My Cria cardigan, started on 1 January 2012 and finished on New Year’s Eve, is now blocked and ready to wear (and, indeed, being worn as I type this).
The yarn is Ochil, from the Yarn Yarn – a high twist 100% merino heavy sock or sportweight yarn. I’ve used it for socks before, but I’m not really keen on yarns without a bit of nylon for socks as they do tend to be more prone to felting – the original Try Again socks were knitted in Ochil and the soles have felted a lot. I also find that the slightly heavier weight doesn’t give enough yardage for man-sized socks. On the other hand, I thought it would be perfect for a cardigan and couldn’t resist this gorgeous violet/magenta shade.
Following the fitting advice in Little Red in the City I made the 38″ size to fit my high bust measurement, with a 1″ short-row bust dart to allow for not being the standard B/C cup of pattern dimensions. I also halved the distance between the body increases to allow for the fact that my hip measurement is closer to the 44″ size than the one I was actually knitting, lowered the neckline to be more of a scoop neck than a crew neck, left out the pockets and didn’t bother with the buttoned cuffs.
I’m very pleased with how it turned out, particularly the fit at the shoulders and bust. The sleeves seem to have grown a few inches when I blocked it, despite the fact that my swatch barely grew at all after washing, blocking and hanging with clothes-pegs to weight it, but I think they look fine folded double anyway, and if it’s cold I can unfold them to cover my hands.
It took me several tries to get the right buttons. At first I ordered two sets of purple buttons: little bird-shaped ones that were the right colour but too small, and round coconut-shell ones which were the right size but a red-purple rather than a blue-purple. Happily, it was third time lucky with these lovely laminated Liberty lawn buttons from Textile Garden.
I’ve put buttons all the way down, even though I never button cardigans up completely, because I like the look of a fitted cardigan rather than the kind that just buttons at the top. I had intended it to be a smartish cardigan I could wear for work, but I’m increasingly coming to think that cardigans of any sort don’t quite fit the professional look I’m aiming for. Still, there’s plenty of non-work time to wear it in, and it’s lovely and cosy.