When Kate Davies released the Carbeth pattern, I immediately added it to my favorites on Ravelry. I was completely sucked in to the boxy shape and the exaggerated raglan lines. I seriously considered scrapping all my other sweater plans to cast on the Carbeth pattern, but held back because I wasn’t sure how I felt about the neckline and wasn’t sure how I would deal with the body of the sweater–I knew I would want to lengthen it, but I wasn’t sure by how much or how much, if any, shaping I might want to add. While I was mulling all of these details over, Davies released the Carbeth Cardigan and all my hang-ups were resolved. I felt more confident about a completely boxy cardigan and I loved the doubled collar on the cardigan pattern. And so the Carbeth Cardigan officially jumped the queue.
The pattern is knit holding a DK-weight yarn double to get a bulky-weight gauge. My original plan was to use Cascade Eco+, but I struggled with color choices. I saw a lovely Carbeth knit in Charcoal Eco+ and settled on using the same color, but something kept me from actually committing to the yarn. The idea of knitting the pattern in gray yarn seemed practical/wearable but left me feeling a bit flat, and I realized that what I really wanted was a Carbeth Cardigan in olive green. The only problem was that I couldn’t find the right shade of olive in any bulky weight yarn.
So I gave up the idea of an olive cardigan and instead started scanning through projects made with Eco+ on Ravelry to see if I could find a color that felt more inspiring than gray. In the process, I actually came across a few projects made up in an olive heather that seems like it’s been discontinued from the Eco+ line. The same color way is, however, still available in Cascade 220 Sport. I decided I would hold two strands of 220 Sport together and immediately purchased all 15 skeins of olive heather Webs had in stock.
The pattern calls for at least 4” of ease at the bust. My current bust measurement is 44,” so my initial plan was to make the 49” size. I knit up a swatch over spring break and did a quick gauge check before washing the swatch and things seemed on track, so I cast on. Obviously, this was stupid. I knit nearly 4” into the body before I finally got around to blocking my swatch, which was when I discovered that my gauge was off and the body of my sweater was only knitting up to be about 45”. So I ripped it out, did some math, realized I could cast on for the next size up (53”) to get the same basic dimensions for the 49” size, and cast on all over again. I like the fabric I’m getting even though my gauge is off, so I’d rather cast on for the next size up than re-swatch with a larger needle.
I’m planning to lengthen the body, although I’m not sure by how much. It’s going to depend on how much yarn I have. I was confident I would have enough yarn to add 7 or 8 inches to the body of the sweater when I first cast on, but I’m going to need more yarn now that I’m knitting a larger size, so we’ll see what I end up with. I think I may also need to lengthen the sleeves by an inch or two, but I’ll make that decision once I start knitting them and am able to try them on.
Mason-Dixon Knitting hosted a Knit-Along for the Carbeth pullover in February called Bang Out a Carbeth where everyone was trying to finish the sweater in three weeks. I’m still seeing people use the #bangoutacarbeth hashtag since this cropped, bulky-weight sweater is ostensibly a super=quick knit. Except, I seem to be knitting at a snail’s pace and am still only a couple of inches into the body. So I won’t be banging out this Carbeth Cardigan in a few of weeks but maybe I’ll manage to get it done in a few months? We’ll see.