Allover lace mesh hooded cardigan

My goals when designing Laika were simple. So often in warmer weather I find myself reaching for the store bought cardigans in my wardrobe over the handknits because they're thin enough to stuff in my bag. Lace can be delicate and girly, but it can also be simple and geometric and I love knitting on simple lace patterns because they grow so fast and mould to the body so well. Laika is the perfect cardigan to carelessly throw in your bag as an extra layer with any outfit, pretty but casual, lightweight but not too delicate.


    Laika is a top down seamless compound raglan in a simple allover lace mesh pattern. A compound raglan differs from standard raglan shaping in that rather than increasing at each “seam” of the raglan on every other row the increases are calculated to result in a good fit at both the upper arm and chest in all sizes. The rate of increase varies to more accurately follow the shape of the body, increasing more rapidly between the neck and shoulders, then more gradually, followed by a short amount of more rapid increasing to curve around the underarm. The yoke is worked in one piece followed by the body. Live stitches at the bottom edge of the body are held while the sleeves and hood are worked from the yoke, then those stitches are returned to the needle and stitches for the rest of the edging are picked up along the front edges and around the hood.



    If you have the printed book please click here for errata

  • YARN

    Fingering or heavy laceweight yarn with a suggested gauge of 7-9 sts per inch / 2.5cm. The garter stitch borders are worked with the yarn held double so it will have enough structure using less sturdy yarns than sock yarn, although more loosely spun yarns will obviously be less durable. The stitch patterns used are very stretchy and can be worked successfully in fairly inelastic yarns, but only those that are lightweight, anything too heavy like cotton will cause the sweater to stretch out of shape and won’t bounce back. Other than the recommended wool blend, cashmere and alpaca blends would also be good choices. My original prototype for Laika was actually worked in a lofty cashmere laceweight, it doesn’t look so great anymore, but it’s wonderfully snuggly.

    Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sock (80% wool, 20% nylon, 435yds / 398m, 3.53oz / 100g).
    Ysolda’s version in Ysolda Red and Amanda’s in Blackberry.

    1395[1480, 1520, 1675, 1740, 1795, 1890, 1980, 2055, 2145, 2235, 2300, 2360, 2450, 2555, 2640] yards
    1275[1355, 1390, 1530, 1590, 1640, 1730, 1810, 1880, 1960, 2045, 2105, 2160, 2240, 2335, 2415] metres


    Scrap yarn for holding sts.
    Stitch markers.
    5/8” / 15-18mm buttons – 20 for sizes 30-34, 22 for sizes 36-46, 24 for sizes 48+.

  • Technique Thursday - Yarn overs
    Technique Thursday - One row buttonholes
    Blog post - Using charts
    Blog post - Working in pattern while increasing



20 sts and 32 rows = 4" / 10cm in mesh pattern worked flat.
Note: Measure gauge after blocking – lightly stretch just enough to open up the stitch pattern but do not stretch out as much as possible as you might for a lace shawl.




Fingering or heavy laceweight yarn with a suggested gauge of 7-9 sts per inch / 2.5cm.
Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock
Ysolda's version in Ysolda Red and Amanda's in Blackberry.

Needles and notions

US 3 / 3.25mm circular, a 24" / 60cm needle can be used for the body of the sweater, but was difficult for the edging, make things easy on yourself and use a 32" / 80cm or longer needle.
US 3 / 3.25mm for your preferred method of working small circumferences in the rnd.

Version information