How to Knit a Super Neat Bobble! Rhythm Cardigan in Rowan Island Blend




I love bobbles. Frankly I'd like to have a garment that was 100% covered in bobbles... but maybe to purchase. Bobbles take a long time to knit! You can get around this by just using bobbles some of the time, like in my Buckland Pullover.


Or really minimally, like in my Hayling Pullover.


Just watch where you place them on your chest. Do you see where I omitted them on purpose? Yes, the dangers of bobbles. ๐Ÿ˜…

I was excited when I opened Rowan Mag 66 and saw Rhythm by Lisa Richardson.


No need to avoid bobbling my chest AND I'd only have to work at those bobbles when I came to the sleeves!

Even better, the pattern called for a new Rowan DK-weight yarn I wanted to try, called Island Blend. No -- not as in ๐Ÿ Jamaica ๐Ÿ, but as in ๐Ÿ‘Falkland ๐Ÿ‘! The yarn is 70% Falkland fine merino wool, 15% baby alpaca and 15% silk. That silk is what really gives it shine.


I couldn't resist the shade Chartreuse for the cardi. It IS the color of a forest walk, look I'll prove it!


This yarn is nice to work with and very soft to the touch. I'd say the silk makes it a little stickier on the needles than you'd expect for a wool blend. I think it's a great choice for slinkier knits that you want to add smoothness to. i.e. a form fitting stockinette garment!


The cardigan sizing was pretty straightforward and I didn't change any of the instructions (except lengthening the sleeves as usual).


I was very pleasantly surprised by how well it fit me, especially under the raglans. Usually raglans leave significant bunching in my underarm. I think it works for me because the raglans are shallow (use less rows to get there) and the shoulder sits wide. This is a magic formula for raglans that I really have to remember for the future!


NOW LET'S TALK BOBBLES.


A lot of people wrote me on Instagram asking me how my bobbles are so neat. It's not me, it's the pattern! I bet a lot of you have made bobbles the increase/decrease way. You increase in the first and (maybe) 2nd row, knit a row or two, then decrease over 2 or (maybe) 3 rows. This really does leave something to be desired on the sides of the bobbles. Loose stitches, big stitches next to tight stitches... a lot of wonkiness basically.

Instead, try increasing all in one row and decreasing all in one row without knitting to avoid all that. Let me explain.

A NEAT BOBBLE:

  1. (RS) K into front, back, front, back and front again of stitch. (5 sts)
  2. Turn and knit stockinette for 4 rows. You should have just finished a RS row.
  3. Lift 2nd, then 3rd, then 4th, then 5th stitch over the 1st st on your right needle. (1 st). You are essentially decreasing without any knitting to avoid the slack that knitting creates. 

Voilร !



So, are you someone who is looking for this type of yarn in a thinner weight? Lucky you, Rowan has just added Island Blend Fine to their collection. Same composition, but in sport weight and 165 yards in 50g (compared to 125m).



Here's a new downloadable pattern book if you'd like to see how it knits up.

I like thicker yarns, so I'll be sticking with Island Blend 1.0. You may have seen in my luscious yarn pile above that I also had 3 other colors of Rowan Island Blend... look what I made!


Aww, pockets! You can make your own Gnellie the Gnome with Sara Shira's pattern here. She really does shine in this yarn, don't you think?

See my Bobble Head on Ravelry


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Comments

  1. I love this! Thank you for passing on that bobble-making technique, because I think it will be just what I need. Favorite patterns from decades past may come to fruition now . . .
    -- Gretchen (aka stashdragon)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Your bobbles are much superior to the ones on the Rowan sweater. Yours are nice and bubbly, and theirs look deflated.

    ReplyDelete

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