Earlier this summer I was given an opportunity by the French yarn company, Bergère de France, to have a sneak peek at their Autumn/Winter 2014 pattern collection and to choose a pattern to knit and review. I decided to knit a child's pattern: number 33 from Magazine 174 - Tricot Kid - 'Zipped Intarsia Coat'. I chose this for a number of reasons: the first being that I knew Monkeychild would be happy wearing it and that it wouldn't be consigned to the back of her wardrobe, secondly its knitted in a chunky yarn so it would be a quick knit for a slow knitter like me, and thirdly: I had never attempted intarsia before so it was going to be a bit of a challenge.
As soon as the yarn arrived I made a start on knitting the back, which went quite quickly. After I finished the back it was time to make a start on the left front and commence with the intarsia. Having knitted Fair Isle patterns previously, I used a similar technique for intarsia using short lengths of yarn wound on bobbins and weaving these in as I knitted. I quickly found though, that I was losing my place in the pattern's intarsia chart; so I decided that I would colour-up each row when I finished it. This lengthy option slowed down my knitting, but at least I could easily follow where I was in the pattern and it did save me from making lots of mistakes and having to frog rows.
You can see from the above photo that I managed to keep a relatively consistent tension, with only a few gaps occurring; however these easily were sewn up when I came to weave in the loose ends.
After a few more weeks of knitting, I finally finished the coat at the weekend and you can see that it's recipient is very happy indeed with it...
I really like the self-striping effect of the 'Cyclone' yarn, especially on the back. And by starting with a new ball of yarn for each sleeve, I've managed to match up the striping on both sleeves.
The only mod that I made to the coat was to slip-stitch lengths of spotted petersham ribbon to the underside of the zipper, which I hand-stitched on. This was just to finish the coat off tidily and to hide the zipper seam when the coat is unzipped.
This pattern was a good introduction to intarsia for me, as the intarsia placement was well spaced and didn't have large areas of colour that required significant stranding to carry the coloured yarn across. All-in-all, I'm really happy with how this knit has turned out and so is Monkeychild too.