Thursday, April 11, 2013

Isabel Cable and Little Branch dress is done!


Cable Dress #2

Cable Dress #3

Cable Dress #4

Cable Dress #5

Finally! After much blood, sweat and tears, the Isabel Cable and Little Branch Dress is done!

Ok, so there wasn't any actual blood spilt whilst making this dress, but there was a lot of sweat, and I could have cried tears of pure frustration at certain points. I'll admit - this was a challenging project for somebody who had never done cables before, and I frogged the back 3 times before I got it right.

The first time was totally and utterly my fault - I made the classic mistake of crossing my cables the wrong way. I didn't discover this error until I'd done another two pattern repeats. Then, when I finally did clue on, I decided to ignore it, and did another couple of pattern repeats, hoping that it would all just disappear. But that mistake just wouldn't evaporate into thin air, no matter how hard I wished it would. It keep catching my eye, and that annoying school marmish voice in my head keep warning me that I would regret it FOREVER if I didn't fix it. So with a great big sigh, I frogged.

As I frogged, I reflected that it was probably a good thing, as I seemed to keep making another mistake during the first row of my pattern repeat. Where there should have been seamless cables there was instead a big lumpy mass of purl stitches. Putting it down to my cable inexperience, I carefully did my pattern repeats, but that pesky error kept resurfacing. So I frogged again.

And again. Geez - was I turning out to be bad at this cable business!

However, after the third frog I decided that surely it couldn't be all me. I jumped on the internets, and found - to my mingled horror and relief - that the pattern was written wrong. GAH! I knew I couldn't suck that badly!

So if you ever make this dress, do the following for the back: Knit the first pattern repeat as written (rows 9 - 32), but then start your pattern repeat from row 21 through to 32. Repeat until done.

My other worry was that the dress wouldn't fit. There had been some chatter online about how small the sizings of the garments in this book were, so I was fretting a bit about it fitting Tyger. Thankfully it does fit her, but I will admit I steam blocked like heck, stretching it out as much as I could without distorting it.

Apart from those niggles, I am super super super happy and proud of this dress. The yarn (Amy Butler Belle Organic) knitted up like a dream, and is warm without being too weighty. Quite a few people who have made this dress up on Ravelry have only knitted the back pattern, but I'm glad I took the plunge and did the branch pattern for the front. The joy of doing those bobbles alone made it worth it (cue cringing from readers over my admission of bobble fondness).

Would I knit it again? Sure - but only if it came in a grown up size. How awesome would that be?!?

Project Details
Pattern: Isabel Cable and Little Branch Dress from Labour of Love by Vibe Ulrik Sondergaard
Yarn: 7 balls of Amy Butler Belle Organic DK (50% organic wool/ 50% organic cotton) in shade #032 (Ash)
Needles: 3mm, 4mm and 2 cable needles


  1. It is absolutely stunning! You did such a good job........oooing and ahhing.....The design is beautiful but you executed it well! Congrats.....hopefully the little one won't grow too fast :)

  2. Amazing!! I want a grown up one :-)

  3. oh my god so very lovely. we definitely need a grown up version.

  4. Amazing! I want one for myself.

  5. I want one!!!
    That looks soo pretty <3

  6. Stunning work and that wool knits up beautifully, the stitches are really defined well and show what a tidy, even knitter you are. Gorgeous!!

  7. Oh. My. God. That is amazing. You must be completely and utterly chuffed with yourself! How long did this take you? No wonder Tyger has such an enormous smile! It is absolutely perfect.

  8. Anonymous2:25 pm

    Just beautiful. Your daughter is so lucky having such a talented mum. Ingrid

  9. OMG I wish I could have had a dress like that at that age!

  10. Oh my, it's truly stunning! A real credit to your talent (despite the frogging!).

  11. Far out! Just beautiful.
    Worth it big time.
    And with a model like that? Far out. Beam with pride.
    Once more for good measure. Far out.

  12. This is so beautiful!! Great job.

  13. What a beautiful dress. I would have given up if I stuffed up the cables that many times. You would think an experienced knitter has made this. She looks awesome in it.

  14. Looks amazing and worth all the frogging.

    Such a great achievement and what a project to tackle when you haven't done cables before.

    I'm tempted to cast this one on, but I don't know if I could finish it.

  15. I am in awe. Not sure what frogging is (being a sewer rather than a knitter... ) but it was worth it.

  16. This is totally worth all that hardship, beautiful cable work!

    WELL DONE!!!!


  17. Anonymous5:44 pm

    Oh my, this is insanely beautiful!
    Just out of sheer curiosity: for how long have you been knitting? (and no, i do not mean for this particular garment only ;-) )


  18. It looks amazing. For someone who hadn't done cables before, this project is a bit of a baptism of fire!

  19. So. Much. Awesome. This looks absolutely rad! I wish it came in big person sizes- I would be all over it!

  20. Thanks everybody for the knitting love! Ya'll the best!

    SabineC, I've been knitting for about 9 years, after teaching myself via the internet. Oh, the mistakes I have made over the years. Does make the success sweater, though :)

  21. Well if this isn't the best advertisement to come join your knitting classes... ;) SOO gorgeous. And tyger is clearly proud as punch to be wearing it. I would be too!!

  22. OOH, I'd like a grown up one too! SO GORGEOUS!

  23. That is *gorgeous*!!

  24. It is absolutely gorgeous!!!
    I can't believe this was your first cable project ~ over achiever!!! ;)
    AND it only took you 2 months to knit?
    Interesting that the back is different than the front.
    When your daughter outgrows it, can my daughter wear it (she's currently 5 yrs old)??

  25. That is so beautiful!

  26. What a gorgeous, gorgeous dress! And your first cables, WOW. Congratulations!!

  27. Beautiful dress. I have the same book and tried a pattern before ripping it out as it turned out too small. I am glad to hear that there is finally errata for the patterns as they are so gorgeous. Your daughter looks beautiful in it too, and it is now cold enough to wear it!

  28. Anonymous12:18 am

    Beautiful dress, your daughter looks so delighted!

    If you find yourself getting addicted to cables, there are two things which are very handy to know:
    1. Cabling without a cable needle (lots of tutes online)
    2. This tute on fixing miscrossed cables :

  29. This is incredibly cute! That mini dress looks very high end (expensive)!

  30. That is so awesome! You make me want to pick up my knitting needles!

  31. Linda in Waterloo7:24 am

    WOW! Impeccable knit and fit & beautiful girl!

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  33. What can I say - you've excelled!!! She looks gorgeous!! Fabulous knitting, as usual.

  34. Oh my gosh leisl, this is amazing!! so much work and such beautiful knitting!!! Suz:)

  35. Sorry it was such a struggle. I'm happy you persevered. I probably would have scratched the whole project. I am glad you finished it. Looks great.


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