September 11th, 2013
Hi guys! I see a lot of you have finished your cardigans already. Looking good! Don’t forget to post pictures.
[Editor's Note: Click here to see photos in our Ravelry group, and if you'd like to leave a photo here on the blog, click in the commenting box and you'll see a little "mountain range" icon. Click it to browse to your photo on your computer and upload it to your comment.]
I considered making the sleeves a little longer, but in the end, I decided in the end to make them the same length as in the pattern. However, if you’d like to lengthen your sleeves, it should be pretty easy to do.
Lengthening the Sleeves
The easiest way to lengthen the design is to just work the number of chains for your size and work even until your sleeve has however much longer that you’d like than the one in the pattern, then follow the pattern as set.
The pattern schematic tells us that the sleeve-to-armpit measurement is 9 inches for all sizes. Let’s say that I want my sleeve to be 16.5 inches (16 to 17 inches is a standard length for women’s sleeves). That’s 7.5 more inches. Our pattern gauge tells us that each row is 0.31 inches (4 inches ÷ 13 rows = 0.31 inches per row).
7.5 inches ÷ 0.31 inches per row = 24.19 rows
Our color repeat is ABCDED and each color is used for 2 rows, so 24 rows is two full sets of all of the colors. Therefore, I’d do 24 rows straight, before following the pattern as set. (If you want to make your sleeves longer or shorter, you may need to do a partial repeat of the color pattern, so be sure to plan for that.)
Tips on Blocking
After the sleeves, I had all the pieces finished, so it was time to block. Don’t skip this step! It can make your garment look much more professionally-made and neaten up any uneven stitches. While you can block after your entire garment is done, many people find it helpful to block your garment before sewing it together, as this way you can correct the measurements of any part where your tension may have changed a little.
An easy method to block your project is wet blocking: First, wet the pieces of the garment in lukewarm water. Then wring out the excess water gently and lay your pieces out on your blocking boards. I had to block my pieces in stages, as my boards aren’t big enough for the whole sweater at the same time! Measure your pieces carefully and pin them to the boards following the measurements on the schematic. Now leave your sweater overnight to dry. Make sure it’s completely dry before you start the seaming.
Tips on Seaming
There are a few different methods of seaming crochet pieces together. Usually when seaming a garment I use the sewn seam shown here. However, as you may have noticed the finished garment is rather heavy so I felt it needed a stronger seam to hold it together, so I choice to slip stitch seam my pieces together. This works for me because I’d much rather crochet than sew!
Pro tip: You may find it helpful to use clips or pins to pin your pieces together before beginning seaming.
Surface Slip Stitch
Next, it was time for the surface slip stitches around the edges of the garment. This may sound a little fiddly, but once you get into the swing of it, it’s super easy! It’s also one of my favorite techniques for adding embellishments to an otherwise plain garment: you can use it to write names, draw pictures, or in this case to make the edges of your garment look a little more finished.
Final step: Wear your finished garment with pride, and show it off to all your friends! I can’t wait until this heat-wave is over so I can finally wear mine!
It’s been so much fun crocheting along with you guys and seeing everyone’s garments developing, each one unique in it’s own way. Thanks for sharing this journey with me!
Please continue to share your comments, questions and answers, and photos with us! We’ll be sharing some of your finished projects in the next few weeks, here on the blog.
- Blocking boards on LionBrand.com
- Colorfully Modern Cardigan Crochet-Along #3: The Fronts and Pockets
- Colorfully Modern Cardigan Crochet-Along #2: Making the Back & Changing Colors
- Colorfully Modern Cardigan Crochet-Along #1: Size & Gauge Swatching
- Pattern: Colorfully Modern Cardigan
- Ravelry Group
- Announcing Our Fall 2013 Crochet-Along Project: the Colorfully Modern Cardigan
While we will try to answer some questions here on the blog and on Ravelry, we do encourage participants to help each other with questions. Learning from each other’s experience, mistakes, triumphs, and “design elements” is part of the experience! If you need specific, personal help with the pattern, please feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org and someone from our team can address your question.