Gilded Lauriel

This is quite possibly the most beautiful and complicated thing I’ve knit so far!

Lauriel is the pattern, the yarn is Madelinetosh DK in ‘Gilded.’ (Ravelry notes here.) It’s a gorgeously bright and sunny yellow! I am drawn to happy colours, and this is definitely a happy colour in my book. (Totally my colour, I know I’ll wear it lots!)

In this project, I conquered a number of firsts: first cardigan, first set-in-top-down sleeves, first time making a button band, first time making something with charts on cuffs and the yoke and the waistline.

I actually started and finished knitting this sweater before the Happiness Cardigan, but took ages to pick out the right buttons and finish sewing them on.

It’s soooo pretty. It’s so pretty that it needs a simple outfit so that it can take centre stage. (I tried it on over my bright Chantilly and it was total sensory overload.)

I added grosgrain ribbon to the front bands to stabilize them. The buttons are from Button Button and I made myself wait until the cardigan was completely finished before picking out the buttons! That was such a fun part, bringing the lovely sweater to the shop and trying on different buttons until we found the perfect ones.

It’s the perfect cardigan for retro dresses and full skirts. The high waistline of the cardigan calls for a full, dramatic skirt puffing out where the cardigan ends, don’t you think?

While this sweater was drying, after blocking, I stuffed its bustline with padding. It looked so funny drying on the dining table with a three-dimensional knitted bosom!

This is a good sweater for busty women. On me, it does fall flat just the tiniest bit. I feel like there shouldn’t be any sagginess at the side like there is! Or maybe in my mind, all cardigans are supposed to be supertight. Perhaps ease is all right. I was worried it would end up too tight, but it ended up a little loose instead!

Time to complete: 11 weeks + 1 day of knitting, plus another two months afterwards to sew on grosgrain ribbon, buttons and snaps. (19 weeks total.) A long time.

I love this sweater. I remember trying it on in the mirror and thinking ‘I want to make eight more of these!’ This is a good style for pear-shaped women, especially in a bright colour. Draws the attention up top, broadens the shoulders to balance out wide hips.

Things I would change? There are often a few teeny things I would change on each project. On this cardigan, the sleeves grew after washing and blocking. I think it may be the weight of the sleeves dragging them down, but they used to stop just below my wrist bone, exactly where I wanted. Now they’re covering part of my hand. Which is fine, it will keep me warmer, but I might get the cuffs caught on things as I work.

I would also find a way to make it just a little bit smaller. The fit is good below the bustline, but a little too roomy through the bust and shoulders. I think it’s the design, as many other people’s projects noted the same thing. Next time perhaps a size down on top, blending into the same size below the bustline? It’s more obvious from the back view, that this sweater has extra ease. I think I’ve changed size since I started knitting this one – I started it back in June, nearly five months ago!

Back view pictures reveal a lot, don’t they? Looks like I could shorten the length a little next time as well, to get rid of that bubble at the back.

I’m excited to be able to knit cardigans now. It used to be that cardigan patterns were out of my comfort zone, but not anymore! Now that the knitting part isn’t so scary, it’s time to learn more about fitting my projects to get the look I want. Isn’t that how it goes in sewing, too? First we learn how to sew and how to use the machine, how to follow a pattern, and then once we’ve conquered that, then we focus on fine-tuning the fit.

PS. Thank you for all the awesome comments on sewing blogs and what you like. More thoughts on that tomorrow!

PPS. Thanks also for the comments on my dress project that bombed. Nobody’s perfect! Which prompted you to ask: whatever happened to all the things I’ve started making and never finished? Look for an embarrassing UFO round-up and status update this week!

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49 Responses to Gilded Lauriel

  1. didyoumakethat December 10, 2012 at 6:21 am #

    You have SUCH a good eye for knitting patterns! I think I basically need to copy everything you do. I love your colour choices, also. That nipped in waist is great.

    • Tasia December 10, 2012 at 7:55 am #

      Thank you! I wouldn’t mind at all if you did. This is a very detailed pattern but the results are worth it! (Lots of charts and such, not a train-knitting project as it requires concentration..)

