The Lovely is a pretty cardigan worked in cables and bobbles, with moss stitch button/buttonhole bands and when I first saw this pattern, I really liked the look of it but I thought that it might be a bit of a challenge for me. It's a seamed construction, which I'm very familiar with, and I was fairly confident that there were no individual elements of the pattern that were too tricky for me, but I'd never knit anything with an all-over pattern (rather than a section of pattern accompanied by nice relaxing areas of stocking stitch). I was also slightly daunted by the look of the chart, as I haven't used charts that much before.
However, I was pleasantly surprised that it turned out to be far less taxing than I thought. What initially looked like a complex 16 row pattern repeat on closer inspection actually turned out to be far simpler. Once I'd got each piece properly started I could largely just knit away without having to check the pattern and the chart religiously. I also made things easier for myself by using stitch markers between each of the individual sections to keep me on track and make sure I didn't go onto autopilot and knit the wrong thing.
That said, I didn't always find this a relaxing project to work on, and it definitely wasn't quick. It's also safe to say that it'll be a while before I feel like tackling another project with quite this many bobbles! It's not that the bobbles were particularly complicated, but they were pretty time consuming and often seemed to initially look nicely bobble-like but then gradually deflate over time.
That's not to say I didn't enjoy knitting it though, and it is nice to challenge yourself with things that are a bit out of your comfort zone every now and then. I just made sure that I didn't knit on it when I was too tired or in need of something mindless.
I used to always be very monogamous with my knitting and just work on one project at a time, but this project really won me over to the joys of having a couple of projects on the go. While I've been working on this cardigan, I've also knit a few pairs of socks and my Spindrift shawl. It was really nice to have simpler projects to pick up when I wanted to knit, but didn't feel like knitting bobbles!
I made the size L, which is the size recommended for my bust measurement, and I'm happy with how it turned out. It's nicely fitted without being too snug, and is just the right length for me to wear with all my waisted dresses.
While I may have been complaining about the bobbles, I do really like how the pattern is written. There are moss stitch panels under the arms and either side of the sleeve seam, and all the increases are worked into those sections so there's no need to figure out adding in extra sections of the main pattern. I also like the fact that the moss stitch button/buttonhole bands are worked with the fronts so you only have to pick up stitches around the neckline at the end.
One point to note if you're knitting this pattern though is that the Tw2L and Tw2R stiches are labelled the wrong way round on the chart. Other than that, I had no problems with it at all!
The yarn that I used is Drops Flora in turquoise. I enjoyed knitting with it and, based on the cardigan's first outing at least, seems like it should be nice to wear. It's also a lovely colour which, as I've realised as I've been wearing various dresses whilst knitting it, should go with plenty of things in my wardrobe.
All in all, I'm really pleased with how my Lovely cardigan turned out. It may have taken me about eight months to knit it (I'm not a speedy knitter), but I'm glad I persevered with all those bobbles and got it finished in the end. And it's another project that I can tick off my Make Nine list! The next cardigan on my needles will be Wainthropp by Andi Satterlund, which is also one of my Make Nine projects but I'm not sure it'll be done this year. How are you getting on with your Make Nine list if you made one?