This post is part of my Handmade Wardrobe Series

Erea Sweater. Photo Credit - J. Seaver
Erea Sweater. Photo Credit – J. Seaver

Today’s craft post has been over a year in the making.  I hold my hands up and confess that sometimes my knitting can be abandoned as I’ve hit the sleeves. They have been the death of many a project of mine.

This pattern which is Erea by Emma Wright is part of the Fell Garth Collection by The Fibre Co. and it was gifted to me during the launch of the collection but at the time I couldn’t knit. The pattern stayed with me and I cast on, got to the sleeves, shelved it and then pulled it back out again to finish during the Frog or Finish event. I’m so glad that I did because I really want to share this pattern with you and to discuss some sweater knitting.

I also hate getting in front of the camera so taking these images took a while but for those interested, they were taken on Gormanstown beach which is a short drive from where we live. We are starting to run out of fresh coastlines to show you all! 

 

Erea Sweater. Photo Credit - J. Seaver

Erea Sweater. Photo Credit – J. Seaver

The Pattern – Erea by Emma Wright

Erea is a fun knit. It has a textured front with stocking stitch back and sleeves. The pattern is written for a front and back to be knit separately and then seamed and sleeves joined.  Being stuck in my ways and trying to avoid seaming I knitted Erea in the round. This meant adding in short rows to the textured front which worked well by hiding the wrapped stitches under the arms.

I also wanted the sweater to lift up a bit in the front and have more of a scalloped shape rather than the straight box shape but that has more to do with my body shape than the pattern. 

For those wanting to do the same, I just cast on the correct number of stitches for my size (small) removing 2 stitches to allow for the seam. Also when joining in the arms to the body of the sweater I stopped at the 53 sts that were required for the small size so this negated the stitches that would have been involved in seaming. 

The pattern is easy to follow and has wonderful instructions and photography so everything is clear as you move from stage to stage. The only adjustment I would make would be to increase the length of the ribbing as I did here but I would actually double it if i was to knit it again.   

The Yarn – Debbie Bliss Falkland Aran

This is where this all fell apart for me. Falkland yarn is soft and it spreads on blocking so this was no surprise. The yarn itself is a joy to knit with and the finished garment is soft, warm and luxurious.

So how did it fall apart? 

I mean that quite literally. The piling in wearing this garment over the last 2 weeks has been insane. That is with the textured finish to the front of the sweater. No matter how hard you block this it still looks ratty on the ribbing and in the neckline.  The garment is overall a little disappointing.

The pattern wasn’t designed for this yarn and substituting an aran for an aran weight yarn is usually ok provided you do a test swatch which I did but the thing with this yarn is that the yarn growth post blocking appears to be relative to the size of your knitting. 

What I mean by that is my swatch grew by less than half an inch my garment sleeves grew by 4 inches, the body by easily 5 inches. So if using this yarn be careful with the swatch if it’s a garment. It does grow, frighteningly so when wet but it does bounce back so take your final measurement when it’s fully dry. 

Final Thoughts

With a little sweater surgery, I will be wearing this again and I do love the pattern so I will probably knit this again as it is a timeless staple. The pattern is beautiful and can look different depending on your yarn choices of 1 or 2 colour sections. 

I also omitted the pockets because I thought my sewing would ruin the front of the sweater. For those shaking their heads, seriously, I sew like I’m wearing mittens and I have the eyesight of a bat. 

I pair this with skirts from Carousel as I love their vintage cut pieces. I’ve found that as I knit more garments I want them to compliment my style which over the years has changed from being fully on trend to adapting what suits me and what I’m comfortable in. I tend to lean towards other Irish brands or slow fashion pieces.

I no longer knit for just the finished piece. The project has to have use afterwards even if it is for a gift I will choose colours or yarn for the person in mind. Knitting this way helps to build a handmade wardrobe that I love and can move with fashion trends and allow me to keep it minimal. 

If you want to read more on my handmade wardrobe series you can do that over here. I really hope that you found this post useful. I’ll be back with another Six on Saturday post this weekend and if you want to hear more from me then please pop over to any of my social hangouts (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram) you’ll find me as @cottagenotebook or use the social links to the right (desktop) below (mobile/tablet)

xxx

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