Machine Knit Brooks Brothers Colorblocked Sweater

I’m embarrased to admit I started this sweater in January 2019 for a February 2019 birthday gift to my husband Jordan. By winter 2019, it still wasn’t done — just needing the neckband ribbing done. I was feeling unconfident about the neckband and asked my expert knitting boss if she would finish it, and she did. All I had left to do for the last YEAR was weave in the ends. She even seamed it for me. The weather cooled off last week and our seventh anniversary was approaching. We’re on a pandemic budget (happy to still be working, but pay cuts nonetheless) and I figured I could get this done in time and present as an anniversary gift.

Back view

I was inspired by this fingering weight lambswool sweater from Brooks Brothers.

Brooks Brothers Sweater Inspiration

I used a wool blend DK weight yarn from Silk City Fibers and knit on my midgauge Silver knitting machine.

I drafted the pattern using my Garment Designer software from Cochinelle and made a goof. The neckline was done as “wide and deep” because I thought, “oh, scoop”. But, it’s too wide and definitely too deep for traditional men’s look. Jordan’s wearing it with a white undershirt and says that makes it wearable for him. I’m on the fence, but in one thousand years would never go back and try to knit up the neckline. I rarely fix for sewing and I absolutely do not for knitting.

Wider back for saddle sleeves

I chose the “saddle sleeves” and I’m very curious now about the draft. I’m not familiar with this style and never saw this sweater on a model. So I’m unclear how far should the front come down on the shoulder. Here it reads a bit drop sleeve to me — but not at the font. I don’t know if that’s the look of it, or if I have his personal measurements off.

Either way, he’s happy so I’m happy. Which is great because I don’t know what I’m doing for myself when it comes to knitting. Jordan needs and asks for so little as gifts. So making for him is the one thing he wants, wears and I can do. I on the other hand have barely retained anything I’ve knit for myself. I think I might not like chunkier knits on me. I definitely like them a bit more fitted too. I’m still committed to machine knitting, but perhaps need to try on more styles and figure out what I like. If I just am a men’s sweater, socks and hat knitter — I would be okay with that too. Might even help me stop buying yarn!

19 comments

  1. It looks really great on him! And he looks so happy with it! I’m not sure what’s bothering you about knitting for yourself—I like the stuff you’ve done, although perhaps you’d prefer a more fitted look. I’m sure you’ll figure it out.

    • I think I find I’ve picked “Easy” garments and eventually feel a little sackish on me? And I think I might not like bulky knits on me. I think. I’m not positive. Two things I like I accidentally shrank, so that’s on me, lol.

      On Mon, Oct 12, 2020 at 11:52 AM Miss Celie's Pants wrote:

      >

  2. That is a great looking sweater! My knitting machine has been gathering dust, I’ve never invested the time to start to master it properly.
    You have made some really lovely garments.. I loved the long open cardigans you made.
    Do you use and/or recommend any online resources?

    • Thank you, Chris! I think I got THE most out of Susan Gaulgumi’s Craftsy classes. I should have signed up for Diana Sullivan’s online class this summer. I think I just need to put a bit more time into it. I’m worried about my machines not getting used enough to justify having them. Or, that learning curve everytime I decide to knit a new project.

      On Mon, Oct 12, 2020 at 12:18 PM Miss Celie's Pants wrote:

      >

  3. Buying yarn, IMO, is all about loving yarn (not what it might produce in the end). I have such a problem stopping myself from buying it, esp when I have no idea what I’ll eventually knit. Fabric, I can resist. Yarn is like crack. 🙂

    • Yarn IS like crack and costs as much as cocaine! I’m actually happy we didn’t have Maryland Sheep and Wool this year. I couldn’t let myself buy another hank after my abysmal knit showing this year, lol.

      On Mon, Oct 12, 2020 at 1:46 PM Miss Celie's Pants wrote:

      >

    • I have accepted knitting is a separate hobby from accumulating patterns and yarn, just like fabric buying is a separate hobby from sewing.😉😉

  4. I really like the look of this sweater on your husband! Will also look great with a turtleneck in cooler weather. You are too hard on yourself – you make lovely things!😊

    • Oh, thank you! Turtleneck is a great idea. I never even considered it for him since he doesn’t wear them. Then again, I literally buy all of his clothes so I guess that’s on me, haha!

      On Mon, Oct 12, 2020 at 3:25 PM Miss Celie's Pants wrote:

      >

  5. It’s a great sweater and he does look happy! I think that going to a store and trying on sweaters until you find a fit and style you like is a great idea. Take a tape measure with you and measure the sweater you like.

  6. I have similar feelings about buttondown shirts. They are OK on me, but my hubby looks amazing in them. And since he’s got the perfect male physique, he’s super easy to make them for, so it’s actually kind of fun.
    This turned out great, the sleeves are very cool! And I’m glad you chose a more subtle color combo than the original…the original is just too much. It made my eye twitch. 🤣

    • In a million years I couldn’t have gotten him on board with those colors! Hahaha! Subtle is the way to go for him. Subtle and just about no prints.

      On Tue, Oct 13, 2020 at 1:47 AM Miss Celie's Pants wrote:

      >

  7. I am beyond impressed! The fit is spot on, and wow that colorblocking really works! It is such a huge deal to make a sweater that fits this well, congrats!

    The neckline doesn’t read wide in these pictures at all, but I had the thought that if it bothers you, maybe you could sew the center to make it a slight V-neck instead?

  8. Looks fantastic! Men are so easy to knit for. Nothing sexier than a man in a sweater. I had to give my knitting machine away – it produced projects too quickly (I live in FL). Machine knitting taught me the importance of gauge and how to convert a pattern to match gauge instead of the other way around. That lesson solved my problem with hand knitting. As I too am busty, choosing the right pattern is important. Fitted sleeves are a must, drop shoulders only make me look like a bear. Cables only on accessories and maybe a cardigan that would remain open.

    I have a gazillion hand knit sweaters but got a bit burned out on knitting and haven’t knit in over a year. I’m still buying yarn though!

  9. Love the colors!!! You made his sweater even nicer than the Brooks Brothers! I love your comment that buying yarn is like Crack…so addictive! You make lovely things to share, Renee!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s