Hannah’s Hawkherst Knit Sweater Pattern: A Finished Object
My Hawkherst Sweater from Knits Winter is complete. I’ve never zoomed through a knit sweater pattern so quickly before. I have the thick Cascade Ecological Wool, big needles, and simple colorwork charts (and maybe my knitting addiction) to thank for that. I think it came out very nice in the end, and was a fantastic first colorwork sweater for someone who hasn’t done a lot of colorwork in her knitting career.
One thing that happened, which is something that usually happens to me when I knit sweaters, is that the sleeves turned out a tad longer than I’d hoped for. This, my friends, is due to my pathetic swatching. Here is my swatch:
This swatch was worked in the round, just like the sweater is, and it’s only about four inches tall and 4-5 inches around. That is not big enough, people! I suffer from an ailment common among knitters: cast-on impatience. I knit this swatch, blocked it, let it dry, and measured it. At that point it matched the gauge listed in the pattern. I was so eager to cast-on I did. What I should have done was create a bigger swatch that included a section of the colorwork pattern. In addition, there is a note in the pattern that says, “It may be necessary to go up in needle size to obtain gauge in colorwork sections.” Had I swatched a larger piece that included some of the color charts, I would have seen in advance how the gauge shifted from the solid to the colorwork, and whether I needed to adjust for that.
I absolutely love this sweater, and it’s not so huge that I’m not going to wear it (in fact, I threw it in the dryer for a short while last night and it helped tighten it up a bit). Were I to knit it again I’d go down a needle size, or maybe knit one pattern size smaller. I definitely plan on swatching a lot more thoroughly in the future when I make sweaters. I’ll be working on my first sweater design soon (!!!) and I’m going to make sure that I have a huge swatch that incorporates every different stitch pattern I plan to include, and maybe even go down a size down from the yarn’s suggested needle size.
My dear knitters, please remember: Taking the extra time to create a quality swatch that matches gauge, no matter how many times it takes to get there, is always worth it in the end for a garment that fits as intended.
I tracked my sweater knitting project on Instagram (@bakeybunz) using the hashtag #Hawkherst, so you can search that to see more photos! If you are knitting the sweater, or plan to, please use the hashtag so we can all take a look! And if you feel so inclined, you can add @InterweaveCraft and maybe Amy will repost your photo on the Interweave account! And stay tuned for more blog posts about techniques used in this sweater pattern!
Happy sweater knitting, friends!