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Where Are They Now? The Summer Cardigan November 7, 2007

Posted by merp in Blogging, Knitting, Where Are They Now?.

I’ve noticed that in the online knitting world, there’s lots of sharing of new ideas, planned projects, and projects executed (in both senses of the word). The merits of various patterns and yarns are widely discussed, but usually only for their future potential, or their performance in a just-finished project.

But how do they wear over the long term?

I’ve decided to start logging the performance of the things I knit a year or more after I’ve finished them.

To kick it off, my second most popular project to date (judging from the number of page hits, surpassed only this week by the Grandma slippers): my summer cardigan from June of 2006.


The design:

Pretty good. If I made it again, I would make the sleeves either shorter (more like cap sleeves) or longer (in which case I might incorporate some of the Grecian plait stitch). I would also raise the waistline to be more of an empire waist (which is what I actually had in mind; it just didn’t come out right). I might also make it a bit of a wrap, so that it crosses over a bit in front. Or not. I would also make the “skirt” of the sweater a bit roomier.

I still love the Grecian plait stitch for the bottom half (close-up here) – breathable and very pretty. And of course the v-neck, top-down raglan, single-button design – how can you go wrong with that?

Not at all unlikely that I would make it again, actually, given the materials I chose the first time….

The yarn:


Caron Simply Soft, 100% acrylic. Indeed, it is soft – and silky – and it stays that way. And you can’t beat the price ($5-6 for the whole sweater). The color (bone) was pretty and versatile, too.

Knitting up, it was sometimes splitty, always slippery, and I found it nearly impossible to weave the ends in so they’d stay. As you see, the ends keep working their way out. Perhaps there’s a special acrylic technique for this?

I knitted it at the gauge specified in Glampyre’s Mini Boobholder pattern, on which this cardigan is based: 16 st/4 inches in stockinette. Too loose, and it made it even harder to keep the woven-in ends invisible, or even woven in. It also snags a lot (see splittiness, above).


When it comes to wearing it, however, it turns out to be quite unbearable, particularly in the summer humidity. Even knitted up into an open fabric like this, I find that I cannot wear it more than 15 minutes without breaking into a clammy sweat and having to take it off again.

So there I am, catching a breeze in my sleeveless whatever-I’m-wearing, pulling on my cardigan, getting sweaty and smothered, taking it off, feeling clammy and chillier than before, putting it on again, and so on. Deeply irritating.

The button:


Isn’t it pretty? It’s a great button. Unfortunately, totally wrong for this fabric. It’s metal (bronzish?) and much too heavy, pulling and stretching out the sweater in front. A fabric this light needed either a plastic button or perhaps ribbon ties.


C+. It’s a decent design, but I never wear it because it’s too uncomfortable. Needs a do-over, in cotton, bamboo, or a silk blend.



1. Where Are They Now? PNW Cardigan « merp - April 27, 2008

[…] yarn: Lion Brand Woolease. Ick, unfortunately. Nowhere near as bad as Caron Simply Soft – the wool content keeps it breathable, springy, and not too squeaky. And I certainly appreciate […]

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