Thursday, November 8, 2012

Sleepy Hollow Sweater Coat


The sweater coat is done, and I love it.  Want to see?  Well, good luck.


I thought to take the camera to the woods, thinking this thing would look so nice against the last of the yellow maple leaves, but events conspired against success.  A few headlines:  Overly enthusiastic dog yanks at leash trying to maximize sniffing experience.  Jeans pocket flap creates unsightly bulge at backside, which shows through knitted garment.  Dark brown yarn absorbs all available light. 


Husband takes sixty-eight photos of woods, leaves, dog, me, and himself, instead of the sweater. 




I fail to remember to remove scarf so collar and yoke are even visible.


Dog continues to drag me through the woods in pursuit of something elusive.


It started to rain.


Which did make for a fairly spooky woods walk, with moody, mossy fallen trees and all gray in the distance.  This spot always makes me think of Sleepy Hollow.  I paused for a moment, and the dog sat with the most quivering reluctance.  She was coiled.  She was ready to lunge. 


I worked this sweater from the bottom up, knitting the body and sleeves separately and then joining them together at for the yoke.  The construction is based on Elizabeth Zimmermann’s yoke sweater recipe, instructions for which can be found in her book Knitting Without Tears  and which is so simple you wouldn’t believe it.  When the yoke was finished, I worked a short shawl collar by knitting extensions on twenty or so stitches at both front edges until the length of each reached to the center of the back neck.  I grafted the ends together and sewed the long edges to the top of the collar opening. 


Then, I lined the coat with a piece of really pretty taupe and white polka-dot silk from the stash.  This took several tries, and I picked out quite a few seams before getting it right, but essentially, all I did was trace the blocked sweater and create a pattern from that, adding a gusset at each armhole to allow for comfort and movement. 


I sewed fifteen buttonholes.  By hand. 


I am so thrilled with this coat.  It is roomy and cozy and woodsy.  The big cuffs turned out just right. 


The experimental collar turned out just right, too, although it took me seven (seven!) tries to get there. 


I used seven skeins of Cascade 220 in some kind of heathered raw umber color, on US 7 needles.  It took ages.  It was pretty worth it.  I wish you could see it.



  1. I LOVE it! The colour, the length, the style...I love everything about it. I'm particular smitten with the long cuffs with all the trendy.

    And the photos are great, by the way :)

  2. That's a wonderful coat, and you did a fantastic job on it.

  3. Wow..that is beautiful! You look like a model straight out of an LL Bean cataloge. LOVE your Hunters! I have some too, love em!
    xo Kris

  4. Well first you knitted this spectacular sweater coat, then you LINED it! Aaaaaaugh!! And buttons too! Love your woodsy walk pics(lucky girl), goofy face from the hubs, and all your knitted accessories. Great post.
    I officially cannot walk my black lab anymore. If he ever took off with me holding the leash, he would be dragging my right arm behind him.

  5. Kristen, I know I have said this many many times...but this really shows truly how talented your's perfect, beautiful and amazing!
    Great Job!

  6. That is pretty amazing! I absolutely love the buttons. I'm over here working on one little scarf ...and you finished a jacket in that time.

  7. hahaha hee hee, funny sweet kristen. i do know how hard that brown is to photograph. but it's easy to see how gorgeous this coat is. i've knit a sweater using that formula but not with the collar, which i LOVE and must try too someday. enjoy your beautiful coat and lovely husband. :)

  8. Gorgeous sleepy hollow sweater coat! I love the long cuffs with buttons, shawl collar & the colour is beautiful! And what an adorable dog ♥
    This is my first visit to your blog ~ looking forward to stopping by again.

  9. Love how your sweater coat turned out.

  10. it is absolutely gorgeous and good call with lining it, especially with 7 balls of cascade, it will be so heavy and snuggly!
    Just lovely, well done for making the pattern youself!

  11. What a gorgeous coat! It does remind me of Sleepy Hollow and is perfect for this time of year.

  12. It's wonderful are so clever .
    Jacquie x

  13. You are my knitting IDOL!!! I can not believe how you just thought this up and tried this collar, and tried this lining, wow. I. Love. It.

  14. Wow, what an incredibly labour of love. It's so beautiful and I am in awe at your knitting prowess. Loved the story of your adventure through the woods and your hubby taking pics of everything else :o) Such an inspiration you are! xox Penelope

  15. Perfect for pooch walking in those gorgeous woods. Love it!

  16. AWESOME sweater - wish I could knit like that - really love it - and I love the scarf too!

  17. i think you did a great job!!!
    xxx Ale

  18. It looks divine... As everything else that you make. I'll be making a sweater for my self after Christmas :)

  19. Oh Kristen this is beautiful knitting. I really really love it and you have me pining for Winter again (Australia). Blessings Fi

  20. It's super Kirsten and the pics are so atmospheric! If I could knit anything as complicated as a garment I'd give this a go - it's so wearable. Glad you got the red hat in as well! E x

    1. PS So sorry - realise I've mistyped your name! Many apologies, Kristen! E x

  21. Wow!! I need the same sweater immediately!!!! :-) :-) Really, you did great job!! I like the color and design. I dreamed about this wear for long time... but I am so lazy to make the same project.

    And yes, the pictures are so nice :-)

    Have a nice Friday and weekend! Jolana

  22. so perfect!

    I love the basket purse!

  23. So talented! You've not just created a sweater coat, you've created an entire IMAGE! The sweater! The scarf! The basket! The woods! The dog! All these images brought together to showcase this work of art. Great stuff. And is the dog 'coiled' or peeing? Wendy

    1. Haha! That's a good question; she did stop to pee on every twig and leaf we passed, so could be this is less a crouch and more a squat. She would pee, just as I pause for the eloquent "Sleepy Hollow" title shot...

  24. Wow! you are so patient. And so talented. I am still struggling with a tiny knitted scarf! Great photos and enjoyed your humorous narration. Love

  25. Kristen this is stunning!!! Gorgeous style and fab colour!!! Did I mention the buttons.....? xxx

  26. Wow! Very impressive. I also like your scarf...what yarn did you use?

  27. I love it!!!! So very much! The photos are brilliant ... the gorgeous dog, the gorgeous gumboots, the gorgeous woods and the gorgeous model! You look fabulous. I see that I have missed quite a few posts and can't wait to catch up with all your makes right now.


  28. What a labour of love. It turned out so well. A fabulous length for a coat. :) I think your hubs did all right on the photos. I confess that what got my attention in the first photo was your scarf - it's SO pretty! What yarn did you use for it? And those gumboots are fab!

    1. The scarf yarn is a handspun worsted I bought at several years ago at a Fiber Festival. I love it, too! :)

  29. What a beautiful coat! And a lovely dog :)
    Greetings from The Netherlands