Vitamin D

Yet another finished knitting project! I am beginning not to recognise myself. Don’t worry I shall be back to my usual very slow projects now.


The pattern is Vitamin D by Heidi Kirrmaier, the yarn is my handspun 80% alpaca, 20% merino. I used 3mm needles, and 648g, 1356m yarn.


I tinkered with the pattern a bit because my yarn was a bit different to that called for in the pattern. I tried knitting my yarn on the recommended needles (3.5mm), but although the tension I was getting was just right I really didn’t like the feel of the fabric. My yarn was spun rather tightly (something I need to work on!) and on the larger needles instead of a lovely drapey fabric it just felt like knitted string – not nice! So after a bit of experimenting I ended up using 3mm needles. My fabric was quite a bit denser than the pattern recommended, but I thought the stitches looked better.

This meant I had to alter things a little so that the cardigan would fit me. I made the XL size, but also added in an extra row of increases in the yoke, and made the armholes deeper and the sleeves wider. I also added in an extra set of short rows to make the whole thing longer (I generally like my cardies to be long).

It was fun to knit. It is an interesting construction. You start at the neck and knit downwards. Knitting the sleeves first and then the body. The body has decorative eyelets (which don’t show up that well because my yarn was rather hairy and my fabric fairly dense), which also add circular yoke shaping. The sleeves are raglan. The short row shaping makes the fronts roughly quarter-circles.

It is very cosy and comfortable to wear – I especially like that the shoulders stay on even when the cardigan is worn open. I find so many cardigans I try on slip off one shoulder if I actually move at all. I like the idea of the drapey fronts but am not totally convinced that they like me. I am still on the search for a flattering cardi, I’m not sure that this is it – but I shall be wearing it a lot anyway because it is so lovely and snuggly πŸ™‚

2 thoughts on “Vitamin D

  1. sahara

    Heather, your cardi looks good! Your adjustments made for a good fit. I totally understand about the slipping over the shoulder. When I worked in the Garment Restrict, I could never understand why the designers wanted the V to be so deep with a wide neckline. I’m not into the “casually falling apart” look, lol! Do you think the top down approach contributed to a better fit as well?

    I see what you mean about the front. Drapey fronts work better with fabrics that lie against the body. Your handspun looks lighter than the weight for the drape you need. How much fiber did it take? I want to knit a cardi for fall and just purchased 3 pounds of Jacob. Sounds like a LOT, doesn’t it? But I’m still amazed that what to me looks like a HUGE amount of fiber, spins down to a few hanks.

    Thanks for the inspirational post.

    1. Heather Post author

      Thank you πŸ™‚ I totally agree with you about wide deep necklines! And I become very self-conscious about it if I am forever having to haul my clothing around!

      I’m not sure whether knitting this top-down contributed to a better fit. Certainly all the calculations could easily be done in either direction, although I found it convenient to be able to try on the portion I had knitted so far when I was working the yoke, to check that I was getting the armhole depth about right. Once you got onto the body, because of the construction of this particular cardigan, with the drape and the short rows it actually made it quite hard to try on and get a real impression of how it was going to hang until the edging was done and cast off. I think a more conventionally shaped cardigan/sweater would be easier to try on at more points in the construction to check for fit.

      Your 3 pounds of Jacob sounds lovely! I hope you have fun spinning it πŸ™‚ I am definitely with you about buying enough. There is nothing more disappointing than getting half way down the second sleeve and running out, especially if it is precious handspun and would be very difficult to buy matching fibre. I started with just over a kilo of fibre. It was very nicely prepared top so there was hardly any wastage. I actually used about 650g for this cardigan, so have a fair amount left over, but better safe than sorry! I’m sure I will find something to do with the leftovers, there is probably about enough for a sleeveless something.


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