Genmou-Modine-Feature

Knitting with Genmou: Kate’s Modine Jumper

This is my Modine jumper knitted in Genmou from Daruma. I love the colourful blocks on the yoke which are knitted using a mosaic knitting technique. Mosaic knitting uses slip stitches which means you are able to create multi-colour rows even though you are only ever knitting with one colour at a time.

Genmou knitted modine jumper from the back
Fraser climbing in his Modine jumper knitted in Genmou

Project Info

PatternModine by Paula Pereira
Yarn: Genmou from Daruma
Size: Size 2 (age 4).
Modifications: The sleeves were too tight so I went back and knitted them again with half the number of decreases and about an inch shorter.

MODINE JUMPER PATTERN NOTES

SIZING

I’ll get my sizing notes out of the way first. I picked the wrong size. However, I do want to place some blame on the Modine pattern. Fraser is not yet 2 years old at the time of writing. He is average size, 50% percentile for weight, maybe slightly taller than average but not massively. So, I thought I was being sensible choosing the 2nd size which says to fit approximately age 4. I even checked Fraser’s chest measurement, 21.5 inches which would give him 1.75 inches of positive ease. That sounded like a fine idea.

This was until I’d finished the body and it’s really not very big. 1.75 inches of ease does fit and it looks fine, but it doesn’t look like it does in the sample photos and it is not going to last long so I was disappointed. It was then that I looked at their sizing description again and notice that they tell you the size the models are wearing. The models are aged 4 and 5 and are both wearing an age 8 jumper, with a sensible 4.75 and 5.75 inches of positive ease!

So, it is my own fault for not looking more closely at the numbers, or for not realising in general that 1.75 inches might not be enough positive ease for a child. But if the pattern was written for average sizes, then I don’t think enough ease is written into the pattern. If I had knitted him the age 2, it would have had no ease at all!

My only other sizing notes is that it is too short. I think Fraser might be slightly long in the body so I will take the blame for this one. I need to decide whether to go back and make it longer. It could really do with an extra inch or 2 inches so he can really bend and stretch (which he is wont to do) without showing too much waistband so I probably will.

Green Genmou jumper

PATTERN

With my sizing gripes out of the way I can write about how much I enjoyed the pattern. The yoke is knitted using a mosaic knitting technique which uses slip stitches to carry colours up the work. This means you get the look of a colourwork yoke knitted with multiple colours at once but you are only ever knitting with one colour at a time. This makes for a much quicker and less complicated knitting experience with, I think, a lovely outcome! I chose to knit the 4-colour version which creates a light and shadow effect giving an amazing depth to the work.  

The jumper is knitted top down, a simple construction which was easy to follow.

MODIFICATIONS

I knitted up one sleeve and tried it on Fraser. This showed me that the sleeves were going to be too tight. I took it back and knitted it again taking the straight section longer and then increased about half the number of stitches recommended. It is still quite tight but he can now get a long sleeve top underneath without too much trouble. I also made them about an inch shorted than the pattern and he still needs the ribbing rolled up.

The only other modification still to come will be to make is to make it longer. I am going to have to gear myself up to go back to it. I’m not great at going back to project but if I don’t do it soon, he will have outgrown it!

GENMOU YARN NOTES

As soon as the Gemnou arrived I knew it would be destined to be a baby jumper – if you can call a nearly 2-year-old a baby still, sob. There is some kind of natural instinct to wrap babies up in the softest materials possible, I guess to match their soft baby skin. Genmou is this kind of baby soft. To hold a ball feels like holding a cloud.

I spent half a knit night choosing colours, asking opinions, taking photos. I love Fraser in green so I wanted that as the base colour but there were so many good combinations of Genmou it was a really hard choice. In the end I went for 15 Green, 12 Pink, 16 Fawn and 5 Sea Glass, a fun, bright combination perfect for a little boy full of energy.  

The construction of Genmou is an interesting one. Two fine threads of merino wool are twisted around a single ply of carded wool. This unusual construction creates a subtle wavey finish and so wasn’t sure how that would knit up. The fabric when knitted is actually very smooth, and the small threads which are a slightly different colour create a lovely depth of colour.

I will be interested to see how the jumper wears. Softer yarns do have a tendency to bobble more easily so we will have to see how it will survive being rolled around in.

My gauge was spot on to match the pattern, which is always a relief. I used hardly any of the contrast colours. I was amazed by the numbers when I weighed my leftovers. I used 4g per contrast colour and I used 96g (just under 2 balls) of the main colour. Brooklyn Tweed is quite renowned for over egging their yarn requirements but I can see that this one was pretty close and if I do go back and add any length, I will most likely go into a third ball.

All in all, this was a lovely knit, the Genmou and the Modine pattern worked beautifully together. I love my colour choice and it has already had lots of compliments at playgroup.