Up and comings.

The photoshoot for my next book is over and the sweaters are done:


Which means it’s time to share our next big news!

We’re very excited to announce that we’ve got a big redesign of The CustomFit site coming on Monday. There are a bunch of new features we think you’ll love:

  • Simplified swatch and measurement creation
  • The ability to to copy measurements from CYCA standards and adjust for your body
  • A vastly improved ability to tweak fit and ease information before making your pattern
  • A cleaner, easier-to-use design
  • Our next Basics Collection
  • And more! :)

It takes a while for our server to upload the changes on the CustomFit site, so there is some planned downtime coming on Monday. We will have the site “down for maintenance” from about 11am – 3pm EDT on Monday. We’ll let you know here when it’s back up and running!

We’re so excited for these changes – we hope you’ll love everything as much as we do. Until Monday, happy knitting!

Knit Wear Love sweater profile: The Cardigan

Knit Wear Love is not a pattern collection.

I don’t really write books that are pattern collections. Instead, I want my books to be a great set of references that help you create garments you can’t wait to put on, and never want to take off.

Knit Wear Love approaches this from a super-practical standpoint: What kinds of clothes do you wear every day? How do you make your handknits work well with that?

The book is centered around 8 “meta patterns”: Pullover, Cardigan, Vest, Cowl, Wrap, Tunic, Tank, Bolero. Everything in the book helps you make sweaters from your choice of silhouette, out of materials and with detailing that you’ll immediately want to wear.

In this ongoing series, I take in-depth looks at each meta-pattern. For each, I share the three samples and styles, talk a little bit about the silhouette itself and what materials can make it shine (or would be tragic), and do a candid photo of how I’d personally style one of the samples. In my first post for this series, I chose The Pullover. Now I’m talking cardis.

The Cardigan.


Everybody loves a good cardi. They’re comfortable, they’re easy-on, easy-off, they go with lots of different outfits. For many knitters, cardigan is synonymous with “first sweater”.

The KWL Cardigans

The book showcases three very different-looking garments that are fundamentally all the same design:

  • A soft, cozy, open cardigan for chilly and casual fall days;
  • A professional, quick-to-knit classic cardigan with subtle texture and some great buttons;
  • A sweeter, vintage style out of some luscious yarn with dainty lace.

Like all of the chapters in this book, these three sweaters were made from the same pattern. When knitting your own cardigan, you could go with one of the variations here – or go further toward your own style! Mix and match detailing (I think lace cuffs would look fantastic in a larger-gauge, super-smooth wool with the worn-open styling), swap out yarn (the pattern is written for sport, worsted, and bulky gauges), really choose detailing that speaks to you.

Personally, I’m looking forward to making the classic variation in a lighter-weight, nubby silk blend next spring. I already have the sea glass-colored buttons picked out… …but you get the idea, right? The choices are completely up to you.

Cardigan Tips & Tricks

Whatever variation you’re making, I have just a few tips to ensure your cardigans will be hugely successful:

  • Make sure your fabric has structure. Cardigans may be more forgiving in terms of fit than pullovers, but they have much less structure: The open nature of the front, combined with the weight of most hand-knits, means that they’re more likely to droop, sag, and have other issues. The solution is a very structured hand-knit fabric – not tight, but strong and with a lot of integrity. Check back here later this month for a video on this topic, or watch Lesson 2 in my most recent Craftsy class.
  • Make sure your fabric matches the way you’ll wear the sweater. Quite aside from how sturdy your fabric is, consider the materials you’re using and whether they’ll stand up to how you wear your cardigans. If this cardi needs to be hard-wearing – it’s your dog-walking sweater, or the one you’ll throw on to head to the park every afternoon, that ultra-soft merino blend that pills when you rub the swatch might not be the best choice. If you’re after something to layer with your work separates, the worsted-weight variegated hand-dye might not be the best match – think crisp linen, instead. To make sure your materials match the context you expect, play around with your swatch! Rub it, shove it in a purse, lay it out on the outfits you’re imagining.
  • Consider closures. You’ll want to keep that cardigan closed somehow, unless you’re going for a worn-open style. You’ve got tons of options, from zippers to tie-fronts (a la the vintage variation) to the classic buttons. There are also movable, removable, screw-in style closures available – super neat for people like me, who like to change their minds!

