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How to convert a knitted sweater pattern into a cardigan

by Michelle Porter

Join me over the next four days as I take you on a knitting adventure where I convert a winter sweater pattern into an ideal spring layering piece.

I’ll be transforming this vibrant, self-striping, 100% cotton from UNIVERSAL YARN called Cotton Supreme Waves (color Equator) into…

A close-up of five balls showing a color range of blue and green of UNIVERSAL YARN Cotton Supreme Waves in color Equator, as viewed from above.

The vibrant self-striping colors are visible in this grouping of Cotton Supreme Waves

… my interpretation of an essential spring cardigan (shown below). Keep reading to learn my process!

A photo of Michelle Porter wearing a finished cardigan with vertical stripes of blue and green, standing amongst large tropical plants.

This is my finished cardigan converted from the Ribline Pullover which is perfect for spring weather.

I chose the self-striping Cotton Supreme Waves yarn because of its energetic and eye-catching color combos, and I especially love the denim blue, pool blue, and verdant green of the Equator colorway! Surely gazing at these tempting cakes will lift you from your winter tendencies.

Two balls of Cotton Supreme Waves yarn showing self-striping color changes of blue and green sit on a patch of grass with four-leaf clovers and a couple of flowers scattered around.

Cotton Supreme Waves in color Equator to welcome spring

Nothing says the first day of spring to me more than an awning stripe fabric pattern!

Knowing that Cotton Supreme Waves works up in stripes, I was hoping to find a knitting pattern that was knit sideways, so my stripes would be vertical. I searched the free patterns offered by UNIVERSAL YARN on their website and found just what I wanted – almost!

The Ribline Pullover, designed by Rachel Brockman was very close to what I was looking for. It was designed for the UNIVERSAL YARN Offbeat, which is 90% acrylic and 10% alpaca. Lucky me, it is listed as the same thickness as Cotton Supreme Waves (DK), so the tension gauge should be close to the same! The only challenge was that Ribline Pullover has long sleeves and a tall neckband, and it’s a pullover. I wanted shorter sleeves, a crew neck, and a buttoned cardigan.

The sketch next to the pattern photo shows the changes I need to make to convert this winter style into a spring wardrobe must!

A side by side comparison of the cover photo of the Ribline sweater pattern and the sketch of it converted into a cardigan.

Cover photo of Ribline Pullover by Rachel Brockman is compared to my sketch of the desired cardigan.

See what my process is like in the next four days as I share the detailed modifications. The next post will be about the sleeves and how to make them shorter. Also, I will give a lot of tips for knitting with the self-striping yarn Cotton Supreme Waves that you might not have anticipated. Save or bookmark these posts so you too can convert this winter sweater to a spring cardigan!

This is part 1 of 5 in this series


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