A step by step guide to knitting the Together Vest.
Yeah, babe! You just earned yourself (humble) bragging rights. This super special Cardigang X OBUS Together Vest will make you feel like a total fox - and cosy too.
The Together Vest is simply the best. A sporty style with contrasting stripes, rock this versatile style alone or layer over your fave dress or skivvy.
If you're a total knitting newbie - WELCOME! 👋 Learning to knit can feel a bit like learning code. We've stripped away the complicated jargon and tried to keep things really simple so even the newest knitter can master the skill 🧶
Let's get ready to rumble.
Your kit comes with all the gear you need to knit this cosy masterpiece. This includes super soft and chunky 100% Aussie Merino Wool, your knitting sticks (needles), a darning needle (to sew your cardi together), a handy little 'made by me' tag to affix to your creation and the all important pattern.
Our Chunky Merino is fine and fluffy and she should be treated well. She'll pull apart if you put too much tension on her, so be gentle, friend.
Pick up the sticks, babe.
Whether you're a never-knitted-before knitter, or a purl-stitch pro, It’s a good idea to learn/refresh yourself on the basics before you start your masterpiece. You can use the yarn that came in your kit to practice with. The video below covers every technique you'll need to learn (spoiler - there's only 5!). Learn how to cast on, do a knit stitch, a purl stitch and put them together to create a rib stitch, lastly, we learn casting off. Once you've got these mastered you'll find this pattern is a cinch!
💭 For more detailed videos of each technique, head down a little further where we've got specific videos for each stitch type.
Stitch happens 😵
When you're learning to knit (and even when you've mastered some of the skills) stitch happens. Things go wrong, you make a boo-boo. Don't stress! Learning a new skill can be a little challenging at first, and you’re bound to find yourself making some mistakes along the way. But as with learning anything, your brain and your hands slowly start to get the hang of it, muscle memory is created, and soon the thing you found tricky/daunting/scary is like second nature!
If you get stuck, reach out to us and we'll give you a (virtual) hand! 😎⚡️💪
TEST YOUR TENSION
Before you start your project, you should make sure your tension (how tightly or loosely your knitting is) is juuuust right 🥣 We do this by knitting a “tension swatch”. It's a bit like goldilocks, if the tension is too tight, your piece will be too small, and if it's too loose it may not hold its shape and might be too big.
If done correctly, your 10x10cm knitted swatch should be 7 stitches wide and 9 rows high. To test this, jump on your needles, cast on around 12 stitches, then knit in stockinette stitch (row 1 knit, row 2 purl) for around 10 rows. Then get a measuring tape and measure out 10x10cm and count your stitches and rows to make sure you're knitting at the correct tension.
THE TECHNIQUES YOU’LL MASTER
Casting on is the first step in any project. It's the term we use for getting the wool onto our needles! We recommend using the two-needle technique as it's one of the simplest methods. Two-needle cast on uses your two needles (surprise!), starting with a slip knot on your left needle, each stitch is knitted to form a new loop and this loop is then added to your left needle. You repeat until you’ve made the desired number of stitches.
💭 Casting on, like many things in knitting, can be done in a number of ways - our suggestion is a simple technique but you can pick any that’s right for you.
This handy little stitch makes up the backbone of most knitting patterns. Each knit stitch looks like a little ‘v’.
The second most common stitch, purl stitches look like little bumps (or purls!). You knit a knit stitch with your yarn tail at the back of your work and your needle going into the back of the stitch, the purl is the opposite, so your yarn tail is at the front of your work and your needle goes into the front of the stitch.
A rib stitch is a textured pattern usually used on the cuffs and necks of jumpers. It’s made by alternating knit and purl stitches in the same row, then knitting the same stitch sequence in the next row.
We reduce the number of stitches on our needle by knitting or purling some stitches together. This simply means we put our right needle into the second stitch on your left needle and collect both the first and second stitch and knit them as you would a single stitch.
To cast off, knit two stitches then slip the first stitch on your right needle back over the second stitch and off the needle. You’ll have one stitch left on your right needle. Knit another stitch so you’ve got two stitches on your right needle and then slip the first stitch off. Continue to the end of the row. When you’ve got the last stitch on your right needle, cut the yarn and thread this through the final stitch to secure. To see casting off in action watch our "Master The Basics" video above.
OKAY, LET’S KNIT UP A STORM!
We knit the front and back panels flat, then sew the pieces together before we knit the rib around the arm holes and the v-neck. We start with the back because it's the simplest piece and will give you the confidence to progress through the pattern - plus, if you make any mistakes they're hidden away at the back of your knit! 😝
You can knit the Together Vest in four different sizes, 6-8, 10-12, 14-16 or 18-20. Our sizing follows conventional Australian sizing. Your pattern is read like this: 6-8 (10-12, 14-16, 18-20).