Amy’s Fave

Although this sample is decidedly not sized for me, I’ve caught myself wearing the casual cardigan a bunch:

yay-book-2 amy-cardigan-kwl-1

This past winter, with its record-smashing snows and super cold days, I wore it regularly – usually over a t-shirt, like on the left. But as I look forward to this fall, I can’t help but get excited about dressing this casual cardi up a bit – maybe with my favorite pair of cords, and that super-cute shirt I found on sale?

(Full disclosure: I have not actually worn the outfit on the right yet. Just taking these pictures in 90+ degree weather was enough to send me scrambling for my cut-offs!)

How about you – what are your feelings on cardis? Do you have a favorite? If so, what’s it made from?

As always, happy knitting!

In Real Life: Cushing Isle

We’re starting a new series over at my Instagram account today called “In Real Life”. Each month, we’ll highlight one particular design and how several truly awesome knitters have made it their own.

Today’s design is Cushing Isle, which is built directly into CustomFit (meaning you can work it in any yarn, at any gauge). Brenda, Melistocrat, Pam, and Rita made four different, and absolutely stunning, sweaters from this design.

Don’t you agree?

Sweater Modifications for a Custom Fit – Final Giveaway!

Edit: Marie is our winner! She had some great thoughts:

I’d like to learn to not be scared & wait for my ideal shape (that probably won’t happen) & to go for it. To learn to knit for me now, to enjoy it and be proud of my attempt/creation!

As my book deadline approaches, the sweaters are piling up …


But I was able to take a few breaks this week to give away copies of my new Craftsy class! I’d like to share a few of my favorite things I heard from students this week.

On Tuesday, we gave away a copy of the class on our Instagram. The topic of the day was Fabric. One of the lessons in the class discusses fabric: how to make a good fabric, what yarns make great fabric for sweaters, how to tell if your fabric will perform the way you expect. Here’s a link to all the lovely photos knitters shared with us on Instagram – there are some great swatches there!

Our winner was @langwidere, who showed off a beautiful tray of swatches overseen by her (not-very-interested) pooch. I loved seeing the many different types and colors of fabric lined up — I save all my swatches, too!

dog plus swatches!

Next, we headed over to Ravelry for a discussion on ease. One of the lessons in my new class focuses on ease: what it is, where you need it, how much to assign where. We asked Ravelers to share stories about ease with us, and the results were amazing! Check out the full thread here. Our winner, reapergirl, shared this with us:

I’ve knitted several sweaters for myself, but I still seem to get into trouble sometimes. Or as Stephanie Pearl-McPhee says experienced knitters just make bigger mistakes, faster.

I wanted a lightweight, loose cardigan that I could wear to ward off office air conditioning. I picked a pattern that was a top-down, increase as you go affair. … Rather than the flowy cardigan that I envisioned, I wound up with a shrug as the fabric stretched width-wise to fit over my chest (part of that was my fault, over compensating for a short torso). It simultaneously had too much positive ease in the back and too much negative ease in the front. I think I’ve worn it twice, once to take a picture for my projects page, and once to figure out that the combination of problems mentioned above means that I wind up adjusting it every 5 seconds.

We’ve all been there! Finally, yesterday we talked about setting in sleeves on Facebook. Jane L. had some great thoughts to share:

Set in sleeves still make me nervous, I admit, for many reasons: because they are crucial to fit and look, and because I don’t feel like I have developed good strategies to fall back on when I run into problems. Glad you are offering a class on this.

I hope the lesson on set-in sleeves and seams can help Jane with some strategies in case she runs into problems … or even better, prevent the problems in the first place!


To win today, tell us what you hope to learn from my new Craftsy class! Leave a comment here, and we’ll pick a winner on Tuesday – meet you back here then. Have a great weekend, and work hard on your Fall Festival sweaters … Rhinebeck approaches!

