In addition to my original designs, I made two sweaters designed by “others” this fall-winter season. If you have already designed a pattern, you may know how grateful you are to other designers who thought of every detail, calculated number of stitches and rows, wrote everything down… I like designing garments from scratch and it’s an immense joy to see your ideas taking shape but I also love that pleasure to follow other designers’ patterns and get what I see on the pictures.
I made Caroline pullover by eri shimizu, and KP yoke – Rasen pullover by Ririko, both created by talented Japanese designers and #strandsoflifeedited 🙂
Caroline sweater is a top-down raglan yoke sweater with (almost) all-over rib cables. Eri designed it with a yarn from Nomad noos, a Swiss company which works for and with Nepalese people according to fair-trade principle. They train the locals, and pay them a fair wage for their work. The yarn is made with local sheep, camel or yak wool, dyed and hand-spun by Nepalese, into a light-fingering weight yarn!
So Eri’s sample is knit with a lovely white light-fingering weight yarn, but I used a fingering weight yarn that I bought a SQ for another project and which turned out not adapted to it!
The yarn I used is Harvest Hues 4-ply from John Arbon Textiles.
It’s a British yarn, made with wool from Devon-raised zwartble and Falkland merino. Harvest hues are inspired by England’s nature. The wool which arrives already dyed is blended with brown zwartble wool, which gives depth to the hues. This Bracken shade is a blend of red, brown, orange, yellow, and green, and is really nice!
The touch, however, is not very soft despite of the (more than) majority presence of merino (65%). Personally it’s okay for clothes, accessories like mitts or hats, but not around my neck (my skin is a bit sensitive).
I bought this yarn in 2020, before Brexit, and when I read this kind of articles, I think I did the right thing. And it’s very unlikely that I’ll buy British yarn in the near future, unfortunately.
So, I got the gauge and began to knit the sweater in fall 2020 with this autumnal shade and from the start, I knew that I chose the right color and yarn for this sweater!
The sweater is worked top-down, and it knits down (relatively) quickly at the start as there’s a (relatively) small number of stitches. You first work the center cable panels on the front and back, then add side cables to both sides of the center as well as the sleeve cables, as you increase stitches in 2×2 rib pattern. The hardest part is the end of the yoke as you need to work center + sides + sleeve cables in the same row, but I can say that you get hooked as the cables grow!
After the sleeve separation, there are only the center and side cables on the body and you could understand what to do though I was not able to memorize these complexe cables.
The sleeve cables are much simpler than those on the body (much fewer crossings).
And the sweater just off needle looked very narrow, because the purl stitches of the ribbing recede. Also, I made the body and sleeves longer, which increases this feeling of “sock sweater”.
I measured the sweater’s bust and the result made me 😱
34.5 cm is 13.5″!
In fact, while knitting it, I was worrying that it would be too tight, but a knitting friend told me that it would stretch.
So I stretched it out at the blocking!
The body width is now okay but stretching made it a bit short… (38 cm to 35 cm [15″ to 13.75″]).
This length is in fact perfect for skirts or high-waist pants, so I took pictures with a skirt.
The problem is I don’t wear skirts in winter (lol) and for me who spent my youth in 90’s, 80’s revival high-waisted pants, I just can’t!
You can see it’s a bit short with my mid-rise jean.
So I added a few centimeters to the body hem and sleeve cuffs.
Don’t you see any difference? I don’t have to pull it down to hide my waist and I’m much comfortable with, and this is the most important thing!
And here is the zoomed-in picture of the cables to make you want to knit this sweater 🙂
Pattern: Caroline by eri shimizu
Yarn: John Arbon Textiles Harvest Hues 4-ply Bracken
Needles: 3.5 mm (US4) for body and sleeves & 3.25 mm (US3) for borders
Mods: longer body and sleeves, neck and body border in simple 2×2 ribbing (not twisted)