It’s November and once again I’m going to attempt to knit a sweater in a month for National Knit a Sweater Month (NaKniSweMo). In 2009, I attempted the Honeybee Cardigan and failed. I got pretty far, but didn’t finish until March of 2010. In 2010, I decided that I would finish a sweater and start a sweater in the month. My Camber cardigan got finished and I cast on for my Vivian. I call that a success!
This year I started the B-Side Cardigan by Laura Chau. I bought the pattern last winter when she had a holiday sale and it’s been waiting to get cast on. The yarn I’m using is Valley Yarns Superwash DK. I knit Brendan a hat out of it earlier this year and really enjoyed working with it. I picked up a sweater’s worth last December when my yarnfriends and I took our yearly pilgrimage to Webs.
In preparation, I swatched last weekend to check my gauge and try to get any issues worked out so I could jump right in when November 1st rolled around. When I washed my swatch it grew a lot. Lots and lots and lots. I didn’t see how many stitches I got pre-wash so I can’t tell you how much exactly. I got 18.5 sts to 4″ on US4 needles. The pattern says 24 sts to 4″. Huge difference! I did like the fabric, so I then did the math to see what size to follow.
What I did was decide what size I want, divide that by 4 inches and multiply that by how many sts per inch I was getting to see approximately how many sts to cast on. It looks something like this (46/4)x18.5 = 212.75sts to CO. The size 36″ has a cast on of 214sts, so I will be following the stitch counts and pattern directions for that. I then measured myself every place the schematic lists to see which size to follow for things like the length of the armhole, bottom ribbing, sleeve cap, etc. I’ll be using the 44″ size for that.
I only have a few rows knit so far because I was busy finishing up a gift for a friend. More on that later.