Fieldwork Cardigan

IMGP4772_PEF_shotwell_modified  Here is another make from PomPom magazine.  This is the Fieldwork Cardigan from last years summer issue (issue 5).  It’s funny how long it can take to start a project. In this case I already had the yarn when I got the magazine last May but I only got myself to start this March.  I took the project with me on vacation and had plenty of time to knit so it went quickly. I finished the four panels in about two weeks, but was not able to block the pieces and stitch them together until I got home.  Then I also knit the garter stitch borders and finished.  I used Merino Singles from Lioness Arts in the colorway “Seeing other People” which is a deep shade of red, very pretty.  I actually won the yarn in a PomPom KAL last spring.  I got two 100 gram skeins and used almost all of it for the cardi.  I think it was a very nice paring. The yarn is excellent to knit with and feels high quality.

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The construction of this cardigan is unusual and I know there has been some confusion about it.  First of all it is knit from the side in four panels: right back, left back, right front and left front.  The two back panels are grafted together and then the front pieces are sewn to the back pieces which means there are two sleeve seams, one on upper arm and one on the underarm as well as side seams.  This is a lot of seams on my opinion ( I am a lover of seamless knits) and makes the construction complicated. Before seaming the panels together you have to block them “to measurements” as it says in the pattern.  I found this confusing, since the measurements given in the pattern are that of the finished garment which has borders that add to its length and width.  I would have found it better to have a figure or table with measurements of only the panels. IMGP4767_PEF_shotwell_modified

The Wave Lace pattern is relatively easy, a repetition of 4 rows over seven stitches so once you get the hang of it the knitting is a breeze.  Also because the four panels are very similar, it feels like you are knitting the same thing four times and by the time I started the fourth panel I had gotten a little bored. However, I followed the pattern to the dot, with one exception.  I decided to graft the pack pieces together before blocking since it felt unsafe to do it with lots of open stitches, even though they were on a thread.IMGP4722_PEF_modified

The PomPom magazine makes sure to write all their pattern is the same style. It is clear and precise, they explain every special method at the beginning of the pattern and they always indicate if you are working from the right side (RS) or the wrong side (WS). I find this very helpful and missing in many patterns.  You also know what to expect if you make many of PomPoms garments . However in the Fieldwork cardigan pattern there are many mistakes regarding the precision and things that were overseen.  Some of the mistakes have been corrected in the errata, but not all of them and not clearly enough.  This is especially obvious towards the end of the pattern where all descriptions get very short.  In the sewn cast of it is not indicated from which side it is and the stitches in the button holes do not add up.  At least to my best knowledge it should say:

Buttonhole Row(RS): Sl 1,k to last 7 sts, work One Row Buttonhole over 5 sts, p1. IMGP4721_PEF_modifiedIn spite of this, the cardigan is a beautiful garment and I am very happy with my make.  It is pretty and perfect to complement flowy (summer)dresses.  I have talked about my love of PomPom magazine before and they continue to amaze me with their beautiful designs and I am very exited to get the next copy in only a few weeks 🙂

 

 

FO: The Parka

So, I’ve finally finished the parka I’ve been talking about for the last month.

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I made it from black cotton twill and the lining is red and white polka dot cotton. It features a two way zipper, zipper shield, hood, fish tail hem, welt pockets, paper back pockets with flaps as well as lots and lots of top stitching.  It’s definitely the most difficult and complicated garment I have ever made and I think I did a fairly good job.  At least I am very happy with the result and I know I will wear it a lot.IMGP4515_modified

I made some alterations. I shortened the body by 7 cm in total, 2 above the waist and 5 below and because of this I used a zipper that was 65 cm instead of 70 cm. I shortened the sleeves by 5 cm, which may have been a little bit to much, but it works OK.  I did not make a muslin because this is a loose fitting jacket and I found it unnecessary, but maybe I should have to get the sleeve length right. The pattern was not always very clear and the photographs in the magazine, the technical drawing and the written instructions did not always match which meant I had to improvise a little sometimes.  But I guess that when you sew a pattern that is graded as advanced you should be able to figure out what to do when the instructions are not clear.  And one thing that I found very bad.  IMGP4520_modifiedThe pockets are worked first. They are sewn on the front pieces before they are interlined with the lining, which means that the fabric stretches out. When I cut out the lining and started basting to the shell, the shell was bigger, which gave me some difficulty when lining up the zipper and hemming.  So my advice (and reminder if I make this again) is to stay stitch the front pieces before working the pockets.

IMGP4523_modifiedSure, it has some flaws.  The sleeves are not totally pucker free, the pockets are not perfectly identical on both sides and the top stitching is not completely straight but I love those little imperfections.  They are there because I made this jacket and I am very proud of it.  For years, I have been looking for a black autumn/spring jacket but never found the right one. Now I have one that I love and I will probably wear it until it falls apart. Mission accomplished!IMGP4521_modified

FO: On-Trend the Skirt

Like I said I finished a skirt from the newest Ottobre woman issue.  It’s red and is lined with grey and red polka dot fabric and very pretty.

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I bought the fabrics a while ago in my local fabric shop.  They were left overs on discount, less then a meter of each and I bought them with the intention of making a simple lined skirt.  The colors worked well together and the shell fabric even has some stretch but it is cotton.

IMGP4361_modifiedIt was relatively easy to make but still has pockets, invisible zipper and lining so in that sense it’s quite advanced. I cut a size 34 but made some alternations. I shortened it by about 10 cm and widened it by 2 cm at the waist.  Normally I would have added those 2 cm at the side seams but because of the pockets I decided to make the darts shallower, and I think it worked ok.  Also, I was supposed to sew the hem by hand, and since I am scared to death to hand stitch a hem I just did it on my machine.

The end result is a classic, well fitting skirt and I hope I will wear it a lot.  I find the red a bit to red though  (do you know what I mean?), but I am determined not to let it throw me off.

IMGP4362_modifiedp.s. I am sorry about the bad photos, I am new to taking photos of myself but I hope I will get better with time.