Sep 17, 2015 :: by Leila Raabe
Today Bristol Ivy brings us a beautifully simple masterpiece: Meet Dar, our newest lightweight cardigan knit in Quince & Co. Piper. Worked sideways in fisherman's rib, this sweater's body is designed to have a comfortably relaxed fit, balanced by long, slender sleeves to keep it chic.
No stranger to Bristol's fascination with fisherman's rib and its cousin stitch, brioche, I recall once how she, somehow both dreamily and a little morosely, voiced her worry about becoming All Brioche, All the Time (as if that's a bad thing!).
When asked why she's obsessed with these stitch patterns: "I think for everyone there are just techniques that click, that work with their synapses and mindset, and brioche and fisherman's rib are that for me. I love how they can be both sculptural or geometric depending on yarn, needle size, and blocking. I love how they make even the simplest increases and decreases look wildly interesting. I can't even describe it—they're just the best!"
Fisherman's rib vs. brioche—what is the difference, anyway, and why does it matter? She says: "The difference between the two refers to how they're constructed, but the funny thing is that through those two different techniques they create pretty much the exact same fabric. Both involve a stitch unworked and a strand of yarn above it that are then worked together, but they approach it in very different ways. Some people have favorites between the two, but I think they're both fantastic depending on your skill set or needs of your finished project!"
We love her use of Piper for a sweater in fisherman's rib (as with brioche, the stitch is often seen worked in a heavier yarn to create a fluffy, dense fabric). On why she chose this particular weight: "I love working these two stitches in lighter weight yarn on bigger needles, to really accentuate the diagonals and architecture that occur within the stitch pattern. Piper does such a fantastic job of this because the mohair content holds the structure after blocking, locking together to keep an open, airy quality. I love it in way different yarns, too, though--the first time I explored small yarn and larger needles in fisherman's rib, it was with Quince's 100% linen Sparrow (the Linum tee with Knitscene)!"
Bristol's thoughtful design highlights how versatile these stitch patterns can be. Dar is timely, too: as summer hangs on—at least from our view here in Maine—this cardigan is just the thing to carry us through these evenings during the season's transition.
And, Piper's palette grew by 5 glorious colors this week, with Austin, Coldspring, Laredo, Pampa, and Lone Oak, just in time to expand your color options for this pretty sweater. Which color would make your perfect Dar? Laredo is calling my name.