Ironically for a blog with a knitting-based title, there hasn't been much substance on the actual knitty side of things for a while, but that's all about to change with my next couple of posts.
Earlier this year I brought a stash of old Rowan knitting magazines from a charity shop, which I blogged about here and mentioned that I was thinking of knitting something from one of them. In the end I decided to knit the 'Sampler Cardigan' by Kim Hargreaves from Issue 4. I chose it because of the Fair Isle pattern and its 1940s vibe. Its not a surprise really to find a vintage-style pattern like this in the magazine, as Issue 4 dates from the 1980s - a decade which freely sought inspiration from 1940s fashions.
The pattern originally used Rowan Designer DK yarn which is now discontinued, so I went for Rowan Felted Tweed DK instead as a close substitute. Also, I thought that the felted yarn fitted in with with the cardigan's vintage look.
I choose the below colours as they were a similar match to the original shades. However, there is a bit of minor deviation as I preferred a darker brown for the birds and two shades of red for the flowers.
175 Cinnamon (Fawn)
160 Gilt (Gold)
178 Seasalter (Blue)
158 Pine (Green)
154 Ginger (Rust)
145 Treacle (Brown)
I started knitting the cardie in March and found that it was quite an easy pattern and very straightforward to knit - apart from a discrepancy with the stitch count in the fronts. I was supposed to have 65 stitches when increasing after the ribbing but this didn't correspond with the chart, so I then changed it to 64, which worked for me.
For once I haven't been promiscuous with my projects; knitting a few rows here then dropping it to flirt with a fresh project that's caught my eye. No siree - I've been a monogamous knitter and have kept on the straight and narrow. This has paid off and after just over five months of monogamous knitting I finished the cardie this week and its now ready to wear.
The only drawbacks I've found have been my choice of buttons as they were the only ones I had in my stash that suited it, but they're too small and easily unbutton. However, this is fine by me as I never button my cardies up.
The other things is the yarn. Its very tactile and great to knit with, but it sheds lots of alpaca strands. After wearing the cardie with dark-coloured clothes it looks like I've been battling with Blofeld's moggy from the James Bond films!