She Knits: Basic Blue Cardigan

The cardigan is finally done and off the needles! This sweater exhibits many firsts for me:

  1. my first knitted, adult-sized article of clothing;
  2. my first time working seams over curved shapes (shoulders);
  3. my first button holes;
  4. my first grosgrain ribbon support band.

Here’s a list of things I like about this item:

  1. It fits.
  2. The shoulder seams landed exactly where they ought to be, which makes for nice-looking cardigan-covered upper arms.
  3. The yarn is soft.
  4. The yarn is machine washable and dryable.
  5. It fits. Oh, did I already mention that?
  6. The wide ribbing at the bottom and on the cuffs flatters my shape.
  7. The overall style (waist shaping, low-cut neckline) compliments my figure.
  8. The grosgrain ribbon adds much stability to the back neckline and was a very good idea.

And here is a list of things I wish were different about this item:

  1. The bind-off edge of the button band is a little too tight—I should have used, maybe, the Surprisingly Stretchy Bind Off. I worried a stretchier bind-off would look sloppy, but I really think the garment requires it.
  2. It is a hair too tight around the bust (top button tends to come undone). But another inch would be way too much—maybe half an inch?
  3. The sleeves are a hair too long. They are supposed to be ¾-length, but look more like too-short long sleeves! I’m not terribly concerned about it and will wear the cardigan regardless.
  4. It really would look better with blue buttons, but I couldn’t find any. If I ever happen to find some, I’ll be taking off the white and putting on the blue.
  5. I think it would look better with a wider button band. It ended up being 5 rows of ribbing, but perhaps 8-10 would look more balanced.

As mentioned in my “likes” above, the grosgrain ribbon turned out to be a great idea. It definitely adds stability to the back neckline because the ribbon does not stretch. I couldn’t find navy blue ribbon (Ugh, Wal-Mart! No navy buttons, no navy ribbon!), so I settled for a complimentary brown instead. The ribbon was easy to add in and was definitely worth the extra bit of time it took.

I did not particularly like all of the seaming I had to do for this. However, the seams add structure to the garment, so are probably worth the hassle. A sweater worked in-the-round would probably be quicker to knit, but might not hold its weight as well.


Pattern Name: Basic Black
Pattern Designer: Glenna C.
Pattern Source: Ravelry
Pattern Rating: 3/5 stars

Yarn Name: Cascade Yarns Cherub Collection DK
Yarn Fiber Content: 55% nylon, 45% acrylic
Yarn Color: Navy Blue (#6492)
Yarn Rating: 3/5 stars

Date Started: 07/16/2011
Date Completed: 10/20/2011


07/17: Completed swatching for gauge; settled on size to knit
07/22: Finished back piece.
08/10: Started front left piece.
09/19: Started front right piece.
09/27: Finished right front; started sleeve #1
10/02: Finished sleeve #1; started sleeve #2
10/18: Finished sleeve #2; seamed; started button band
10/19: Finished button band
10/20: Added buttons, grosgrain ribbon to back neck seam, washed, dried

Please excuse the imperfect photos. It is difficult to get a decent shot of an item while wearing it. Also, the color of this cardigan is very tough to photograph accurately—it’s a nice, navy blue, no matter what the pictures tell you! The color is most accurate in the first photo.

Here you can see a closer shot of the grosgrain ribbon. You can’t see it from the right side, though the anchor stitches look big. I really don’t like that it’s a contrasting color, but my only other options were light sky blue and pink—so brown was the obvious choice!


One thought on “She Knits: Basic Blue Cardigan

  1. I love all your comments about it fitting! And nice one getting it to fit on your first adult garment, that’s the tricky part!

    The colour looks royal blue on my computer, isn’t it funny the different ways the colours show up?

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