Brioche Stitch Is Yummy!

The Orne Cardigan is a gorgeous example of brioche stitch.

Orne Cardigan

Last weekend we went to a play, and I wore a handknit sweater. I knew the air conditioning would be on high, and I wanted to enjoy the play instead of thinking about how cold I was the whole time, and how I wished I would have grabbed a sweater or wrap. Sweater weather is approaching, and I couldn’t be happier.

I recently went through my sweaters, shook them out, and put my favorites on a reachable shelf in my sweater closet.

One of my sweaters is knit with brioche stitch, and although I didn’t knit it, I love it. The stitch is lofty and soft; it’s my go-to sweater for the movie theater because it’s warm, but not too warm.

We have a lovely collection of brioche patterns (that are all on sale now!), and Amy Palmer filmed a brioche stitch tutorial video recently, so I thought I’d pass that on and show you all of the beautiful patterns.

My favorite is Meiju K-P’s Orne Cardigan, shown above right. Isn’t it chic?

Anyway, off we go. Here’s the how-to video:

Here’s what Amy had to say about learning brioche stitch: “I’d never knit brioche stitch before Bayeux Cowl (shown below) arrived, but I had to have it, so I had to learn it. Turns out, brioche knitting, like so many other things, is a lot easier to do than it initially sounds. The stitches that didn’t make sense in my head suddenly felt familiar when I had yarn and needles in my hand, because they are totally familiar—if you can work a knit 1, purl 1 ribbing and a yarnover, you can do brioche knitting.”

The Argentan Pullover showcases a brioche stitch detail at the sides and hem.

Argentan Pullover

Amy was good enough to demo brioche stitch in both English and Continental style; equal opportunity knitting instruction! I love it.

At left is another of sweater that incorporates brioche stitch, Leah McGlone’s Argentan Pullover. I really love this sweater’s simplicity; brioche stitch is used as an accent on the side panels and around the arm holes, and on the cuffs and hem. The split hem is very casual, which I love.

Brioche stitch is a great stitch pattern to use sparingly. It’s a nice decorative stitch, as well as a versatile stitch for accessories. Shown below are four scarf/cowl patterns that use brioche in different ways.

The Bessin Scarf and the Tourlaville Shawl showcase the beauty you can achieve when you knit brioche in two colors. Amazing technique, isn’t it?

The Caen Cowl is the ultimate in lush, cushy brioche coziness. This shawl is knit on chunky yarn and includes large tassels along one edge. I’m not a tassel person, so I’d leave those off, but either way, it’s a great scarf.

The Bayeux Cowl takes it up a notch with a staggered brioche stitch pattern worked in the round. I love infinity scarves, and the brioche pattern adds so much texture.

Brioche stitch comes in many forms. Here are four examples that show the versatility of brioche knitting..Clockwise from top right: Bessin Scarf, Tourlaville Shawl, Cain Cowl, Bayeux Cowl

My favorite Orne Cardigan, by Meiju K-P,  begins at the top and is worked downward, featuring the brioche stitch in a wide collar that carries down the open fronts. By combining a provisional cast-on and picked-up sleeves, Meiju keeps the knitting entirely seamless. I really love this look. And the gray yarn appeals to me, of course.

All of these patterns are available in our pattern store, so get your yarn, needles, and brioche know-how ready, and cast on.




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