  2. Kathy December 10, 2012 at 6:24 am #

    How gorgeous! I have taken up knitting and am working my way up to a cardigan/sweater very much like this. The color is a dream. I’m going to have to check this one out on ravelry.

  3. Tasha December 10, 2012 at 6:43 am #

    Gorgeous, Tasia! I’m a yellow lover too and I bet you’ll get just a ton of wear out of it!! The pattern is so pretty and the color is beautiful on you!

    I could probably talk your ear off until I’m blue in the face on resizing things as I tweak patterns all the time when I knit. (So feel free to email me if you have specific questions :). Specifically the little bunchiness you see at the sides -below- your bust (not at the bust, which overall means it’s got some positive ease) is because the pattern isn’t shaped between the ribbing and your bust, so when your waist gets smaller the extra fabric that had less ease at your hips has more ease there. Make sense? That can be avoided (if you like) with some waist shaping to make the sweater follow the contours of your body. Or simply knitting the entire thing with some negative ease, but be careful at the bust with negative ease b/c it will get gap-y between the buttons if you plan to wear it closed. Or you can totally knit a smaller size for the back than the front in a pattern if you’d like, or start with a size on top (or bottom as the case may be) and switch before/after the bust!

    I’ll stop prattling now. It looks beautiful and you’ll love it for years to come! :)

    • Tasia December 10, 2012 at 12:07 pm #

      Thanks for the offer of help! You have the most beautiful knitting projects and I’m in awe of your colourwork. :) One day I’ll be a master of colourwork knitting like you!

      I think you’re right, the sweater was meant to stop at my waist but it ended up a little long, stopping at the hips, so there’s no waist shaping and no allowance for it to stretch at the hips. The good thing is that now I have a starting point to work from, for next time!

  4. Anthea December 10, 2012 at 6:46 am #

    Lovely! I really love the details of this cardigan

  5. cidell December 10, 2012 at 7:18 am #

    Really really beautiful. Man, I wish I was a knitter.

    • Tasia December 10, 2012 at 7:52 am #

      It’s never too late to learn! I only started knitting two years ago, less than that actually. There is so much free, helpful information out there for new knitters, ravelry and youtube especially.
      Although, it all depends on whether there’s room in your life for another hobby!

    • Amy December 11, 2012 at 12:48 pm #

      Seconded. One day…

  6. Amy December 10, 2012 at 7:35 am #

    It is stunnning! I am too afraid to take on such a complicated project!

  7. CGCouture December 10, 2012 at 7:37 am #

    This is gorgeous! It’s a bit roomy, but like you said, not everything has to be skintight. So pretty!

  8. Laurie December 10, 2012 at 8:01 am #

    I love that pattern! I have no idea how to knit but that is lovely.
    Laurie

  9. jillyb3 December 10, 2012 at 8:07 am #

    Beautiful! How did you sew on the ribbon? I had never thought of doing that before!

    • Tasia December 10, 2012 at 8:17 am #

      I’d seen it on ready-to-wear sweaters and thought it might be a nice detail! I sewed it on by hand, with regular hand-sewing needle and thread, making tiny whipstitches along all sides of the ribbon. It took a long time to do! I also tucked in the raw edges of the ribbon at top and bottom for a cleaner finish. Hope this makes sense!

      • jillyb3 December 12, 2012 at 10:33 am #

        Thanks! It totally makes sense. That is what I guessed, but I wondered if there was a secret :)

  10. Lauren December 10, 2012 at 8:09 am #

    Haha I started knitting this pattern after I lurked your Ravelry and saw yours as it was nearly-completed. Instant jealously, instant must-knit-this-right-now (although mine is blue ;)). I just love the lace yoke and the pretty little pattern repeats at the waist and sleeves – gorgeous! The pattern knits up so weird, doesn’t it? I feel like I’m learning all kinds of new things with each section. But enough about that – back to youuuuuuu. I think this looks gorgeous on you, even with the little bit of extra ease (which does not look bad at all!). Love that color and the buttons are absolutely perfect.

