Dorchla – A Rustic Sweater Pattern in Blasta Yarn

Textured pattern stitches, interesting neck options and a boxy shape, Dorchla is the perfect sweater project for Autumn.

The Dorchla sweater was inspired by the Dorcha Hat from our Celtic Knits Club and came to be because of the gorgeous Coillte Óir yarn sitting in my studio. During admin days, I kept picking up this yarn and in the end, I cast on. Just to play with the yarn of course! But here we are a few months later and I want to introduce you to Dorchla.

As the seasons change, I always go for comfort. This extends into my knitting. Not just in the stitches I use, but also in the final shape of the garment. I want something easy to wear that’s flattering and can be worn with almost any outfit type.

With that in mind, I also wanted a sweater that had an interesting construction, oodles of texture but was also enjoyable to knit without exhausting my brain.

As always I filmed an introduction video for you to meet Dorchla, and we have yarn kits and a step-by-step project workshop, so that you can have as much choice and help as you need.

You may wish to bookmark this post and refer back to it later. If you do here are the quick links for each section:

Dorchla Knitting Pattern Overview and Modifications

Pattern Details and Gauge

Yarn Details and Knitting Kits

Online Project Workshop and Knitting Class

Where to Purchase

Dorchla Knitting Pattern Overview

Dorchla Pattern Construction

Dorchla is a cropped texture sweater knit from the top down with a drop shoulder. You begin at the shoulders initially in Garter Stitch using German Short Rows to shape them. Once that is done you work down into the textured ladder stitch.

This textured section is the depth of your yoke and also the depth of your sleeve so if you need to adjust the sleeve depth this is where you do it. Please note any adjustments you make here as you’ll need to match it for the front section!

Dorchla also has options for edging, neckline and length so that you can knit a sweater that is perfect for you. Let’s take a look at these next:

Pattern Options and Modifications

Dorchla has a yarn guide that allows you to calculate the amount of yarn that you need if you want to add extra length to your sweater. Please keep in mind that most modifications do require extra yarn!

Dorchla also has options for a garter or ribbed edging for the bottom of the sweater. If you choose to lengthen your sweater you may wish to have a ribbed edging that matches that of the neckline and cuffs. The ribbed edge does pull the sweater in a bit so I opted for a garter edge for a more open finish on my cropped sweater.

The neck options here are for a ribbed or i-cord edge. The i-cord edge allows you to have a clean finish without any added height to your neckline. This is a perfect option if you wish to have the sweater sit a little lower.

Adjusting a knitting pattern for size and shape

If you are unsure how to measure yourself to decide on a pattern size, please refer to this blog post and if you are looking for directions on how to adjust a pattern for size and shape please head on over here for my 3 step guide to adjusting for size and shape.

Pattern Details

Back of Dorchla Sweater

Pattern Sizes

To Fit Actual Bust Circumference Up To: 33.75 (35, 38.5, 43.5, 47, 48.5, 52, 55.5, 56.75, 61.75)” / 85.5 (89, 98, 110.5, 119.5, 123, 132, 141, 144, 157) cm

3-6″ / 7.5 – 15 cm of positive ease recommended.


Finished Bust Circumference: 36.75 (38, 41.5, 46.5, 50, 51.5, 55, 58.5, 59.75, 64.75)” / 93.5 (96.5, 105.5, 118, 127, 131, 139.5, 148.5, 152, 164.5) cm 

Size 38″ / 96.5 cm modelled with 3″/ 7.5 cm positive ease.Length: 19 (19.5, 20.25, 20.75, 21.25, 21.5, 22, 22.5, 22.75, 23.75)” / 48.5 (49.5, 51.5, 52.5, 54, 54.5, 56, 57, 58, 59) cm from top of shoulder

Needles & Notions

2 US size 6 / 4 mm circular needles, 40” / 100 cm long 

US size 6 / 4 mm dpns if magic loop not used for sleeves

Always use a needle size that gives you the gauge listed, as every knitter’s gauge is unique.

10 stitch markers, tapestry needle.


19 sts and 40 rnds = 4″ / 10 cm in Garter Stitch blocked

19 sts and 28 rnds = 4″ / 10 cm in Stocking Stitch blocked

19 sts and 29 rnds = 4″ / 10 cm in Ladder Stitch blocked

24 sts and 29 rnds = 4″ / 10 cm in Blackberry Stitch blocked

23 sts and 29 rnds = 4″ / 10 cm in Faux Cable Stitch blocked

Yarn Details and Knitting Kits

Dorchla Yarn Kits

This yarn is a heavy DK / worsted weight yarn with a phenomenal stitch pattern with an envious bloom. The quantities used in this pattern are:

Stolen Stitches ‘Blasta’ (60% Fine Irish Wool, 40% New Zealand Wool; 232 yds / 212 m per 3.6 oz / 100 g); colour: Coillte Óir; 5 (5, 6, 6, 7, 7, 8, 8, 8, 9) skeins

Approx Yardage: 1003 (1077, 1174, 1296, 1406, 1461, 1568, 1684, 1758, 1895) yds / 916 (984, 1072, 1184, 1286, 1335, 1433, 1540, 1607, 1732) m 

Dorchla is a cropped sweater. If you wish to lengthen your Dorchla sweater then the measurements you need are below. If ordering a yarn kit and you want to lengthen your sweater then ordering the next size up may give you the extra yarn quantity you need.

Every 1” / 2.5 cm extra in body length requires an extra 31 (32, 35, 40, 42, 44, 47, 50, 51, 55) yds / 29 (30, 32, 36, 39, 40, 43, 45, 46, 50) m

The colourway in the sample garment is Coillte Óir which is the marled version of Blasta. The difference between using a marled version and a plain yarn here is the visual depth of the texture stitches.

Here, with the marled version, you can see that the stitches are a bit more muted. If you want these to stand out more you can use plain colourways.

Dorchla Project Workshop

Dorchla Project Workshop

This Teachable course goes hand-in-hand with the written Dorchla knitting pattern so you’ll never be left wondering how to approach a section. If you want step-by-step video instructions for each section then this is for you.

Some of the techniques covered in this course are:

  • Sweater Cast On
  • Working from the top down in pattern
  • Blackberry stitch swatch and measurements
  • Working adjustments for fit
  • German Short Rows
  • 3 needle bind-off
  • Finishing
  • Blocking

Find the project workshop here or the bundle option here.

Where to Purchase

You can now buy both the pattern and yarn kit on my website. (Note the yarn kit does not include the pattern). You will also get a 5% ‘bundle’ discount if you add both to your cart.

You can also use discount code DORCHLA10 for 10% discount on this pattern until the 15th of October on both my website and Ravelry.

Find the entire collection HERE.

Find the pattern HERE on my website or on Ravelry HERE.

Find the Yarn Kit HERE

Find the Project Workshop HERE.

Happy Knitting!

3 thoughts on “Dorchla – A Rustic Sweater Pattern in Blasta Yarn

  1. Your inventive construction techniques never cease to amaze me! Another one of your patterns added to the queue!

  2. As much as I would like to knit the brioche sweater, Brutach, I would have too much difficulty with the front leaf pattern as experienced when knitting the brioche Malandros scarf as a practice run. (After 2 full weeks, I am still struggling, altho still persevering)
    So my question is; could I use the DK Nua Worsted yarn for this new rustic sweater, Dorchla, that I purchased for Brutach?
    I think that the Blasta would be too prickly for me as I experienced with the Blasta Light yarn.
    Thank you, Carol, for your great abundance of design ideas.

Comments are closed.