Thursday, January 17, 2008

Fana Swatch

I've decided to make a Fana sweater. I'm using Rauma Strikkegarn and made this swatch with #3 needles.

The shoulder and cuff motif I'll save for the headband.

I really want to make a Fana cardigan that I've been drooling over instead of a pullover. I have relatives from the west coast of Norway, and visited Bergen last year, where Fana sweaters originated. And I want it to be a bit fancy with pewter buttons. So, I'll be knitting steeks up the front, cutting out a square neck, and notches in the cuffs. The edges are bound in trim (except the bottom).

There's a photo of it in "Everyday Knitting: Treasures From a Ragpile" page 39 #G and on page 47 of "Knitting in the Nordic Tradition" if you happen to have those books.

Do you like how I throw the word "steek" around? I have never done one before. I'm going to stitch and cut my swatch open tomorrow to do a row count for my headband.

I don't have everything figured out yet, button holes, for instance. Can I cut them in later or do I need to knit them in as I go? And how does the tape go on?

My biggest challenge will be tension. I've done some stranded work in baby yarn that I'm happy with, but still have trouble with thicker yarn.


Donna said...

Not sure what you mean about tape. Can you explain that a little more?

For a cardigan, I suggest casting on 7 extra stitches at the center front, making sure you center your patterns neatly around that. Work the 7 extra stitches in alternating colors, either columns or salt-and-pepper. (I can post charts for both if you want). I like the vertical columns better because it's easier to see for cutting. That's the only difference you need until you get up to the neck shaping. In the sweaters we're doing, we'll just be cutting the armholes and neck with no extra preparation (unless anyone really wants to do the shaping, then we'll discuss it when we get further along).

You can figure out the button band, buttonhole band, and neckband later. There are several ways to do that. I don't discuss it until book 2 in the series, coming out in fall 2008, but we can certainly go over some of the options here.

Janice said...

Thanks for the help on my departure from the project!

By tape I mean binding it with decorative trim, instead of picking up and knitting a button and button hole band. Dale makes one called Baby Fana, but it is only 3/8". I have to figure out if it just goes on top of the cut edge or wraps around.

And in the photos of the old sweaters, the buttonholes look like they are on the patterned ground of the sweater, not on the trim. Hmm. I need to get a magnifying glass out.

I think I will do columns for the steek.

I am thinking of doing some shaping at the armholes. Drop shoulders seem to really stick out on me. I think it is because I'm a bit of a pear, so there's so much extra fabric at the shoulder seam.

Donna said...

Oh, so it has fabric trim instead of button bands. Do you know where to buy the materials? I'm sure we can figure it out. If you have a picture of a finished sweater you could post it so we can all see what the bands look like. That might help.

Melissa said...

I know that it is common to use velvet ribbon that is wide enough to turn under all the ends. I just consulted a friend who has done some of these and bought as couple. Most of them have pewter or silver decorative hook clasps.
The ones that have button holes do not have colorwork (stranding) in that area and thus the buttonhole is knitted in the solid area next to the velvet trim.
Another option which is less fussy would be to use the ribbon trim and then use large black hooks and eyes and attach them to the back of that trim. They would be invisible and would just see the to edges of trim meeting at the front.

Hope this helps. I really love cardigans and have tried a lot of different front closure methods!

Janice said...

I've got permission to post a photo from one of the books, will do so when I put up the photo of my almost-done headband.

I've emailed the Husfliden in Bergen twice about purchasing the trim, just have to keep trying, I guess.

Oh yeah, here's a link to a recreated sweater:

Melissa, that makes sense, buttonholes on a non-stranded part. I will have two rows of solid color.