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It was love at first sight.
I love bright colors, but sometimes I don’t want to be dressed too brightly. That’s why the Saturn Sweater, a pattern by Linda Permann, with its charcoal grey body with colorful accents, immediately caught my eye when I was searching for a crochet sweater pattern on Ravelry.
One day when I was about eight or nine, I was helping my best friend to choose her accessories. She was wearing all black and white, so I chose black and white earrings. Her mother, on the other hand, chose some huge fluorescent ones. (This was in the 80s. Everyone wore huge fluorescent things.) She explained to me the idea of using bright accessories to break up neutral colors. And ever since then, I’ve loved dark clothing (or anything else) with a few bright pops of color.
The Saturn Sweater is not only very cool-looking, but also really easy and relatively quick to work up. Let me tell you all about it.
Besides the color choices, the other feature of this cardigan that really struck me are the embroidered rings around the neck. I’ve always loved astronomy and have studied books about space pretty much ever since I could read. Saturn is probably the planet that strikes people the most because of its rings, giving this sweater its name.
The body and sleeves of the sweater were quite quick to work up, being all in half double crochet. The body is worked in rows, which creates a cool lined effect. In order to recreate this effect, the sleeves are also worked in rows, rather than in the round.
I chose the same exact yarn brand and colors as the original in the pattern (Zara Filatura di Crosa, colors charcoal grey, rust, faded denim and fawn brown). I made the stupid mistake of not buying extra yarn, and ended up not having enough grey to finish the second sleeve. (I blame it on the shop assistant– he told me I had enough!) When I went back to the yarn shop, they didn’t have any more of the same dye lot, so I got a skein of a different lot, thinking it couldn’t be that different.
Oh, how wrong I was. I soon realized that my second sleeve looked as if it had been left out in the sun and had faded horribly. What looked like a slight difference in the yarn shop was magnified when crocheted along with the original dye lot. I published the picture above on Instagram, asking more experienced crocheters and knitters for advice.
I got some great suggestions and the one that I ended up following was to split the new dye lot up between both sleeves, as if there were cuffs. I removed the new yarn from the second sleeve and unravelled my gauge swatches to use that bit of old dye lot on the second sleve. I then bit by bit unraveled the first sleeve, crocheting that original yarn onto the second sleeve. I went on like this until both sleeves were the same length.
At that point I finished both sleeves with the new yarn. The difference between yarn lots was still noticeable, but not nearly as much as before. To try to make it more intentional-looking, I added a couple of rings of embroidery where the two dye lots meet. I chose the two rings of rust after experimenting with different color combos and different numbers of rings.
You can see the difference, but not so much. It almost looks on purpose. Almost….
I added an extra ring around the neck and a few more around the cuffs than what the pattern calls for. I love the color combo.
And how cool do the rings look from the inside?
The buttonbands are worked in the rust color in the opposite direction of the body. If I were to make this cardigan again, I will make the buttonholes one stitch smaller, because the recommended button size slips out of the buttonholes too easily for my liking.
The bottom of the cardigan is embroidered in a tan color, though you hardly notice it when wearing it.
I used ¾” coconut buttons. I love how they look with the yarn colors.
I was shocked at how much this cardigan stretched out when I blocked it, but thankfully I was able to get it pretty much back into shape with the help of this Craftsy article. Then a friend of mine showed me how to slightly shrink a knitted or crocheted garment back into shape with the steam from an iron, and it got pretty much to how it had been in the first place.
This is the first crochet sweater I’ve ever made, and I was really surprised at how much the half double crochet stitches stretch vertically when putting it on. Knowing this, I would keep the length as per the pattern (I added a little bit of length both in the torso and in the sleeves).
The Zara Filatura di Crosa yarn feels really soft against the skin, but I noticed that it started pilling after wearing it a couple of times, which was a disappointment.
However, all things considered, I really like this cardigan. It was pretty simple to understand and fast to make, especially compared to knit garments, and I just love how it looks. The few times I’ve worn it so far, I’ve gotten a lot of compliments on it.
You can find all the technical details of my version of the Saturn Sweater here on Ravelry. The crochet sweater pattern can be purchased at Interweave, but make sure to see the errata of the pattern on Ravelry.
And if you love to crochet, make sure to download my FREE crochet pattern for the Ball & Chain Necklace!