I completed my Not-Viajante last week and here it is, being modeled by Gwendolyn:
As I mentioned in this blog post, I changed the rate of increase to make a wider, shorter piece, and the results are, for me, much more wearable. On the short side, the bottom of the piece hits me at the wrist, and on the long side it’s just a few inches longer. While it is not as dramatic a piece as the original, I think I’ll wear this one a lot more.
I used 3 skeins of Three Irish Girls Kells merino wool sportweight (just under 1000 yards) and a U.S. size 7 needle.
What’s on the needles now? A cardigan design called Midnight Waterfall.
This pattern caught my eye as soon as it was posted on Ravelry. I think it is beautiful. The original called for Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light, but I am using Handmaiden Mini Maiden, another lovely one-ply fingering weight yarn. Mini Maiden is a 50/50 wool/silk blend and I’ve used it in the past with great results. I am using completely different colors from those in the original — my colors are wine, Cocoa, and Cactus Flower. I’m using a 3.25mm needle.
I have completed one of the back modular panels:
And have just started the second one:
The pattern for the mitered pieces is a bit different — there are a number of slipped stitches that give the pieces a stained glass look (if you follow the link above to the Ravelry page for this pattern you’ll see what I mean.) I knit the first square as directed, but in the colors I am using, the slipped stitches obscured the other color and I did not like how they looked. So I am knitting mine with just stripes, so slipped stitches.
Honesty compels me to tell you that I would not recommend this pattern unless you are an experienced knitter who can read between the lines and make assumptions about what the designer does not tell you. The pattern is very vague and, I think, poorly written. After working on the design for a few hours, I left this comment on the Ravelry pattern page:
I fell in love with this design the moment I laid eyes on it. I’ve just started knitting it and have a few questions/comments as I have found the pattern to be somewhat vague and confusing in places:
On the back mitered panels – is the first row you work for each of the squares and triangles supposed to be a wrong-side row? By trial and error I figured it must be, judging from where the slipped stitches are — one usually slips the first stitch of a row, not the last. If so, you might want to note this on the pattern as most of the time odd-numbered rows are right-side rows, not wrong-side rows.
For some of the pieces, you do not specify in the pattern which color to use (like the back middle panel, the side backs, side fronts, and collar). While one can figure this out by looking at the photos, if one were to print the pattern out in black & white (as I have), it is not obvious which color to use.
In a couple of cases in the pattern you call a triangle a square (you refer to Square 2C and Square 3C at the bottom left of the second page, for example).
It might be helpful to include more instruction on how to sew the pieces together for the back, possibly indicating the placement of the pieces on the schematic. While you can figure it out by looking at the photos, I think less-experienced knitters would appreciate more than simply “sew or crochet all 3 pieces together.”
I respectfully suggest that you might wish to expand the instructions for knitting the collar (which actually is the front band AND the collar), indicating where to start and end picking up stitches, possibly indicating where one should be on the body of the sweater at each point where one places a marker. While experienced knitters will be able to figure this out, I think it would be confusing for newer knitters.
The designer responded to my comment within a couple of hours of my posting it, thanking me for my suggestions and saying she would update the pattern accordingly. She did post an updated pattern very quickly — the same day. I appreciate such a quick response. However, the updated pattern does not address everything I pointed out, and I have since found more areas that could benefit from a re-write and more explanation.
I’m not saying this to diss the pattern. I really love this design — I think it’s one of the most beautiful cardigans I’ve seen in a long time. But it is also the most poorly-written pattern I can remember working with in a long time. Your mileage may vary — different people perceive things differently, so maybe it’s just me. But I don’t feel right about not issuing a warning. You’ll get no hand-holding or detailed instructions for some pieces of this design. It is not a difficult pattern by all means, but it is complex in that there are a lot of different pieces and stitch patterns involved and you will have to figure out a lot of the details of construction by looking at the photos.
Okay, I’ve said my piece. 🙂 Now I have a fluffy kitty waiting to play with me!