Joji Locatelli Madewell cardigan

Really feeling the autumnal vibes! Like I said in my last post, I love a bit of layering and a hand knit cardigan was conspicuous in its absence, considering how much I love to knit! I had recently succumbed to a scant sweater quantity of yarn that was just right for autumn/winter wear, and eventually found the Madewell cardigan as my pattern - something with few details and built more for comfort than intricate details, and crucially, in 4ply/fingering weight!


The yarn I had ready for use was Birdstreet Yarn 4ply/fingering in the Pebbles on a Beach colourway, 80% superwash merino, 20% nylon, high twist. I have been obsessed with this colour ever since I first saw it and eventually caved, buying 3 skeins, which will often just about do me a sweater. It was £18.50 a skein normally, but the reason I caved is that there was a sale on (so worth following them on socials as that's how I found out about it). I love the variety of colours in the skein, and though I used mine homogeneously, pairs very well with other skeins that Birdstreet Yarn dye up. At the time I bought mine, there was a high twist alternative available, which I tried, but I'm not sure what the difference was - too much of a yarn novice here! I semi alternated the skeins - meaning I alternated for quite a bit between skeins, but also knit with just one for a while as well. Whatever I did on the body I replicated on the sleeves, just in case there were visible differences between the skeins. I don't think there were in this case though! I made a size Medium, and only just had enough. The cardigan did grow lengthwise when I blocked - to the extent that I would have had plenty if I had factored that in.

Pattern and Instructions

I used the Madewell cardigan from Joji Locatelli, which I purchased through Ravelry for about $8.00. I chose this pattern because I wanted something simple, but not boxy and overwhelming, and this one also has a tiny bit of waist shaping too. I didn't want lace or cables as I was looking for an easier knit, and was already coming to terms with the fact that I wasn't going to be able to knit this in the round, so would have to purl like a grown up. I know I could have found a cardigan that is knit in the round and steeked, but I'm not convinced that steeking gives the kind of finish that I like. The raglan sleeves make it easy and able to be knit without seaming. There are optional elbow patches, which I left off. 

Like I said, once I had come to terms with the fact I was going to have to purl each alternate row on the body, I quite enjoyed knitting this cardigan. It was really relaxing. The start was obviously a bit more complicated, but not very, and once I split the sleeves to work on the body, it felt like it was flying off the needles. I am a big fan of Joji's instructions, which I find very clear and easy to follow. Her patterns are also as uncomplicated as possible, which is helpful for those of us who are less experienced. I didn't deviate much from the pattern (I may have not had as much waist shaping as it says to do - too long ago now to remember, sorry). So, I did follow the length instructions, leading to a problem a bit later. I ran out of yarn when I was working the neckband ribbing, so it doesn't sit properly and is not the same width as the ribbing at the bottom and the cuffs. Like I said earlier, when I blocked it, the length grew, so it's a bit longer than I had in mind and I would have had enough for the width of ribbing required.
Never mind.
I did consider adding a contrast colour, but it's ok.

Would I make this pattern again? Yes. I love to snuggle up in this and it was easy to knit. You could play around with colours on this too, or stripe it, to use up remnants or an advent set. It was my first cardigan and I would recommend it to anyone else making their first one too.


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Welcome to Sewing and Other Stories; my journeys with sewing and knitting; pattern reviews, tips and guides for beginners. I'm also the designer behind West Beach Knits knitting patterns and I host a Knitting and Sewing channel on YouTube where you can see all of this in person. Come have a look!

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