It’s been a long time coming but I have finally finished the cardigan I started about a year ago. Mind you there were a few other projects that I started and finished while working on this so it wasn’t like it really took me a year to complete.
As a recap here is a picture from the pattern.
I used the Deborah Norville Serenity Garden yarn in the “Sea” color way (it took about 10 skeins of yarn). I found this nice cardigan pattern at Patternfish that used that weight of yarn. The pattern is listed as an “Easy” level but I’m here to tell you it is not. At the very least it is an intermediate level. The basic fabric repeat is definitely easy to follow but when it came to the necessary shaping they just told you to “decrease x stitches per row” and never gave you any hint how to do it neatly for either row of the pattern. For an “Easy” pattern I would expect it to tell me how to accomplish the necessary decreases. I think this is one of the reasons it took me so long to complete the sweater. It is a good thing I have made clothes so I had a good understanding on how it should look.
One change I made was to make the sleeves long instead of 3/4 length. I liked the way the sleeves were created by working in the round so I kept trying on the sleeve as I went along. After I was about half way done with the first sleeve I realized I would need to replicate what I was doing on the other sleeve. My sister gave me a great tip to work both of them at the same time. I had enough skeins of yarn to be able to do this so I started the second sleeve and caught up to the first one. After that I would do a row on one sleeve and then work on the other.
Even though I was trying the sleeves on and thinking I had the length correct once I had them attached to the body of the cardigan it was easy to see that they were a bit too long.
At first I thought I would just roll the sleeve up, but it just felt too heavy and I wasn’t satisfied. It was another consultation with my sister (who has been knitting for decades) that gave me an idea of how I could fix the problem (and the courage to try).
First I determined which row I wanted to have the sleeve finish at. The pattern has two types of rows. One type is shells and the next type has a row of pairs of double crochet topped by a row of single crochet. I was lucky that to achieve the correct length I could stop at one of the single crochet rows.
I needed to secure the stitches on this row so with the sleeve in tact I strung yarn through the bottom loops of the single crochet row. Then I cut off the excess a few rows below that row. I wanted to keep the yarn attached that I would then crochet around the cuff.
I had to frog the cut off part to get it away from the sleeve. Then I took the remaining rows and frogged that back to where I had sewn in the yarn to hold the stitches.
The purple yarn is the one that is threaded to hold the row of single crochet (I tied a bow to hold it). The green yarn is what I used to crochet with. At this point I needed to re-anchor that row of single crochet so I did two rows of single crochet around the cuff with the little yarn ball I had already attached to the sleeve.
Once the first row of single crochet was done I pulled out the purple yarn and did a second row of single crochet.
I wasn’t sure if it would work since crochet usually depends on the row below it to anchor it but it did. I’m glad I was able to work through how to fix the sleeves with some great advice from my sister. Thanks Colleen! Now I’m happy to show you how it all turned out.
I know…it’s a rare sighting of this blog’s author, but here I am. I’m very happy with how the cardigan turned out. Even though I wasn’t sure about all the shaping when it was sewn together it fit perfectly. It is a great weight that I know I will get plenty of use out of from Spring through Fall. I love how the cardigan has so many colors so I can pair it with a multitude of t-shirts underneath.
I’m linking up this post with Hookin on Hump Day.