Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Hand knitted sailors jumper

This is my sailors top pattern in knitted form! As I stated in this post, I have joined in with the #sundaysweaterkal on Instagram and have taken on two jumpers. I have the greeny one still on the go and was knitting them both flicking between the two. I knitted the back of the green, the back of the orange, front of the green and then finally the front and shoulder gussets of the orange, which is where I decided to take this forward and finish it!

I wrote the pattern for this jumper based on my free pattern, but with slightly tapered and longer sleeves rather than just square. I haven't written a knitting pattern for so long that I wanted to start with something simple and seeing's as this is as simple as it gets in terms of shapes it is a great place to start. You can't really see it here, but the sleeves are inset into the bodice slightly rather than just joined onto the end. I knitted up to the underarm point and cast off 4 stitches either side so there was a rectangular chunk missing from either side for the sleeves to set into and reduce the shoulder width. I tried to reduce the risk of getting bored or disheartened by this project by doubling up this drops Nepal yarn to create a bulky yarn knit on 8mm needles. This yarn is so soft and I absolutely love the colour. I have never used this brand before (and probably should have used from the stash), but I will definitely remember it for the future!

I was kind of going for a Guernsey knit type thing as I love the use of stitch to create subtle interest for a change. I did go through a phase of loving colour work, but am into stitches at the moment. The stitches I used are 2 x 2 rib, stocking stitch, garter stitch and diagonal crepe stitch (on the upper chest).

I want to try this again using a single Aran yarn on 5mm needles next and make some improvements, as the neck did not need those shoulder gussets. I totally did not take into account the weight and stretchiness of the knit dragging the neck down.

I have re-enforced the neckline with bias tape (didn't have any petersham ribbon) and this does help, but the shoulder gussets can go on the next one.

I could not decide about the sleeves, as I always roll them up. They are wrist length, but I totally finished the jumper, tried it on and wanted to see what it looked like with 3/4 length sleeves so un-ravelled, re-knit to 3/4, didn't like them, un-ravelled and re-knit to wrist length and then was done. For some reason I prefer the look of them rolled up even though it's more bulky.

As for my knitting skillz, they are not that refined. I could not work out how to do my short rows on the shoulder gussets without it creating massive holes, so in a bodge attempt to get rid of them have made it look a bit messy.

The other thing I missed on the back is a few stitched where I only picked up one strand of yarn instead of both and it looks a bit holey in a couple of places. I was much more vigilant after this!

To conclude, this is not perfect, but it's got me back to thinking about knitting more. Don't worry I'm not about to start writing knitting patterns to sell, but if I knit something that looks ok and I can write legible instructions then the odd free pattern may pop up from time to time. I'm not sure that this is going to be one of them, as it's not quite right, but I if I sound displeased with it then I'm not. I really like it and it's definitely a useful piece to have in my wardrobe. Perfect for this c-c-cooold weather!


Meg said...

Wow I'm amazed at your output lately! You are a sewing/knitting machine! This sweater is great, and I agree that I'm super into mono/simple color things right now. Maybe this will finally inspire me to finish that sweater I started over a year ago...

Anonymous said...

Cute jumper. I love the shape and the detail on the yoke. Gorgeous colour too.

Kathryn said...

This looks great! The knitting lingo is totally over my head but wearing a knitting pattern from your sewing pattern sounds very clever to me! It's a great colour too.