Make Your Own Basics: The shawl-collar cardigan

Make Your Own Basics: The shawl-collar cardigan

In all honesty, Make Your Own Basics is my favorite series I’ve done so far on the blog. (Scroll through the whole collection here.) I have a deep and abiding love of basics, but I also increasingly find basics to be the most rewarding things to make. As proud as I am of my trophy sweaters, it makes me really happy to wear clothes so classic and hardworking that nobody would ever think to ask me if I made them. (The new black cardigan is the epitome.) My number one goal in life is to someday be wearing jeans and a grey t-shirt and have made them both.

I just wanted to say all of that at the outset of this installment because we’re in the midst of Slow Fashion October and I think it’s an important point! So with that said …

I’m of the mind that every good wardrobe requires a good shawl-collar cardigan, the coziest of garments and useful even for warm-climate people who find themselves at a beach bonfire on occasion. It’s just a thing you have to have! My love for big slouchy cable cardigans is well documented — my beloved Bellows, which I wear multiple times a week in my studio; the incomparable Channel Cardigan, which I’m currently knitting after more than two years of yarn deliberations for what I expect to be a lifelong companion; in fact, a whole raft of shawl-collar standouts from BT. But this is Basics, and so while I think you could argue that any of those would actually qualify, let’s talk about these simple stockinette gems today:

TOP: Georgetown by Hannah Fettig is equally appropriate at work or with pj’s in front of the fire

BOTTOM: Fredericton by Kiyomi Burgin, with it’s two-strand marl and contrast edge, has that classic professorial flair; leather buttons recommended!

See also the previously noted Fable and Killybegs.


PREVIOUSLY in Make Your Own Basics: The sweater vest

18 thoughts on “Make Your Own Basics: The shawl-collar cardigan

  1. I bought the pattern for Fable and have the yarn but just haven’t made it yet. I need to because I think it would be such a workhorse in my closet.

  2. I absolutely love Georgetown…that’s now on my short list (which is growing longer every day!)! Thanks for hosting this incredible month long event! I have learned so much and look forward to the daily discussions on Instagram! Happy making!!!

  3. I am minorly obsessed with trying to find the Perfect Shawl-Collar Cardigan for Me. I love Bellows, but want something a bit longer, that covers my butt, without being too big on top. Will have to see if I can lengthen this effectively…

    • Mm, check the schematic — I think it’s quite long, if I remember correctly. Pretty sure I shortened mine, but it’s definitely super long on a lot of knitters. But even if you want it longer than it is, that’s the very simplest modification to make. Bellows doesn’t even have any waist shaping, so just add how every many repeats of the chart will give you the extra length you want!

  4. it’s my favorite series TOO!! I’m debating on putting a shawl collar on my fafkal sweater but I think shawl collars are best left to a pattern with exact instructions. can’t get over the BT!

  5. I’m currently on my second Georgetown in a row! I finished seaming my first one, tried it on and immediately said “I need to make another one in black….” :) SOOO in love!

  6. I love the Basics series, and shawl collar cardigans are my favorite! After making Bellows this year, I’m anxious to make a couple more. I love my Bellows so much but it’s a little heavy (not just warm but heavy on my body – maybe due to my yarn choice, wondered if you feel this way about yours in the Owool Balance?) I want both a cabled and non-cabled lighter weight version. Ready to cast on Burr tonight actually, and I will make Milk Stout by Thea Colman at some point because I just cannot stop thinking about it.

  7. Iced by Carol Feller is a super quick and cozy knit. I made it out of Noro Hitsuji and am waiting to wear it (it’s not quite cold enough yet, even in MN). I am planning to add pockets, they have to be completely afterthought so it’s going to be a first for me.

  8. I was lucky enough to get to try on Georgetown at a trunk show for Hannah Fettig’s Home & Away collection, and it was sooo good. I came away unable to stop thinking about both Georgetown and Hancock. They are definitely amazing basics — the kind of sweaters that aren’t necessarily showstoppers in photos, but once you put them on you realize that you would wear them all the time, with everything.

  9. The basics series is my favourite because these are the things I’m most excited to wear. Thank you for creating it! Shawl collar cardigans are not something I’ve worn before, but after seeing your bellows, I think it might be something I will try!

  10. Thank you for featuring Georgetown! After seeing finished versions of my cardigan enter so many knitter’s wardrobes I’ve finally starting knitting my own. :)

  11. Pingback: Make Your Own Basics: The turtleneck sweater | Fringe Association

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