Tag: cardigan

Pender Cardigan (#wip pt. 3/3)

Glad to be getting back into weekly blogs. In the time I’ve been away, I’ve completed quite the number of projects, which you would have seen if you’re following me on instagram. If not, no worries! I will be rolling out new posts for old projects over the weeks to come!

First up is the final post of my Pender Cardigan wip…It’s complete!! I had originally intended to have another check-in post before the final product, but I got swept up with the website move and completed the cardigan without stopping to take photos.

I did take the time to note down my thoughts as I worked through it though, so here they are. To see the final product, skip to the bottom of the page.

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As I get closer to the end of a large project, I start to get nervous as to whether or not it will turn out like I imagined, particularly with knits that need to be blocked. It’s the point where I’ve already committed so much to it, that any changes that need to be made may involve significant backtracking.

After attaching the sleeves to the body as instructed in the pattern, I found it difficult to work with the rest of the garment because it became quite bulky. I have suspicions my sleeves ended up too long for my body, so I removed them and started putting together the collar first. I also ran into some issues with picking up stitches on the collar, so I went ahead and modified to achieve what I wanted (yet again, I have failed to complete a pattern the way it was instructed…oops). After trying it on at this point, I’ve fallen in love with it all over again! The stitch definition is looking so good and it is holding its shape incredibly well.

Here’s how it looked without the sleeves and hem. It looked so amazing I was almost tempted to leave it as a vest instead!

I went on to add the bottom hem, which I also shortened both length and widthwise to give a shorter and tighter look. Halfway through the hemline, I tried it on and got chills!

Full disclosure, I actually finished all the components within 3 weeks of starting, but left it sitting for another month because of my pure hatred of seaming. I found myself more enticed by other knitting projects that I never sat down to tidy up. Blocking was a whole other ordeal. I finally committed to finishing when my custom made ceramic buttons were finished. They really tied the piece together (literally.) so it was a perfect finish.

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Alas, all the coziness in a coat. It definitely turned out to be more of an outerwear style jacket than a cardigan. I’d love to remake the pattern in a worsted weight to see what it would look like. I do also wish there was one more button up top to close the neckline a little more. This just means another Pender Cardigan is in my future for 2018!

Ceramic buttons by One Bear Ceramics.

Get the pattern for yourself on Ravelry and check out Lindsay’s Instagram page for other amazing knits.

Pender Cardigan (#wip pt. 2/3)

Pender Cardigan (#wip pt. 2/3)

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This cardigan is working up much faster than I anticipated!

All of this past week, what got me through the day was knowing I was coming home to this project. Even after a long day of work, I somehow still had the brain capacity to decipher chart instructions.

I just got through the largest and what appears to be the most difficult part of the pattern, the back. Now I can see the cardigan coming together! I have just casted on the first sleeve, feeling much more confident about what I am doing.

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The design on the back of this pattern is just dreamy. Without planning it, my last row happened to fall on the point of the diamond, which absolutely thrills my OCD mind. I was also a little bit concerned about the stiffness of the swatch because of my gauge, but now that the piece is so large, it’s actually turned out to hold its shape with just enough squishiness.

Next up, the sleeves and collar!

Pender Cardigan (#wip pt. 1/3)

Pender Cardigan (#wip pt. 1/3)

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I’ve been dreaming of this cardigan since the first photo I ever saw of it surfaced on Instagram. All the teasers and promotional pics really got me, and I anxiously awaited the pattern release at Knit City 2017.

The pattern was written over the summer by Lindsay of Standard Knits for the Hinterland Straits collection. Lindsay was one of the first local knitters I started following when I discovered the world of makers out there, so it seems fitting that her pattern be one of the first I ever buy and follow to a T. I’m notoriously bad at following other people’s patterns because I get so distracted by my own ideas and end up making alterations or creating my own design altogether. The amount of technical skill involved in this pattern forces me to stick to the instructions!

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So far I’ve already had to frog 2 pocket linings and half of a front panel because it took me THAT long to realize I was reading the charts wrong. I have avoided chart work through my entire knitting career, and every time I have attempted to learn, I gave up and managed to find some sort of written pattern instead. This time there is no escape. The second time through I already had an understanding of the concepts, so reading the charts became almost unnecessary, though now I can match the actual design to the chart to hopefully help me understand the rest of the cardigan. I should add that at this point I am only reading a 2 line chart… The learning curve is steep.

