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Colorfully Modern Cardigan Crochet-Along #2: Making the Back & Changing Colors

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Colorfully Modern Cardigan Crochet-Along #2: Making the Back & Changing Colors

CALbadgeHi everyone! I’ve been very impressed by all the pictures I’ve seen of your projects so far and so many great color combinations!

[Editor’s Note: Click here to see photos in our Ravelry group, and if you’d like to leave a photo here on the blog, click in the commenting box and you’ll see a little “mountain range” icon. Click it to browse to your photo on your computer and upload it to your comment.]

Making the Back & Changing Colors

This week I worked on the back of my cardigan. To avoid having to weave in all those ends, I had planned to carry the colors up the side and hide them in the seaming process, but I found that having 5 balls of yarn attached to my project at all times drove me a little crazy! So instead I decided to weave the ends in as I crocheted, hiding them by holding the ends of the new and old colors together on the WS of the work and crocheting over them as I made the stitches. Now all I’ll need to do is snip off the ends when I’m finished. This is my favorite method of hiding ends for crochet, especially for color-work.

Colorfully Modern Cardigan Crochet-Along #2: Making the Back & Changing Colors | Lion Brand Notebook

Click the photo to enlarge.

The cardigan has an A-line shape that gets narrower towards the top. I love the way the decreases are positioned so that the space between the vertical lines of the post stitches gets smaller, exaggerating the flare of the sweater. I found it helpful to count my stitches after finishing the row after the decrease row, as I would sometimes add stitches by mistake by going into the top of the stitches that had been decreased more than once. If you are having this difficulty (and even if you’re not) I would recommend placing a stitch marker where the decreases are—it makes it much easier to keep track of where you are.

Colorfully Modern Cardigan Crochet-Along #2: Making the Back & Changing Colors | Lion Brand Notebook

Click the photo to enlarge.

Pro tip: When shaping for the armholes and shoulders, I always worked the very first and last stitch as a single crochet, even if it is a post stitch in the pattern. This is just to make the seaming process a little neater later on.

I also made the pocket linings. This part was great for crocheting in front of the TV as there were no post stitches, color changes or shaping.

[Editor’s Note: Some of you have asked about the color of the lining matching up with the design of the sweater. Since the linings go inside the pockets, the pocket linings will not be visible from the outside. We’ve designated the color based on the yarn quantities available.]

I look forward to seeing how you are all progressing so keep the pictures and comments coming!

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While we will try to answer some questions here on the blog and on Ravelry, we do encourage participants to help each other with questions. Learning from each other’s experience, mistakes, triumphs, and “design elements” is part of the experience! If you need specific, personal help with the pattern, please feel free to email and someone from our team can address your question. 

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  • HI
    I have decided to leave off the pockets and use the extra yarn to lengthen the sleeves and make the neckline come in more. When I get to the row where the lining or pocket is crocheted in, do I just work the row as a normal row keeping the same stitch count and color sequence? I just started the back last night using an L-8mm to get correct gauge since I crochet loosely. I am also slow due to arthritis in my hands but I know that I don’t have to keep up. Thanks for your advise on the color changing as I was also going to try and carry the colors up the side. Your way is much better.

    • Hi there, yes, you can just work across as normal with the same stitch count. Don’t worry about keeping up–everyone’s welcome to work at their own pace!

    • Hi,
      I was thinking of lengthening my sleeves too, so I will be covering that in a future post, also yes the colours and stitch pattern will line up when you get to
      the pockets, I’ll be writing about it next week.

      I’m glad you like the weaving in ends as you go tip, it cuts down finishing time by quite a bit!

  • Hi. I am having trouble with the FPDC. Do I do the stitch twice in the same place? Thank you.

    • Hi Joansie, check out this video from YouTube:
      Hope it helps!

      • I did see that, but in the stitch explanation it says after the parentheses, “twice”
        I’m not sure what I do twice.

        • Gotcha. If you’re referring to this direction: (FPDC around next st 2 rows below, sc in next 2 sts)

          …you repeat everything in the parentheses twice. So you FPDC around the next st 2 rows below, sc, sc, FPDC around the next st 2 rows below, sc, sc. Hope that helps.

          • Thank you!! I should have been able to figure that out by myself! I’m so glad you’re there to help. :o)

          • This helped me also

  • I have to reduce the length, but not the width. I wear petite sizes. After reading the pattern, I am planning to do the repetition of the colors (I am using the kit) in the order called for, but to recuse length, while maintaining the shape, I am planning to eliminate rows 5-8,13-16, 21-24, 29-32, 37-40 and 45-48. Would you please give me feedback on whether you think it is a good plan? Thanks!

    • Hi debbie,

      yes, this sounds like a good plan for reducing the length whilst maintaining the flared shape and stitch counts. You will be eliminating about 5.5 inches from the length.

      • Thanks Lauren.

  • Is anybody else still waiting for their order? I live in CA, hopefully here today. Anxious to get started! I ordered it on the 16th of August but didn’t ship until the 22nd. I hope I won.t be too far behind.

    • Hi Eliz,
      Don’t worry, you won’t fall behind! everyone is going at their own pace. A few people have just started swatching and a couple of people have finished the fronts already. We’re going to leave the blog posts up so whatever stage you’re at you can refer back to them and get help from other people at the same stage.

      • Thank you Lauren. The weather in No. Cal messed with the delivery. Here tomorrow. Can’t wait! Thanks for your response and info.

