Working on the second size from my KnS pattern, making a few adjustments to my schematic, mainly making it longer to reflect the tunic length I now wanted (changed side seam length to 50 cm/20 in), adding another inch to ‘1/4 hem width’ because of the change in length and adding a curved/shortrowed 1.25 inches to the centre.
Made the hem for the Back – my new schematic indicates 64-0-64 ns for the width, but my hem stitch pattern is a 12-st repeat, so I’m going with 66-0-67 ns, the closest 12-st repeat and of course redrafting the side seam decreases.
While working on the hem, I was pondering life. I had meant to knit this thing as the original, in stockinette, with the Aran-look yoke but I thought, what the hay? I’m here, working at wasting time and getting through the day, trying to feel like I’m accomplishing something…let’s stretch this out!’
After the hem, I figured I may as well start with that nice diamond thing up the centre back. By the time I got the first repeat done, at RC024, I was itching to expand. I added the 2X2X2 braided cable on either side – oh yeah, turning all those between sts to purl stitches was too much for me and I liked the separating tuck ribs that I used on the poncho better so left 3 plain sts between each new vertical cable with a tuck rib on either side. After another 24 rows, began the 3X2 cable turned every 6 rows; then at RC072, started a 2X2 turned every 4 rows; at RC096, a 2X1, turned every 4 rows.
Some tips for Aran knitting:
1. Choose yarn and stitch size so the knitting is not too tight – you’ll be fighting with small stitches the whole time and not enjoy the experience. The yarn I used (DK Wool) for this tunic, I would knit at T5 stockinette but for this worked T6 to make sure there was enough give to manoeuvre the cables.
2. Make a cheat sheet noting the row numbers for each operation.
3. The stitches put down first are the ones that show on the public side of the fabric – talk to yourself as you’re transferring to remember what to do.
4. Be sure to read the Cables section in ‘The Handbook for Manual Machine Knitters’ for lots more!
5. Making the Back first allows you to sort things out before working the Front – they do not have to be the same but the front neckline is the most important part of any garment and here you want to make sure you have the best pattern row to stop on. That diamond will look best if completed or stop at the halfway.
6. Mark the needle butts to help keep track of things – I mark the tuck ribs and then you see what fits between them.
P.S. sorry for the confusion about inches and centimetres. I always work in cm and give the inch conversion for the U.S. as a courtesy, but sadly KnitStyle wanted only inches so that pattern has only inches in the schematic – I was working on them to change!
P.P.S. I did make a swatch in stockinette only and used that reading for my calculations.