Having wanted to write a straight forward top-down jumper pattern for quite some time, I had no idea quite how long it was going to take… In fact when I edited the images of the various stages I realise that I started the first sample in April last year 😱However, I am not going to beat myself up, it is what it is, suffice to say that the pattern is now finally finished and Eiffel Tower is here.
I really wanted it to be simple for three reasons, 1) I like knitting in front of the TV and can’t do that if I’m counting all the time; 2) I wanted something to show off my yarns and 3) most of my customers prefer simple patterns and whenever I have complicated samples, whilst they frequently comment on how gorgeous they are, the most common response is “Oh, I couldn’t do that”.
After much swatching I also decided that I would go for a looser than normal knit, and settled on 6.5mm needles with a DK, although I actually knit the first two samples with Mulberino 4ply and Angelo Lace held double. My biggest priority was that I wanted it to be accessible to knitters of all skills, however, whilst creating the first sample (see image on the left) I decided that I needed to add in something to make it less boring, so I frogged the bottom 6 inches and worked out a lace pattern. However, this had to be designed differently, because of the larger needles, it was hard to get the lace pattern to hold any form. So, I constructed it slightly differently and instead of using the usual ‘yo’ to create a hole, I just use a m1 on the following round.
Add to this the fact that it is my first adult jumper pattern and it incorporates many possible customisations: 3/4 length or capped sleeves; cropped length or long like a tunic; and the afore mentioned yarn variations; it is hardly surprising it has taken so long! Also, I wanted to make a sample in each of the possible variations myself, before even giving the pattern to my tech editor and sending it out for test knit…
Test knit was completed in January and then February we gathered all figures and finalised the pattern. I couldn’t do it without my fabulous Tech Editor Deb from Find Me Knitting – if you find yourself in Snowdonia then visit her shop – it is a knitters (and crocheters) paradise. For those of you who don’t know what a tech editor is then let me explain – they take your scribbles and illustrations as a designer, and make it into a coherent pattern! They also help with sizing, and each size is carefully worked out using the measurements and gauge. Deb is particularly brilliant because she has a mathematics degree from Cambridge University, so she can really do the bits that I can’t. There is a LOT of maths involved in writing a pattern… even just working out the gauge can make my head hurt and I have a maths A Level!!
Anyway, the photograph above are the three samples that I have made and I’m really happy with all of them and they are all slightly different. I have also made this one for myself which I have now worn alot… I so rarely make things for myself it feels like such a treat! Please excuse the awful photo – it was taken literally as I cast off.
Once the pattern was finished the next thing was to create kits and yarn bundles… Now, given that you can use a 4ply and 2ply there are infinite combinations of this and not really advantageous to create my own bundles but you can create your own combination on the Eiffel Tower Kit page. However, I have dyed lots of Ultra Merino DK yarns with this pattern in mind and have enough of all of these colourways to make at least 1 jumper. However, all colourways are available on backorder and I have a few kilos of undyed yarn too so can create bespoke colourways too.
So, my first top-down jumper pattern, but definitely not my last… Having said that, my next design is much simpler… more on that to follow!
Until then, in these crazy times…
Love as always