Monday, September 26, 2005

Welcome to the Colchique Knitalong, English Version!

It's somewhat well known that the French are a stylin' bunch of people. So it's no surprise that their knitting patterns leave most American ones in the dust.

A while back, I posted a photo of this lovely sweater, from the 2004 issue of Phildar Irlandais, on my blog:

Phildar Sweater

Oohs and aahs followed, but many of us were intimidated by the thought of translating a pattern from French. But you know what? Together, and with a little help from our French counterparts, I'll bet we can do it! (Even if we are a little fumbly along the way)

Valette, who founded the French knitalong (or "tricotons ensemble"), named this sweater "Colchique," after a flower that blooms in autumn.

So, if you're feeling linguistically adventurous and love Colchique as much as I, join up. First, download the pattern (en francais!).

*****Then, to join, just leave a comment below with

(1) your name,
(2) your blog URL, and
(3) your e-mail address,

and I'll add you to the sidebar.*****

And don't forget to save the button at left to post on your blog!


Blogger katmeow said...

this looks like it will be quite a challenge...
especially for me, who knows nothing about the french language...
but i'll love to try it out!!!

10:51 PM  
Blogger illanna said...

Hi Jessica! Great choice for a knit! I just did some research that I figured I'd share. The Phildar Pure Laine 3.5 yarn that the pattern calls for has 119 yards per ball, at 50 grams per ball. It knits to 21 sts per inch. Added up, that is a total of 1309, 1428, 1547, 1666, and 1785 yards in order of the different sizes. I can't join yet, because I have a million projects on the needles, but I think if I can finish 2 or 3, I'd love to join!

10:56 PM  
Blogger Juniper said...

I have no idea how I'm going to make time to do this, but I will definitely do so as soon as possible. Meanwhile, I'll tag along and try my best to help out with my sad, limited French.

1:05 AM  
Anonymous Abby said...

I'm blogless, mais enthusiastique! I think I have the perfect yarn already lying around. Oh, and my French is rusty but used to be decent...

5:48 AM  
Blogger sylv said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6:15 AM  
Blogger laura said...

hi, i am a nonblogger but would love to join this knitalong. i am currenlty trying to decipher the pattern, and plan to knit it in elsbeth lavold silky tweed.

6:16 AM  
Anonymous Jessica said...

Hi there! Laura, Abby... I need your e-mail addresses in order to add you to the knitalong, so you will be able to post!


6:31 AM  
Anonymous Heather said...

This is fantastic!! I don't have a blog or url just my email. Is that ok?

This should be fun!! Any yarn suggestions. I see the comment by Illanna that says its 21 sts per inch?? really???that's a lot of stitches!!


6:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Thank you so much. I look forward to this project!

8:20 AM  
Blogger julia said...

Hi Jessica. I have a few projects on the needles at the moment, but I have the yarn for this lovely pattern so I'll begin as soon as possible. Why, oh why did I take Spanish, German and Russian and not French? I'll be needed lots of support on this one. The sweater is too lovely to pass up though.

Email: julia dot dumperth at gmail dot com

Thanks for taking this on! Julia

8:23 AM  
Anonymous Jess said...

Charissa - welcome! I need your e-mail address in order to add you to the knitalong. Thanks!

8:24 AM  
Blogger seal said...

I drooled over the picture but put it out of my mind for fear of the language barrier. But if there are people out there who can translate, I'm all over it. I pledged not to buy more yarn or start anything unplanned until I widdled down my stash a little. But maybe I can make an exception this time. I'll be a little behind the group, I suppose, but better late than never. I'd be curious to see what yarn you guys are using.


8:49 AM  
Anonymous Abby said...

Abby again - sorry, email is

Oh, and I was wondering... this is for a worsted weight yarn, and the gauge'll be 21-25 sts/4 in, depending on the st used, but on size 4(!) needles? I was perusing the french kal and saw some exclamations about this over there as well. Apparently size 4 needles do indeed produce something "joli mais extrèmement serré" (pretty but very tight), while size 5s create a too-loose gauge, and doesn't look at good. I suppose the size 4 thang is right, given that the photo makes the resultant fabric look pretty dense - that's part of its appeal.

Also, given that it calls for size 4s, I'm thinking of using my sweater-sized stash of Knitpicks elegance, which is DK, and maybe bumping my needles up to 5s. Any thoughts - do you think this 70% alpaca/30% silk yarn would have too much drape for a part-cables sweater?

Sorry for the novel here...

9:27 AM  
Anonymous Stephie99 said...

Bravo pour cette version anglophone de Colchique Ensemble ! If you have any questions with the pattern translation, I will be happy to help...
Did you know this great English-French knitting translation ?
It may answer a lot of your questions !

10:12 AM  
Anonymous amiee said...

hi. i want to join too. i know of a generic site at that may be of some use but the knitting content might confuse it. i will try it and post any results.

my email is
and my name is amiee

12:08 PM  
Blogger Procrastinatrix said...

Not a knitter, but let me know if you need translation help.

1:08 PM  
Blogger Julsey said...

AaAAh! I LOVE this...and many other Phildar patterns...but I don't speak a word of french. I'm in if someone else can translate it!


Thanks Jessica - I totally *heart* your blog, and your creativity!

1:17 PM  
Anonymous Whitney said...

