Wool and the Gang Review: Julia Sweater
This Wool and the Gang kit review is of the Julia Sweater, an easy knit, slouchy sweater in moss stitch. It is made in their own brand of pima cotton known as “Shiny Happy Cotton” which is available in a huge range of colours.
As it is part of a kit, you can’t currently buy the pattern alone from WATG. However, you can buy it as a stand-alone pattern from Laughing Hens.
If you want to know a bit more about it before you invest I’ve written a review about my experience with the kit! Read on for the verdict…
Wool and the Gang occasionally have big sales, this is where I managed to pick the kit up, including needles for £47! This is an absolute steal, as normally the sweater retails at £73 (size and needle dependant).
If you’ve ever ordered a kit from Wool and the Gang before, then you know the drill. You have a knock on your door from the delivery man with a big box, full of your stash. The packaging is all plastic-free, and your project comes in its own large sturdy paper bag – perfect to keep your project in if you don’t have a dedicated space.
You can choose for the project to come with or without needles- though these 6.5mm are really lovely and smooth. It’ll come with the recommended number of balls of yarn for the size you selected, and a little booklet containing your pattern, a tapestry needle, and a label.
This is the first kit I have ordered which contains the Shiny Happy Cotton, 100% Peruvian Pima cotton. I purchased it in chalk yellow, and fell in love with it instantly- it is such a beautiful colour! The yarn feels so light, soft and luxurious.
It took a little while to get used to knitting with it and get my tension right, but after I did I really enjoyed working with it. For this, I really would recommend doing your tension squares (yes yes, another person nagging you to do them.) Play around with the yarn, to begin with, to really get a feel for it.
You even knit guilt-free as WATG specialise in earth-friendly yarns. The only negative I found is the yarn snags very easily on things like broken nails. This can be a pain when you have “worn” hands from spending your time working behind a bar.
The actual pattern is simple and easy. It is essentially knitting 2 large squares and 2 long rectangles, which all join together to make the sweater. However, be warned about working such a big piece in moss stitch.
It does take time!
Now, this was the first time I had worked in moss stitch. I wanted to know if I needed to start K or P on every row or every other row. Whatever I ended up Googling led me to do a 4-row pattern of K1, P1… P1, K1… P1, K1… K1, P1…
How overly difficult is that hey?
Having to keep count of which row I was on within this set of 4 did lead to some mistakes. The worst thing is I didn’t realise this was wrong until I saw my wonderful mum, who was baffled by what I was doing. This was after I had just finished the front and was halfway through my second sleeve!
I fell out of love with the project for a while after that and it took me a while to pick it back up. If WATG had simply stated when to start with a knit or purl, it would have saved me from my mistakes! Although, I do now love my quirky little stitch.
Now remember this kit is marked “easy” and not beginner- I would definitely recommend a different kit if this is your very first knitted project.
It took no time at all to sew the pieces up and the ends in. I really appreciated that about this piece. I get so nervous about sewing up my projects! It really does make or break your piece so if you’re unsure, I do recommend checking out their YouTube for tips on the invisible stitch.
I am usually a UK 14-16 in clothes (WATG Size 3) but sometimes find the “oversized” look drowns me out so I decided to go with Size 2- however it is a little tight, especially where the sleeves join. My advice would be to stick with your main clothes size and it should fit you just right.
I do love the way that WATG use different sized models for some kits, however, it would be great to have the representation of a variety of sizes for every kit.
I often find with WATG kits that the sleeves are too long on me (I’m only 5ft) so make sure you adjust for this if you’re like me. When you lay the piece flat it does look a bit blocky and rectangular, however, it sits well when on and a bit of wear will help budge it into shape.
A sweater I am in love with! From the luxurious soft cottony feel, to the beautiful pastel colour, this sweater is sure to make my summer essentials list!
Even though it is a little bit snug on the arms, the whole piece is very flattering. I found that it came up a little short for my personal preference, so I haven’t tucked under the bottom seem like it suggests.
The Final Verdict
This kit took me a very long time to complete as it is a moss stitch sweater (apart from the hem). I really should have taken this into consideration when purchasing the kit, oops!
The yarn is gorgeous, and I am desperate to get my hands on some more. It’s perfect for the summer as it is so lightweight and comes in so many shades. I managed to bag this kit at 40% off, which I think made it far more affordable for me.
I am so happy with my final product; it has an everyday feel to it compared to some of the chunky knits I have had from WATG. I would pair this with a vest, jeans and Birkenstocks for those warm summer evenings.
The best part of it all? It was made unique, by me.
If there is anything else you would like to know about this sweater, or about this project, please let me know in the comments below! I am so happy that I have finally found some motivation and finished one of my lock-down projects.
As always, thank you for reading and make sure to follow my Instagram to stay up to date with my latest knitting projects.
Until next time… Em x