Designer Feature

Interweave Knits Fall 2016 / Rahwah Pullover by Kate Gagnon Osborn

Interweave Knits 20th anniversary issue was just published, and it is, in a word, excellent. I am proud to have a design in the issue, the Rawah Pullover,  in the Cabin in the Woods story.

Many among you will recognize the garment as heavily inspired by the iconic “L.L. Bean Sweater” popular  in the 80s and 90s. The L.L. Bean sweater itself is an homage to much older Norwegian sweaters, and were originally produced for L.L. Bean in Norway as an 80/20 wool/nylon blend and sold by the company to the United States market. Later, in the 1990s, L.L.Bean changed production to China. They then changed the fiber to 100% wool and moved production back to Norway, but the cut and construction is different from the original, including modifying the shoulder width, drop shoulder sleeves, sewn-on cuffs, and seaming.

 A classic-inspired garment made a lot of sense to me to include in an magazine that I see as being such a classic staple of the industry, especially in light of the 20th Anniversary celebration. While the Rawah is inspired by a garment that was itself inspired by an even older, more classic design – and both have changed multiple times over the years – I was very conscientious of the fine line between honoring and copying the original. Throughout the process, I converted many aspects of Rawah to be much more appropriate for hand knitters: the design is knit seamlessly in the round from the bottom up, the yoke decreases are created using raglan shaping, (as opposed to flat and seamed with drop shoulders), the colorwork pattern is flipped to be the mirror image, and the neck is a larger crewneck and not folded/doubled. 

At first, I intended on knitting the garment in The Fibre Co. Arranmore, but found The Fibre Co. Cumbria to be a better option for the colorwork pattern, and the classic nature of the yarn is perfect for the fit and style of the sweater. This is definitely a sample garment I want back as soon as cold weather hits!

Yarn The Fibre Co. Cumbria Worsted: derwentwater (navy; MC), 5 (5, 5, 6, 6, 7, 7) skeins; scaffel pike (light gray; CC), 2 (2, 2, 3, 2, 3, 3) skeins.
Gauge 24 sts and 25 rnds = 4” in charted patt on larger needle, after blocking.
Needles US 4 (3.5 mm) and 5 (3.75 mm): 16” and 32” circular (cir) and set of double- pointed (dpn). Adjust needle size if necessary to obtain the correct gauge.
Notions Markers (m); stitch holders; tapestry needle; smooth, contrasting waste yarn; size F/5 (3.75 mm) crochet hook; spare 24” cir needle size 4 (3.5 mm) or smaller for tubular CO.
Size 34 (38, 42, 46, 50, 54, 58)” bust circumference. Pullover shown measures 38”; modeled with 3” of positive ease.


One thought on “Interweave Knits Fall 2016 / Rahwah Pullover by Kate Gagnon Osborn

  1. Kevin says:

    Oh i had a ‘bean’ sweater as we call them locally…bought it so long ago cost was 45.00. and that was lot of moola at the time. Wore it til the elblow holes got too big for patches! Now i’m thinking perhaps i’ll knit myself one….bring back those memories and i’lltell you its some sharp loking with a pink buttondown shirt peeking out from collar and cuffs…if you post again to generate more interest in pattern and yarn….try the pink shirt, sharp, sharp,sharp!

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