I discovered Zenta by the Danish yarn company and agents Permin last December, and was instantly drawn to the vivid lime color as well as their full shade card in a luscious wool and silk mixture: 50% wool, 30% silk, 20% nylon, 50 g, 180 m/196 yds. I decided to design a straight cardigan with a combined lace and cable stitch pattern to adorn the back, sleeves and the generous loop closure named after a beautiful elf, for the special issue called Strikk by Familien to be published at the end of August. The loop collar can be worn loose, folded once behind the neck or twice in front or three times around the neck in a ballerina style. I thought the idea was brilliant until I realized how long I actually need to knit the loop to make it work as I wanted: 300 cm/118″ consisting of two parts joined together at the neck and at the front. Permin could sense my stress, when I phoned them desperate for 2 more skeins to be able to complete the loop to my preferred length. Above you see me wearing it with the loop twice around my neck.
Place the loop around your neck to put the cardigan on, and leave it like that, see above. The photos are taken by my husband, but only give an indication of the cold and the strong wind we experienced at the end of May. Hence I do not look my best. The cardigan has garter stitch edges at the bottom, at the end of the front, as well as a fake garter stitch side seam to add a bit of structure to the cardigan.
The sleeves, knitted in the round, have one pattern repeat with what looks like 3 panels of lace, just as the loop which is knitted flat in two parts and then joined. The back has two pattern repeats with what looks like 5 panels of lace. The garter stitches in the side are divided by one stitch in reverse stocking stitch which give the appearance of a side seam.
The body is knitted in one piece to the armholes, then divided into 3 parts. The loop collar is knitted separately in two pieces, bound off on 3 needles and sewed on from the back neck, while the cast on edges are joined by mattress stitches. Maybe some knitters will opt to make a loop closure at the bottom instead of sewing it together? Or make a shorter scarf collar? The sleeves are knitted in the round and set-in.
Above you see it worn in ballerina style, three times around the neck and with a safety pin at the bottom of the fronts to make it stay flat. With the loop worn like this the cardigan gathers around the bust and the back, making it appear more like a fitted cropped bolero. Hence you have two cardigan in one: a straight casual one and a close fitting one.
The best way to illustrate the length of the loop is having it hang loose as above. I am sure there are more ways to wear the loop if you want a more avant-garde style. I plan to have the English pattern test knitted in my Ravelry group this autumn before it will be released. But long before that I will share the marvelous professional photos Eivind Røhne took of modell Anne Dorthe/Team models.
Beautiful! Love the styling, love the numerous ways it can be worn, love the design details. Love love love it. Congratulations Linda on a great design.
Oh, marvelous complement, Janie! Thank you so much!
Aw, what a fantastic complement, Ruth! Thank you so much!