    • Tasia December 10, 2012 at 12:01 pm #

      Aw, thanks! It does knit up weird, you have to just trust the directions and hope it all works out. I felt like that too – I had to look up so many things as I worked on this project. I did the button bands several times to get them right, those are tricky. (The ribbon helps force them into the right shape though.)
      I’ve lurked your Chuck sweater and one day will have my own! In purple, I’m thinking, or maybe brown. Yours is so cute!

  11. Sam December 10, 2012 at 9:04 am #

    Wow, that is such a beautiful cardigan. Your finishing is immaculate, its hard to believe this is your first cardigan.

    I’m adding this pattern straight to my Ravelry favourites, as your version has made me want one of my own.

  12. CosIadoru December 10, 2012 at 10:10 am #

    It’s a marvel on you!!!
    I think you have magic knitting needles!!!:)

  13. Fiona December 10, 2012 at 10:14 am #

    What a beautiful cardigan – and the colour is glorious too. Lovely!

  14. Sabs December 10, 2012 at 10:39 am #

    I love it! Wow I really hope that in a few years I can get that good (I can’t knit at the moment but am hoping to start learning in the New Year… I want a cardi like that! And what a gorgeous colour too.

  15. tracy December 10, 2012 at 11:02 am #

    I love the colour, I’m sort of getting into this shade for myself, the pattern is gorge too.
    I do lots of knitting but it doesn’t look as good as yours!
    Good job!

  16. Salma December 10, 2012 at 11:23 am #

    Oh wow Tasia! This sweater is gorgeous!

  17. Colleen December 10, 2012 at 11:38 am #

    Oh, Tasia, I just love it! I have a skein of this yarn and it’s beautiful. That bust line is just gorgeous. Magnificent!

  18. Caroline December 10, 2012 at 11:52 am #

    Oh, this is really lovely!

  19. Jo December 10, 2012 at 11:55 am #

    It’s really lovely! At first when I saw your ribbon I was like “what the heck? Amazing hand stitching! But now since you said you’ve whipstitched it on I’m thinking that beautiful contrast stitching was already part of the ribbon? Do tell!
    This looks awesome :) I just finished a 3 month cardigan lol, isn’t it satisfying to complete though?? (have to blog the finished project this weekend!). Okay, I’m rambling. Just have to say again how lovely :)

    • Tasia December 10, 2012 at 11:59 am #

      Yup, the white stitching was part of the ribbon! The hand-stitching I did is (mostly) invisible, along the edges of the ribbon to hold it to the sweater.

      It sure is satisfying to complete a big project! It feels especially complete when it’s been photographed and blogged too, then I can wear it without worrying about taking freshly-finished photos.

  20. Lynne December 10, 2012 at 12:46 pm #

    This is gorgeous!! I absolutely love the colour. Spookily enough, I started this pattern in June too! I started the last bit (the second sleeve) today. I, too, found this came out a bit big, and I had to go down a size and a needle size. I didn’t do all the increases for the sleeves, as it fitted across the back when it was about an inch too short at the underarm. So I just kept going until it fitted at the underarm, but didn’t do the increases. I had to re-calculate the sleeves (which was a bit of a nightmare, because I’m hopeless at maths!), but the finished sleeve fits fine. I like how you padded it out to block it, I must remember that!

  21. Sue December 10, 2012 at 2:41 pm #

    C’mon now! You owe us a photo of this w/ the bright Chantilly! I think that’d be perfect.

  22. Sue December 10, 2012 at 3:19 pm #

    P. S. The fit of the sweater on your dressform is perfect. It has extra room at the bustline, helping to make a small girl look bigger. The sides hang perfectly. If you want that look, you might look at it and compare how the sweater fits on you to decide what to change. I believe I would make it shorter, (if you want it waist length exactly), and actually wider around to not pull open when partially buttoned, but angle the sides into your waist to get the shape you want. Gorgeous work, though.

