2017 FO-3 : Sloper as a linen V-neck

2017 FO-3 : Sloper as linen V-neck

I tried two new things with this little summer sweater: knitting Sloper as a V-neck and holding (Kestrel) aran-weight linen yarn double for a bulky linen fabric. The former was straightforward enough and worked out great. The “bulky linen” concept is a bit of an oxymoron and I won’t really know how it plays out until I’ve worn it a few times. It’s heavy for a little linen sleeveless thing, clocking in at just over a pound (520g, to be precise, so just over ten 50g skeins), and I fear it may feel like I’m wearing chain mail on a hot day. But it’s cute! Looks just like my initial sketches.

To be candid, I have a serious love-hate relationship with this yarn. This is the third time I’ve knitted with it (see Togue Stripes and Flex, both in my sister’s closet) and hated every minute of the knitting but loved the finished fabric. Knitting with it held double on US13 needles definitely increased my unenjoyment of the actual knitting, but also made it blessedly brief! I think the fact that I keep doing it must be like what they say about childbirth. :/

My mods to the chart are documented here, and there’s a further rundown on all of the modifications/details below. There have also been several people having some fun with the pattern for the #sloperKAL this month, which I’ll follow up about in a separate post. But if you’ve got one planned or on the needles, please link it to the Sloper pattern page at Ravelry so I can see!

You can also scroll through my Instagram posts on this sweater here, and like it at Ravelry if you’re so inclined!

2017 FO-3 : Sloper as linen V-neck

Pattern: Sloper by Karen Templer (me)
Yarn: Kestrel by Quince and Co. in Ash, held double throughout
Cost: free pattern + approx $110 yarn = $110

Modifications and details: (see mod chart and notes here)
– Working at 2.75 sts per inch on US13 needles, CO 58 sts each (front and back); decreased twice along the way so it was 54 by the time I got to the armholes
– Knitted 6 rows of ribbing instead of 8
– Switched to Andalusian Stitch* on the 3rd RS row (i.e. row 9)
– Began the armholes (3 BOs per side, as per pattern) on row 61, the 14th Andalusian ridge, so it’s about 15″ from cast-on to underarm
– Divided the (48) sts in half for the V on the last RS armhole BO row and immediately began the V shaping
– Worked decreases for the V one stitch in from the edge; k2tog on the right side, SSK on the left side (so leaning toward the V): every RS row 6 times, then every-other RS row 3 times, leaving 15 shoulder sts per side
– Worked 34 rows from underarm to shoulder
– After blocking and seaming, on US11 needles picked up sts around the armholes and neck for edging: p/u 3 in 4 all the way around (wanted to cinch it all up a bit), then BO all sts purwise on the next round, binding off firmly to gird against the inevitable stretching

Size notes:
Assembled, it’s about 40″ at the bust, 42″ at the hem, and 24″ long — and it will definitely grow with wearing and shrink with washing and grow with wearing … It’s all fluid!

*Andalusian Stitch = k1/p1 every 4th row (aka every-other RS row if working flat). I love how simple it makes it to ensure that you’re doing things evenly across pieces and to match them up at the end.


I had already done outfit ideas for this one during Summer ’17 Wardrobe week; here they are again with the actual sweater filled in:

2017 FO-3 : Sloper linen V-neck
2017 FO-3 : Sloper as a linen V-neck
2017 FO-3 : Sloper as a linen V-neck

IN SHOP NEWS: The new issue of Knit Wit is here, this time with patterns, and we have all three issues of Making back in stock again. Also, thanks so much for your enthusiastic response to the new Charcoal Field Bag! I’m always so glad when you love something as much as we do. ;)

Have a fantastic weekend!


PREVIOUSLY in FOs: Camel Channel cardigan

34 thoughts on “2017 FO-3 : Sloper as a linen V-neck

  1. It may be heavy, but it’s also very cool and looks terrific on you! Besides, who says you can’t wear linen as a vest well into the fall, especially in Nashville? Love it!

    • It was cool here yesterday (photo day) and I wore it with my chambray shirt over it all day. Started out in the linen pants and stuck with the natural jeans after we were done with photos. I was super happy in it all day, loved it layered like that, and didn’t want to take it off last night. So those are all good signs!

  2. It looks great on, even if it might feel like chain mail LOL. I have yet to try Kestrel but have used a similar yarn by Berroco and don’t love the feel of it while knitting but love the fabric it creates. So I guess sometimes you have to take the good with the bad. I’ll be really curious to see how this one holds up with more wear.

