I feel like an enchanted storybook character in this gorgeous duster. It’s the Sylvi Sweater pattern by Mari Muinonen, published in Twist Collective Winter 2008. I love her designs for their dramatic and playful cables, and plan on eventually knitting several more of her patterns. I used 32 skeins (that’s a LOT of yarn!!! 1760 yards!) of Grignasco Marte yarn. Its’s 60% wool and 40% synthetic. I usually try and knit in all natural fibers, but I found it on an amazing sale which made buying epic amounts of this yarn almost affordable. See my Ravelry project page for more technical details.
While the body is knit in moss stitch, the back features an intricate cable pattern over a patch of reverse stockinette. Bobbles make the centers of the flowers. The pattern was simple enough to read for anyone familiar with cable charts, but if you’re new to cables, you might want to start somewhere else. I knit this sweater in almost exactly 2 months, with 67.5 hours of knitting.
This sweater is supposed to button up the front, but in my excitement at how quickly this was knitting up (compared to my last sweater which was fingering weight yarn), and maybe a bit due to wine consumption whilst knitting (strictly for hip pain management, I swear), I completely forgot to put the button holes in the front of the sweater. So, I added a toggle to the front neck and sewed on a chained loop of yarn on the other side. I actually kind of like how it looks with only one closure ( I only had one wood toggle in my button jar), but I may wear it a bit and then decide to go back and add more loops and toggles.
I added a couple of inches to the sleeves, as I always do, and found, much to my surprise, that I didn’t need to! The sleeves area actually a bit long on me now, but I’m sure I’ll be able to get them the right length with another block. The color of yarn that I chose is almost exactly the same as the sweater on the pattern cover, which I don’t usually do, but it was the color that I liked best out of the very sale yarn that I found. Fortunately, I happen to love red clothing and will unabashedly pair this color with just about any palette.
All of the cabling and bobbles are knit onto the sweater as you go. However, the flower petals are knit by picking up two stitches at their center, knitting the petal to the tip, and then sewing them down.
The sweater is seamed with right sides together leaving the seam visible on the outside. I had considered not doing this, but it sewed together so much more quickly this way than if you are trying to make the seams even and hidden on the wrong side, especially trying to match a moss stitch. And seeing the sweater all together, I think the seams add to the design instead of distract from the cables as I had initially thought. So, the author knew what she was doing :)
I wet blocked this sweater by washing it in the bathtub and then stretching it out on the patio to dry. I usually steam block things, but I am so very glad that I washed this sweater as the yarn bled a lot when it got wet. This surprised me as I’m only used to seeing that much color bleeding with hand-dyed yarns. I finished this sweater just in time to wear it over my new silk Anna dress and I would have been devastated if it turned the white silk pink! I thought that it would be important to wet block because the back cable design needed to be stretched out a LOT to hold a nice even shape (which it does easily now).
Does this sweater make anyone else think of a storybook character? Any character in particular? And don’t say Little Red Riding Hood because that’s too easy!