PlanetJune Craft Blog

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12 Knit Sweaters Project wrap-up

When I decided to learn to knit by making a dozen self-designed sweaters, I didn’t really think I’d ever reach this point – surely I’d lose interest in knitting such time-consuming pieces before I’d completed 12 sweaters?

12 knit sweaters project

Apparently not! Shall we take a look at them all properly?

12 knit sweaters project: sweaters 1-3

12 knit sweaters project: sweaters 4-6

12 knit sweaters project: sweaters 7-9

12 knit sweaters project: sweaters 10-12

(Find details of each sweater project in its own post, here.)

Project Stats

I started my first sweater in June 2012, and knitted the final stitch on my 12th sweater in June 2017. So that’s 12 sweaters in 60 months, or an average completion time of 5 months per sweater.

I was very surprised to discover I’ve been working on this project for 5 whole years, but then, I’m busy with work a lot of the time, and summers in Africa aren’t very conducive to knitting sweaters, so maybe it’s not so surprising!

Techniques I’ve Learnt

This project has helped me learn a huge number of knitting techniques. And, while there’s still much, much more I can learn, I’m almost comfortable calling myself a knitter now without feeling like a fraud.

  • I’ve made sweaters from the top down and bottom up, seamed and seamless, flat and in the round, with raglan and set-in sleeves, and sleeveless.
  • I’ve made cardigans and pullovers and a vest.
  • I’ve tried lace and cabling, ribbing and all-over texture.
  • I’ve used provisional and cable cast-ons, directional increases and decreases, mattress stitch, kitchener stitch and 3-needle bind-offs.
  • I’ve used short rows and turned hems, attached i-cord and picked-up stitches.
  • I’ve made buttonholes and inserted a zip.
  • I’ve learnt how to reliably make a sweater that will fit me, in a range of yarn weights and fibres.

Final Thoughts

12 knit sweaters project

I feel quite proud, seeing the whole dozen together like this. Although they almost all have features I’d change, with hindsight, were I to knit them again, I enjoy wearing all of them. (And I have my notes, so I can always reknit them with a few tweaks once the originals wear out!)

All in all, I’d say I’ve met my original goal:

I’m teaching myself to knit by making myself a dozen self-designed sweaters, and learning new techniques with each one I make. I’m hoping that, by the end of this journey, I’ll be a real knitter and not have to survive on guesswork!

It’s time to own it: I am a real knitter.

What’s Next?

Now I’ve completed my mission, I don’t have any plans to stop knitting sweaters for myself – it’s become a long-term hobby, and I can’t imagine buying a sweater at this point! I’ve already bought the yarn to make another half dozen – I think we can safely say I’m addicted… 😉

(You might also be wondering if I’m considering selling patterns for my knitwear designs… and I’ll save that topic for another post!)

4 Comments »

  1. Lindy said

    What a journey – that’s brilliant! And I love all your gorgeous knitted sweaters, cardigans and vest. Lovely photos too.
    Love,
    Lindy xxxx

  2. .: petrOlly :. said

    Amazing! I just recently finished my first knitted scarf (yay!) and at this point I wouldn’t abandon crochet for knitting 😉 I also didn’t understand at least half of the techniques you named 😀 But your sweaters look fantastic and I wouldn’t mind having at least a few of them 😉

    Oh, you obviously didn’t move your wall with you – do you have a similar place to photograph your future knitted projects now? 🙂

    • June said

      The great thing about crafts is there’s no advantage at all to only doing one (even though it does feel a bit disloyal to crochet – I know that feeling too!) Your hooks will still be waiting for you, and I actually think it’s better for the hands and wrists to switch between different tools and different motions, instead of always doing the same thing. I also have zero intention of abandoning crochet for knitting (although I do prefer knitted fabric for garments, in general) but for toys, accessories, home decor, ornaments, etc, crochet is still very much my preferred option 🙂

      I’m not sure yet how I’m going to tackle photos of me modelling my creations in future, although I’m hoping to keep a large empty wall in my new studio, so that could mean doing all my craft photography indoors in future. It’s not the same as the natural light outside, but it’d take away the weather-dependency (remember this?!), which would be a big advantage! We’ll see how it looks when I have my new photo studio area set up (the lighting is on order right now, so it’s too soon to tell…)

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