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December 13, 2011 / KristenMakes

Cadence KAL: Body, Sleeves, Modifications

Finally, we are drawing to a close in our Knitalong!  How is everyone doing on Cadence?  I have not been as quick in knitting mine as I hoped, as life (especially around the holidays) can definitely get quite busy quite unexpectedly!

It seemed as if everyone was trucking through their Cadence sleeves and body on their own – let’s face it, after the difficulty that was our neckline, lace, and the yoke increases,  the body and sleeves are a bit smoother!  As such, I hadn’t prepared a SUPER-detailed post on that, but I will go into it a wee bit before we get on to the finishing post.

Body & Sleeves:

The sleeves and body are very similar, you are knitting plain and every couple of rows (the exact number is dependent upon whether you are knitting sleeve or body, and which size too) you work a decrease row until you finally reach the rib hem/cuff.  For example, the pattern says of the body section:

All Sizes:
K 6 rounds.

Decrease Round: [K1, k2tog, k to 3 sts before marker, ssk, k1] twice. 112[128, 140, 156, 172, 188, 200] sts.

Repeat these 7 rounds 5 times more. 92[108, 120, 136, 152, 168, 180] sts.

Continue in stockinette st until work measures 14.75 inches from underarm, or 1.25 inches less than desired length to lower edge.

In this way you work SIX rounds of plain-knitting and then ONE increase round, and you repeat this 5 times.  Now there are some very specific variances depending on size so like before, do go through the entire pattern ahead of time and highlight your specific size instructions so that you don’t miss a particular step.  If you are struggling with the body & sleeve shaping, by all means let me know and we’ll go through it together!

My Personal Modifications:

(c) Jordana Paige

Following the instructions to the ‘T’ will get you a fit according to the schematic above.  What I did instead was modified the fit to fill my personal requirements.   I took a look at my wardrobe and realised I already have plenty of jumpers and what I really wanted was a tunic/sweater dress.  I wasn’t sure if I had enough yarn for the length I desired so I knitted arms first, and so that I’d have the remainder of the yarn to devote to making the dress as long as I could.

knitting arms first, then body

I followed the body instructions for the first few decreases.  I tried the jumper on along the way and when the length reached my natural waist I began to increase for the hips.  I worked an increase row exactly as I had worked my decrease rows only with a ‘M1’ increase in place of an ‘SSK’ or ‘K2tog’ decrease.

The rate of increasing is a bit trial and error.  At first I worked about 5-6 rounds between every increase round, but upon trying that on, the dress got too wide too quickly.  So I ripped out and began to increase every 8 rounds which was a much better fit.  Trying on the jumper is so important to creating the perfect fit for your body and needs.  Happy with that rate of increase, I continued until it was about 2.5 inches shy of my desired length and switched to rib for the hem.  It turns out I had plenty of yarn, and so I went back to the sleeves.

I thought the loose-fit of the dress was not well-matched with the slim, ¾-length sleeves so I ripped out the sleeves to the underarm and squeezed in a few more stitches in the underarm.  This created a looser fit sleeve.  I actually knitted straight without decreasing to the rib cuff, which created a nice roomy fit that complimented the roominess of the body nicely.

Happy with the fit, I went on to finishing.  Finishing is a VERY important step, and the difference between something that is obviously hand-made and something that looks wearable and professional.  The next post will go into detail on my finishing methods, so hopefully it will help you in these last steps!



Leave a Comment
  1. Sarah / Dec 13 2011 12:07 pm

    That is one FANTASTIC job, Kristen! Me likey 🙂

  2. Suzy / Dec 13 2011 9:08 pm

    I would love some tips on picking up the stitches for the arms. I had a huge hole in my underarm and had to re-work it several times. It’s still not perfect but it will do.

  3. KristenMakes / Dec 14 2011 7:22 am

    That’s a great idea Suzy! I’ll work on it post something soon.

  4. Marcy / Dec 29 2012 1:11 am

    I just have to tell you I am so grateful for this knit-along! Before I found these blogs, I was completely baffled by the instructions. Thank you so much for making this a fun instead of frustrating project.

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