A massive blanket I can actually wear in public

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For a couple of winters now I’ve been craving a massive aran cardigan to keep me warm when the weather gets chilly. A big baggy one, to wrap myself up in, that would easily go over a jumper, basically like blanket that I can wear in public without fear of embarrassment.  This winter I actually got around to doing something about it! I opted for Maude by Carrie Bostick Hoge as it looked super cosy. I was also tempted by Rosemont Cardigan . I might make that one for next year.

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If you look closely you can see the line from where my cardigan was drying on the airer. I was too lazy to block it out properly!

I used Garnstudio DROPS Nepal in cream. It’s a slightly itchy wool but it’s super warm and it’s for the winter so is unlikely to be right next to my skin. It was slightly off gauge, to be honest, but as it was going to baggy I wasn’t too concerned. Indeed, I was so confident that the gauge issue wouldn’t increase the size too much that I went up a size to make sure that it was suitably baggy. In the end that was overkill; I had forgotten that I am only 5’2” and that my knitting is almost always too big….  It’s a HUGE cardigan! At first I was a bit disappointed as it wasn’t what I’d had in mind. I was aiming for big rather than massive. However, as it has been cold I’ve been wearing it anyway and it has really grown on me. Now I’m thinking that it looks kind of cool in a 90s sort of way.

This is what it should look like. I think this model is quite a lot taller than me!

This is what it should look like. I think this model is quite a lot taller than me!

I’m so used to working with 4-ply that it was a bit weird to be knitting in aran. It came together so quickly and my progress was so visible!

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The sleeves are so long I’ve had to turn them up

The pattern was super easy to follow and I ran into no problems at all. It’s a nice construction with the body worked in once piece until you reach the sleeves and then both the sleeves worked before bringing everything together onto a circular needle. No seaming! The button band is picked up at the end and worked in garter stitch. I wasn’t sure about that at the time as I like the stretch of a ribbed button band and thought a garter rib might pull it out of shape. It has grow on me now but I think that if I was doing it again I would go for a rib to pull it all in.

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The buttons look like they are hideously uneven at the bottom but they are fine I promise!

I got the buttons from the lovely Raystitch in Islington last time I was in London. I have a thing for wooden buttons and I think these are perfect for the shade of cream. I normally avoid cream wool for fear of staining it, by chucking tea all over it or something, but I surprised myself by keeping it clean, even while drinking mulled wine! I had planned to put the pockets in as I am a huge fan of pockets but I ran out of wool and was too cheep to order another ball.

Although its turned out differently to the cardigan I had in my head at the start it has really grown on me and has been worn in heavy rotation since I finished it. I work at home and it’s particularly good for chucking on as an extra layer if it’s not quite cold enough to put the heating on but distractingly chilly. It was also AMAZING when I ventured into the icy cold for ice-skating. My toes were freezing but the rest of me was toasty! All in all I would call it a success!

Summer cardigan (and a new house!)

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Things I like about new house: 1. We don’t have to keep our bikes in the dining room anymore.

If you read this blog regularly you’ll have noticed that I love cardigans. I have an insane amount of cardigans and I wear them virtually all the time. I am not the sort of person to let something like the summer get between me and my cardigans so this year I have made myself a Featherweight Cardigan by Hannah Fettig so  I can still have a cardy even when its hot… I have had this in my queue for years now and I’m not sure what finally  inspired me to make a start on it but I’m glad I did.

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2. We have sash windows. I really love sash windows.

I used Garnstudio DROPS Lace. I wasn’t overwhelmed with awesome colour choices but in the end I went for purple. When it arrived I realised that it’s pretty similar to the purple of my Relax jumper, I must really like that colour! The Drops wool offered really good value for money; when I bought it, it was about £7 for £100g (although I bought two to be on the safe side) and I used less than one skein! Hand knitting can often work out more expensive than buying from the shop so I’m rather chuffed with making a cardigan for £7! 

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3. We have an even patio so we can have garden furniture.

I love the finished cardigan, I cast off a few weeks ago and I have been wearing it a lot. The wool is super soft and isn’t as itchy as some of the alpaca blends can be and the finished cardigan is so lightweight that I can shove it into my handbag to keep me warm on the way home from the pub (or other more sophisticated evening pursuit..)!

As you can imagine though, with 2.75mm needles and lace weight wool this took forever. I was working on it for months and it got really dull in the end as it was just rows and rows of tiny stocking stitch. It’s weird the way that it is often the projects that are a  little boring to make that I wear the most; I think I have a preference towards fairly plain clothes.

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4. You can get wifi in the garden!

Regular readers may have spotted that my garden has changed, that’s because we’ve moved house. We’ve moved all the way from North London to Cambridge. We’re just renting (until we win the lottery…) but I love the new house and the new garden. I had the best time in London and will be going back on a regular basis but so far I am enjoying Cambridge very much. It’s very pretty, the pubs are awesome, there’s a good selection of beers, the restaurants are varied, the shops are good and the whole place is insanely cycle friendly!  Plus our  front room is big enough for Coco to have her own little run to hang out in!

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Pretend you haven’t spotted the bin bag on the cage…..

Now that I’ve finally unpacked my sewing machine and my wool I plan to do a lot of crafting here (and never move again- it was ridiculously stressful and expensive)!