(If you just can’t wait, or missed your chance to win – again, here’s the link for 50% off the class. Thank you all so much! You’re the best knitters I know.)


Sweater Modifications for a Custom Fit

Update, 08/31: The class is live! You can find it here for 50% off! We’ll also give away a copy of the class on the blog on Friday.

One of my favorite things about my job is teaching. I love teaching the love of sweaters to knitters all over the country, and I wish I could do it more often! Unfortunately, one of the biggest frustrations in this new career is that I simply can’t be everywhere, all the time.

(Scratch that. It’s one of the biggest frustrations of my life, not just in this career!)

So I’ve really really enjoyed working with Craftsy these past couple of years, to offer my very popular Knit to Flatter class through their platform. (Click that link for $20 off if you haven’t taken it yet, by the way.) It allows me to work directly with students, whenever and wherever they are. I’ve loved the interactions I’ve had with the 13,000+ students enrolled in the course.

So I was absolutely delighted when they asked me to do another class.

It’s called “Sweater Modifications for a Custom Fit”, and it goes live this coming Monday, August 31!


The class was super fun to film, and covers a lot of sweater topics that I’ve been teaching these last couple of years. While my first Craftsy class included a little bit on fit, I kept things pretty general! Knit to Flatter was focused mostly on the visual elements in enjoying your sweaters, instead: Why you might like V- or scoop-necks instead of crew necks, for example, and tips on how to branch out from there.

This class leaves body shape and visual elements behind, and focuses instead on everything else that goes into a successful sweater – and there’s lots to cover, there, from fabric, to stitch patterning, to fit specifics, and beyond. Want a little more detail? In the 7 lessons, I’ve included:

  • A class pattern. I wrote up a choose-your-own-adventure style pattern specifically for the class. It’s worked in two yarns – the budget-friendly Naturespun Sport and the pricier but oh-so-luscious Rowan Lima. There are cardigan and pullover options, and two sleeve lengths, and two necklines. So you get the benefits of working through a class pattern, without being constrained to one specific look.
  • Detailed Fit Modifications. In this class, I get nitty-gritty about how to make all of the modifications you need in a sweater – from measuring to choosing a size to working modifications within the super-easy system and formula I’ve streamlined over the past 5 years. I even talk about those pesky sleeve caps!
  • Fabric and Style choices. I talk about what sweaters need, fabric-wise, and how to tell if your fabric has it. I talk about fiber, and how it affects fabric in the context of a sweater, and when you might want one thing vs. another. I talk about where you might place stitch patterning in a “blank slate” sweater, and what considerations you might make around that.
  • Finishing things off. I give a quick crash-course in blocking, pinning together, and seaming your sweater to round off the course.

I had a wonderful time filming it, and I hope you enjoy it too! The class goes live on Monday, and if you’d like a chance to win a free copy from Craftsy, click here!

Since book knitting is still in full-on crazypants mode, I’ll sign off for now, and catch up with you again on Monday. Until then, here are some pictures from the shoot:

craftsy-class-smaller-3 craftsy-class-smaller-1 craftsy-class-smaller-8 craftsy-class-smaller-7
Have a great weekend!

Missive from the Field

I am 6 weeks away from deadline for my next book, and while I can’t spare a lot of time to type these days, I wanted to give you a little flavor of life around here right now.

See you in September!


Holiday knitting

Happy Friday, and happy holiday weekend to those of you in the US!

I’ll be knitting this weekend (I know, you’re shocked), but while knitting is my job, don’t feel too sorry for me for having to work! In some ways I’m on a little bit of a holiday because the sweater I’m knitting at this very moment isn’t actually for the book – it’s my Summer Sweater KAL sweater:


The yarn is Rowan Handknit Cotton in “Slate”**, which is one of my absolute favorite summer staples. It’s smooth, it has a beautiful sheen and hand, and I can’t wait to wear this pullover tank. It’ll be the perfect thing for layering over my favorite acid jean skirt (don’t judge) or some crisp white linen pants.

