Alanna Nelson New Orleans inspired cable knitting pattern

Grapes, leaves and winding tendrils inspired a cable pattern


After weeks of brainstorming, figuring,swatching and experimenting, I finally began KNITTING my aran sweater design for the Master Knitter Level 3 program.

Inspiration: wrought iron railings in New Orleans.

Ideally, I wanted to create this motif center panel with a V neck. Then, I’d make the body in one piece… a princess line sweater. It would be easy to customize when it came time to size the pattern.  Unfortunately, my brain insisted that the cable motif would wrap around the neck and shoulders, which would probably require considerable short rows. Time is of the essence, and I’m much more of a cardi kind of gal anyway.

So the princess line sweater became a high low cardigan. This time.

I’ve grappled with my stubborn non conformity to traditional aran style.  It would have been infinitely easier to drop a few stitch patterns into a basic sweater shape with ribbed edges. But I don’t like ribbed edges these days (exception for mittens!). My aran sweater has a stretchy provisional cast on with stockinette stitch hem. I’m using rick rib for the lower edges of the sweater, and I love the lofty light effect that contrasts with the other stitch patterns.

The Master Knitter program requirements are fairly straightforward: cables, bobbles and two other stitch patterns. I’m making this more difficult than need be.

Deadline’s a looming. I spent at least 3 weeks creating the 3 dimensional leaf shapes and the cable pattern with a bunch of grapes (bobbles) tucked inside. My swatch is nearly 2 feet long, complete with V neck shaping (that doesn’t include all of the work frogged!).

The yarn? Woolpak NZ DK weight purchased with my employee discount at Sit n Knit (Thanks, Janet!).

Once I drafted the pattern, work proceeds quite well… until the first leaves.  I developed leaf patterns in 7, 9, and 11 st.  I chose 7, and now wonder if the 9 wouldn’t fit the overall scale of the sweater better.

Alanna Nelson NOLA cable knit pattern

first repeat of cable pattern

Part of me says, forge ahead, deadline looming.

Any thoughts?