We knit the back piece from the bottom up, starting at the rib and going up to the shoulders.
First, we cast the required number of stitches using your 10mm circular needles. Remember to follow the correlating number for the size you've chosen to knit.
Once you've cast on the right number of stitches you move on to the rib stitch. We knit the rib following the instructions in your pattern. Make sure you're moving the tail of your yarn to the front and back of your work between each stitch.
Once we've finished the allocated amount of rows in rib stitch, we switch to the 15mm straight needles.
💡 To switch to a different size needle we just hold the new needle in our right hand and knit onto it.
You'll work in stockinette stitch for the rest of the back panel.
💭 Cross off a circle for every row knitted. The dotted circles indicate rows for larger sizes, so just make sure you're checking the pattern for the number of rows you need to knit for your size.
Simple right?! 😎
🧶 You'll see throughout the back panel we change yarn colours a few times. Changing your yarn is simple. When you get to the end of the row, you simply secure the end of the old and new balls together by tying a loose knot with the new yarn around the tail of the current colour and sliding it up to the needle. Tighten the knot at the needle and start knitting the new row with the new colour yarn.
📉 Once we get to step 7 we'll start to shape the piece for the armholes - we do this over 18 rows. To shape the piece you'll cast off some stitches and knit some stitches together.
💭 To slip a stitch you'll just move it from your left needle onto your right needle without knitting it.
Knit, knit, knit 🏋️
When you've finished the last row of the back panel you cast off your stitches.
The front panel begins in the same way as the back. You'll cast on, knit the rib and the contrasting stripes. When you get to step 9 you'll split your work to knit up the v-neck shape.
We'll knit up the left-hand side of the front panel, and then the right.
💡Just remember you knit all the rows to complete one shoulder before you move onto the next. It will seem a little weird on the first shoulder because you’ve got all the extra stitches sitting on your needle but that’s totally correct.
SEWING IT TOGETHER
Well done on getting this far! We hope you're enjoying yourself! Time to grab the darning needle and sew the pieces of your vest together.
Lay your front and back pieces on a flat surface, the right sides facing you.
Sew the shoulder panels together using the invisible seam technique.
Fold your vest in half long ways with the wrong sides facing each other. We're going to sew it together using a Mattress Stitch, from the bottom rib up the side to the start of the arm hole.
💭 It's normal for the wool to get a bit shabby as you go, so we recommend using a few pieces and tying them together underneath as you go! If you're feeling like a real pro you can also change the colour of yarn to match the section you're sewing together.
Okay, onto the armholes! You'll need to follow the same instructions for both arm holes 😊
The armholes are knitted in the round. We want to pick up an even number of stitches around the armhole. You'll do two loops of rib stitch before casting off! Make sure you mark the start of your loop so you can keep track.
The below video shows you how to pick up stitches.
We're almost finished now! 💃🚀
It's time to knit the V-neck rib - you’ll be pretty good at this now!
So first things first. Using your 10mm needles, we pick up an even number of stitches from around the neckline. Pick up a stitch for every row and make sure you space them evenly.
Mark your middle stitch at the bottom of the 'V' and mark the beginning of your loop (the place where you start knitting your first loop of rib). These markers will help you keep track of your knitting. A spare piece of yarn or ribbon make good stitch markers!
Okay time to start knitting the rib. We want the middle stitch (the one you've marked at the bottom of the V) to be a knit stitch, so we count back to the beginning of the loop (knit, purl, knit, purl... ) to determine what stitch you start with. Your first loop will be a simple 1x1 rib stitch - knit 1, purl 1. On the second loop we start to cast off some stitches around the bottom of the V-neck to create the shape.
The last thing we do for every piece is weave in the ends. That’s basically just tidying up the piece so all loose ends are trimmed down and tucked in.
FINITO! You are done! 💪🔥🥳
Time to rock that baby out and about 😎
Care for your cardi 💕
Once your fabulous cardi is complete you'll want to take care of her. Handmade knits need hand washing.
Wash your knit by hand, in cool water with a wool detergent and don't leave her in the water for too long. Roll in a clean towel to remove excess water and dry flat out of direct sunlight.
💭🧼 TIP! Did you know that wool is 100% biodegradable, naturally antibacterial and stain-resistant? It's also naturally elastic, returning to its original shape after wearing. These magical properties mean you don't need to wash your woollen garments very often, in fact just a bit of fresh air and a lay down can be as good as a wash.
Share the love.
We'd LOVE to see how you go! Share your masterpiece with us by tagging @cardigang_knits and @obusclothing on socials or by sending us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Until next time! 😘🧶💕
Morgan & Cat xx