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Lacy Red Bolero knit pattern

I’ve been trying to get rid of yarn in my stash this year. I came across these two red yarns that look similar but are slightly different. I didn’t have enough of one yarn for a scarf, and while I had enough of the second yarn for a scarf, I have TONS of scarves.

So I decided to use both yarns to make a lacy bolero that I can wear over tank tops to make them into T-shirts (it’s still a little chilly here in California, not quite tank top weather).

I wrote down the pattern here. I based it off of the Anthropologie-Inspired Capelet pattern by Julia Allen.

This is a good pattern to use if you have between 250-300 yards of a worsted/Aran weight yarn, or between 150-200 yards of a worsted/Aran weight yarn and about 90-100 yards of another yarn to use for the ribbing and edging. I think this might look really good with a contrasting color for the ribbing.

The yarns I used were a wool worsted/Aran weight (I’m not sure since I got it when my mom cleaned out a friend’s house for her, but I think it was a Zaol yarn since the colors match exactly) and Zaol Canon (Aran weight). I used about 164 yards of worsted weight yarn and 86 yards of Canon (Aran weight).

This stretches a lot, and it was made to fit me at a 38” bust, 13.5” upper arm circumference.
Unstretched, the measurements are:
Back: 12.5” wide
Front panels: each 5.5” wide
Arm: 10” circumference
Length from neck to bottom ribbing: 11”
(Unstretched, the lace pattern is all bunched up.)
You can increase or decrease the size by changing the number of pattern repeats in each section.

Needle: US 9 (5.5 mm)
Gauge: Honestly, this stitch pattern is super stretchy so I couldn’t get a consistent gauge number. In the Aran weight yarn, k2 p2 ribbing was 4 stitches per inch.

In worsted yarn, CO 52 stitches using provisional cast on (on waste yarn) since you will be picking up stitches later for ribbing (using Canon/Aran weight yarn).

To increase the size, you could simply add repeats of the pattern stitches (within parenthesis below) in each section of the set up rows.

Set up rows:
Row 1:
Left front: k1, (YO, ssk, k2,) YO, ssk p1, k1, place marker,
Left arm: p1, (YO, ssk, k2,) YO, ssk p1, k1, place marker,
Back: p1, (YO, ssk, k2) 3 times, YO ssk p1 k1, place marker,
Right arm: p1, (YO, ssk, k2,) YO ssk p1 k1, place marker,
Right front: p1, (YO, ssk, k2,) YO ssk k1.

Row 2:
Right front: p3, (YO, p2tog, p2,) k1, sm,
Right arm: p1, k1, p2, (YO p2tog p2,) k1, sm,
Back: p1, k1, p2, (YO p2tog p2) 3 times, k1, sm,
Left arm: p1, k1, p2, (YO p2tog p2,) k1, sm,
Left front: p1, k1, p2, (YO p2tog p2,) p1

Then begin pattern increases:

Row 1:
Left front: k1, (YO, ssk, k2) until 4 stitches before marker, YO, ssk, kfb, k1, sm;
Left arm, back, Right arm: [purl into front and knit into back of one stitch, (YO, ssk, k2) until 4 stitches before marker, YO, ssk, kfb, k1, sm,] 3 times;
Right front: purl into front and knit into back of one stitch, (YO ssk k2) until 3 stitches to end, YO ssk, k1.

Row 2:
Right front: p1, p2, (YO p2tog, p2) to 2 sts before marker, p1, k1, sm,
Right arm, back, Left arm: [p1, k1, p3, (YO p2tog, p2) to 2 sts before marker, p1, k1, sm,] 3 times;
Left front: p1, k1, p3, (YO p2tog, p2) to 1 st before end, p1.

Row 3:
Left front: k1, (YO, ssk, k2) until 5 stitches before marker, YO, ssk, k1, kfb, k1, sm;
Left arm, back, Right arm: [purl into front and knit into back of one stitch, k1, (YO, ssk, k2) until 5 stitches before marker, YO, ssk, k1, kfb, k1, sm] 3 times;
Right front: purl into front and knit into back of one stitch, k1, (YO ssk k2) until 3 stitches to end, YO ssk, k1.

