Monday, December 15, 2014

larch cardigan

It's coming on Christmas, and I've got a go-to red sweater to keep me warm through the holiday festivities. It's my Larch Cardigan, which I finished knitting last year and then promptly stashed away, unable to bring myself to sew the pieces together. Like a lot of knitters, finishing feels like a chore to me. The knitting's the thing. All I want is that sweet click of needles in hand and rows of tidy stitches manifesting themselves from a simple twist of yarn. Pull out a sewing needle and things get wonky (and whiny--I turn into Paul Rudd so fast).

But--and I wish I had realized this sooner--I don't have to sew up seams to finish things. I can crochet the seams! I like crochet, and it doesn't feel like a chore at all, which makes it my ideal finishing technique. I didn't actually look up how to crochet seams (see Paul Rudd attitude above). I just pinned the pieces together with stitch markers and seamed them with single crochet. It took a while to get right (maybe an hour per sleeve), but in the end I have tidy sleeve seams and, best of all, a finished sweater.

This cardigan has become a wardrobe staple and has made me want to be more intentional with my knitting. In the past I've made things just because I feel like making them, but moving forward I want to consider how the finished product, particularly sweaters, will work with my existing wardrobe. I'm interested in the idea of growing a minimalist wardrobe, and I want to work toward that goal through my knitting. If I'm going to spend hours and hours (and hours!) making something, I need it to be a piece of clothing I can wear for years to come. I think this cardigan fits the bill.

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Do you have any handmade wardrobe staples? I'd love to hear about your tried-and-true pieces.


  1. What a beautiful type of red. It looks great on you! I have this Owls sweater that I knit last year and it's very warm, I wear it frequently. I also wera my knitted socks a lot on colder days.

  2. You look beautiful. That red cardigan is snappy! I would have never thought to hook the seams rather than sew them.

  3. I'm the EXACT same way about sewing up sewing! haha, I have a "pair" of slippers waiting to be cut and sewn together (I didn't read far enough into the pattern to realize I was only knitting flat "fabric" to be felted and then cut and sewn together). Crochet is my favorite way to connect pieces as well. I feel like it is so much sturdier and doesn't leave so many gaps.
    I've been longing to have an entire handmade wardrobe as well. I just haven't mastered the sewing part quite yet. So far I've made a pair of really warm winter wool socks. and scarves & mittens & hats. My first sweater was a bust but I'm still hoping to get it right with a new pattern. I'm glad to see I'm not the only one with a desire to make my own (minimalist) wardrobe! :)


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