If all goes well, it will be finished up this weekend, and available for your own summer knitting shortly thereafter!

**The picture above is from Instagram, and so has been filtered to within an inch of its life. The color is substantially more accurate in the pictures below. The way it looks on the end is the fabric when light hits it; the way it looks in the middle is when the fabric is in shadow or indirect light.

hkc-tank-2 hkc-tank-3 hkc-tank-1

What will you be knitting this weekend?

CustomFit “Mash-Ups”

Well hello, there!

Squam was a glorious oasis of stillness and joy:


(Photo courtesy the amazing Clara Parkes.)
…before coming back home to the gauntlet that is the final week of school when you have elementary-aged children. Things have settled down into “summer vacation” now, and we’re all enjoying a few days of lazy mornings and coffee-until-11am before summer camp starts.

I’m working fast and furious on the next book and a couple of other really exciting projects for fall, which doesn’t make for great blogging!


So I thought I’d take today and write about something that’s been rattling around in my head for awhile:


CustomFit Mash-Ups


Once someone has knit up one of the designs built directly into CustomFit, they often want to use CustomFit to recreate a design they love, but that isn’t built into the site – whether the design is mine, or someone else’s. We call this “mashing up” the original design with CustomFit.

Here are some of our favorites from the past year:

jenn-vika kelly-gakusei lauren-acer mollie-hitch
(Jenn’s Vika, Kelly’s Gakusei, Lauren’s Acer, and Mollie’s Hitch.)
For some of my designs, we’ve released files called recipes to help with this mash-up process. But most of the time, you’ll be on your own. With that in mind, here’s a step-by-step guide, along with a downloadable worksheet, for mashing up a CustomFit pattern with another design.

Step 1: Purchase the original pattern.

You like that sweater enough to want to make it – and you’ll need information from the pattern to do so. Show the designer that you like their work and purchase the original.

Step 2: Identify the CustomFit options for the design’s silhouette.

You’ll be using the Build Your Own Sweater feature to create your core CustomFit pattern, and it’s a good idea to specify as much of the design in CustomFit terms as possible. Using the pattern’s photo, schematic, and actual text in combination, write down the following on your mashup worksheet:

  • Basic Garment Type and Info: Is it a cardigan or a pullover? Sleeved or sleeveless? (You can tell these things simply by looking at the photos.)
  • Sleeve Info: How long are the sleeves, and what shape are they (tapered? straight? belled?)? What stitch pattern trims them, and how much trim is there? (The sleeve length & shape should be easy to tell from the photo and schematic, but you’ll need to look at the pattern itself for the trim info.)
  • Neck Info: What shape is the neckline itself, and how wide and deep is it? What trims it, and how much trim is there? (Again, the pattern schematic and instructions are the best places to find this info.)
  • Length and Cardigan Options: Look at the picture to determine the length, and the pattern to determine what the hem and cardigan plackets (if any) are trimmed with.

You’ll use this information to generate your basic CustomFit pattern.

Step 3: Identify changes you’ll make to the CustomFit pattern, and write them down.

For most sweaters, you’re not done yet! You’ll be making changes to the basic CustomFit pattern to achieve the look of the original design. Usually, these changes involve either adding stitch patterning to one or more pieces, or doing something unusual trim-wise during finishing.

Stitch patterning. If you’re adding either a textured stitch or a lace panel to your CustomFit pattern, you likely don’t have to adjust the stitch count. Simply make a note of which stitches you’ll be marking and what stitch pattern you’ll be working on the marked stitches.

If you’re adding cables, you’ll need to adjust your CustomFit stitch count to account for the cable’s “suckage:” Add one stitch to your CustomFit stitch count for each stitch that gets put on a cable needle during your cable repeat. (For example, if you’re adding a single 2×2 cable to the front of a cardigan, add 2 stitches to your cardigan front. If you’re adding three 2×2 cables to your sweater back, add 6 stitches to your back stitch count.) You’ll then need to remove those extra stitches when you’re done with the cable – usually, this means working some decreases in your bind-off row to eliminate the stitches.

