March 6, 2012


Retro Mod Cardi

Since I started crocheting and then knitting, I’ve completed five sweaters. The first sweater was too big (no photos taken), the second sweater was too small. Then I learned how to create a swatch and test my gauge. The tricky thing with knitting clothes, that need to be a certain size, is that there are three factors that can greatly change the size of a stitch. The first is the size of the strand of yarn. Yarn comes in “standard” sizes the same way that women’s clothes do, which is to say, broad estimates of size, but a huge range within each estimate. The second factor is the size of the needle. Needle sizes are more standard than yarn sizes, but different needle lines will vary. Finally, and most varied, is the tension of the yarn. Tension is solely determined by the individual knitter. The more you knit, the more you learn what type of knitter you are from loose to tight. Also, depending on your mood, the time of day and where you are knitting, your own tension can change.

With these three factors, it is amazing that it is even possible to make something in a certain size. When someone designs a knitting pattern they are using a specific yarn, a specific needle and they themselves are holding the yarn at their own tension. Knitting a test swatch helps to determine if the instructions in the knitting pattern will match-up with the knitting size you are creating. I still don’t really like to swatch, but swatching is the reason I’ve had sweater success.

I finished my first, well fitting sweater about a year ago, just in time for our trip to Europe. Here I am wearing it in Paris. The yarn came from a local yarn producer and the sweater has a hood.

Central Park Hoodie

This fall I finished my second, well fitting sweater. This time I used more mass produced yarn. It has a large collar and fun textured knit work.

Jacket Cardi

Finally, I recently completed the more modern sweater pictured at the top of the post. This pattern reminds me of something you could buy at H&M, only nicer. The buttons run at a diagonal and it has a massive collar. Again, I used a more mass produced yarn.

Now I feel like I’m on a sweater roll. Next up I’m working on a summer weight sweater to wear with summer dresses. Ah summer dresses. I can’t wait!


  1. I’m digging the mustard/golden short sleeve sweater over a longsleeved t or turtleneck. Tres cute! But I also like the marl of the blue Euro cable sweater too. Very, very nice.

    Comment by Steph — March 6, 2012 @ 9:59 pm

  2. Thank you! There is so much fun yarn out there, it is always hard to choose the color and fiber.

    Comment by Marijka — March 12, 2012 @ 9:33 am

  3. these are all gorgeous! so much talent!!

    Comment by rosemarie — March 12, 2012 @ 3:22 pm

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