garter stich pullover

June 03, 2019

This Garter Yoke Cardigan by Melissa LaBarre is a pattern I've knit several times before. It's meant to be worn with the buttons in front but I've always preferred this sweater with the buttons in back. It's a fantastic pattern but it runs HUGE. I knit the smallest size and made modifications to make it smaller, plus made gathered sleeve poofs. Directions for both modifications are on my Ravelry project page and below.

Wow! In these pictures I was really surprised to see a dye lot change in the yoke. I thought I always checked dye lots but in this case I guess I didn't. It's weird because you can't see the change with the naked eye, but a camera will magnify anything done wrong in a knit, right? No mercy.

The yarn is one of my favorites for summer, Rowan's Creative Linen, a 50/50 blend of cotton and linen. Rowan does a lot of things right and while I think they are most famous for their beautiful wools, they make gorgeous cottons too. Creative Linen goes right into the washer and dryer--the ball band might not recommend it, but I've knit with this many times and even after a few years of wear and quite a few times in the washer and dryer, it holds up very well. If I do put a sweater in the washing machine, I usually put it on gentle cycle with cool water, then put it in a warm, not hot dryer until it's half dry, then finish drying flat in the shade. But this sweater was a little bit big (even with all my modifications) so I put it in a hot water wash and hot dryer to shrink it. It did shrink an inch in length and an inch in width which made a better fit.

I was so happy with the sleeve poof. It turned out just as I had hoped it would. I love the fit and made a few easy mods to make it smaller. My modifications:

To make an XS:

Knit with a much smaller gauge. (DK weight instead of Aran weight.)
Stopped yoke at row 37.
At raglan shaping I repeated rows 3 and 4 six times only.
I had 153 sts for body and 46 sts for each sleeve.

It was still too big so I put it in a hot water wash and hot dryer. It shrunk about an inch in width and length which made it a better fit. The ball band will tell you not to do this of course, but it's cotton and linen and those two can go in the washing machine and dryer. Normally they would not shrink, but this was a planned shrink with HOT!

For sleeve poof: (These are knitted top down in the round,)

To taper the sleeve I made two mirrored decreases before the elbows: 42 sts.
Just below the elbow, kfb each stitch across row: 84 sts.
Knit to desired length of poof.
To finish:
Row 1: K2tog across row: 42 sts.
Row 2: Purl
Row 3: K1, K2tog, K to 3 sts before M, K2tog, K1: 40 sts.
Row 4: Purl
Row 5: Bind off knitwise.

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  1. Love the sleeves! They are proportioned perfectly for you. (When I try those sleeves on in a store they are always too loose or floppy.). Chloe

    1. Oh I know what you mean! I've tried a few tops on in Anthropologie and I thought how on earth would I do anything with these sleeves tripping me up all day long?

  2. Absolutely smashing, you are such a pro and I love seeing all the great knits you make. Thank you for sharing. Debbie

  3. He’s adorable and growing up so fast! I love the romper! I must try mosaic stitching.

    1. Thank you! Yes, I know you'd love mosaic stitch. It's often called the lazy man's colorwork, but I don't care, because I like easy!


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