Turn Crochet So Fine Into Crochet So Mine

From Marcy: The cover of Crochet So Fine by Kristin Omdahl is one of the most beautiful covers I've seen on any book ever. The cover garment truly makes you want to pick up your crochet hook and make one of your own. I've seen the Petals Wrap Cardigan in person and it is even lovelier when you're able to touch it! Here, Kristin talks about the inspiration behind this design and how you can make this garment your own.

I crochet and knit interchangeably, and as a result I find that my knitting inspires my crochet and my crochet inspires my knitting. My very first knit sweater pattern ever published is a wrap sweater (show at left) with a 6-petal lace flower on the back. Originally published in 2005, it is still one of my favorites. This was my inspiration for the Petals Wrap Cardigan.

My knitted wrap cardigan really called out to me reinterpreted in crochet, and I felt that a pineapple-style stitch pattern would be a very pretty way to translate the flower petals into crochet. The original knitted design begins as a hexagon, but is modified while knitting in the round to eventually become a square. The construction of the knit sweater is a square back (knit in the round) and the fronts are picked up along the sides of the back and worked sideways across the front. The sleeves are picked up and worked down.

For the crocheted Petals Wrap Cardigan, I wanted to explore how a hexagon could be used as the actual shape of the back of the cardigan. I wondered if the angled lines of the hexagon could fit together in a way similar to the angles of a raglan yoke.

 

Before investing hours of crochet time and yarn, I wanted to prove my theory. I swatched the shape in a worsted weight "granny hexagon with half-hexagons (top two photos). Then I tried it on my cutie desktop dressform. As you can see, it worked! So then I used a lightweight yarn to work the hexagon in a pineapple-style pattern in a lightweight yarn (bottom right).

 

I constructed the crocheted garment in much the same way as the knitted version. The fronts can be crossed over in a variety of ways. If you cross over across the edge, it is a surplice wrap cardigan. If you cross over at one of the points, you have additional fabric crossed over with a bit of a shawl collar.

Running with the idea of a lacy shawl collar, I added a perpendicular lace edging with a little pineapple scallop to tie in with the flower petal design. The sleeves are picked up from the armhole opening and worked in the round. The sweater looks great sleeveless—so you could consider making this as a pretty wrap vest, too! In fact, if I were going to make a second version of the sweater, I would make it sleeveless and add a small picot trim to the armhole openings.

The sweater is sized from small to extra large, but you could make adjustments for any size. The back is crocheted the same for every size, but extra rounds are worked for the larger sizes. To make it larger, just continue adding rounds until the width measures half of the bust measurement. However many rounds you work for the back, make sure you work the same number of rows for the fronts.

To help you successfull make this sweater your own, remember a couple of things: You can change the yarn weight or fiber content as long as the blocked gauge swatch measures correctly. Be sure to measure your gauge swatch AFTER blocking. Enjoy!

To get started making this beautiful garment your own—whether as a vest or a cardigan—get your own copy of Crochet So Fine today! (I'd let you borrow mine to look at, but it has drool all over it. Sorry.)

Best,

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