I have also had to frog another 8 rows or so because I missed a decrease in the pattern simply due to lack of attentiveness, and it took me awhile to realize why my stitch count wasn’t adding up.

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Now I’m back on track and will have an entire right front panel by the end of the day!

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Hooded Tweed Cardi (#wip pt. 2/4)

Hooded Tweed Cardi (#wip pt. 2/4)

59 rows of 610 sts in: -my god what in the world would possess me to start a project like this-

This cardigan is a bit of a gamble. By that I mean I’m putting a lot of time and effort into making it, yet I am not 100% sure what the final product will or should look like. It makes me wonder whether skilled knitting designers really know what they are doing before they create their patterns. Or is it really a ton of guesswork and revisions to create something worth selling? In any case, I have never done anything like this before, so I’m really just going based on a mental image and tiny versions I’ve made using scraps of fabric. I won’t be fully convinced of the structure until the life-sized piece is assembled.

While the herringbone stitch doesn’t require counting or inconsistent changes, it does lend itself to dropped stitches. With my lack of concentration, I’ve dropped quite a few without knowing it because this stitch pattern doesn’t run when a stitch is dropped. On the one hand, it’s great that it doesn’t completely ruin rows and rows of work, however, it results in me being a few stitches short a few rows later, asking myself if it’s worth undoing 5 rows of 610 after counting only 604 stitches. The answer is no. Since the yarn is fine, I’ve resorted to randomly increasing stitches in less noticeable areas in hopes that I can get away with it. Unless you look closely, you can’t really tell. For now my goal is just to maintain the integrity of the overall piece.

9 inches in: -I’m so close to being ready to start a pocket! Just keep knitting…

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The Inset Pocket:

After researching how inset pockets are knitted into projects and trying to translate this onto the herringbone stitch, I decided to invent my own method. This could be completely unorthodox, or already something someone somewhere has thought of–I don’t know. I more or less stopped where I wanted the pocket, knitted the width of the pocket until it was the depth I wanted it when folded in half, then brought my needle back and continued knitting the full length. Later on I will sew up the sides and tack this piece down to the inside of the cardigan.

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The Arm Hole:

I made the arm hole the same way you would knit a button hole. I knit up until one side of the hole, bound off the length of the hole, and casted the same number of stitches back on on my way back up the next row. The placement of the hole was around the halfway mark of the length, on the same half as the pocket (the other half will become the hood of the cardigan).

Now it’s just rows and rows of herringbone stitch til the next arm hole! I think I may have measured wrong and it’s ending up longer than I planned…oops.

Hooded Tweed Cardi (#wip pt. 1/4)

Hooded Tweed Cardi (#wip pt. 1/4)

I have this problem with falling in love with a stitch pattern and then using it for everything. In attempt to break out and continue to expand my skillset, I’m trying out a completely new project. New stitch pattern; New article of clothing; New construction method. I am designing my own hooded cardigan, and if the pattern comes out well, I may put it up for sale on Ravelry.

I’m also trying out a new category of blog posts– #wip (work in progress). Rather than posting the final product in one post, I figured I would post updates as I go along. This makes more sense to me for larger projects, that I may start today and not finish until next year! By the end of the project there will be approximately 4 posts that I will group for you to find easily (either through the #wip category in the sidebar or I will make a tab at the top specifically for these posts).

This is #wip Project #1: part 1 of 4.

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The Cast On

The body of this cardigan is one piece constructed as vertical columns from the base to the hood. My cast on length ended up being 610 stitches in my chosen yarn (*sobs*).

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The Stitch Pattern

I am using the horizontal herringbone stitch to create the tweed look which I think will look great for the concept I have in mind based on the color scheme and hooded shape. This is a new stitch for me and it does require a little bit more concentration, however after awhile it becomes a good brainless-knitting stitch–my favorite! I will add that I have already accidentally dropped a stitch many-a-times and had to backtrack entire rows to fix it (all 610 stitches *sobs again*). After all that frustration, I spent one evening testing with scrap yarn and figured out how to pick up the dropped stitch without having to unravel the piece! If this is something that interests you, comment below or shoot me a message from the contact tab and I will share a post about it. I really think there aren’t enough people doing tutorials on picking up dropped stitches on a variety of stitch patterns apart from the stockinette stitch. Perhaps if I have the time I may start a video series on this…but that’s another task for another time!

