OAL 2014: I Made A Cardigan!!!

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I knit my very first sweater! The Myrna cardigan by Andi Satterlund of Untangling Knots. Woohoo!

This was completed as part of the Outfit-Along, as I mentioned in a previous post. I did sew a dress in the challenge time frame (my peach dress that I shared last week), but I didn’t originally intend to wear them together. It just happened to be the dress I was making at the time and since the summer has been so busy I never got around to making the pencil skirt I had planned.

In any case, I was just so thrilled to have finished this cardigan by the deadline that I wore it with the peach dress and shared them in the OAL thread on Ravelry. A few days later, these photos were taken in Bryant Park and I’m much happier with how this cardigan pairs color-wise with my Colette Parfait dress from two years ago.

The yarn I used was Worsted Cotton by Blue Sky Alpacas. The color is Mediterranean, which is perfect since it reminded me of crystal blue water when I spotted it at Downtown Yarns at Avenue A and East 3rd Street. This yarn may be a bit heavier than what’s recommended, but I think it worked out all in all. The one issue I noticed is that it shed on my white dress. Little blue furries lightly sprinkled over the fabric. Hmm, was that supposed to happen?

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Oops, should’ve evened out the cardigan before having my picture taken. 🙂

The pattern calls for size US 8 (5mm) needles, but after my first gauge swatch I went down to a size 7 (4.5mm).

I thought Myrna was a great first sweater project. It came together surprisingly quickly considering I really only worked on it on my subway commute, lunch breaks, and travel (and I was watching a lot of technique videos that I now know by heart – thank YOU, knittinghelp.com!). After a few false starts trying to figure out this whole knitting-a-cardigan business, I started for real in mid-June and, as I said earlier, finished by the July 31st deadline.

By the way, if you happened to buy this pattern before mid-June, or thereabouts, make sure you have the updated pattern instructions. There was an error and some people had armholes that were much too long. Since I was a bit behind, this didn’t really affect me, but I wanted to share that with you just in case. I believe you would have received an update from Andi on Ravelry (as I did).

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I made my version without the keyhole at the upper back.

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This is an extra small, which calls for approximately 440 yards of yarn. My three skeins gave me 450 yards, but oh did I ever struggle to make it to the end! Halfway through the bind off I ran out of yarn. I didn’t want to buy another skein so after frogging I ended up with one less row at the button band. At least now I know how to go backwards halfway through a bind off…

I was even thinking that for my next cardigan I would knit the button band first and then the sleeves. I figure it’s better to have to shorten the sleeves slightly than end up with an unfinished button band should I run out of yarn.

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I wonder how I ended up with too little? One thought is my ribbing, which came out looser than the stockinette stitches. I think my purl stitches are the culprit – too loose – but I could be wrong. My finished waist circumference was 26″ and the schematic says it should be 23″. Also, the cardigan’s length is about 1/2″ to 1″ longer than it should be.

Finding the right ratio for picking up stitches, particularly at the armholes, was the trickiest part. I ended up picking up two stitches for every three at the armholes, but now I’m thinking they should have been picked up a bit differently at the sleeve cap. No idea! Anyway, it’s something to work on.

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And that’s it! Thanks to Lauren and Andi for hosting the Outfit-Along, my Instagram buddies for cheering each other on during this challenge, and everyone else for having to listen to me discuss this knitting project. Oh, and thanks to Maggie of Stitch-n-Thyme (great blog name, right?!) for the moral support on Ravelry as we both ventured into the world of knitting sweaters. This somehow turned into an acceptance speech.

I’m excited to hear that the OAL will happen again next year. I’ll definitely be better prepared now that I know I can do this – I CAN knit a cardigan! Yep, I certainly can. And so can you! 🙂 Speaking of which, did you join in too and/or will you do it next year?

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16 thoughts on “OAL 2014: I Made A Cardigan!!!

    • Aw, thanks. 😀 Buttons can be so tricky – I feel like they can change the entire look of the outfit. I had the same issue with trying to find something to match. I forgot to mention in the post that I got these from M&J Trimmings on 6th Avenue. Guess I could’ve looked elsewhere for the match, but the clear ones let the yarn shine!

    • Ah, I didn’t realize cotton was challenging to knit! If I had known that going in I probably wouldn’t have used it. Ignorance is bless, as they say. 😉

  1. It’s a beautiful cardigan! The color is really amazing, and it goes so well with that dress! I could see it with a tweedy skirt too. I’m impressed you managed to finish it after running out of yarn… that’s the demoralizing sort of problem that gets projects thrown into drawers for a few months!

    • Good idea to pair it with a tweedy skirt! I bought yarn for winter cardigans that I’m excited to pair with skirts and dresses one of these days. And yeah, I was so determined to finish this by the deadline that I think that’s what kept me driven even after the yarn ran out!

  2. Your FO is beautiful! And thanks for the heads up about picking up stitches for the sleeves. I’m working on a Myrna right now (my first knitting project since I was about 10, which is almost 30 years ago) and I had been wondering what the go with that was.

    • Thank you! I hope you’re enjoying knitting Myrna. It was a great first knitting project for me. Very exciting that you’re re-starting your knitting journey – it’s an incredibly rewarding and happy hobby!

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