You know those “quick” projects that are supposed to keep you busy whilst you wait for the wool for your current project to arrive but then end up taking forever? Yeah, well, this was one of them!
I cast this on after ordering the wool for my Majagenser thinking that I’d be half way through by the time the wool got delivered and I was. It’s an easy enough knit – all three parts (back and two front pieces, are knit on one circular needle and then split into three and knitted separately from the armholes up. The front pieces are then joined to the back using a three needle bind-off which I’d not done before but which, with the help of my trusted teacher YouTube, was easy enough to learn.
Sounds like it all went according to plan, I hear you say. And it did. All apart from one minor detail.
Turns out that despite having survived at life (admittedly, just about) for the past 33 years it appears that I CANNOT count!
So when I laid out my cardigan it was completely twisted with one front piece wider and longer than the other side, all distorted and warped. Absolutely beyond salvation basically. The only remedy was to undo the whole hot mess and start again. Only because the piece is knit with a double yarn (drops alpaca and drops kid silk) this took forever as the silk kept getting tangled.
Take two, and this time when it came to placing the stitch markers to mark the two front pieces and the back I made sure I was by myself with nothing distracting me and counted and re counted about 4 times! Also, after separating the front and back pieces at the armhole instead of knitting each piece separately I knit them at the same time by attaching a new ball of yarn at each section. This did get a bit messy at times but I was very disciplined at untangling everything every so often to avoid major knotting. This meant that I could completely forgo row counting and that each piece was exactly the same length as the counterpart it would be joined to. Major win!
The next tricky part was knitting the flutter sleeves and here I do think that the quality of the usually fantastic paelas instructions dips slightly. There are two views to the vest – an A-line vest with very voluminous flutter sleeves (in blue on the photo below) and a straight bodied model with more modest capped sleeves (in yellow).
I wanted to make the A-line flutter sleeved version. In the English version of the instructions it says to use 3.25mm needles to knit the sleeves but I didn’t think I’d get the desired volume by going down with my needle size and this was confirmed when I looked at the instructions in Norwegian which I think say to use a 4mm needle. No biggie – the instructions are there in theory, I just think they could be expressed a bit more clearly. The second point that I think could be made more clearly is the number of stitches to be picked up – it says to pick up a minimum of 42 stitches around the armhole, which is what I did on my first attempt. The outcome was then more of a capped sleeve as in the yellow version, rather than a voluminous flutter sleeve which is what I was after. I therefore had to undo the sleeve and start playing around to see how I could get the outcome I desired. I ended up picking up stitches all the way round the armhole – I think I picked up a total of 64 stitches in the end and this gave me the desired sleeve effect. It seems like the instructions, in English at least, were written only for the capped sleeve version and not for the flutter sleeved version.
Anyhow, I got there in the end, and now I know to pay attention to my counting and what adjustments to make to the sleeves, I’m sure my next one will actually be quite a quick knit.
In terms of sizing – I knit size 3-4 for my average sized 3 year old. She loves it as it is so easy to put on and take off by herself and because it keeps her warm without being as restrictive to her movements as a jumper can be. It is also such a great between -seasons piece. I’ve already cast on another in the light grey drops yarn that I had left over from my Bernadette Cardigan.