Dock and Cabin

This replica of one of my oldest and dearest sweaters, which I designed and knit back in the 1990s, has been several years in the making.

Originally knit in Morehouse Merino 2 ply sport yarn, I had planned to reknit it many times, and even bought the yarn once. But I always put it off in favor of more urgent projects. I sort of doubted my ability to recreate it exactly, or that reknitting it might not reproduce the magic of a sweater I loved so much.

It’s not that I didn’t have a pattern—I did—meticulously handwritten notes for every step of the process (being that it was designed and knit before computers were a fact of life). I just knew there were some challenging parts that I wasn’t sure would translate to a range of sizes or that I could even reknit successfully again in one size.

Then, my dear friend Stone Soup Fingering came into my life and after knitting one favorite sweater with it, I knew I had to reknit my old favorite in it too (and of course, it would be luscious in Better Breakfast Fingering or Seasons Fingering). I pulled five skeins in color Pumice and set to work.

Once I got started on Dock and Cabin, my confidence in my dog-eared, handwritten pattern solidified and I was off to the races. The details I worried over actually came together very well—I remembered a lot more than I thought I would.

I won’t lie, an oversized cardigan like this entails a lot of knitting, but with little fit or shaping involved, it’s easy to settle into a rhythm with a fun stitch pattern to watch unfurl, some cabling to keep it goal oriented, and the knowledge that a wearable beauty would be mine at the end.

The fabric was just what I had hoped—very much like the original, but now in our own yarn. This size weighs just 17 ounces—not bad at all for a good sized slouchy sweater. I love it so much I am already contemplating another; just have to decide which yarn to use . . . or maybe the same yarn in a different shade—I love it that much.

Let’s talk a bit about the sizing and fit, because you might be surprised to see that there are just three sizes, with a wide spread of measurements for each. Dock and Cabin is intended to be oversized—I wear mine with approximately twelve inches of ease. that said, each size will accommodate more than one size person, so my small/medium sample looks equally great on Turner, Alex, Barb, Cherie, and Cynthia, though we all wear different sizes in a sweater with a more traditional fit.

The fabric of this sweater is very light and airy, so it drapes against the body beautifully—i.e., all that extra ease does not add poundage the way a stiffer fabric with more body would do. While this is a drop-shoulder style, I still added some armhole shaping and a sloping sleeve cap so as not to end up with a lot of extra fabric under the arms the way a straight, boxy drop-shoulder sweater would have.

It’s still plenty roomy so that you can wear a heavy shirt or use it as a jacket over layers, but the shaping makes the fabric fall around our curves and not bunch up in bulky folds.

It looks great on guys as well—a totally sharable knit, should you be so inclined. for everyone who told me they were awaiting this pattern, I hope you’ll start one soon and share with us in our #1 Knitspot fan Ravelry group! Dock and Cabin is a wonderful knit for long winter evenings and snow days . . .

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