BIG NEWS for crocheters!!!!! If you have ever wanted a size-inclusive sweater pattern that you could try on as you go, with built in advice on how to make custom changes to fit your body AND is written for yarns that give you endless colour possibilities, then read on! YAY, it’s pattern release day for my Ever-Change Sweater!!
My Ever-Change Sweater creation is a crocheted cotton blend V-neck raglan sweater constructed top-down in the round, with feature slip-stitch embroidery on the sleeves. The name suits because it is an ever-changing canvas for playing with colour, and it reflects my journey to design it (the back-story can be found here: part 1 and part 2).
Support blogs will be posted here - starting with the Prep blog tomorrow, and The Ever-Change Sweater MAL will be hosted in my Facebook group Pepper-Gaggle!
How to join the MAL:
Buy the pattern from Ravelry or Etsy, join Pepper-Gaggle to share the MAL journey, and subscribe to my blog so you don’t miss a post!
I am launching Ever-Change with a marked down price until 2 weeks into the MAL which is Dec 24th!
The documents, support blog posts and other resources will only be published in English, in both UK and US terms. Please note my blog uses UK terminology.
The Ever-Change Sweater is written for 9 women’s sizes XS through to 5XL (referenced from CYC size guidelines) and includes advice regarding adding length and customising your fit. The top-down construction method allows you to try it on and tweak things as you go.
Level of Difficulty:
Intermediate to Advanced
For beginner crocheters, I hope this inspires you with what crochet can do, but this is not a beginner-friendly design.
For experienced crochet garment makers and those who have already made my Sashiko Happy Coat or Beach Daze patterns, you may be set to download and find your way through the instructions okay, with help found in Pepper-Gaggle.
For intermediate - experienced crocheters who have never made a garment - you will find it a challenge and perhaps frustrating at times, but there is a lot to learn along the journey and the MAL helps you make it with friends! My advice to you is think of it as a learning exercise, go with the solid colour (yarn B) option for a first sweater and depending how your swatching goes, make it in 1 size larger than you think - that way if your gauge is tight, you still end up with a jumper you can wear. Then with all that you learned in your first sweater, go crazy for your second! (Third....?)
Colour Options & Materials:
Three colour planning options are described.
The pattern instructions are written for combining gradient yarn A (Whirl/Woolly Whirl) with solid colour yarn B (Whirlette/Woolly Whirlette).
An accompanying PDF (Appendix A) details yarn handling and schematics for this and 2 other colour planning variations: all in gradient yarn A (hello statement rainbow), or all in solid colour yarn B (everyday wardrobe staple).
This video below explains these 3 colour planning options, materials needed, and the yardage required for each size. Everything except a few rounds of neck edging is worked with a 3mm hook, or the hook size required to achieve gauge when swatching. (The neck edge uses a 2.5-2.75mm for a few rounds).
How many colours are there to choose from? HEAPS! Check out the Scheepjes website for the full range of Woolly Whirls, Whirls and their Whirlette counterparts. Simy’s blog is the official colour guide to combining them!
Testers on Show:
Now what about some tester projects? Some of my testers making the XL-4XL range are still finishing off their samples and will be added here once they are complete, but for now I can show marvellous creations for sizes XS-XL in Woolly Whirl/Whirlette.
My testers are an amazing group and explored lots of different colour ideas - blending and contrasting colours, with sleeve embroidery and without! Each maker tweaked to their desired fit during the project. For some of them, the Woolly Whirl tightened up a bit more than expected during blocking and are going to allow slightly more ease for their second sweater (which they are planning already!!)
Introducing Lydia Callahan! This was Lydia’s first Peppergoose test though she has made several of my patterns before. Lydia looks just about ready to conquer the world in her gorgeous FO here and tells me she thinks her crochet has “levelled up” by making this project!!
My test group have been very patient and supportive to both test the pattern and to help me to refine the fit across graded sizes, so the neckline sits flat and that the raglan line curves with the body. The neckline enlarges with each size and Lydia’s XS (above), and Naomi’s S necklines (below) were a bit snug after edging, so this has been addressed in the pattern.
I have also included a note in Appendix B for how you could create a deeper V-neck option as some followers on socials asked about this, though it does rather disrupt the ease of understanding my carefully grouped and charted instructions, so I would recommend doing that on your second Ever-Change Sweater once you understand how it all comes together, not the first!
