Knitting Fail: The Lauriel Cardigan

5 Feb

It was only a matter of time before I knitted something that was completely unwearable. And here it is. Woof. I’m actually surprised it took me this long to get to that point – this is my sixth sweater, ffs!

Lauriel fail
This is the Lauriel pattern by Ysolda Teague. I fell in love with the pattern after lurking Tasia’s golden version. I used Cascade 220 sport (the color in these photos is definitely off; the swatch picture on my Ravelry page is much closer to the true color) and even bought me some of them fancy flexi-cable bamboo needles. I learned two new techniques for this sweater – a super stretchy bind off (my bind offs are always soo tight, no matter how much I go up in needle size. This method is awesome!) and Magic Loop for knitting the sleeves. I actually really enjoyed knitting it, although knitting the button bands almost broke my brain. I have no idea why the instructions were so bad for that part, but they were TERRIBLE. I spent about 3 hours on just one of the bands – I know this because I watched 4 episodes of Breaking Bad during the harrowing process.

Lauriel fail
So what’s the problem? Well, it’s too fucking big! I mean – holy shit, look at that sleeve length! I can’t cuff the sleeves back. I mean, I could, but there is a lace detail right above the cuffs and it would suck to cover that. Actually, the sleeves are the least of my problem. The entire thing is just huge huge huge. It swallows me, I look like a kid playing dress-up in her mom’s clothes. I know it looks semi-ok in these pictures, but trust me on this. This sweater is way too big, and I can’t wear it.

Lauriel fail
So where did I go wrong? I knit it correctly as indicated by the pattern – knitted my little gauge swatch (actually, I knit 3, just so we’re clear here), properly blocked it, checked my gauge frequently as I knit. So my knitting itself isn’t the error.

First of all, I admit that I knit the wrong size. The pattern has you knit by your underbust measurement, so I went with the 30″ since that’s what I measured at. Unfortunately, I must have measured wrong because I was checking that shit the other day and my underbust is actually closer to 28″. FACK. Even then, this thing is too huge.

I also suspect that this pattern simply runs big. Go look at Tasia’s sweater and notice that she said the sweater ended up very loose? Uh huh. Shoulda heeded her advice right there. I’ve actually now discovered, upon actually researching, that a lot of people have reported the thing problem – specifically in the bust/shoulders area. Which, yeah, that’s exactly the issue with mine. The shoulders droop down past my shoulders, the underarms are at least a couple of inches below mine, and the bust just swallows me.

Lauriel fail
Here I am pointing my finger at where my actual underarm is. Look at how low the sweater goes! The arms are huuuge on me – and I don’t have pencil thin arms, y’all!

Lauriel fail
The back is really a shining example of this sweater being too big.

Lauriel fail

Lauriel fail

Lauriel fail
Just for the record, this is how it is *supposed* to fit. I originally thought I might be able to just whip up the side seams with a backstitch, but the underarms are so low that I can’t do that. Wah.

Anyway, the knitting itself is really pretty:
Lauriel fail

Lauriel fail
(fuck that button band, forreal tho)

Lauriel fail

So yeah. I’m pretty bummed – I spent a little over 2 months knitting this (not to mention the money I spent on the yarn, pattern, and new needles) and I just can’t wear it. That’s the sucky part about knitting – you never really know the full extent to the fit until it’s finished and blocked. I’m afraid I can’t salvage this one.

That being said, I don’t regret knitting it. It was a fun pattern to work with, and I learned some fun new techniques. I am considering selling it for , I dunno like $50, just to recoup my costs. Anyone interested? The bust is 35″, waist is 31″ (with lots of stretch) and the length from shoulder to hem is 20″. The sleeves are also 20″ (underarm to end of cuff). I didn’t bother to sew the buttons or snaps on as I’m kind of over this sweater; I’m sure y’all understand. It has been finished and blocked, though. The sweater has found a new home! Thank you everyone for your interest 🙂

Lauriel fail
Sooo… what have you failed at lately? Let’s commiserate!


105 Responses to “Knitting Fail: The Lauriel Cardigan”

  1. verna February 8, 2013 at 12:55 pm #

    OMG before I even made it halfway thru the post I was thinking “That would fit MEEEEEEEEEEEEEE . I WAAAAAAAAAANT it NOOOOW”

    damn, too late 😦 Lucky sweater owner I is jealous 😦

  2. Anonymous February 8, 2013 at 7:06 pm #

    Please have a mental memorial and then frog that thing. Gorgeous yarn deserves to be loved and worn! And there are fantastic blogs out there on how to de-kink frogged yarn. As one who waited 10 FLIPPIN YEARS to frog an old item- it is worth it. I love love love what I ended up doing with the yarn.

  3. Max February 9, 2013 at 7:02 pm #

    Oh man bummer! It takes forever to knit anything anyway, and for it to come out all wrong 😦 It would have been a cute little cardi too. At least it has ound a new home!

  4. Kait February 11, 2013 at 7:40 pm #

    Lucky person-who-fits-it! =) It’s lovely.

    For your future projects, I think you need Maggie Righetti. She was this kickass knitting instructor who wrote books about how to make sure your knitting projects will fit you and stuff. I actually enjoyed, understood, and retained her lessons. And that’s saying something, because when it comes visual tasks, I usually prefer to learn kinesthetically.

    Anyway, I recommend Maggie’s Sweater Design in Plain English, if you want like, your very own wise old knitting mentor in book form. XD

    • tracy February 12, 2013 at 9:47 am #

      oh what a shame, such a beautiful colour! this had made me feel a wee bitty better as I’m wearing a dress today that I made, it looked ok this morning but now it just looks wrong, too big but that’s my fault cos i didn’t make a muslin i just went on ahead thinking how smart I am, ha! So I’ll just take it to pieces and do something with it, but it is disappointing and not nice when you spend a lot of time and effort and its not rightx 😦

    • LLADYBIRD February 13, 2013 at 4:46 pm #

      Oh, lovely! Thanks for the recommendation – I see my local library has a copy, so I’m going to pick it up and have a look. It sounds perfect to me 🙂

  5. Pam March 12, 2013 at 2:33 pm #

    I know I’m way, way too late commenting here… but here goes! Sometimes I’ve knitted things that turn out too big so I tie them in a pillow case and put them in the washing machine, in a cycle that’s not suitable for wool. Every time they have come out a size or two smaller and they fit perfectly!


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