After having argued with myself over the width of the back section, whether or not I was a loose knitter and finally, deciding on the best way to do seaming, I actually finished my project.
The cardigan was made up of a few key pieces and the rest was picked up and knitted on. Some of it was bottom up, others were top down, which was necessary for me to be sure I’d have enough yarn to complete the job. I always had that nagging doubt that my maths would let me down and that I’d calculate the yardage incorrectly.
Funny enough, everything was correct and the cardigan turned out brilliantly. I even forgave myself for not making a better effort to make the stripes more random. But you can only spit-splice so many times before you end up eating the yarn… a girl only needs SO much fibre in her diet!
The Battle of Feather & Fan
I didn’t realise it but there are about 5 versions of Feather & Fan Stitch – which was lucky, because the first F&F stitch I had in mind had an 18 stitch repeat. Luckily for me I found a stitch called Ridged Feather, which was only an 11 stitch repeat. Perfect. And it was right on the allowance I had for the sleeves and the fronts.
Looks like I’ll either have to learn to love it or find a way to design my way out of it!
I was reading Modern Top-Down Knitting by Kristina McGowan and she featured a few patterns where the edgings and details were finished with a bit of single or double crochet. I was impressed by this, but I’d never crocheted before. So I read the instructions in her book and went on from there. I cannot tell you how useful crochet is to knitting. Before, I would mildly hurl if anyone mentioned crocheting to me because I always thought of it as a bit… granny!
I take that all back now. Crochet is king. And although I will always knit, I will supplement it with a bit of crochet because it can make all the difference to a finished knitted garment, In my opinion.
I used double crochet on the edge of the sleeves and the fronts. It made the edgings look so much better and reduced the inward curling that was happening to the front sections.
The End Result
The cardigan is so soft and warm and snug. Surprisingly, with a short back, I don’t get a cold draught going up there. The yarn itself is just gorgeous and really pleasant to knit with. The yarn has 60% silk in it, so it has an iridescent shine which catches the light and throws out interesting colours along the way. The yarn has the right weight for this design (not intentional, of course). It drapes nicely without curling and it is not too stiff either.
So far I’ve had quite a few compliments about this cardigan and requests to write up the pattern.Writing the pattern is a daunting prospect because my notes are so mad, it looks like someone let off a hand grenade! However, I do quite like this ‘designing your own’ concept. It is hard work, but its well worth the challenge!