    • It definitely didn’t feel heavy or chain mail-y yesterday while wearing it for the first time, but it was also not hot, and I’m just curious to see if it’s different on a hot day. But so far so good!

  3. The shape and fit of this are so lovely, but the heavy fabric does seem like an oxymoron. What was behind the decision to double the linen yarn?

    • I just wanted to try it, see what would happen! And I really love the fabric, just hope it holds its own against gravity, since this one tends to droop and drape even when knitted single. Only time will tell.

    • I should mention, too, that it’s pretty airy. I knitted at a slightly looser gauge than I typically prefer — you can kind of see its see-through-ness in the photos. So it’s very breathable from that perspective as well as being linen. Although knitting it more tightly would be one way to offset the droop factor, and it would still be nice breathable linen!

      Cheers to experimenting ….

  4. I think that anyone who knits with linen has a love hate thing going on. Every linen thing I have ever knitted is still in my wardrobe, in frequent rotation (and one of those items is 15 years old: linen is forever), but the knitting of them has caused quite a lot of repetitive stress injuries and this year, I gave away all of the remaining linen in my stash to keep me from using it. I am an old knitter, and if I want to keep it up, I have to stick to user friendly yarns

    But ah, the love of having it, and wearing it! Hand knit linen never wrinkles; it never wears out,; it can go in the washer and dryer a million times (trust me: really a million) and it just feels nicer and nicer. You will always feel great when you wear it, even when it is fifteen years old. But pace yourself. alternate the knitting of linen with the knitting of nice stretchy wool, limit the knitting time (in other words, don’t be me) and you will have something to love for years and years!

    • Apparently once a year is enough for me! If the last few years are an indication. I get the urge, knit one thing, and go ‘ok that’s enough of that’!

  5. Love it too! The Andalusian Stitch gives it a very nice texture! You are very lucky in the US because you have access to such beautiful yarns. “Organic linen” is but a dream for me in Brazil…

    • I’m not sure where Kestrel is milled (might be US or might be Italy?), but the linen comes from Belgium. We do have a lot of amazing yarns being fully sourced and milled in the US, but there’s not a real US source of linen (on a commercial scale) apparently. You can read a bit about Kestrel’s origins here: https://quinceandco.com/pages/about (click Fibers when you get there — there’s apparently no direct link)

      But yes, it is at least organic linen and non-toxic and so on. Lots to love about it!

  6. gosh I really like this!! I wasn’t totally on board with it until seeing the FO, I thought tape linen held double would create really messy stitches but your stitch definition is crisp and interesting. out of curiosity, would you do a swatch with it held single on size 13 needles? I would like to compare the “see throughness” and how much it would grow. my linen swatches tend to grow a lot but I’m wondering if held double it sort of….reigns it in a little

    • You should definitely swatch it both ways and compare. I personally would despise knitting one strand on 13s — I can’t stand knitting on needles that are bigger than the true gauge of a yarn, it’s all too slippery and messy for me! I like things nice and tidy.

  7. To throw a monkey in the works with all of this organic talk, I wonder how they process linen,nowadays. It used to be that they ‘retted’ the linen fiber by leaving it in water for days to leach out the lignens that hold the fibers together. It is relreased as a black substance and is a pollutant. It may be difficult to get permission to process it, on a large scale, in the US. I think that methyl alcohol is obtained from the lignen solution.
    However, I am also kntting with linen at the moment and the yarn also tends to stretch when set aside mid row and looks like there is a mistake. I am hoping that blocking will eliminate this problem.

    • I don’t know whether that practice is still in use, or has any bearing on this particular linen. The Quince page on the origins of their different fibers (https://quinceandco.com/pages/about) doesn’t go into granula detail, but I know that Pam Allen is very concerned and committed to responsible production.

      • The Quince page refers to the GOTS certification and if you google that it would seem that certification also requires responsible disharge and minimization of waste products.

  8. It looks awesome, a perfect summer basic. Knitting with linen is a pain, true, but so worth it. The fabric just gets better with every wash. And in this color, it just goes with everything, as demonstrated by all your outfits.

  9. You look fabulous with that top Karen! It pairs really well with the ones you have in your closet. Enjoy your Sloper! You are inspirational!

  10. Every time I’ve knitted something where I held the yarn double, I regretted it after – feeling as if the yarn’s character did not come across as well as it could have in the finished piece. Someone once told me that holding the yarn double ‘flattens’ it, so that could be it? But in any case, your project does not seem to suffer from that, so congrats! Love the use of Andalusian stitch, too.

  11. It’s a beauty, Karen. Love the texture you used. And what a versatile piece!

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