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Stretched out sweater!

nmog | Posted in Knitting and Crochet on

I have a Fisherman knit cardigan I made a few years ago.I pulled it out of the closet last week to wear and was horrified to find out that it grew! My tension has never been perfect, but it was fairly close with this one – I made sure of that! Either way, this sweater has stretched at least 2 inches in length and more than that in the width. SHould I be crazy and try a delicate dryer cycle? I used 100% wool. I loved the sweater but am not sure if it can be salvedged. Thanks for the help!


  1. damascusannie | | #1

    Soak it in cool water, squeeze out the excess water and re-block it to the original measurements. If that doesn't work try some controlled shrinkage: warm (not hot) water for a few minutes, followed by a cold water rinse. (It's the temperature change that causes the shrinkage.) Again, block to the correct size. FYI: I was taught that sweaters should never, ever be hung because it stretches them out. One of my pet peeves is ready-to-wear sweaters hung on hangers in the store. They are stretched out of shape before you can even get them home! Always fold and store on a shelf or in a drawer. Annie

    1. nmog | | #3

      Thanks for your help! I've washed it in warm and am blocking it. It seems to silly that I didn't fold it - all my other hand-knit sweaters are. Hindsight's perfect, I guess!Thank you.

  2. Katina | | #2

    Is your sweater knitted in the stitch pattern called Fisherman's Rib? If so, this stitch has considerable sideways stretch. Washing will probably improve the situation.


    1. nmog | | #4

      I always thought that Fisherman's knit was super-tight, but not in my case. Oh to have perfect tension and loads of shelves in my closet!
      Thanks ofr your help.

      1. Katina | | #5

        Nicole, just to be absolutely sure - is your sweater knitted in a rib stitch pattern, all over (Fishermen's rib) or do you mean that it's knitted in the traditional style of garment worn by fishermen?


        1. nmog | | #6

          Good question - I didn't realize that there was two types. Mine has cables, moss stitch and a popcorn-like stitch in it. Does that clarify? I don't think that it's a rib knit. Thanks!

          1. Katina | | #7

            It sounds beautiful, and it must be rescued! What you are describing is a style of sweater worn by fishermen in Britain, the Netherlands, Scandinavian countries. I'm surprised that it's 'grown' sideways. Did you block it when you first knitted it? Did you knit it in wool?

            I'm enclosing a link so you can see what the fisherman's rib stitch looks like.



          2. BernaWeaves | | #8

            The popcorn stitch is terrible for not holding its shape.


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