That’s all for now. Keep a lookout for part 2 where you’ll get to hear about my struggle with inset pockets and where exactly to create the sleeve holes.

Forest Dweller Chunky Crochet Cardi

Autumn is my favorite season–partially because Fall fashion is amazing! The color schemes, the styles, and the layering–I love it all.

Deep forest green has been my favorite color for a few years now, but is still severely lacking in my closet. I decided it was time to fix this by adding a new piece. I stumbled upon the perfect shade of yarn at Walmart while I was yarn shopping for a different project. I was pleasantly surprised when I found this large Bernat Premium skein in “Evergreen”, which is almost equivalent in yardage to the Red Heart Super Saver skeins. It was not only softer, but $1 cheaper! I found out later on that this particular yarn is sold exclusively at Walmart, and has now been discontinued (…so I went back to pick up a few more).

I’ve taken a greater interest in crochet over knitting recently, and since I have not been super happy with my knitted sweaters in the past, I thought I would give crochet a try. Finding a good looking free pattern was not easy, so after browsing a few different styles and concepts, I decided to go ahead and combine aspects to create my own. All the stitches and elements are basic, but I usually find that these simpler pieces turn out more functional anyway. My end result was a chunky yet cuddly cardigan I’m calling the “Forest Dweller Cardi”.

Pattern:

This sweater is made with 5 pieces seamed together and finished with a stockinette hem around the base, front pieces, sleeves, and collar. The design on the back is optional and could be anything. It is done with topstitching using a crochet hook or darning needle.

 Back:

Make one 49cm wide x 57 cm tall rectangle in hdc (or dimensions based on shoulder width and desired length).

Front:

Make two pieces in hdc that are the same height as back piece (57cm), 16cm wide at top (about 1/3 of total width) with increases until 20cm wide at bottom.

Seam front pieces to back piece at shoulders.

Sides:

Attach yarn at bottom corner of outer edge of front piece and work hdc until desired base of arm hole. Continue for about 3 more rows (5cm), decreasing one stitch per row at arm hole edge. Repeat for other front piece, and on either side of the back piece (4 total).

Sleeves:

Attach yarn at top corner of side piece and work hdc along edge to other side around the arm hole, forming the sleeve. Calculate the number of stitches needed to obtain desired cuff circumference at wrist bone (or length before cuff) and spread decreases evenly throughout the length of the sleeve. Repeat for other side.

Cuffs/Hems/Finishing:

With knitting needles one size smaller, pick up stitches along the edge of the sleeve and knit the stockinette hem to the desired length. Repeat for other sleeve. Seam the sides of the sweater together from sleeve cuff to base on each side.

Pick up stitches along the base of the sweater and knit the stockinette hem to desired length. Repeat for the inside edge of the front pieces and around collar.

*Note: Do these steps very loosely! I always find I stitch pieces together too tightly, which doesn’t allow the final product to stretch consistently when wearing.

Final notes:

I don’t have the specific details for this project as I made it up on the go, but it’s quite basic so you could easily create your own. The design on the back was something I chose to add at the very end once the cardigan was complete, giving it its name. I wanted to add a creative touch to it (I guess I was going for an…ugly yet so hipster it’s kind of cool look?). Pockets are also something I may want to add in the future, though I would recommend making pocket pieces and stitching them in at the side seams rather than making patch pockets, unless you like the look of visible pockets in the front.

Crochet is faster than knitting in my opinion, however the final result tends to be bulkier. This is the perfect chunky, warm, cuddle sweater, though it isn’t as refined as if I had done it with knitting. I do really enjoy the shape of it though, which I describe as a varsity/sports meets oversized denim jacket. I want to attempt a knitting replica, possibly in a smaller gauge to make something more cardigan-esque for springtime. In the mean time, this sweater is keeping me warm on these chilly autumn days