I got super excited in January when Jonna from the amazing Laine Magazine approached me with a request. She asked me if I'd like to design something for Laine's spring/summer magazine. I had been toying around with an idea of a gradient cardigan, so I sat down, did the calculations and started knitting right away.
What: Utu / own design
How: Circular needles 2.25 mm and 3.0 mm
From: Snailyarn Gradient Set, 310 g
Last summer, we had a knitting festival in my hometown Jyväskylä. And there were two dyers from a bit further away, La bien aimée from France and Snailyarn from Italy. I fell in love with some minty green gradient sets at the Snailyarn booth. One set had 100 grams of yarn in five different shades. Mint has been my absolute favorite color for the past few years so I bought them all and now was the perfect time to go stash diving.
I designed a cardigan with a round yoke decorated with leafs. The leafs are knitted with twisted stitches and two stitch cables. The insides of the leafs are purled except for the stems. Besides the leafs, the cardigan is plain stockinette stitch to let the beautiful yarn have the spotlight it deserves. The cardigan doesn't have waist shaping, the neck band is knitted with smaller needles to keep it snug enough and the sleeves are 3/4 length and have one leaf right before the cuffs. Pretty and delicate, if I may say so myself.
I used the gradient sets so that I switched colors every 12 cm. Before switching colors, I knitted a few stripes to make the transition smoother. I was having a hard time remembering to leave some lighter colors for the sleeves as well and managed to run out of yarn. I was contemplating crying my eyes out when I thought to try Ravelry's stash search. What a wonderful tool, I tell you! I found out there had been one more gradient set up for grabs at the festival and my friend had bought it. I sent her a begging message and the next day, she brought me the yarn. I can't thank you enough!
I was knitting like a crazy person trying to finish the cardigan in time to take it with me on a holiday. I finished it two night before our flight but got into trouble. The superwash treatment made the yarn stretch enormously when I washed it and the cardigan became way too big and droopy. Oh yes, you should always, always wash your swatches before starting the actual project. I had never before had similar problems with SW yarn and didn't thing I would have any this time either. Oh well. I soaked the cardigan again and laid it on the blocking mat trying to first crinkle it to the right measurements and then smooth out the wrinkles. Luckily it worked and the cardigan was the right size after drying.
It wasn't too shabby at all taking pics at the Oxford University botanical gardens. The British winter was offering us its best despite its reputation.
I am beyond excited to have my design in the new issue of Laine Magazine. And not only that, it's featured in the cover! I hope you enjoy knitting it.