<- Back to Blog

A Bounty of Blackwoods
Written by PippaFabric
Category: reviews, sewing


Building a bounty of Blackwoods


I’m beginning to get a bounty of blackwoods.

I’m super-late  to the Helens Closet Blackwood Cardigan but boy, does it live up to it’s reputation.

I love a cardigan.  Normally my go-to cardi shape is cropped and fitted.  Hello twin set.  I love a Cardi over a fine jumper.  A bit of a contrast to the Blackwood.  The long loose comfy cousin.


The summer edit

I’d bought some lovely jersey from Fabrics Galore a year or so ago, originally for a sweater dress but it felt right for a long cardigan.  I had a much loved ready to wear long cardi that I live in during the spring and summer.  I thought this was the perfect time to try for another so measured it to make sure I got the same length.  I’m a 36 bust so cut a medium and added 4″ (10cm) to the front and back and front band pieces.  I’m 5’4″ so it doesn’t take a lot to lengthen.

As I’d heard from CraftyClyde who’d made it before, all of the pieces went together like a dream.  I think it helped that the jersey I was using was relatively stable but the pieces matched together really well.

I left off the pockets as I wanted a clean line.   I made this towards the end of the summer as it was cooling off and found I started to live in it.  So comfy but I do find I try to pull it round me as the day cools off.  It’s not meant to meet, I’m just used to full coverage.

The winter version

Fast forward a month or so to when I saw that fabric godmother had some knitted chunky cable in, I pounced.  Hello comfy cosy blackwood of my winter dreams.  I didn’t add any length to this one, I just made the long version of the pattern but I did go up a size to a large.  I wanted  a little more coverage.  The sleeves are quite fitted on the original pattern so I straightened them out a bit as I knew I’d be wearing heavier layers underneath.


I had a couple of ‘Oh pockets where art thou’ moments with my other Blackwood so didn’t even consider not adding them to this one.  I was aware that the cable would stretch out a bit so I decided to line them with a jersey just to support them a bit in wear.

Naturally it was no ordinary plain jersey, dragons get everywhere.  It also meant I could get a relatively square pocket without having to fiddle with the knit whilst topstitching  (I’m not a tacker)  nightmare averted.

I played with the pattern placement of this one to make the best of the cable.  It made it more interesting fitting the bands on as the cable doesn’t stretch equally but I’m quite pleased with the end result.  It will get lots of use over the next couple of months.  Sadly I probably won’t take it out so much as it would appear all of my winter coats are…jackets!  I love layering but having half a cardi sticking out the bottom would just plain annoy me.  Obviously I need to get on the coat making train.  Maybe next year, though I do have just the fabric in the stash…

I have to say this pattern is fabulous! I don’t think I’ll be stopping at two, maybe a short one next so that I can wear it out under my jackets.  It’s also just been extended in size range so if you weren’t sure it would work for you, Go, go, go!

Have you made the blackwood or do you have a go-to cardi pattern?  I’d love to hear about it, do drop me a line in the comments.




Leave a Reply