If you’ve been following my knitting journey this year you’ll know that I’ve gone from complete knitter newbie, having never picked up a set of needles before, and where it took me numerous attempts over multiple days to cast on ten stitches, to dipping my toes into the world of projects via my first make - the Skyping Beanie.
In the past few months, via the splendour of chunky yarn, I found my knitting mojo, ignited the flames of new craft passion. Since then I have been working very happily with the Lissy Cole Auaha Haukura yarn range to steadily knock out my next few projects - including my first large scale garments - working though the Good Night, Day collection - The Kingston Sweater, Carlisle Cardigan and Aiki Seeded Rib Scarf.
However this whole time it’s been in the back of my mind that I’ve been playing in the baby pool. Paddling in safe, warm and shallow waters where I now find myself quite comfortable. And there’s nothing wrong with that - I could happily stay in that shallow end for quite some time. However with these recent projects under my belt, and my eye firmly on knitting future that involves being able to someday make a fantastical West Knit pattern - I know I have to pull on my big girl pants, leave the safety of the shallow end, and get back onto the DK yarn train if I’m to continue to grow and evolve as a knitter.
Which leads me to introducing to you my next project - the Quintessential Cadigan.
THE QUINTESSENTIAL CARDIGAN: INTRODUCTION
The Quintessential cardigan by Churchmouse Yarns and Teas is a beautiful classic and timeless style of garment. The type of cardigan that everyone should have in their wardrobe. Great over a dress, tee, shirt - it’s wonderfully vintage and yet incredibly modern at the same time- as all great garments should be.
This pattern includes classic details: a pretty jewel neckline, knit-along button bands, full- or bracelet-length sleeves.
When talking to Ethan at Outlaw Yarn about my next project, we agreed that we wanted to embark on something classic, that anyone can wear, and style in their own way. Through choice of colour, buttons, sleeve length it’s easy to customise and add your personality to this piece.This pattern also has the advantage of coming in plus size options, with further scope for size and length customisation. And whilst I admit, I feel a little daunted as I look over this 8 page pattern, I've been assured it is beginner friendly!
It’s really a garment for everyone, which makes it perfect for me to share with you!
However, unlike my recent Good Night, Day chunky knits, I’m well aware that this project is going to take some time. Between the finer yarn, smaller needles and the significant extra stitches needed to expand the pattern for my plus-size body, not to mention a whole heap of new techniques that I will need to learn on my way - this is going to be a long-time project! I am very aware that this might take me the entire winter!
I've decided to record my process and journey on this knit - a project diary of sorts. Each week I’ll share with you my progress, what I’ve achieved, how long it’s taken, what I've learnt, and what have been my struggles. As I read through the lengthy pattern pages for this piece, every panel feels to me like an entire pattern in itself, and so I’ll be treating it this way. Like any big project that feels daunting, we must break it down into digestible bit-sized pieces to save our heads from exploding!
Online there’s all kinds of project recaps and tutorials, pattern info, and finished project reviews. However as a new knitter I know that I’d like to follow a new knitter, in real time, as they make a pattern that is daunting and full of new things. To see how it really is. The slowness. The frustrations. The screw ups. It’s incredibly helpful and actually inspiring if we can see the entire gory process, warts and all!
Which brings me to you - I hereby invite you to knit along with me! Join me on this project and lets’ make the Quintessential cardigan together!
Head to Outlaw Yarn, pick up your materials, cast on with me and let’s make this cardigan together. In the spring we’ll emerge like cute woodland creatures, sleepily coming out of hibernation, shrouded in beautifully made cardigans!
For this pattern I’m going to be using Outlaw Yarn’s Bohemia in Radiance - from their new colour range. It's a beautiful lime green/ yellow that is bright, distinctive and yet is super versatile and will look fantastic layered over so many of my dresses - perfectly complimenting their colours and patterns.
This yarn is divine to the touch. Deliciously soft and silky, Bohemia is the perfect blend of luxury fibres. Bohemia has the same excellent properties as Bohemia Light.This DK yarn promises to knit up fast for larger garments, like this cardigan.
NEEDLES & NOTIONS REQUIRED:
3.75mm circular needles
3.25mm circular needle
60 cm cable
Stitch markers: 2 ring markers; 8 locking markers
2 stitch holders.
Darning needle to finish.
Seven 16mm buttons; needle and thread.
So this week, why not get your gear together, download the patterns and join me as I make my first DK weight full-sized garment. As always the wonderful and knowledable team at Outlaw Yarn HQ are ready and waiting to help you with all of your questions and needs and will be so very happy to get you set up for success on your very own Quintessential cardigan!
Every week I’ll update you as to how it’s going, and hopefully give you a realistic and approachable guide to making a pattern that will show you how real beginner knitters.... knit, and to take away the intimidation and insecurity that project comparison can bring!
Not going to lie - I’m a little daunted by what lies ahead of me, but also quietly thrilled by the sense of danger! See you next week!
PATTERN:Quintessential Cardigan by Churchmouse Yarn and Teas via Ravelry
YARN: Bohemia - Radiance by Outlaw Yarn
I'm Lou, an Ōtautahi based personal stylist and craft-lover, and this is Never Been Knit - my journey from complete knitting virgin to...well, let's find out together!