Given the frustrations I expressed the other week about my lack of design output this year, you can probably guess I'm pretty happy to have a new pattern out there! And yes, I am.
This is Tully, so named for my niece. This is her birthday cardigan (her birthday was in July), but I have to admit it is still in my possession. Oops! Now the pattern is finalised and I know I need it no longer for any final checks or photos, it can go to her. Luckily she lives in a cooler part of the country!
Tully is very classic in shape and style. I love the way it sits so nicely upon the shoulders and I do so love a well formed set-in sleeves.
For a long time, I've avoided designing a set-in sleeve simply because a lot of seamless knitters avoid them. Why? I'm not sure. I guess there's a comfortable familiarity with a raglan, and of course the ease of its construction. Perhaps it's the techniques. I do know that there are knitters out there who avoid patterns with short rows or kitchener stitch. Ironically, many of my online knitter friends began their knitting career with longies and soaker patterns, both contain short rows and kitchener stitch!
I guess I also avoided short rows in a pattern because of my style of pattern writing. I like to totally guide the knitter, leaving nothing to guesswork and I consider communication within a pattern paramount. Despite the many different ways to work short rows, there was not one technique that I would consider fail-safe or perfect. Each of them had their own little idiosyncrasy that either annoyed me or I knew annoyed other knitters. And then I discovered German short rows.
While this pattern doesn't have any kitchener stitch, it certainly does have short rows. That shoulder shaping that helps the cardie hug the shoulders is created with German short rows.
Have you tried German short rows?
You really should!
If you're one of those knitters who is a bit apprehensive about short rows, you really should check them out, they are soooo easy!
Here's a link to my favourite you tube videos that show how to work short rows :
Short rows part 1 and Short rows part 2.
I also use the more traditional wrap and turn short row technique to shape the sleeve caps after picking up stitches around the armholes. But you know what, they're pretty easy here because I don't pick up the wraps, I just leave them as is and they create a nice edging around the armhole. So the whole pain in the neck part about wrap and turn, picking up the wraps, is avoided.
This is the third set in sleeve garment I've designed. You've not seen the other two as I've not publicly released the pattern nor photos of the garment. Each of them uses a different technique for working set-in sleeves. So I guess you could say, I've been experimenting with this technique and finding out works best for me and my style. I'll talk more about more experiments with set-in sleeves in my Introduction to Seamless Design class at The Craft Sessions, but suffice to say, at the moment I think the finish of this technique is the most pleasing. And yes, if you're attending my class I will take the other designs along.
The reality though is that a set-in sleeve cardie is no more difficult to knit than a vest such as What Big Eyes You Have or Zigvest. In fact, it's actually easier as you're not having to deal with charts will working the bodice/yoke section. So if you've successfully knit that style of vest, you will have no problems with this pattern.
One of the things I really like about this pattern, as did my testers, was the way I laid out the instructions for the two front pieces. The layout allows you to knit the two pieces either simultaneously or individually, which I love and am really proud of. It was a bit of an inspired moment! If you knit this pattern I'd love to know what you think of that aspect of the layout as it is one I'll probably use again.
Check out those sleeves! I really love them. Lily was adamant that this cardie needed those sleeves. Because I know you like choice there is an option in the pattern for knitting them straighter, as a few of the testers did. The number of buttons is also optional. Despite the prototype being a full buttoned cardie, I personally prefer a single button closure, but I know for smaller kiddies a lot of mums prefer cardies that fully button. After all, we do need to keep those little chests and tums warm!
So finally, my dear little Tully you can have your cardie! I hope it keeps you warm and toasty my sweet girl, and wear it knowing that Lily and I thought carefully about what was the perfect design for you!
Tully can be purchased via Ravelry for $6AUD.
And as a very special introductory offer for all my blog readers, if you use the code blogreader at the check out you will get an automatic discount of 30% off Tully for the next week. The discount code will expire at the end of the day Friday October 11th AEDST.
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Who am I?
Craftin' Mummy about the house to the always gorgeous and very silly Miss Lily Rainbow and very snuggly and smiley Toby Milo, wife of the adventurous Andy, underwater man extraordinaire.
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