Remember the post I wrote a while ago about building a garment from a modular pattern? I explained how I was using Amanda Griffith’s book “One Thousand Sweaters” to build my Coconut Ice jumper and mentioned this being a great entry into the idea of pattern modification. With this in mind, I was very interested to see that Brooklyn Tweed are thinking along similar lines and have released two patterns in a workbook format which encourage knitters to personalise the different elements to suit their own tastes. They, too, have concluded that there is a merit in being able to knit several garments from one basic pattern, ringing the changes by choosing different options each time. They have started the ball rolling with a boxy sweater and an item they are calling the Modern Tabard, although I would describe it as more of a tunic. The last time tabards were modern was back in the 1970s, and it has to be hoped that they don’t date quite so badly this time around. I’m surprisingly keen on the tabard idea because the shape is similar to that of a tunic which I bought from Masai Clothing several years ago and have found to be a competent layering piece.

Returning to that Coconut Ice jumper, I am pleased to report that it is now a finished object in every respect other than needing a soak in warm water and detergent. I’m very pleased with the result, in particular the fit. It was certainly a good call to go down to the smallest size in the pattern when I reached the armhole shaping as it gives a lovely fit across my shoulders. That collar will be great come the chilly days and I can see this working well as an outer layer in the autumn and spring as well as a nice snuggly winter garment. I tried it underneath my blanket coat and I think it’s going to be useful when I want some additional warmth at the open neckline.

So far, I’ve only taken some quick snaps of the finished object and I intend to take some better shots as proper documentation after the jumper has been washed. I have two slight issues with the jumper at the moment, the first being that I don’t like the way the hem flaps up. If this doesn’t cure itself in the washing I will try adding a facing to stabilise it. I can’t deny that I prefer the finish a ribbed hem gives to a garment, but with my current body shape ribbed hems don’t look so good on hip-length garments and I don’t want everything I knit to be waist-length.

The other slight niggle is the rather visible open stitches where I’ve worked decreases. I’m not sure why these have turned out so noticeable on this particular garment, but I hope that the first soak will fluff up the wool fibres enough to make this problem disappear entirely.

Looking at the photos of the jumper and coat combination has got me pondering the idea of a hand-knitted “dickey” once again. It’s something I like to contemplate and reject several times a year, mainly being put off by the idea that it could prove to be somewhat flappy when worn. Just a minute, though. What about that tabard idea from Brooklyn Tweed? That would do away with the loose, flappy edges of the dickey whilst covering my chest, shoulders and neck for warmth. It could work.

For now, though, I’m turning my attention down to my feet and I’m going to finish the socks I’m knitting. Once that is done, I will have a completely clear plate and will be able to look forward to stirring my imagination with some completely new projects.

I hope you’ve all had a good weekend and indulged your passions, whatever you hobby may be.

8 thoughts on “Coconut Ice

  1. I looked up “tabard” because I never heard that word before. I was shown many images of the 3 Musketeers! I get it though. I think something like that would be very functional and versatile.
    Your finished sweater is so pretty.

    1. Yes, it is a bit of an odd concept. In the 1970s they were definitely more a loose front and back with just a strap or buttoned flap joining them together, but the Brooklyn Tweed ones go the route of a split hem which is altogether more wearable.
      I’m so pleased with the Coconut Ice sweater, although this afternoon I would definitely be putting the ‘sweat’ in ‘sweater’ if I went anywhere near it.

    2. Oh and we are having a chilly day for June. A nice line of thunderstorms came rumbling through this morning and the temp is about 18c.

    3. It’s only 21c here, but I’ve been slaving over a hot computer all afternoon doing a job application (my full-time job at present is applying for jobs!) and I feel like I’m going to melt.

    4. Thanks. I can’t deny it’s sapping my energy, but I’m trying to focus on the end result. I really want something that will see me through the next five or six years until I retire as I don’t relish the idea of chopping and changing again this late in my career.

    5. I’m hoping to get back to some basic office admin, but I feel those positions are going to younger people now. My last role was as a dental receptionist which was too far out of my comfort zone and I was dreadful at it. Before that I did seven years in a customer service role. I’m open to other things, though, just have to see how it goes.

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