I'm exceptionally pleased with the start of this sleeve!
First off, it is no longer huge. I have a nice, slim fit. I am not usually magic with numbers, but I seem to have succeeded here. As written the sleeves were enormous gaping maws a little bit big. I would have known that if I had read the comments from other knitters, but, um, no. I did not do that. But we are started up again, this time one at a time instead of two and the fit is nice and tidy. Please keep your fingers crossed that my math holds up at the armholes.
Second, the sleeve is a set of pretty complex cables. I'm not sure if I can fully explain, but you can see it best in this picture of the body.
The body consists of five "bands" of a nine stitch cable and it's border. The cable is a sort of convoluted one that crosses over and back and makes a cool interlocking chain. On the sleeve, there are only three cable bands. But, you increase every few rows, and are told to work the increased stitches into the cables when possible. I'm not experienced enough for that to make a lot of sense, but after doing a lot of research, I realized that I had to make up the "outsides" of each side of the sleeve and add the proper stitches in. It's really not as easy as it sounds until you get the right pictures in your mind -- what you have to do is oppositional to what you see on the charts. But it seems to have finally clicked, and so far so good.
It's slow going, but I would really like to get this sleeve finished by the end of the month. Along with this hat, which I had to cast on for yesterday.
The pattern is a very clever new hat that Faiza asked me to test. If you've not seen her patterns before, she is the designer of the delectable Rumors of Snow. You won't want to miss the hat when it's released! I'm knitting it in Plucky sweater, in the Antiqued colorway.