The Big Knit

Or as I like to call it POD – project of doom.

Last winter I found my dad sitting on the sofa in his living room shivering under a knitted blanket wearing a pair of knitted socks, a knitted jumper and a knitted hat. Ah yes, my parents, incapable of turning the heating on. Instead mother generates her own heat by knitting furiously and my dad gets dressed up in the end product. Ill equipped for my weekend visit to Iceland (aka West London) by Sunday I was sitting with my dad, sharing his knitted blanket, wearing knitted socks, a knitted jumper and a knitted hat.

My mother is a great inspiration and my biggest fan – she can do anything she sets her mind to and she thinks I can too.. So I was brainwashed into thinking if I can knit a scarf I can knit anything. Cue mother to step in helpfully with a pattern in one hand and a bag of slightly suspect wool in the other. It took me a year to finish the back panel due to my short attention span and shopping addiction (why make it when you can buy it?) but I am proud I’ve pushed on over the last month (mainly because my husband wont programme the heating – it’s a blue job and the shopping ban) and in one sleeve, a front panel and a button strip knits time I will be cuddled up on my sofa wearing my own knitted cardigan under a knitted blanket (present from mother) and my cat (formal introductions to Oscar on a later date). I have to say this progress has sparked a real sense of achievement and inspired many more projects (namely a Wool and the Gang Jumper Dress) and so probably this blog too.

Some problems I encountered and how I overcame them:

  • Symmetry

    knitting-4When you sew all the pieces of your project together its helpful if they a
    re all the same length. Initially I found it really difficult to count stitches once the piece is made so for this a stitch counter is your friend! It also helps when you have to do wild things like increase every 6 rows. Just remember to use it.


  • Abbreviations

    Knitting instructions are hard to follow. So many abbreviations. Even if I don’t plan on following the in
    structions fully I really need things spelled out to me – at the start of every pattern there is a glossary of knitting terms. It is from this I learnt at 3am during a coffee fueled knitting binge that M1 means ‘make 1 stitch by picking up strand between stitches..’ There is more to that explanation but I did
    n’t follow it and my new stitches looked alright.

knitting 3.jpg

  • Increasing/Decreasing

    The pattern asks you to increase or decrease on every knit row. Increase how many on each row? I took it to mean increase/decrease on one at the beginning and one at the end. For increasing I would knit one then make one as above. For decreasing I would knit two together.

Finally YouTube is fantastic! That and FaceTime to someone that knows how to knit.

Having said that please comment if you have any more tips or even questions!

knitting 2.jpg

the back panel

Smallprint: I’m not sure where the pattern was purchased as it was a gift but its copyright is Thomas B Ramsden (



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