Tongshan Sweater: Easy Sweater Pattern from Knitscene Winter

I hold very few things to be true in this crazy world, but one of those things is that any knitter, of any skill level, can knit any project they want—those projects might take longer than they would for more experienced knitters, but my philosophy is that if you're excited about a project, you'll stick with it and work through any challenges faced because you're that excited about having the finished piece. (Yes, I do consider myself a "project knitter.") Allison Mackin, our managing editor, gets to hear this all the time—as an inexperienced knitter, she frequently flips through the magazines and says "Oh I'd like that," so I point out that she could, in fact, knit whichever project it is. Her first garment? Alexis Winslow's Vera Cardigan.

When we were working on Knitscene Winter, Allison fell in love with Kiyomi Burgin's Tongshan Sweater and just had to have it. Here's Allison to tell you more about her love affair with this project.

It was love at first sight with the Tongshan Sweater from Knitscene Winter. The marled yarns story that this sweater is part of speaks to everything cozy and earthy and fireplace-y that I adore. The sweater has a classic shape, but also has an artful young edge to it, with its curved hem and subtle color panels.

After falling in love with this sweater, it followed the path that all of my knitting projects do. I showed up in Amy’s office professing said love for the sweater and asking if she thought I could knit it.

“Yes!” she said. It’s what she always says, good-natured knitting advocate that she is.

A fun perk of working here is that we happened to have the sweater in the office. It’s just beautiful in person. And I was able to try it on to decide what size I wanted to make (larger than the sample size, for sure!—I wanted the ease to be about the same as it is on the model, about 4").

The yarn, Classic Elite’s MountainTop Crestone, is made from undyed wool and comes in several rich colors. I debated about doing a darker colored version, but in the end I chose to make the sweater in the same colorway as it’s shown in the magazine.

On to the knitting! After the curved hem of the sweater was complete, the pattern is stockinette in the round, so it seemed to fly by (with the company of Gilmore Girls streaming on Netflix). As a beginnerish knitter, it was really satisfying to make a lot of progress in just a few hours. Shaping the armholes (simple decreases) and adding the contrasting color panel on the back were straightforward and helped me to really see the sweater taking shape. Things were starting to get exciting! I tried on the body of the sweater at this point and was worried that there’s a little more ease than I’d intended. We’ll see how that works out.

Right now, I’ve got a good start on a sleeve. (Amy showed me how to do the Magic Loop for this—if you haven't tried it, watch episode 1301 of Knitting Daily TV!) Now it’s just a matter of finding the time to finish it up! I blame the warm, beautiful fall that we’ve been having here in Colorado. Once the weather turns colder, I hope to hunker down and finish the sweater and enjoy wearing it all winter. I’ll be back to show you the finished product when I get there.

And thanks to designer Kiyomi Burgin—this sweater makes me so happy!

Want your own Tongshan Sweater? Pick up Knitscene Winter to knit this pattern and so many more!

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