Recreating a cardigan pt. 1

recreating a cardigan -original cardigan
recreating a cardigan - original cardigan

Recreating a cardigan

I have been wanting to recreate this cardigan I received from my mother-in-law for awhile now. I have had it for 7 years and it has become a staple item I wear all fall, winter and spring.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with it, but I feel drawn to this idea that I want to recreate it with my own flare. Something that is more intrinsically my style.  

I’ve never been one to  consider myself to be a fashionista, by any stretch of the imagination. I love thrift shops and good clearance rack and obviously slow fashion, but I do have a “style” of sorts.

So first I set out to create the colorways I had in my mind for this recreation.

Recreating a cardigan- The colorways

You can view the dyeing process I went through in the video below


After dyeing all the neons,  I settled on just using 4 colors of the rainbow as the flourescent yellow created a bright green and the flourescent orange turned brown because of the technique I used.

color rejects

I also dyed a neutral with grays with the same technique, so the plan is to work this bottom up and marl all 5 colors starting with the neutral and ending with the spearmint color.

The original cardigan is a very thin machine knit material possibly fingering or lace weight, but my favorite base to work with is DK.

I chose my Sturdy DK base which is 75% superwash merino 25% nylon 246 yards per 100g and its just so soft.

I chose this base with nylon for extra sturdiness  to keep from excessive wear over time as this will be heavily used.

recreating a cardigan pt.1- the math

To begin with, I took measurements for the width from edge to edge, from the bottom to the neckline, the measurement from the bottom to where the armhole splits, and then from where the arm holes split to where the shoulders are joined.


Front width -35″ 

Back width -37″

Average -36″

Armhole to bottom hem -16″

Armhole length -9.5″

Neck to bottom hem -30″

Shoulder to bottom hem -25″

1.5″ Bottom ribbing

1″ ribbing around front and hood


Swatch- 21s x 32r = 4″

swatch in the round using US6 4mm needle

21s /4 = 5.25 sts per inch

36″ width x 2= 72″

72 x 5.25 = 378 #of sts to cast on

Actual cast on 376 sts

376/4 = 94 

change colors every 6″

Recreating a cardigan pt.1 - the plan

When I laid the cardigan out to take measurements, I quickly realized that there is shoulder shaping, as a result of this discovery I took 2 measurements for length.

From the neck to the hem and then the shoulder to the hem.

There is a 5 inch slope for shoulder shaping, so I will need to do some research on the shoulder shaping process for when I get to that point.

The front width is a little smaller than the back width, which I deduced is from frequent wear and occasional washing, so I decided to take the middle number 36″ to use when figuring out the math.

This cardigan has plenty of ease, so by taking the number in between, 36 for the width gives me a 72″ circumference and my bust is 53″ so I am confident that even though its not exact, it will work out.

The original cardigan is in stockinette, so I am going to be working this in the round and then steeking.

Steeking is something that induces anxiety just watching videos of it, however, I am excited to learn a new skill and will be practicing a lot before I steek this cardigan.

If you don’t what steeking is, it involves scissors and cutting your knit fabric. You can view this video on steeking.

Using the math above I have cast-on 376 sts. The original math worked out to 378 but I need the # of sts to be divisible by 4 evenly.

The photo below is my progress as of now:

recreatng a cardigan pt.1 - conclusion

In conclusion, I am pleased with my progress thus far and am confident that I am on the right path.

In my next post, I will discuss my color changing technique and my plans for splitting the front and back. 

Please let me know your thoughts or suggestions in the comments!

Thank you so much for coming along this journey with me. 

Take care and make loops with love,


Empower People Crochet Bandana


Owner/ Operator

Teresa is the jack of all trades behind FuzzyWhatKnots Fibers. Teresa resides in Pennsylvania with her Husband, daughter and cat. When she’s not slinging yarn or splashing dye she enjoys a scenic hike or a good book

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