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May 24, 2012 / KristenMakes

On my Needles…

I hang my head in shame at my number of knitting FO’s for 2012.  A few wee hats.  Now, I love the hats, I just wish I had more to show for 2012!  Not that I don’t have good reason for this of course.  First off, my job requires work-knitting which cuts into the me-fun-knitting.  Working for Di Gilpin is a dream and I love all the amazing things that I find on my needles, so it’s no true disappointment I don’t have much time for selfish me-fun-knitting.  Also cutting into the me-fun-knitting is the work I’ve been doing for my collection, let’s call that me-work-knitting.  Of course, this sort of knitting is fun too, but it involves planning, calculating, copious note-taking, and worry that it’s not good enough.

So when both sorts of work-knitting are caught up, and my fingers aren’t stiff and dead, I do have a me-fun-knitting project I’ve been slowly working on:  The Pearl Gansey.

(c) Laurel Guilfoyle

This gansey is, you’ve guessed it, one of Di’s designs.  It actually was published alongside a huge feature on Di in May’s issue of Knitting Magazine!  We rushed to get the pattern developed, samples knitted, and details for the article sorted on time, and the end product was fab!  The team at Knitting Mag are so great to work with and produce an ace magazine!

The issue features 2 variations of Di’s design, a cropped jumper and a longer jumper.  The design is a contemporary take on the traditional fisherman’s gansey.  It features traditional gansey stitch patterns like Print o’ the Hoof and Braided Cable, but the shape of the gansey is very non-traditional.  It features a growing moss (seed) stitch side panel that extends into a batwing that attaches to the sleeve.  I think the effect is very chic and stunning!

The design for the magazine arose from a piece from Di’s Spring/Summer 2012 collection, which was originally knitted in Louet Euroflax linen.  Stiff to knit with at first, upon wash and wear, the yarn relaxes into a gorgeous drapey piece.

photo credit David Stanton / Stanton Imaging

So for months of having seen this lovely design being modeled and reworked, I was dying for the chance to make my own.  Slowly but surely, my Pearl gansey is coming together…


So having seen several versions already go out, I wanted to make some modifications to my own Pearl gansey.  I wanted to use wool (surprise, surprise…), and for the colour to be marled or heathered.  I had a few spare cones of JC Rennie 4-ply and liked the look of a soft teal with a light grey.  Using my winder, I wound the two strands together as one ball, which is working out pretty nicely for the knitting up, and the gauge is close enough to make me happy.  The Rennie lambswool off the cone is a bit stiff and oily but I know from experience when it is washed, the yarn softens and behaves beautifully.  I can’t wait to see the transformation!

        Pearl  Pearl

I altered the centre diamond panel to be more diamond-like and altered between large and small diamonds, with one extra-large diamond centred over the chest.  I also created a twisted knit stitch at the sides to create an exposed faux seam.  I also flipped the braided cable to go in the opposite direction.

    Pearl     Pearl

I really love the contruction of the batwing sleeve.  It is really so simple, but creates such a unique sihlouette!

So I’ve got one more sleeve to go technically, which should be pretty quick once I get the time.  I’m still dithering though on whether I should rip back on the roll-neckline make it a bit wider…  Anyway, hope your projects are going faster than mine!



Leave a Comment
  1. unlabelled clothes / May 24 2012 3:38 pm

    wow, the pattern is so detailed & intricate.

  2. Richie / May 24 2012 7:43 pm

    I think you should do your hair like that one lady. And also take your pics like her too!

  3. Mum / May 24 2012 8:26 pm

    Silly brother comment! Love your creativity! See you soon!!!

  4. scruffybadger / May 25 2012 2:17 am

    Gosh! Gasp ! I absolutely love it! I love the original design & I am blown away by your alterations & beautiful knitting-in-progress. You are so clever!!

  5. susannahradford / May 25 2012 6:27 am

    Looks beautiful Kristen, great knitting. Looking forward to seeing the finished product.

  6. Tasha @ By gum, by golly! / May 25 2012 9:44 am

    Ha no, my projects are not going faster. I have one sweater and one hat to my name for 2012. Egads. lol

    I love how your gansey is coming out. That’s a clever idea to wind the two skeins together, I’ve just pulled from two at a time when knitting with two balls, but that’s a bit of a pain. I love the color it’s turning out, it’s going to be just beautiful!

  7. Roobeedoo / Jun 3 2012 2:01 pm

    Oh gorgeous! I love JC Rennie yarn, so the thought of two strands and that pattern = wow!
    And I love your sewing plans too!

  8. Lisa / Jun 4 2012 11:53 am

    Utterly beautiful , I love the lacy design and the sugared almond colours.

  9. Jen / Jun 13 2012 12:15 am

    WOW !!! Wow wow wow ! I mean, I have not checked in on you in a while, and I have missed out. So I fixed that… became a follower 🙂 . You won’t get rid of me now. I am hoping your sewing passion will rub off on me and I’ll get my machine out and start sewing again (other than just shirts for my guy).


  1. Pearl Jumper finished « KristenMakes

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