  • I started with the back. Is that right? It sounds like people are all over the place. I thought we would be doing it together? How far along should we be by now. I am just to the shape armhole section of the back.

    • Hi Rebecca,
      yes everyone is going at their own pace so we are a bit all over the place! we’re going to leave the blog posts up so you can refer back to them no matter what stage you’re at. But yes, the pattern starts with making the back. I’ll be writing about making the fronts next week.

  • I tie the ends of my yarn together when I change colors then crochet the ends in together as I go along. I’m not thevworld’s best crocheted and paranoid about ends coming loose when washed or worn. Tying them off makes me feel better. Makes the edges a little bumpy, but it will get hidden I think when I see the pieces of the sweater together. I’m not very far in. Started tonight and three hours later I’m only far enough to have done one round of each color. Had to look up videos on you tube of the post crochet and decreasing. Never did them before.

    • Hi Kelley,
      Take your time, I’m not a particularly fast crocheter either! I’m very impressed that you had never done decreasing or post stitches before and yet you managed to work it out. Keep it up!

      • Thanks Lauren. I learn by doing. I’m a big reader but when it comes to trying to learn something new I’m very visual. You Tube has some excellent demos. I watched each one a couple times then I got it. 🙂 some of my stitches are far from pretty and I think I picked one up somewhere by accident but hopefully I’ll find it and do a decrease so I don’t need to tear it all out back to where the goof is.

  • Rebecca again! I hope I don’t become a real pest! Is there a picture of how the armholes should look? I do not think mine looks right.

  • Still waiting for my yarn. It was shipped yesterday. I am making a test swatch with Tweed. Hopefully that will help me get started.

  • ok im having trouble getting the yarn, there are not any stores that sell it in my area. I orderd it from lionbrand and after two weeks I still dont have it. I hope to catch up with everyone else soon.

  • Jumping in late with this one but I had an aran sweater to finish before I began a new project. Has anyone attempted to do the fronts and back together rather than piecing? I just finished swatching and practiced my post stitches as I hadn’t done them in a while. Mine is a solid metallic yarn of an acrylic, nylon, wool blend. I love the sheen.

  • After watching my post stitches skewing far left for17rows, I ripped it out and started again. It turns out I was posting along every third stitch below, not the fourth. Now my fpdc’s are standing straight and I am enjoying the pattern!

  • Hello every one I am using one color “Vannas color Lagoon Blue”. so far the back is done and the pocket linings. I have never made clothing before. I did a swatch to get the right hook. it has been easy to follow the instructions. I have been crocheting for 40 years. I am excited to see this cardigan to its completion!

  • […] Colorfully Modern Cardigan Crochet-Along #2: Making the Back & Changing Colors […]

  • Hi Lauren, I wonder how to correctly measure the armhole? Do I measure the height of the rows from the last full row? (6 inches.) Do I angle the measuring tape to measure from the point of the last full row to the top of the smallest row? (8-1/4 inches.) Do I fold the armhole in half and wrap the measuring tape around both halves? (9-3/4 inches.)

    • Hi Cstarz,
      Sorry it took me a while to get back to you! yes, measure your armhole straight up frm the last full row.

      • Thanks!

  • I’m having trouble with the decreases. I’m doing size 1x and start the back with 72 stitches and after first decrease row, pattern says I should have 69 stitches – shouldn’t it be 70?

    • Duh – I guess I need to learn to count :-). I started with 71.

  • I have used the suggestion to weave in ends as you go. I just recently read a note which stated doing that will unravel after washings whereas it should be knotted first then weaved. Comments?

  • Thanks for teaching me how to weave in the ends! I have completed the back up to where you shape the armholes…it’s going to be a very warm sweater…I also love the shaping.

  • I am pretty excited about the project! After about a dozen starts/unravels/restarts, I finally mastered the FPDC and the correct gauge. Whoohoo! Here is a picture of my progress and a close up of the stitches. (Sorry, the photos are upside down.)

  • I have some questions About the armhole shaping. Row 1 is on right side where you start shaping. The next row (wrong side) is the first decrease row – is this correct. All previous decreases have been on the right side. Are we then decreasing every row regardless of right or wrong side?

    • Yes, this sometimes happens in patterns when you need to rapidly decrease (decreases are worked on both sides), and you’ll notice that after the Decrease Row, you repeat it several times regardless of right or wrong side.

  • Work in progress. I didn’t understand the decreases were eliminating the ribbing made by the fpdc, but I think it still looks cool.

  • WIP

  • Hello!
    It’s Maria from Barcelona again.
    Making slow progress with the back, the color and the stiches look gorgeus!
    I’m doing 1x size. I’m at row 42 and it measures 13in. long
    I put the work over the schema on paper (see picture below), so far so good.
    But … if I understand well, at row 51 I should be on 20 in. and start working on the armholes.
    I placed a pen on the picture to indicate where the 20in. are, I think I will not be there with 9 more rows, it’ll be short … I don’t know what to do, I’m stuck here
    Thank you,

    • Hi Maria, I’d recommend that you just continue the pattern as written. At the end of the project, you will block the pieces (wash and stretch the pieces to the right size), which will lengthen them, so you should be okay. Also, since this crochet-along has ended (the host is no longer answering questions), please feel free to email questions to our team at, so that someone can answer your questions via email. Good luck with your project!

      • Thank you Zontee!

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