Hawthorn hem

Hawthorn Sweater Kickoff

I love the excitement of a new knitalong. Watching everyone getting the first stitches on the needle and enjoying the stitch patterns. If you’re new to KALs, you can check out our getting started video guide here. If you’re an old hand, then it’s time to jump into clue 1!

Split Hem Detail

split hem
Split hem Detail

We’re going to start at the very bottom with our split hem. This is a DEEP hem. As you can see, it means that it works great for accessing your pockets! It also means that if you’re sizing your sweater down but have wider hips, you’ve got much more room.

Now I know not everyone likes split hems, so if that’s not your thing, you can work a shorter split hem or even remove it. If you do remove it just start with the joined stitch count and work, a few inches of Mistake Rib before moving on to the body as written.

You can see that you start with a Mistake Rib. I kept this nice and wide. Everything about this sweater is generous and relaxed, including the ribbing depth. I would suggest putting a marker on the front of the work to ensure that you don’t lose track of RS/WS.

Once the ribbing is complete, we move onto the Sand Stitch, but there is ribbing maintained at each end. This will continue up the complete length of the body.

Joining the Hem

Once we’ve worked the hem to the length we want, it’s time to join in the round. This will mean that we need to remember a couple of things:

  1. Decrease the edge stitch so that the rib panels from front and back join to form one continuous panel.
  2. Move from working our stitch patterns flat to in the round.

When you are working flat, you work the right and wrong side separately. However, when we begin working in the round, we will only be working on the right side. This means that our wrong side is effectively ‘converted’. To keep it in pattern, just keep working on the next row of the stitch pattern, moving from flat to ‘in the round’. So if you finished flat with row 2 you would then continue in the round with round 3.

Hawthorn hem

Body Shaping

This sweater is designed to be oversized and slouchy, so there is no body shaping. If you decide to work a smaller size, you may want to add some a-line shaping so that the hem is wider and it decreases towards the bust. The stitch pattern is a multiple of two, so I’d suggest decreasing two at a time (each side of the rib panel) so that you’ll find it easier to stay in pattern.

Keeping in Pattern

When working in textured stitches that combine knit and purl, it’s tricky to keep track of where you’re at in your knitting.

If you’re a more experienced knitter, then you can probably ‘read’ your knitting, checking if you started the previous row with a knit or a purl. If you’re newer to knitting, this may be a challenge, and I’ve got a few ideas that may help.

  1. Put a marker on the right side of your work.
  2. Draw a grid with all rows of the pattern, ticking each as you work.
  3. Consider swapping location or colour of stitch markers when you start a knit/purl row to indicate which one you started with.

I hope this overview of the Hawthorn clue one will help you with your knitting. If you haven’t signed up yet, you still can!

You can buy the pattern on Ravelry or my website.

Yarn kits are also available on my website here.

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