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View Full Version : FINISHED~~~~WIP ~ Banana Tree Cardigan


Lighting57
05-26-2011, 06:15 PM
A search on ravelry will bring the free pattern up.

Banana Tree Cardigan

http://inlinethumb24.webshots.com/47255/2404058170011070831S425x425Q85.jpg (http://home-and-garden.webshots.com/photo/2404058170011070831uFJzsJ)

Eight inches into the pattern and this is what I have so far. I had to go outside to take the picture. Black is a hard color to photograph and an even harder color to knit. I have to sit by the window or outside. If I did not need a good black go to sweater, I would have used another color.

I changed the pattern to a horse shoe because it is easier to work and keep track of, especially on black. The yarn, Lion Brand AL-PA-KA, is a very nice yarn. I get gauge and 22 rows per 50 gram skein using a US#8 options interchangeable circular needle.

salmonmac
05-26-2011, 06:35 PM
It looks great. I can't wait to see the finished sweater. I'm glad to know that the Lion Al-pa-ka is a nice yarn. Thanks very much.

ArtLady1981
05-27-2011, 07:59 PM
Wonderful progress! I really do like the horseshoe cable! Plus, it is bolder...and shows up on the black very well!

Good job!!!

Jan in CA
05-28-2011, 12:09 AM
Ohhhh that's beautiful!

Antares
06-01-2011, 02:50 PM
Oh, this is coming along nicely! I hope you will post another pic when you're done!

Lighting57
06-01-2011, 05:08 PM
Oh, this is coming along nicely! I hope you will post another pic when you're done!

I have 13 inches of the body done and I'm hoping to separate for the back and fronts by the weekend.

I will post other pictures then.

ArtLady1981
06-01-2011, 06:25 PM
Oh you'll love this part! :happydance: When you can separate the fronts and the back
and work the more manageable armhole regions!!!

Those long long lonnnnnng rows are done!

Lighting57
06-01-2011, 10:33 PM
Oh you'll love this part! :happydance: When you can separate the fronts and the back
and work the more manageable armhole regions!!!

Those long long lonnnnnng rows are done!

Artlady, what length did you make the sides on yours'? I am 5'4". I'm thinking 15". I'm making it by the 40" measurements. While wearing the sweater, how much distance is there from your armpit to the underarm seam? if you don't mind me asking.

ArtLady1981
06-01-2011, 10:49 PM
My Banana Tree measures 18.5" from cast on to armhole bind-offs, where I divided to begin the armhole shaping. I'm 5 feet tall. I wanted a less sporty look. The slightly longer length is dressier, IMO. It doesn't fit too long or even tunic length.

Lighting57
06-02-2011, 08:21 AM
I want the sweater to end about mid buttocks or slightly lower (about where my wrist are hanging at my side). If I had an idea where the seam fell below the armpit then I could better judge how long to actually make the sides. The pattern calls for 15, 16, & 17 inch sides. That's why I asked.

OH! I used the long tail CO and my bottom edge is rolling. Will blocking take care of this? The LB AL-PA-KA is 30% wool/ 30% alpaca, & 40% acrylic.
Thanks.

Jan in CA
06-02-2011, 12:34 PM
The cast on doesn't have anything to do with the rolling. Stockinette just does that. Blocking may help.

ArtLady1981
06-02-2011, 05:27 PM
I want the sweater to end about mid buttocks or slightly lower (about where my wrist are hanging at my side). If I had an idea where the seam fell below the armpit then I could better judge how long to actually make the sides. The pattern calls for 15, 16, & 17 inch sides. That's why I asked.

OH! I used the long tail CO and my bottom edge is rolling. Will blocking take care of this? The LB AL-PA-KA is 30% wool/ 30% alpaca, & 40% acrylic.
Thanks.

Not sure what to tell you about the length. Take another sweater that you own and compare the lengths to make a judgment call. With me being 4.5" shorter than you...none of how this size 40 fits me will fit you the same way. How my armholes area fits my short frame is unreliable intel for a woman of your height. A 5'0" woman is shorter than a 5'4" woman in all areas...back waist length, leg length, torso/midriff length. My shoulder-to-armpit length will be a correspondingly shorter measurement than yours, so where my jacket fits me is not an example you should follow. What do your schematics tell you about the length of the armhole area? If your row gauge is spot on, you will get that length stated in the schematics. Check yourself as you knit up the Back Armhole area. If you have to...rip it down to add or substract rows to get the measurement stated in the schematics. Easier to experiment with the Back (no cabling) than on the Fronts.

I think blocking will take care of rolling that occurs due to a long tail CO. But you always have remedies to that later on. You can do the reverse crochet stitch all along the bottom edge to give it more weight if you have to. (aka "crab stitch")

Lighting57
06-04-2011, 09:50 AM
I went with the given measurement for the side length.

The front and back has been divided and I am now working the dec for the back.

