Knit for the life you have

Linen swatch and reelAfter mulling over lots of patterns for rather lovely, loose, sleeveless summer tops (Slope was my favourite), I have decided instead to make a more practical long-sleeved sweater from the reel of undyed linen yarn I found in a cupboard. I’m someone who feels the cold and the reality is that I seldom wear anything short-sleeved or sleeveless unless I’m abroad, and never unless I’m outside in full sun. On the rare occasions when we do have hot weather at home and I’m able to take advantage of it, I generally want to wear something I can garden in, or cycle in, or paint the outside of the garage in. I’m too much of a do-er to be comfortable sitting around in beautiful, floaty, hand-knitted summer tops that require careful washing after each wearing. I must resist the temptation to make clothes for the balmy, drinks-on-the-terrace sort of life that I might wish for and instead knit for the spanner-or-paintbrush-in-hand life that I actually live.

Lightweight raglan pulloverTo that end, I have chosen Purl Soho’s Lightweight Raglan Pullover. It’s a basic, straight up and down, raglan shape with a dropped hem at the front and back, knitted in the round from the bottom up. I’ll wear it over a T-shirt on days that aren’t quite hot enough for short sleeves.

I couldn’t get the stitch tension the pattern calls for, even after buying a 2.75mm circular needle – a size too small for interchangeable circulars. I’m compensating by knitting the smallest size, and I’ll worry about whether I need to make adjustments to suit the different row tension when I come to the sleeves.

Corded hem of jumperThis jumper has corded edgings around the hem, cuffs and neck. They are worked by knitting each stitch together with the one from 4 rows below to draw the fabric up and make a little bulge that runs round the edge just inside the cast-on (or cast-off, in the case of the neckline). The idea is that it will stop the stocking stitch edge from rolling, while giving it a “finished” look. I rather like it and will use it again if it really does prevent the roll.

There’s an awful lot of plain stocking stitch, and on 2.75mm needles (that’s 12s in old money – yikes!) it’s going to take a while.

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About yorkshirecrafter

I live and work in West Yorkshire.  I've always enjoyed crafts of all types, from woodwork to lace-making.  I also enjoy anything mathematical, which makes knitting a favourite pastime, especially complicated designs.  I've been advising businesses and industry on environmental matters for 30 years and also have an interest in green living, especially where it saves me money. I live with my husband and our Maine Coon in a 100-year-old cottage that constantly needs something doing to it.  Fortunately, I enjoy DIY too.
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2 Responses to Knit for the life you have

  1. Aussie says:

    Yikes indeed! It looks wonderful though, and linen, sigh. I haven’t knit with linen yet and I’m so looking forward to knitting it and wearing it. If you need any inspiration for knitting a sweater on tiny needles, there’s a Swedish knitter Disa who has a YouTube channel and she does whole dresses on tiny needles and sock yarn. She had to stay home a lot because she was unwell and making YouTube videos allows her to connect with people while she is unwell. She’s fantastic and her dog is so cute. They had puppies last year and she put some videos up of the puppies too. She is wearing one of her sock yarn dresses in this video (she makes them up as she goes along, she is amazing at creating something from nothing, like you) disascraftwork youtu.be/f-duP7aINt8

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