Wednesday, 3 December 2014
I finished knitting a thick cardigan for myself months ago - sewn up and everything. Except it didn't have any buttons. Then I sewed the buttons on. And I have been wearing it quite a lot since the weather turned colder. So it's about time I wrote about it.
The design is 'Wainwright' by Bristol Ivy. It's described as "an asymmetric cardigan whose construction takes traditional chevrons for a joy ride." It's a really interesting construction. ( I do like a design with an interesting construction.) You start by knitting two triangles separately, increasing in the middle of each, one bigger than the other. The middle of each triangle marks where the side seam would be, if there was one. Then you join them together, so that you knit along the top edge of one triangle and then the other, decreasing where they join to form the off-centre 'seam' up the back. And so on - you end up with one piece that combines the entire back and fronts of the cardigan, including the front button bands and welt. The raglan sleeves are knitted separately and then sewn in, and then you pick up stitches around the neck edge and knit the collar.
I made a couple of changes to the pattern. First, I made it longer - you'd think that would be difficult, but actually it isn't, and the pattern tells you where to make the change. Second, I used the garter ridge stitch pattern from the body on the sleeves as well - the original design has plain stocking stitch sleeves, but I thought that it would look better if the garter ridges extended over the sleeves. Finally, and inexplicably, I had to make the right front wider than it should have been, otherwise the front would have been narrower than the back. I don't know why - I checked the instructions, and they seemed quite correct. If I had followed them, the front should have been wide enough. It wasn't. Baffling.
Because of this quirk, the neck opening is wider than it should have been. I don't think I would want to wear the collar as a cowl (i.e. buttoned up), even if it was the right width, and I haven't put any buttons on the collar (although I did make the buttonholes).
When it was finished, I wasn't quite sure at first that I was happy with the wide asymmetric collar (especially since it was wider than intended). But the more I have worn it, the more I like it. It has a slightly 1950s look, I think.
The yarn is Wendy Traditional Aran, in charcoal grey. It is a good to knit with and very cosy to wear. Altogether a successful knit.