Lighting57
11-09-2011, 03:32 PM
Has it been since April that I started this sweater?
The black yarn is murder to work with.
I have to sit by a window or outside to work on it.

I am almost finished with the last sleeve.
Then I can block the two of them and seam it all together.

I am planning an i-cord trim around the bottom and on the sleeve edges also. When it is finished, I will post pictures. I hope to have it done by my birthday Nov.24th.

ArtLady1981
11-09-2011, 04:28 PM
Great to hear the update! Keep on keepin' on! You'll get there!

nonny2t
11-09-2011, 10:33 PM
Looking good so far. I look forward to seeing what the completed sweater looks like.

Lighting57
12-09-2011, 05:27 PM
I am ashamed that Christmas is almost here and I still have not finished this sweater. I did pull it out to work on today. I'm doing the shaping on the last sleeve cap now. Then I will block the two. The body has been blocked. I never would have thought it would take so long. Take my advice, do not use black for such a large project unless you have the eyes of a hawk. Christmas knitting and crochet has taking first place a lot lately, but I really need this sweater done so I can wear it. Hopefully, I will manage to finish before the new year.

Y'all have a Merry Christmas!:hug:

justplaincharlotte
12-09-2011, 10:37 PM
I'm so looking forward to seeing your completed sweater!

Lighting57
12-10-2011, 03:31 PM
I managed to finish the knitting yesterday and I'm off now to lay out the sleeves, pin and steam block them.

I have my misgivings about them tough. The top part where I bound off the last stitches looks too wide.

I much prefer knitting with no seams.

Keep your fingers crossed. If I can get it pinned and blocked today, then maybe I can finish it before the end of next week.

Artlady loves to seam pieces. Hey, Artlady would you please come seam and sew in my sleeves for me? You're so fast.

salmonmac
12-10-2011, 04:25 PM
Congratulations! This is really the fun part because you're so close to the end (at least that's what I keep telling myself).
You can try pinning in the sleeves before you block just to see if they should be blocked a little smaller but I suspect you're past this point by now. It's much easier to ease sleeves that are slightly too large into the armhole than to work with sleeves that are too small for the arm opening. You can even gather the top of the sleeve a bit so that it fits the opening.
Hope it all goes well and you have this finished for the holidays.

Lighting57
12-10-2011, 04:33 PM
Thanks.
No I haven't gotten it laid out yet. Working toward that now.
I had to stop and get some housework done while my husband is away and out of my way.

Lighting57
12-20-2011, 10:58 AM
I finally finished the sleeves and blocked them but had to set them aside when our daughter & gbabies came last weekend for our Christmas get together. They live three hours away.

She brought two skeins of sock yarn and asked me to make socks for her out of it. One is of multi-colored brights. The other-- you guessed it, a black and gray yarn.

I can not get away from black. And if working with a worsted black is hard on my eyes, you can take it to the bank that a black sock weight is going to be worse.

Anyway, we'll do almost anything for our kids. Especially when we so rarely get a chance to be with them.

Perhaps my sweater will be finished by spring or next fall. If I should manage to get it finished I will post a picture.

justplaincharlotte
12-20-2011, 03:30 PM
I finally finished the sleeves and blocked them but had to set them aside when our daughter & gbabies came last weekend for our Christmas get together. They live three hours away.

She brought we two skeins of sock yarn and asked me to make socks for her out of it. One is of multi-colored brights. The other-- you guessed it, a black and gray yarn.

I can not get away from black. And if working with a worsted black is hard on my eyes, you can take it to the bank that a black sock weight is going to be worse.

Anyway, we'll do almost anything for our kids. Especially when we so rarely get a chance to be with them.

Perhaps my sweater will be finished by spring or next fall. If I should manage to get it finished I will post a picture.

How wonderful that they came to visit!

Ouch on the black sock yarn! I just started a hat for my son in chocolate brown yarn, using some bamboo DPN, and I thought to myself that the almost white bamboo made it so much easier to work the stitches. Now that I've transferred it back to my NP circs the glare from the nickel plate gives me eyestrain and makes it harder to see the stitches...

Why, oh why, doesn't someone come out with a white or light colored non metallic powder coat for metal needles? Or maybe I just haven't found them online yet...

Lighting57
12-20-2011, 04:11 PM
The sleeve seams are done. :cheering:
I had to sit out on the front porch to do them.
Now to sew them into the body.
It now looks like rain is ahead and it's getting cloudy so I may have to put if off AGAIN.

ETA- The light held out long enough for me to get the first sleeve sewn in.
Hopefully, tomorrow I will be able to do the second one.

Lighting57
12-20-2011, 05:45 PM
Justplaincharlotte,

You may have to sit outside, by a window, or under lamp like I do.
I haven't noticed the Options nickel-plated needles being a problem with eyestrain.
However, I can not seem to use anything but my KP options.
My DPN's are colored and it's hard for me to see the stitches on them. Same goes for my straights which are colored also.
I'm considering getting rid of my colored DPN's and buying the ones from KP"s.

justplaincharlotte
12-20-2011, 06:54 PM
Congrats on the sleeve seams! :cheering: Looking forward to seeing your FO!