Hi Jessica! I've been following your blog for a little while now and was so excited to hear about this, as I was recently given the magazine (I'm a linguist and have fun playing with things in other languages, so people are always giving me foreign magazines and books) and fell in love with this sweater! I'm not sure when I'll be able to start, because I've got a lot on my plate in terms of both knitting and grad school, but I hope I can contribute something. I don't know very much French but am pretty good at figuring things out language-wise, so hopefully with everyone else's help this pattern will be a fun puzzle to solve.

email: zigeunerweisenknits (at) gmail (dot) com

1:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

name: andrea
email: kittenmouse at gmail

7:26 PM  
Blogger Marji said...

I am so excited that you are starting an english version. I've been trying to follow the french one since you posted the link last week, but my french is tres petit and not up to the task. I even downloaded the pdf from the french site and have been playing with some of the translations (help!) I have a question on that too: don't the French also have laws about intellectual property?
now to figure out which yarn to use, hopefully something from my kingsize stash.
looking forward to it.

name: Marji
email: mlweaving at earthlink dot net

5:53 AM  
Anonymous Lara said...

I have been looking for a new and fabulous sweater pattern, and this is it. I am a non-blogger but would like to join. My name is Lara and my email is

8:41 AM  
Blogger knitting pinki said...


I saw the link in the stitch&bitch yahoo group yesterday, and tried to translate this using some of my favorite translation site. Lets just say, I'm soooo glad someone else is translating this.

However, I'd love to share two sites: (translate paragraphs at a time)

This should be fun, going to look for yarn now. Sooo excited. Yay!

11:08 AM  
Anonymous Katarina said...

Me too, me too! I absolutely adore this jumper and would love to join the knitaling!

Name: Katarina

You are so marvelous for doing this translation! Thank you ever so much!

6:39 AM  
Blogger C. Lindsay-Abaire said...

count me in! -- I am healing 2 broken wrists (but still knitting!)and have some time to take on this project. I'll need some yarn, though all of my stash is too bulky I fear. Any suggestions? Also thanks to illanna for calculating yardage. Hope I can contribute something to help pot others, though it probably won't be French. xo, C

10:42 AM  
Blogger C. Lindsay-Abaire said...

oh,and my name is Chris

10:43 AM  
Blogger laura said...

hi, i rather ingeniously neglected to inculde my email address when i made my previous attempt to join the knitalong. it is

4:10 PM  
Blogger Juniper said...

Oh right. E-mail address.

I am Juniper and my email is

I don't have a blog, but I could have you link to my SG journal (in which I far too frequently ramble on about my knitting) or my website, if that's okay.

12:25 AM  
Anonymous Susanne said...

I'm in!! I hada dream about this sweater and needing to knit it! I have had the pattern book for a while, but lacked the ability to translate it. Thank you for sharing!

3:36 PM  
Blogger Juniper said...

Okay, well, I sort of have a blog now.

11:57 PM  
Blogger Mia said...

I'm very much in!!! I have been planning on this project since april, and only have the pattern in dutch (which I don't speak at all). I am so excited that this KAL exists, and hope that I can join!
My blog,, is in Swedish, but when I start posting about Colchique it will be in English.

11:20 AM  
Blogger Mia said...

I forgot to include my email-adress:
See ya!

12:27 PM  
Anonymous Chris Q said...

I've been giving it some thought, and I'm going to give it a go. Probably in KnitPicks, merino style as others have suggested. I've been bored with my knitting lately, and since I don't know any french, this project will certainly put me on my toes.

Chris Q

5:39 AM  
Blogger Linster said...

I'm in!


10:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

lkmotter at

I'll try this once I figure out what yarn to use and get it. I might decide to make it for my sister or mother instead...I'm not sure about those ribs across my chest. It is gorgeous though!

1:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for hosting! I'm a non-blogger but am half-way through the back and am loving this pattern. I'm using wool-cotton on size 4's and am making the smallest size (my sister is tiny). My name is faith and my email is

10:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have some cashsoft 4 ply I'd love to use for this, but I'm wondering whether it will be too fine a yarn. (I'm a newbie at deviating from the yarn called for in patterns.) I also usually have to use needles a size down from those called for to get gauge. Is the 4 ply completely out of the question??? Thanks for any help!

1:51 PM  
Blogger Joy said...

Hi there,
i'll start this project once the yarn arrive~~My name is Joy and my blog is, email:
Thanks! =)

6:36 PM  
Blogger storyville said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

5:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi, my name is janie and my email is
I can't get the french pattern to work if possible could you email it to me, it my be its format i don't know. thankyou

3:06 PM  
Anonymous Prim said...

V. late to the party, but consider me in! Looking fwd to knitting this one and thank you for starting the KAL, Jessica!

1:09 AM  
Anonymous Prim said...

Forgot to add my

1:15 AM  
Anonymous Al said...


don't know when i will start, but i will!

12:25 AM  
Blogger tcknits said...

I would like to join the knit along if it's still in production. I've got a few balls of Wool of the Andes that I'm going to try to knit to gauge. A little of the cart before the horse I know. However, I am up for the adventure since the only French I speak is Wee. I'm a new blogger at My email address is

10:15 AM  
Blogger Margaret said...


9:59 PM  
Blogger Feeling Sheepish said...

I'd love to join this knit-a-long if it's still going.

9:54 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home