that long)
Notes: The pattern is very well written and Knitty.com provided answers to all questions I had. I've made a few modifications: no buttons, 3/4 sleeves, grafting instead of 3-needles bindoff for the shoulders, and more length to the body. And although I made the body in size A that made it very adjusted due to the fact that I knit a bit tight, I switched to size D (!) when I started doubting that my arms could get into the sleeves of size A. I think it explains why the collar does not go very low: smaller size made longer.
Here is also a closer look at the stitch pattern, collar and shoulder. I have to say I am very satisfied with the result. Very proud also. Every defect I detected, I corrected. Even if it meant hours in some cases. To give an example, I picked up the collar stitches 3 times (and there were about 250 stitches for the collar): the first time was for practice (!), the second time I did much better except for the back which explain the 3rd tentative (after knitting half an inch I decided that I wasn't satisfied with the back). Every time, I was so glad I did it again.
Another thing I learned is that knitting is not a matter of life and death ;-) When I put the center front on a stitch holder to knit the sides, I lost many stitches without realizing it. Can you imagine my unpleasant surprise when I realized that the stitch holder was not holding the stitches? I was so discouraged. It did not occur to me then that I had the capability to fix it. This yarn is so small and dark. I waited a while and then, a co-worker explained to me what I had to do and with a lot of work (and countless hours), I was able to fix it. That teached me that knitting is a hobby. If I want it the easy way, I can always go buy a nice sweater at the mall. If I want to learn and achieve new habilities, I have to work hard and mistakes are part of it. Isn't it a nice conclusion?
I hope that this will inspire other people to knit this sweater. After all that time and hard work, I'm really glad I did!