Lion Neck Cardigan, to ruffle or not?

One of the main reasons I bought the book Custom Knits by Wendy Bernard, is due to this pattern. The model is on the beach looking free and easy, the sweater is oversized and comfortable looking yet complimentary to her figure. And we must always bear in mind that sweaters in books are worn by models, the average size now being a 2-4 US but they actually would prefer a 0. Well as we know, everything looks cute smaller!


Never the less, I decided I had to have this sweater. I frogged a ill conceived hoodie from 2 years ago. Of course I had lost all of the yarn info, so I had a mystery amount of it. Slightly bulky with 6 balls I cast on without fear. Since it was top down I hoped I could alter it, if I needed to.

Thank goodness for Ravelry, I read all of the helpful comments of those that had gone before me with this pattern and took note.

The sweater took off at a great pace. Before I knew it I was on the sleeves! I decided to try to get it done before the week was over!


One sleeve almost done!


Both sleeves finished! Syd is helping me decide how long to make the body.

Yarn used: May have been Manos, (possibly) SILK BLEND
70% MERINO / 30% SILK, The yarn is yummy.

History of Manos here

For more into on Manos listen to Deborah at The Savvy Girls Podcast Episode 23 she did an interesting interview with the company representatives.

Gauge: 14 stitches in 4 inches

Needles: Size 9, circular, I used my Denise set to enable me to add as I needed. Pattern calls for a 40”cable. You don’t need one that long. It does make it easier to try on the sweater while knitting the collar, but you could easily move stitches to yarn.


1. I made the sleeves longer, the pattern calls for a 3/4 length sleeve, although the model is wearing a full sleeve.

2. I changed the cuffs on the sleeve to a traditional k2, p2 repeat. I didn’t think the k3, p1 had enough definition.

3. I made the front wider, to close in the front. Try it on and gauge for yourself, I only added 5 increases to each front edge to make it able to close all of the way.

4. I changed the bottom of the sweater to a k1, p1 repeat, hoping that this will be smooth and not pull in. I’m a pear, say no more.

5. I was worried that the neck ruffle, while being it’s best feature could backfire at the bottom. So I worked a number of short rows to taper this ruffle, making it closer to a shawl collar. FROGGED, I’m not really a ruffle person. I think it would work with the ruffle with a different yarn, or gauge.

6. Collar modification: Total shawl collar, I used a series of short rows to make the collar and even decided to add buttons.

Shawl Collar, I picked up stitches as called for in the pattern. Place marker (pm) about 4 stitches into picking up the sides, (4 stitches from the back stitches), work 5 rows in k1, p1 pattern.


See tutorial from Cat Bordhi on short rows and wrapping stitches, this video show how to wrap both knit and purl wise, she also shows how to hide your wraps.

She also shows how to hide your wraps on purl wise short rows

Begin short rows: (you begin using just the neck stitches and gradually use a few more to develop the gradual increase for the collar) *work in pattern to 2nd marker, work in pattern 3 stitches further, wrap stitch, and move marker to stitch before the wrapped stitch. Turn and continue in pattern until you get to marker on other side*, *repeat*. Try on as you go to see how big you want your collar to be. I repeated my short rows 8 x’s.

Now resume knitting in pattern for entire collar and sides. Until you are about 1/2 inch from your final width of the collar and front band. Now include your button holes, (if you want some), mark the location of the button holes, then bind off two stitches (I used two stitches, but judge how many you need by the size of your buttons you are using) at each location. Next row cast on two stitches in the same location.

Button row tutorial from knittinghelp

Now you are ready to continue knitting in pattern for about 1/2 inch, then bind off in your choice of methods. I used my favorite the 2 stitch I cord bind off. (from stell66)


Yay!! I’m very happy with the collar! Although I would like to try this pattern again with a different yarn, and try the ruffle.

019 Only this much yarn left!! I was sweating that! I think this will be a wonderful, cozy fall sweater. It is very warm (OK it’s over 90 here) and soft.

On to the next sweater! I’m now looking at the Slinky Ribs sweater, long sleeve, (thanks Blueberries, Art and Life blogger!) Maybe we can knit this one together!

May your knitting needles fly as fast as Dragonflies….


  1. Syd is quite the dashing young dog! How long did it take you to make this sweater?

  2. A. The sweater looks great! I really like the shawl collar and it works well.

    B. You sure did cut it close on the yarn, dear!

    C. Revisit Slinky Ribs? Must I? ;-) If we knit this one "together" will you agree to come over for coffee and help me out when I get stuck? ;-)

  3. wonderful! You certainly did justice to that yarn hon.

  4. Another sweater done?! You go!


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