Soft and Chunky Big Wool Silk

Winter still has a few months to go where I live in Colorado but you can always get a few warm days like we had at the weekend when I sat outside with my husband eating an ice-cream in the sunshine! So, this chunky short-sleeved cardigan will come in useful when the weather cannot make it’s mind up.

Rowan Nutmeg Cap sleeved cardigan

It’s called Nutmeg and consists of stocking stitch with large lace holes up the front and around the cap sleeve edges. Knitted using Big Wool Silk, a new yarn from Rowan for A/W 2015, which is a more luxurious version of Rowan’s popular Big Wool yarn as it contains 30% silk. Big Wool Silk is gorgeous! It is soft and thick like Big Wool but with a silky sheen!

I used a shade called Journal, which is a lovely deep purply-pink shade, but also comes in five others……


I started knitting following the pattern but then, before I got too far, I decided to start again and knitted the whole body in one on circular needles adding waist shaping at the back a couple of inches from where the side seams would be. I also used the K3tog, yfwd 4 row lace stitch pattern to execute the front waist shaping by omitting to make one of the decreased stitches where the side seam would be and then reinstating it when I had decreased enough. I also added an extra M1 on the 3rd knit row a few stitches before my side seam markers, increasing a stitch every 4th row.

Knitting increases decreases waist shaping

Additionally, I moved the buttonhole down quite a few inches as it felt like it was right under my chin and pulling underneath my armholes! It has turned out quite different from the actual design but I am quite pleased with the result.

I decided to change the pattern because the actual Nutmeg design confused me slightly; I wasn’t sure if the side seams were sewn together? This was because the diagrammatic illustration showed dotted lines on the side seams……


and there was no reference to sewing the side seams together, only to join both shoulder seams which I didn’t need to do because I used the 3 needle cast off to join them together very neatly. So, not being really keen on open side seams I back-tracked and did a bit of a re-design. I’m sure the original design would look great but I’m far too much of a conservative dresser and that would just be outrageous on me!

Rowan Nutmeg Cap sleeved cardigan waist shaping side view

If you want to try knitting Nutmeg, it can be found in the pattern booklet Autumn Accessories, all designed by Marie Wallin and includes 14 designs in total including wraps, scarves, cowls and hats. Not just for Autumn, these will be useful for Spring too……

Autumn Accessories cover showing Clove Loop Scarf

Autumn Accessories cover showing Clove Loop Scarf

Rowan Cassia Wrap

Cassia Wrap

Coriander Cowl

Coriander Cowl

Mustard Hat

Mustard Hat

Tarragon Snood

Tarragon Snood

If you find Big Wool Silk too expensive you can substitute with Big Wool.

Kim Hargreaves has also used Big Wool Silk for some of her designs in her pattern books Hush and Embrace. I do like Rain from Hush; it’s a simple design but Big Wool Silk will add the allure.

Rain by Kim Hargreaves

Rain by Kim Hargreaves

Or, if you would like a super quick knitting project in a chunky yarn you could try the Outland Scarf by Sarah Hatton.

Outland Scarf

Outland Scarf

This pattern uses Big Wool but I used Big Wool Silk in the blue and green shades Song and Verse, knitting up a decent length scarf (mine is 177cm) with just two balls. Wear it long…….

Outland Scarf long Big Wool Silk blue and green

or wrap it around your neck like a chunky cowl……

Outland Scarf wrapped around neck

The pattern actually makes a longer scarf…230cm/91in but using 4 x 100g of Big Wool (2 in one shade and 2 balls in another shade).

One of the best things when using any chunky yarn like Big Wool Silk and Big Wool is that they knit up so quick. I made this scarf, which is actually for my husband Neil, in one afternoon. Here he is wearing it but with the reverse side showing which looks good also………

Outland Scarf Rowan Big Wool Silk on man

He loved it so much I made him another one, slightly shorter, with one ball of Big Wool Silk in Journal and one ball of Big Wool in Steel Blue a couple of weeks later.

Outland Scarf Rowan Big Wool and Big Wool Silk on man

You can buy the pattern for Outland Scarf as a purchasable download; the link below will take you there but you need to be registered (it’s free to do so) and logged on…….

The scarf comes from “10 More Simple Cosy Projects” designed by Sarah Hatton, which includes super cosy accessories and simple sweaters. You can purchase the patterns individually at £3.00 each, or buy all fifteen patterns as an entire collection for £9.00.

So, a successful few weeks of knitting; I am happy with my version of Nutmeg and Neil is super happy with his Outland-ish scarves!

6 thoughts on “Soft and Chunky Big Wool Silk

  1. Gorgeous patterns Esther ! Love how you have fashioned the waistcoat to fit – it looks lovely. Really suits you. I really enjoy your blog ?

  2. Esther, your modifications on the sweater are fabulous! I would have done the same as you did with the sides of the sweater!!

    • Thanks so much Jan! I have not actually written out my changes to the original pattern…..not sure if that is really allowed as Rowan owns the pattern… but the details in my blog post do give you the basics. If you are a beginner knitting this will not be much help, I know, but any experienced knitter will be able to implement the changes. Sorry I couldn’t be of more help 🙁

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