  23. Krysta December 10, 2012 at 3:52 pm #

    Like someone else upthread has said, the fitting does need some tweaking, but that looks like a good style for you! :) Just like with sewing, you can’t take every knitting pattern as-is and expect it to fit perfectly.

  24. Cascadia December 10, 2012 at 4:00 pm #

    Such a beautiful color and you did a great job!!! Oh how I wish I could knit…..and make something as gorgeous as this…

  25. Kathryn December 10, 2012 at 4:46 pm #

    This is soo lovely! And is inspiring me to get on with my knitting! I’m a beginner knitter, but have chosen to tackle a tunic pattern from cleckheaton as my first project beyond a basic scarf. I must say it’s slow going, but I’m loving it!

    I love looking at your blog for inspiration and motivation – great work.

  26. Lora December 10, 2012 at 5:26 pm #

    Tasia:

    The sweater is absolutely lovely and looks great on you! You have almost inspired me to start knitting with the lovely, tasteful things you are making.

    Lora

  27. Lorinda December 10, 2012 at 9:04 pm #

    So very pretty! I really like the use of snaps so you don’t need button holes.

  28. ladykatza December 10, 2012 at 10:19 pm #

    All these amazing cardigans are making me contemplate knitting, seriously.

  29. Jane December 11, 2012 at 4:44 am #

    That sweater is gorgeous! Congratulations on finishing – it looks perfect and so cheery on you.

    In terms of your concerns about fit and the yarn “growing” – do you wash and hang your gauge swatches? I find sometimes, especially with super wash yarn, the wool behaves differently in a whole sweater with the weight of the rest of the sweater pulling it down a little. One way I like to simulate this is by hanging my swatches up after I wash and dry them, and weighting them with a couple of clothespins, then using it to get my gauge measurements.

  30. Marie December 11, 2012 at 6:26 am #

    I think that this is quite literally the most beautiful cardigan I have ever seen!!! The colour and shape look amazing on you and I just love the pattern! If I ever get good enough to attempt it, I’ll be a very happy girl ;o)

  31. Ally December 11, 2012 at 7:02 am #

    Tasia, it’s gorgeous! YOU and Lauren (Lladybird) make me want to start knitting. And I never thought this was possible. Totally want to make my own jumpers & cardis now.
    And the colour is sooooooo beautiful!
    Stunning!

  32. Sandra December 11, 2012 at 12:43 pm #

    This is such a lovely pattern. I knitted more in my early twenties than I did sewing, probably just cause I could knit and watch TV! Hand knit items were very fashionable back then. When my children were babies I loved knitting cute little cardigans for them, oh and baby stuff is so quick – for those of us looking for instant gratification. This is such a fashionable pattern it makes me want to visit the wool shop to see what else is available now days. Really, really lovely.

  33. Meg the Grand December 11, 2012 at 1:59 pm #

    The color and details are just stunning!! What a marvelous piece!

  34. foamofdays December 11, 2012 at 2:27 pm #

    So beatiful!!! Love the colour, it is a complicated pattern, but you did such a great job!

  35. Sue December 14, 2012 at 8:49 am #

    That’s a really pretty cardigan, Tasia! Probably the best I’ve seen! Beautifully made up too! I like how you’ve used the grosgrain ribbon to stabilize the front bands and sewn it in so neatly that it doesn’t show at all on the outside! The making up of a knitted garment makes all the difference after you have knitted all the pieces so nicely!

  36. Stephanie December 15, 2012 at 3:42 pm #

    This cardigan is so fantastic and pretty. Love the color too. Oh, how I wish I could knit.

  37. Sally December 21, 2012 at 9:17 am #

    I loved your Lauriel so much I bought the book. :-)

    One thing you can do next time is use a smaller needle on the top half rather than work with differing sets of numbers. I did that at the waist of my Gemini to give it waist definition without changing the stitch count because I needed that number to increase from for the hips.

  38. Jackie January 5, 2013 at 6:59 pm #

    Just getting back into knitting after 25 years and I really like this cardigan. After some simple projects I want to try this one, is it available somewhere in Vancouver or do I have to send away for it?

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

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