The latest sweater to come off my needles is Elia. This cabled pullover is designed by Julia Trice (MindOfWinter) and she kindly asked me to review this pattern for her. After a couple false starts with yarn choices, I found myself reaching out to one of my favorites – Tosh Vintage – to knit this sweater. A great choice since the cabled work really pops with the well rounded yarn and of course, you can’t go wrong with madtosh colors!
Julia’s pattern writing skills are exceptional and she has laid everything out for the knitter to understand easily. There are several check points along the way to track your progress in the form of stitch and row counts.
I have an assortment of row counters laying about but I still prefer to check my rows off on Post-Its or in the margins of the pattern itself. This, along with various little notes and doodles to remind myself of something that I thought was crucial enough in the pattern to make a note of. Often when I read back, I understand what I was trying to remember, however, just as often I find myself going, “???” Julia, goes one step ahead and provides a cheat sheet with the pattern. This pattern has you knitting a central cable with a large pattern repeat and two smaller cables on either side that are an 8-row repeat. The cheat sheet helps you keep track of your pattern rows and your waist shaping rows in one handy place. This way you will know immediately if you mess up.
The sweater is a pullover design chock full of cables, flattering waist shaping and a very interesting collar. It is slightly on the shorter side, but if you’re not into the cropped garment style, the pattern gives you alternatives to lengthen the sweater. I was afraid I would run out of yarn and I knew that I would wear this sweater over a tank and so I stuck with the original cropped version. I did run out yarn (gulp), but more on that later.
The body is knit from the bottom up, in the round until the armholes. Then you knit the front and back separately, join them together and pick up and knit my favorite part – the collar. The sleeves zoom along on your needles. They are knit flat, set into the armholes and then seamed close. I guess you could knit these sleeves top-down and in the round to avoid seaming. But I quite liked the set in sleeves method that the pattern calls for especially since this is a heavier garment and the reinforcements help keep it structured.
Once you’re done with all of this, block. Weave in those ends. Wear and smile for the camera 🙂
I loved every bit of knitting this pattern even though I had to put it down for a couple weeks over spring break. It is very well written with a lot of attention to detail and the design is both charted and in long-hand. My only critique was that I ran out of yarn. My sweater used a tad less than 1200 yards while the pattern says that I needed 950 yards for my size. In my case, I was able to track down a perfectly matched skein of Tosh Vintage quite easily. However, if you are using yarn that is hard to come by or discontinued, it is better to err on the side of caution and be more generous with the initial stash enhancement.
Now, that my Elia is all knit up, I sadly have to put it away in my box of cold-weather- sweaters. But come October, I’ll have a squishy, cozy cabled sweater ready to be worn 🙂
Thank you Julia for this amazing pattern and for the opportunity to review this design for you! Julia is a talented designer and all-round sweet person. Check out her website, designer page and Ravelry group.
As always, deets…