Naomi Boxall is super-talented, super-helpful with testing several of my patterns, helps to moderate Pepper-Gaggle and always takes fun photos of her makes! She tested a size S as a gift for her sister who models it with an air of casual chic and looks to be pretty happy with the deal.
Naomi’s measurements fall between S and M size categories, and she models the same size S jumper with her characteristic crazy gusto below! She never fails to crack me up!!! Naomi is planning a Medium for herself during the MAL.
Lisa Marlow is an experienced tester for several designers, and she also generously helps to moderate Pepper-Gaggle. Lisa is a total whizz with a hook and her Ever-Change Sweater is a tropical rainbow!
Ruth Lambert is a true yarn-lover, makes meticulous projects in both knitting and crochet and helps to moderate Pepper-Gaggle too! We share a love for a good yarn experiment and so Ruth decided to see how things went combining Woolly Whirl for the Bodice with (not Woolly) Whirlette for the sleeves, as the rose pink would complement the range of pinks in the bodice. Her Ever-Change Sweater is a great example of both blending and contrast.
Annemie Celens made her XL without any changes and in the same colour as my size M sample seen at the top of this post, so it’s a really great comparison with how the colours can play out slightly differently over the size range when combining the chosen gradient yarn A with solid colour yarn B! Looking great as always Annemie!
Now that we have the colour run-down and inspiration from my talented testers...
WHAT’S IN THE DOCS?
There is a lot of information in the pattern documents. When you combine 9 garment sizes and colour-play, it gets quite complex to cover all bases! The detail is there to guide you through each step, but I fully appreciate it might be a little overwhelming at first!
For each UK and US version of documents, there are 3 PDFs to download when you purchase the pattern:
The Pattern PDF is designed to be read in sequence to guide you step-by-step, with tips and links to support material as you go. (Don’t immediately print it all out as there are several pages that contain size-specific instructions).
· 47 Pages - comprehensive written instructions to describe how to make the version that combines gradient yarn A with solid colour yarn B.
· Schematic & Measurements Charts
· Advice regarding how to choose size
· Advice regarding yardage for adding length
· Specific swatching instructions
· Stitch Chart
· Advice regarding effect of blocking
· Photo tutorials and progress pics
· Links to video demonstrations for key techniques
· Links to relevant support blogs for general crochet techniques
· Link to pattern support group (Pepper-Gaggle)
Appendix A: Colour Planning Schematics & Colour Planning Variation Options
This 4-page PDF applies to all makers and describes yardage, yarn handling and schematics for combining yarns A and B as written, only in yarn A, and only in yarn B. It also links to the video seen above to help you visualise how colours play out for your Ever-Change Sweater to help you plan your project.
Appendix B: Custom Fit Examples: Minor & Major Adjustments
This 6-page PDF describes principles of making custom fit changes, with numerous examples that range from easy to advanced. It applies to some makers, though everyone might benefit from reading through the easy set of examples that step you through using body measurements to choose size, and to plan where to make minor adjustments.
WHAT’S IN THE DOWNLOAD?
Ravelry: the one pattern listing contains 6 PDFs (UK terms version of Pattern, Appendix A & Appendix B; US terms version of Pattern, Appendix A & Appendix B).
Etsy: the separate UK & US listings each contain 3 PDFs (Pattern, Appendix A & Appendix B).
If you love the look of this project and are ready to dive in, or you have simply been enjoying following along with my journey to design it, please share this on socials to spread the word and tell your fibre friends about our Ever-Change Sweater Make-A-Long! Use the hashtags #everchangesweater and #everchangesweaterMAL on your socials and be part of the rainbow of jumpers we are about to see!
I will post the MAL Preparation Blog tomorrow that steps you through how to choose your size, what to check before you order yarn and how close you ideally want your gauge to be when swatching. Then head to your favourite Scheepjes retailer and have fun browsing! My local retailer Leanne from Yarns for All is one of my testers, so if you live in Perth, she really knows the ins and out of this design!
If you are ready to jump on the Ever-Change MAL bandwagon then download the pattern from my Ravelry or Etsy stores, join Pepper-Gaggle so you can share the journey and find help when you need it, and subscribe to my blog so you don’t miss a post! After months of working on it I am so excited to finally release this design and really hope you enjoy making and wearing it!!!
Thank you to Scheepjes for contributing some of the yarn that I used in developing my first prototype of this design.