Trims. This is the other big place you’re likely to make changes – be they a shawl collar, a hood, an edging that’s picked up and worked during the finishing stage, etc. Read this portion of your original pattern carefully to determine what you’ll do. Usually the pattern’s instructions will translate well to your CustomFit version.

In both cases, you’ll be writing down the changes to the CustomFit pattern on the second page of your mashup worksheet.

Step 4: Create your CustomFit pattern, put it and your mash-up worksheet together, and start knitting.

As you knit your CustomFit pattern, pay attention to page 2 of your mash-up worksheet (and anything you need from the original pattern, like charts). Make adjustments as you get to them.


Sound complicated? It’s not, really – once you have a specific design you’re working toward. Since I don’t have permission to build any of my book sweaters into CustomFit yet, let’s step through this process with one of my own designs that’s very popular in classes: The Cypress Cardigan.

Cypress-2 Cypress-back-nfb
For each step, I’ll go through the changes – and then you can download a sample, filled-out mash-up worksheet for Cypress here.

Step 1. Cypress is in my first book, Knit to Flatter, on page 31.

Step 2. You can tell from the picture that Cypress is a mid-hip cardigan (though of course you could change this!), with tapered 3/4 sleeves and a narrow scoop neck that begins .5” (1.5 cm) above the armhole shaping. The trims are as follows:

  • Hem: 2” (5 cm) Twisted 1×1 ribbing.
  • Sleeves: 3.5” (9 cm) Twisted 1×1 ribbing.
  • Neck: .75” (2 cm) Twisted 1×1 ribbing.
  • Button Band: 1” (2.5 cm) gap and trim height for Twisted 1×1 ribbing. Sample has 7 or 8 buttons depending on size.

Step 3. The non-standard bits of Cypress are the lace stitch patterning on the back and front. You’ll be making changes to your CustomFit pattern’s back and front to recreate it:

  • Back: The Shell Lace pattern written on page 31, and charted on page 32, is repeated as many times as possible within the neck bind-offs on your back. The lace repeat is a multiple of 11 sts plus 12; find the largest number of repeats below the number of stitches you bind off in the back neck, and place lace markers around those stitches after you complete your ribbing. Switch center-most marked stitches to Shell Lace for Back until neck bind-offs.
  • Fronts: Similarly, the Shell Lace pattern for Front (pages 31/32) are repeated as many times as possible in the number of neck stitches you have on each front. The repeat is a straight 12 stitches this time, plus 2 stitches of Stockinette on the edge for selvedge. Place a lace marker where appropriate and switch the edge stitches to lace and selvedge after the trim, until the neck bind-offs.

When you’re knitting, you’ll need both your CustomFit pattern and the charted or written instructions for the lace handy. (I’ve been told by many many knitters that Knit Companion is a great way to merge your PDFs and keep track of your stitch pattern charts.)

Make sense? You can download an example of the mash-up worksheet for Cypress here, and download a blank mash-up worksheet here. I hope you feel confident in using CustomFit to recreate the sweater you’ve been wanting to make, but not wanting to modify! So let us know:

What sweater do you most want to mash-up?

And if you have already mashed-up a CustomFit sweater with another design, how did it go?

make. wear. love. west: pescadero

I want to help you create practical, beautiful things that you actually love to wear. The crazy happy sweater face grin you get when you complete a sweater you want to wear all the time? Literally one of the best things in the world. Until now, the focus of my efforts has been to help every knitter get a tailored, fitted sweater that gets worn immediately, and often.

There’s good reason for this! A well-fitting tailored garment feels amazing. It’s one of the most basic, classic things you can make with your hands. But it’s not the be-all, end-all of clothing.

It’s time to talk about the raglan.


The name “raglan” comes from the the mid-18th century. When the Lord Raglan lost an arm in the Crimean war, his tailor made a simplified shirt construction to allow him better freedom of movement. This expanded range of movement (vs. a set-in sleeve) made raglans the darling of American sportswear – think baseball jerseys!

