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Son Of A.R.A.N. Project

Part 7: Finalizing the Pattern Layout for the Back

Copyright 1999 Janet Szabo. All rights reserved.

I know that as a group you have expressed a preference that I provide as much hand-holding as possible. I am more than happy to oblige. This is the point, though, at which you're going to have to make some more calculations and decisions yourself. Hopefully my sweater will provide a good example of what we need to do next. And as always, if you have questions, please e-mail me, and put ATTN: SOA in the subject line so I see it right away.

Let's review here:

Now that the saddles are knit, we can pick up along their edges and knit the back. But, you may wish to fine-tune the pattern layout at this point. For example, I decided that I want to have five repeats in the Aran Honeycomb pattern instead of the four repeats that I specified in the swatch directions. With four repeats, my Aran Honeycomb is 4" wide. With 5 repeats it will be 5" wide, and I like that better. The group of cables to one side measures 5". I measure them as a group rather than individual patterns. Also, when I measure, I include one purl stitch to either side of what I am measuring (so I measure the width of the Aran Honeycomb plus one purl stitch to either side).

So....the total width of my cable patterns will equal the width of the group of cables on one side plus the width of the Aran Honeycomb panel plus the width of the cable patterns on the other side, or 5" + 5" + 5", for a width of 15". Remember, though, that I want the width of the sweater here to be the same as my cross-shoulder measurement, which is 19". I have to make up that 4" of width, and this is where I add in my filler stitch.

There are 4" to be "filled in" -- 2" on either side of the cable patterning. My gauge over moss stitch is 4.5 sts/inch, so I would add 9 or 10 stitches to either side of the cable patterning to make up the width.

What happens if you have a cross-shoulder measurement of 21" and your cable patterns only take up 14" of width -- should you fill that remaining 3 1/2" on either side with filler stitch? It's up to you -- you can make up the width by adding filler stitches, or by increasing the width of the Aran Honeycomb panel, as I did with my sweater. Likewise, if your cross-shoulder measurement is 14" and the cable patterns take up 14" of width, you can either not have any filler stitches in the top of your sweater (I've seen it done that way -- it looks nice), or eliminate a repeat of the Aran Honeycomb pattern.

Let's go back to that back neck measurement for a moment. I decided that my sweater will have a back neck width of 7", which just happens to be the same as the width of my Aran Honeycomb panel (5") plus a Little Twist Cable to either side of it (1" each). I don't like my front or back neck openings to cut into my cable patterns if I can avoid it. It's better to have a back neck opening be a little wide than have it slice into the middle of a cable pattern.

Your current assignment, then is to decide on the final pattern placement for your sweater. Coming shortly (later this afternoon), I will give specific instructions for figuring out how many stitches to pick up along the saddles and how to cast on for the back of the neck.

Questions welcome!


Last Updated: May 10, 1999
Page maintained by: Esther S. Bozak, ebozak@cs.oswego.edu
URL: http://www.cs.oswego.edu/~ebozak/knit/soa/part7.html