Kiwiyarns Knits

A blog about New Zealand yarns, knitting and life

I should have known better


I stood in the store and looked at the cardigan.  It seemed like the perfect pretty summer cardigan to me.  It had a neckline I wanted to check out, the right colour and shape and it was only $30.  What could go wrong?  I don’t have time to knit everything I want to wear sadly, and this seemed like a nice, lightweight number that I could buy and then concentrate my time on knitting other things that are more suitable for colder weather.

I went home and happily put on my new cardigan.  The neckline was great – haha! I can now queue the Rosemary Cardigan with confidence to make a winter cardigan of the same shape!

The new cardigan

A few minutes later, I started to feel strange.  Clammy.  Sticky.  Irritable.  What was this?  I was most uncomfortable!  I took off the cardigan, but started to feel cold.  It definitely wasn’t too warm to wear it!?  Then I realised:  the cardigan was not made from wool.  Or cotton.  Or any other natural fibre.  It didn’t even have viscose or rayon in it.

Lulled by the fact that I hadn’t bought any clothing ready made (with the exception of knickers, but you can’t knit them) from a store for over a year, I had fallen prey to a cardigan that was obviously pure synthetic even though it came from a high street shop that normally sells good quality clothing.  I had forgotten do to my normal check on the label for some natural fibre content.

$30 may not seem a lot of money, but it equates to a fair chunk of yarn.  In fact, depending on the yarn I choose, it is almost the cost of a hand knitted New Zealand pure wool/natural fibre cardigan that will not make me sweat, or feel sticky.  It will also definitely last a whole lot longer than this piece I have bought, and which already sports several small yarn pulls!!

I should have known better.

And now, I’m going to have to knit that cardigan I wanted because there isn’t any other way to get it in a cost-effective fashion, or it seems, the quality I need!

I feel I should insert this qualifier here just in case I hear “what do you expect from cheap” next:  I know this was a cheap cardigan, but I also have at least three expensive pure wool cardigans from designer labels from my richer days, and they are now so full of holes and darned patches as to be unwearable except for gardening and house cleaning.  I decided that knitwear had to be knitted by me after that, and that I was not going to pay over $100 for any piece of commercial knitwear given how quickly it wore out.

So what am I going to knit? After much pondering on the patterns I’ve admired on Ravelry, and to find the one that most fits what I want, I think it’s going to have to be Tempest.

Next I thought, “oh no, now I’m going to have to buy more yarn!”, but I then I decided I had better have a look at what was already in my stash…

I went to the stash room, and look at what I found:

Knitsch in Silver Lining and Pencarrow

Knitsch 100% merino wool in Silver Lining and Pencarrow

I’ve been looking for a project for this Knitsch yarn for quite a while, and I think I have just found it.  

I don’t know why I even bother buying ready made knitted clothing these days. Making your own is so much better and more fun.  It will just have to take a bit longer before I can have that cardigan!


Author: kiwiyarns

Welcome to my blog where I talk about knitting in New Zealand and the beautiful yarns you can find here.

16 thoughts on “I should have known better

  1. Thanks for sharing the Tempest link. It’s as cute as a bugs ear, and I’m going to make this too.

  2. Love the yarn (the gradation of colours in Tempest is going to be gorgeous) and the pattern – looking forward to seeing the finished piece. Much as I love spinning and wool, I don’t normally wear knitted garments as I just find them too hot (even in our winter), but it looks very tempting. Thanks for the inspiration.

  3. I only get machine made knitwear from my work, which is all Merino/Possum and good quality, but unfortunately over $100. It does last well though, so worth it, especially if for my husband who I haven’t yet knit a jersey for as there’s a lot of knitting required to cover him. Socks he gets though.

  4. A question. The Tempest cardigan uses only 2 skeins of wool. One of each colour. Is this correct? Many thanks.

  5. I understand your points. That yarn is gorgeous. I have held off buying knitted garments. I may break down because I can’t knit cardis and sweaters that fast and well, I’m into simple fashion. But they’ll be cheap ones because I can’t see myself paying so much for something I can eventually knit.

  6. Yes I feel like this about store bought too, just doesn’t do it for me. I have quite a few plainish everyday, lightweight cardigans I need to knit… Your tempest is going to look lovely!

  7. Oh no! I’ve fallen for that too – in fact I just bought one of my daughters a cardigan over the weekend and then later thought to check the tag – thankfully it was mostly cotton and angora rather than “plastic”. Good luck with the replacement – the colours are simply divine 🙂

  8. I love Tempest – been in my queue a while – keep thinking that it looks lovely on slim ladies but my big boobs might look even bigger with the horizontal stripes!! But I won’t know till I try!!!!

    • One of the things I do is have a look at the project on Ravelry to see how it fits on other people of the same shape as me. Perhaps you could try that? You might be surprised. 😉

  9. Oh my… I hope you can find some destination for that cardigan ? I see your point there, made that mistake too, once.. the itching was enough to convince me never to go there again..
    Both cardigans you picked to knit look great !

  10. Oh dear! I’m like you, I really can’t stand synthetic fibers. (I’ll give in to a little nylon or spandex on occasion….) I’m glad you have some stash to match up with such a lovely cardi. It’s going to look great, especially with the Knitsch.

  11. that’s odd because synthetic fibre cardigans don’t irritate me at all – and I’m the queen of irritability. I tend to only buy cardigans because I got caught out with unexpectedly cold weather, or because I want something thin. With the Tempest pattern, don’t you need Dk-isn yarn? Or will you knit with the yarn doubled?

  12. Love Tempest. I’ve knitted 2. They are ideal for this time of the year.I think I used 3 and a bit of main and 2 of contrast.