Compared to a tailored set-in sleeve, a raglan top has more fabric in the armholes and shoulder, so you can swing a bat or racquet, even when the shirt is made out of a woven fabric. Raglans are sporty and comfortable — you’ve probably got a bunch of them. Personally, I love a good raglan and wear them all the time.

And yet, many knitters have tried to make a raglan they loved, and failed. Why is that?

I think there are a couple of reasons. In my opinion, the first is that the most popular kind of raglan sweater right now is a top-down, seamless construction. This raglan is usually shaped using matched increases every other row until the full bust width is reached. Here’s one I made for myself several years ago:


This way of forming the raglan is really limiting. You can’t adjust the sleeves and body independently, even though bodies vary a lot! That means this style of raglan works really really well for a very specific bust/shoulder/armhole combination, and it doesn’t work at all well for others.

Contrast that with a seamed raglan, where the sleeves and body are knitted separately, allows for different shaping rates on the different pieces. As long as the row counts match, you can change how often you decrease to match your body better. And this works for lots of different shoulder/armhole/bust combinations. Just as importantly, the seams provide added structure when the sweater needs it.

Here’s an example of a raglan of this type that I knit for myself close to 15 years ago. I still wear it regularly:


Honestly, I wear a lot of raglans regularly. So when I was designing my own sweater of the make. wear. love. retreat: west coast collection, and thinking about what I wear on the beach, I knew it had to be a raglan.

Presenting, Pescadero:


Pescadero is a bottom-up, in-pieces raglan with compound shaping.

The raglan shaping changes from armhole up to shoulder – sometimes it’s steeper, sometimes it’s shallower — to better match the body. It’s worked with back waist shaping only, to give it a relaxed, but not boxy, feel. The front has a small, allover lace pattern, and I just love the way it worked out.

It’s the single best sweatshirt-y sweater I’ve ever had, and I’ve knit myself a lot of sweaters.

pescadero-final-print-4 pescadero-final-print-2 pescadero-hanger-1 pescadero-hanger-2

It’s made out of Indigodragonfly Wingenhooven, a lustrous fingering-weight blend of superwash merino, yak, and silk. I worked it up at 7.5 stitches to the inch, and the fabric is beyond amazing. It’s soft, has an incredible soft sheen, and has lovely drape thanks to the silk.

…which brings me to the number two reason that many knitters haven’t been happy with their raglans: The fabric.

Hand-knit fabric just isn’t like store-bought fabric.

It has structure, a mind of its own, and doesn’t conform well to the body. The heavier the yarn, and the more tightly it’s knit (which is necessary for well-wearing sweaters), the less any sweater is going to move with you and be comfortable.

With a properly-fitting set-in construction, this doesn’t matter. The garment anchors itself to your body well and your movement exercises the basic stretch that even hand-knit fabric has. No problems.

But with a raglan sweater, which by design isn’t anchored in the same way, it’s a different story. Heavy, stiff, hand-knit can feel uncomfortable, bunch, and otherwise keep you from the sweater of your dreams.

Working Pescadero in a drapey fingering weight yarn gave me a sweater fabric that breathes and moves with me. It’s a little scrunchy, a little fluid, and moves with me well.

So there you have it. My first raglan design, and a sweater that I love to wear – and that shows the best of what this construction can be. You can purchase it by buy now“>clicking here, or by downloading it in my Ravelry store, for $7.00.


I’ll talk in later posts about how to choose a size and modify a raglan pattern. Until then, happy knitting! I look forward to seeing lots of great sporty sweaters in the future.

make. wear. love. west coast: the retreat designs

Each year, I create a design mini-collection for our fall retreat in Maine. Some of my favorite sweaters come from these little collections, and so when we decided to run our first west coast retreat, my brain immediately went to sweaters.

Drawing on my own knowledge of the Monterey Peninsula, which is both soaked in sunshine and often quite cool, I decided to create a collection of sweaters that would make great beach-wear.

spanish-bay-final-1 sunset-drive-final-1 pescadero-final-print-2
(From left to right: Spanish Bay, Sunset Drive, Pescadero.)

