Monday, July 13, 2015

Sweater Project Update 1: Knitting the Vale Cardigan by Norah Gaughan

So the progress on my Vale Cardigan has been extremely s-l-o-o-o-w.  But that's okay.  I've completed the back and one front side so far.  While knitting this cardigan, I remembered why I try to avoid patterns that have a lot of moss stitch - it's a easy stitch pattern, but requires moving the yarn back and forth with every stitch, which means the project moves rather slowly for me.  But I'm not a fast knitter anyway. 

But I really love the look of this sweater and trust that this slow moving pattern will be worth it in the end :)  So here's what I've learned/realized so far:


 1.  Just a head's up if you plan to knit this sweater - If you make one of the smaller sizes, the pattern includes only 3 columns of the cabling design, as opposed to the 4 columns shown in the pattern photo on  This is completely understandable in order to change the size of the sweater, but I am a little disappointed to have less design on the back on my size small sweater (see my photos above).

2.  The gauge listed in the pattern is for MOSS Stitch, not stockinette stitch.  You'll want to avoid making the stupid mistake I did.


3.  Each front side of this cardigan is almost as wide as the back section of this cardigan.  This is what creates the swing shape of this sweater, but is also going to create two very wide, loose front pieces.  I had thought about adding a few buttons to be able to close this cardigan if I wanted, but now I'm not sure. If I add buttons, I think it's going to look really weird when buttoned, but I'm still thinking about it.

4.  There's a few minor mistakes I've found in the pattern so far:

When starting the cable charts for both the back and front pieces, you need to use Row 1 of the charts TWICE as your set up row (once as the right side, then once as the wrong side).  This will make sense when you knit the pattern.  By using Row 1 twice, it sets you up to do the rest of the charts with the even rows being the right side of your work.

Then I think there's a mistake on the directions for the decreases on the side seams of the two front pieces.  The directions say you should start the decreases on Row 20 for the back portion.  But the directions for each front piece say you should start the decrease FOR THE SIDE SEAMS on Row 2.  I chose to ignore this and did my side decreases on the same rows as my back decreases so they match up.

5.  I've also lengthened this cardigan a bit.  I've added about 1 1/2 inches to the length by starting my underarm shaping at 13 inches instead of at 11 1/2 inches.  I hope this turns out to be a good decision and that I don't run out of yarn because of it.

I'll post more updates as I start the sleeves.

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