Kartopu Punto is one of my favorite yarns to knit because of its light texture and soft feeling. The yarn is very enjoyable to knit and cozy to wear. That’s why I choose this yarn for this men’s cardigan project. This is a very cozy cardigan for men. It is perfect for sweater weather or wearing at home while snuggling. You can also arrange the size based on the calculations I will explain in later parts of this post for boys, too.
What Did I Use?
- Kartopu Punto yarn in 1038
- Kartopu size 8 needles
- Yarn needle
k2tog: Knit two together
k1p1: Knit 1 stitch, purl the next stitch
Before diving into the details of this fall cardigan, let’s talk about some general terms and how I planned the cardigan beforehand. I will explain the pattern and talk about the steps as I go while I am making it. Once you read the whole pattern, you can change the order of the steps as you wish. For example, I like making calculations as I go. Because I start knitting and the piece in hand gives me an idea of how the yarn looks and works, I prefer making my calculations and decisions once I see a knitted piece. As an alternative, you can make all the calculations beforehand, plan your cardigan and then start the actual work of knitting.
As all we knitters know, before starting any pattern, we make a gauge. For a bulky yarn like Kartopu Punto, I made a gauge of 10×10 (10 stitches for 10 rows).
The pattern of this cardigan is made as k1p2, repeated multiple times. Therefore, for the gauge I made 10 stitches as follows: k1, p2, k1, p2, k1, p2, k1 for the right side and p1, k2, p1, k2, p1, k2, p1 for the wrong side.
For this particular example, my gauge is 7.5 centimeters for 10 stitches and 12.5 centimeters for 10 rows. We will make our further calculations based on this gauge.
For this raglan cardigan, we will make 5 separate pieces and seam them together afterward. As you would see in many patterns, we will work with ribbings. We will make ribbings at the ends of all pieces, and sides of right and left fronts. The ribbings will be worked as k1p1. After we calculate the number of stitches needed for the piece, we will make 3 rows of ribbing, then continue the pattern. For the right and left front pieces, we will also continue ribbings on the sides as 6 stitches of k1p1.
Let’s dive in now!
- Back Piece
For the back piece, we start with casting on 90 stitches. Here’s how I calculated the number of stitches to start:
- Measure the hipline (130 centimeters for this example).
- Divide it by 2 (130/2=65 cm).
- Calculate the number of stitches by taking your gauge as a reference (our gauge was 7.5 centimeters for 10 stitches. The calculation is 65/(7.5/10) = 86.666… I generally prefer rounding the number upwards -90 stitches- since I like making cardigans and sweaters a little looser. If you prefer tighter clothes, you can take the exact numbers and work with them).
We start the back piece with 90 stitches. We make 3 rows of the ribbing as k1p1 and start making the pattern as [k1, p2] repeated on the right side and [k2, p1] repeated on the wrong side. In other words, we set up the pattern as the multiples of [k1, p2] for the right side of the 4th row. Then, when we turn our work, we knit or purl the stitch as we see it.
Now, we measure the length of the back piece, which we will use for front pieces, too. First, decide the point where you want your cardigan to end. Then, measure the length starting from your armpit up to the point where you decided.
If you want looser shoulders, lower the point under your armpit. Be careful here, because if you lower the point too much, the shoulders will be too large. Decide an optimum point and measure the length.
Lastly, we calculate the number of rows needed to reach that length (including the ribbing) and knit on up to that point. Keep the number of rows you calculated in mind, we will use the same number for front pieces, too.
When the number of rows we calculated is reached (44 rows for my example cardigan), let the back piece stay on the needle for a while. Take your pen and paper, we need to make some more calculations.
How to Calculate How Many Stitches to Cut for Raglan Shoulders?
Now we calculate how many stitches we need to decrease for the raglan cut of the cardigan. The number of decreases is very important because this calculation will determine the fitting of the cardigan. We calculate the number of stitches here and keep that calculation in mind. Later, we will make the decreases of fronts and arms the same as the back piece.
We have two methods to measure the length we will make the decreases for.
First method: Measure your arm as a whole round at the point where is the closest to your shoulder. Add 10 more centimeters to that number to give the necessary looseness for a convenient fit. Divide it by 2.
Second method: Remember the point we measured the length of the back piece? Start where you left off, at the point under your armpit, and measure up to the middle of your shoulder vertically.
I used the first method for this cardigan. The tight measure of the shoulders is 50 cm. I added 10 more cm and divided it by 2. Therefore, we are working with 30 cm in this example.
Now, considering your gauge, calculate how many rows you need to knit to reach 30 cm.
As a general rule, I divide the number of stitches of the back piece by 3. I leave the first 1/3 for the left shoulder, 1/3 for the middle and 1/3 for the right shoulder. However, I want this cardigan to have more stitches in the middle because it is a men’s cardigan. Therefore, I divided the 90 stitches I have as such: 25 – 40 – 25. If this were a women’s cardigan, I would prefer dividing it as 30 – 30 – 30.
Since we need to make decreases from each side (each shoulder), we know that we need to decrease 50 stitches in 25 rows. We will decrease one stitch from each side for 25 rows. This means perfection!
Here, I recommend you use a chart to follow the decreases. I am leaving my chart as an example of this cardigan.
From the first row up to the 25th, decrease one stitch from each side of the back piece by using the k2tog method. We make the decreases on right sides and be careful about the stitches decreased so that the pattern is not disturbed. Follow the pattern taking the right side as a reference and knit or purl as needed for the pattern to remain intact. At the end of 25 rows, you need to have 40 stitches left on your needle (this is the number of stitches we decided to leave for the middle part of the back piece). Cast off the stitches and weave the ends.