The actual release of these patterns will span two days, since Pescadero is a little different than what you’ve seen from me before! So for today, I’m going to start off with the two designs that are built directly into CustomFit: Spanish Bay and Sunset Drive.

Spanish Bay

Ask any knitter what sweater she prefers to wear in warm-again-cold-again weather, and a cardigan will top the list. And there’s lots of truth to those preferences!

Cardigans are easy to take on and off, forgiving in terms of fit, and flattering to all.

And I’ve personally always loved the slightly thicker, cotton store-bought cardigans that I wore on the beach, growing up. Spanish Bay is a nod to that nostalgia.

It’s made in Rowan’s Purelife Revive, which seems to have taken the place of the old Summer Tweed in their yarn line-up. I love this yarn. (For that matter, in terms of summer yarns in general? Rowan’s seriously got it going on.) It’s a lovely, heathered tweedy yarn made out of recycled cotton, silk, and viscose, so you get all of the nuance of color as from a traditional tweed… …but it’s smoother on the hands, less grabby when you knit with it, and all around a pleasure. I knit this sample in a week, and it wasn’t even a chore.

Spanish Bay is built right into CustomFit, so to get your very own, all you need to is fall in love with a yarn – we’ll craft the pattern numbers directly from your gauge. Want a little more detail? Check out Spanish Bay’s pattern page here, or on Ravelry.

spanish-bay-final-3 spanish-bay-final-2 spanish-bay-hanger-1 spanish-bay-hanger-2

Sunset Drive

Contrary to popular opinion, pullovers make great warm-weather sweaters too! Though it’s absolutely helpful to knit them out of a lighter weight yarn. I’ve stayed away from fingering-weight designs, since I started pursuing a career in the fiber arts – the sad truth is that fingering patterns just don’t sell as well. But many of my pre-design-days sweaters are fingering and I love them all fiercely. Lucky for me (and hopefully you too), designing for CustomFit frees me up design-wise, in this way. As long as the design will look great in other weights as well, I can give fingering sweaters some time in the spotlight! And that’s good, because they deserve it.

You’ll never wear a hand-knit as comfortable as a fingering-weight sweater.

They’re light, they’re comfortable, and their fabric tends to be much, much closer to the kinds of fabric you can find in the store than that which we typically make with our hands. This means that the sweater will move against your body, and feel, more like a store-bought fabric. Except better, because now it fits you perfectly too! With this design, I went the tiniest bit funkier with my stitch patterning. I chose a shaping-on-the-back-only crew neck silhouette, with a super-wide lace panel on the (straight) front. I then added a lace panel on the roll-em-up sleeves, but only to a little bit above the elbow, giving some shape and style to this more relaxed silhouette. I love the result, and I hope you do too.

Thanks to a plethora of sock knitters in recent years, there are some stunning fingering-weight hand-dyes out there. I chose Anzula Squishy, in the Yarnover Truck-exclusive colorway “Minty Unicorn” (this sweater was for Lauren, after all, whose love of mint is well-documented). The tiny arrowhead lace pattern on this sweater is a snap to work, and looks great in Anzula’s wonderful colors.

Sunset Drive is also built right into CustomFit, so whether you’ll come along with me and knit fingering sweaters or not, it can still become your next favorite garment. (Did I mention Anzula also makes one of my favorite worsted-weight MCN blends?) For more detail as always, see either the Sunset Drive page here on my site, or within Ravelry.

sunset-drive-final-4 sunset-drive-final-3 sunset-drive-hanger-1 sunset-drive-hanger-2


The final sweater in this collection, Pescadero, isn’t built into CustomFit yet. And there’s good reason for that — it’s very different than other sweaters you’ve seen me design so far. So I’ll be back later this week with more detail about Pescadero’s release, and a little bit behind why I created the sweater this way. Until then, have a close-up!


The next summer sweater KAL is on its way, so get your needles ready – it’s time for warmer-weather knits!

(One final note: Jackie and Amy will be traveling to the TNNA summer show this weekend, so if you’re there, stop by booth #1215 to say hi!)