September 14, 2017

Oversized Knit Weasley Sweater (free pattern)

If you know me, you know that I'm pretty much a huge Harry Potter nerd. 
Also, my hobbies are pretty fitting of a retiree; I knit and crochet, play card games and watch Jeopardy or Netflix documentaries. So what better way to cover all my interests than to sit myself down in front of the TV and knit myself a Weasley sweater? 
This was my first ever true clothing piece of knitting. I mean, I've done hats and scarves, but nothing really fitted, so I decided to make my sweater over-sized, both for ease of patterning and for overall comfy-ness. I used this pattern as my base to modify from. 
For reference, I am 5'4" and typically a size 2/XS, so I will try to add a note (**) for where to add length for bigger sizes. If I end up making a bigger version I'll update with actual numbers. 


Yarn: I knit this double stranded with 8 skeins (1440 yds) of I Love This Cotton #82 (Burnt Sienna) and Yarn Bee Soft Secret #22 (Honey), but you could also use a bulky weight yarn.
Needles: 9mm/US 13 circular needles (this is knit flat, but the circular needle is helpful for length)
Gauge: 4"x4" = 12 stitches x 14 rows
Abbreviations: CO - cast on, k - knit, p- Purl, sl1k - slip 1 knitwise, BO - bind off, stst - stocking stitch, p2tog - purl 2 together

Body (knit 2)
   Working double stranded, CO 64 stitches**
        (increase or decrease by even numbers here for body circumference)
   Rows 1-9: sl1k, (k1,p1) to last stitch, p1
   Row 10: sl1k, k62, p1
   Row 11: sl1k, p63
   Repeat rows 10-11 to desired length.**
       (For me this was 94 rows, but I didn't count, I just tested it by holding it up)
   Bind off all stitches. Keep this as even as possible as this creates the neckline unless you
        do the optional collar below*.
Precision measuring
On one of the pieces, either Fair Isle or duplicate stitch the letter of your choice. I duplicate stitched mine because I was worried how the different types of yarn would handle the wash since the gold is an acrylic where the rest is cotton. I used the letter charts from this book from my local library to create the "M". It is 26 stitches wide and 24 rows high, beginning in row 48. If you plan knit it Fair Isle style, I would recommend making the "back" piece first and holding it to your body to decide exactly where you want the letter to fall.
Finished front piece
*Optional Collar:
   On your last knit row: BO 18** stitches, (K1P1), K18**
          (increase for smaller neckline, decrease for tighter)
   Next Row: BO18**, K1P1
   Continue K1P1 rib to desired length
   Bind off remaining stitches
Without collar
Sleeves (knit 2)
   CO 40
   Rows 1-58: Stst beginning in knit row except on rows 18, 26, 32, 36, 40, 44, 48, 52, and 56, where you will decrease by 2 stitches per row, ending with 22 stitches at the cuff. ** 
        (This makes a fairly fitted sleeve from about the elbows down and a snugger cuff. If you want a looser sleeve, add to cast on stitches (even number) and/or decrease on rows 18, 26, 32, 38, 44, 50 and 56 leaving 26 stitches at the wrist. Increase length by adding rows at the beginning)
   Decrease Row: p1, p2tog, (p to last 3 stitches), p2tog, p1
   Rows 59-65: (k1p1)
   Bind off all stitches

So I forgot to take pictures because I was too excited to finally be done knitting this bad boy, so the pictures are using this ornament sized sweater, but it works the same way, the ornament sleeves just don't taper. Oops. 

1) With the right sides together/wrong sides up sew the shoulders and optional collar. Reinforce the stitches at the edge of the neck, especially if you did not add the collar. 
 2) Fold sleeves to find the center pair of stitches. Align this with the shoulder seam and pin/secure with row markers because you're too lazy to go get your pins. Count rows on front and back to ensure same stretch top and bottom and secure ends. Sew.
 3) Fold along shoulder seam with right sides together. Align bottom rib and secure along edge, matching rows. Repeat along the sleeve. Sew from rib to rib, reinforcing at the ends and in the armpit.
4) Turn right side out and fold cuffs if desired. Attempt to take selfies Make your husband take pictures and brag to all your friends that you finally finished your biggest knitting project to date. 


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