I've got one of those natural spectrum light lamps that I work under and it reflects off my NP Options and it's almost like someone shining a light into my eyes.:eyes: Maybe the reflected light is catching the line in my bifocals? :sun: :teehee:

I'm thinking about going into inventor mode and trying a white enamel spray paint on a pair of my straights in a coat light enough to cover but not heavy enough to change the needle size... Worst thing that could happen is that it doesn't work, but that will have to wait until it stops raining. ;)

If/when you get your KP DPN, please do share what you think about them.:think:

salmonmac
12-20-2011, 07:33 PM
Congrats on getting as far as you have what with Christmas visits, sock requests and the waning daylight. I really can't wait to see this cardigan finished, and I'm sure it will be way before summer. You're making great progress.

Antares
12-21-2011, 04:39 PM
The positive side of this whole venture is that once done, you will have a fabulous, all-ocassion sweater that will last you for a long, long time!

I hope you get the light to finish it, but I also don't wish the rain away since I'm hailing from drought-stricken Texas, where people are scowled at when they wish it wasn't raining (at least lately, anyway).

Looking forward to seeing the finished object! Talk about a teaser!!

Lighting57
12-22-2011, 05:18 PM
TA~~DAH!! :woot:

Finally, my Banana Tree Cardigan is finished after about eight months. Most of this time, the body spent hanging in the closet waiting for me to figure out and finish the sleeves.

I had gauge for the stitches per row, but I failed to take into consideration the rows per inch. After making most of the required increases I found that my first sleeve had already reached the underarm length yet there were more to go. Long story short, I had to redo the math and everything about the sleeves. They are still an inch longer than I care for. The finished sweater looks more like a coat on me than a sweater. I pinned out the sleeves according to the chart for the size I used. The wide sleeve top edges and the width of the sleeves would better fit a woman with heavier arms.

If I use this pattern again I may work 2-3 less stitches on the front center edges and then work and i-cord trim along these edges afterward. I think it would work well as a long sleeveless vest with i-cord trim along the front and around the armholes. Zippered or not would be good too.

This is a good basic pattern and I can see where it could be changed in various ways to achieve different looks.

I used ten 50 gram skeins of Lion Brand Al-Pa-Ka for this. Although, it looks and feels good to the hand, it is scratchy to my neck and arms. It would wear best with a long sleeved collared top or blouse.


http://i1113.photobucket.com/albums/k510/LightningSJ/P1010005.jpg

Closeup of horseshoe cable along the front.


http://i1113.photobucket.com/albums/k510/LightningSJ/P1010001.jpg

This shows where the two fronts are seamed in the back.


http://i1113.photobucket.com/albums/k510/LightningSJ/P1010003.jpg


http://i1113.photobucket.com/albums/k510/LightningSJ/P1010004.jpg

The whole cardigan.

Sorry about the light folks. It has been cloudy and rainy here. If and when I can capture it in better light, I will post another picture. Black is hard to show well.

JudyD
12-22-2011, 05:28 PM
Beautiful sweater! Well done!

:cheering: :cheering: :cheering:

Judy

salmonmac
12-22-2011, 05:35 PM
Worth the wait. It's beautifully knit and looks lovely. Enjoy wearing it

justplaincharlotte
12-24-2011, 12:08 AM
Congratulations on such a lovely sweater! :cheering: :woot: :yay:

nonny2t
12-24-2011, 03:11 PM
It's really lovely, nice job!!!:inlove:

ArtLady1981
12-24-2011, 03:33 PM
Wow! The Banana Tree looks so smart, so classy, in black! Hey, I noticed you did a perfect alignment at the back neck seam! Way to go! You will love your cardigan! Wear it with pride! :happydance:

Lighting57
12-24-2011, 04:53 PM
Thanks everyone.
I'm glad it's finished and plan to wear it as much as I can.
Have a Merry Christmas.

GrumpyGramma
12-26-2011, 01:25 AM
Beyond beautiful, very well done, excellent job! :cheering: :yay:

It really is a very beautiful sweater, worked up well in black (oh, your poor eyes) and you will look lovely in it. Your workmanship is impressive.

Jan in CA
12-26-2011, 08:11 PM
It's beautiful! :inlove:

Olha
12-27-2011, 10:10 AM
What a great cardigan! In black, it looks very sophisticated.

And every time one of us knitters finishes a massive project, I feel like applauding their determination and -- in your case -- stamina :) Enjoy it!

Antares
12-27-2011, 01:50 PM
Oh, wow! You did a fantastic job on this! I hope you get lots of years out of it--and many many more well-deserved compliments!

Pat yourself on the back! You done good, girl!

Lighting57
12-27-2011, 02:58 PM
Thanks everybody. I've needed the pats on the back.
Hope you all had a good Christmas and will have a Happy New Year.