Row 4:
Right front: p1, p2, (YO p2tog, p2) to 3 sts before marker, YO p2tog, k1, sm,
Right arm, back, Left arm: [p1, k1, (YO p2tog, p2) to 3 sts before marker, YO p2tog, k1, sm,] 3 times;
Left front: p1, k1, (YO p2tog, p2) to 1 st before end, p1.

Row 5:
Left front: k1, (YO, ssk, k2) until 2 stitches before marker, kfb, k1, sm;
Left arm, back, Right arm: [purl into front and knit into back of one stitch, k2, (YO, ssk, k2) until 2 stitches before marker, kfb, k1, sm] 3 times;
Right front: purl into front and knit into back of one stitch, k2, (YO ssk k2) until 3 stitches to end, YO ssk, k1.

Row 6:
Right front: p1, p2, (YO p2tog, p2) to 4 sts before marker, YO p2tog, p1, k1, sm,
Right arm, back, Left arm: [p1, k1, p1, (YO p2tog, p2) to 4 sts before marker, YO p2tog, p1, k1, sm] 3 times;
Left front: p1, k1, p1 (YO p2tog, p2) to 1 st before end, p1.

Row 7:
Left front: k1, (YO, ssk, k2) until 3 stitches before marker, k1, kfb, k1, sm;
Left arm, back, Right arm: [purl into front and knit into back of one stitch, k3, (YO, ssk, k2) until 3 stitches before marker, k1, kfb, k1, sm] 3 times;
Right front: purl into front and knit into back of one stitch, k3, (YO ssk k2) until 3 stitches to end, YO ssk, k1.

Row 8:
Right front: p1, p2, (YO p2tog, p2) to 1 st before marker, k1, sm;
Right arm, back, Left arm: [p1, k1, p2, (YO p2tog, p2) to 1 st before marker, k1, sm] 3 times;
Left front: p1, k1, p2 (YO p2tog, p2) to 1 st before end, p1.

Repeat rows 1-8 until sleeve section is circumference of arm), in my case, 12". End with a WS row. I made it easy on myself and ended after row 8.

Knit in pattern (without increases at marker, no kfb or purl/knit into one stitch) to first marker (sleeve), put sleeve stitches on scrap yarn, knit in pattern (without increases) across back to second marker (sleeve), put sleeve stitches on scrap yarn, knit in pattern (without increases) to end.

Pattern without increases for as long as you like or until worsted weight yarn is used up, end after WS row. In my case, another 14 rows. You could knit only another 4 rows in pattern and make a super short bolero, or you could go even longer.

My bolero ended up being 11” from neck band to bottom band. The ribbing was 1 inch at neckband and bottom band, so the patterned portion was 9” long from provisional cast on to when I started the ribbing for the bottom band. For me, 11” was a little short, I probably would have liked it to be around 13”, but I ran out of worsted yarn at 9”.

Switch to Canon (Aran weight yarn) for ribbing on bottom band. If you’re not using a separate yarn for the ribbing, you can just continue with your yarn.

You will be picking up stitches on the ribbing for the front edges. You don’t need to, but I wanted an extra selvedge stitch at each end for when I pick up stitches fro the front edge ribbing. I wanted to begin and end with k3 (k2 plus 1 stitch selvedge), then do p2 k2 rib for the rest of the bottom band, so I wanted to make sure the total stitches I had was a multiple of 4. I ended up adding 2 stitches for a total of 100 stitches (you might have a different number if you don’t do the same number of rows as I did). k3, then p2 k2 rib until last 5 stitches, p2, k3.

Do ribbing for one inch, then bind off loosely using Knit Lace Bind Off (through the back loop variation)--k2, transfer stitches back to left needle and k2tog through the back loop, then ** k (or purl) next stitch, transfer stitches back to left needle and k2tog through the back loop. Repeat from ** to the end.

Pick up stitches along right front edge. You are going to pick up stitches for neckband, so you may want k3 stitches near the neck band (k2 plus 1 stitch selvedge), and k2 stitches at the bottom end. You will be picking stitches that are a multiple of 4 + 3. With RS facing, I picked up 39 stitches total (you might have a different number if you don’t do the same number of rows as I did). Then did ribbing:
WS: p3, (k2 p2) to the end.
RS: (k2 p2) to the last 3 stitches, k3.
Do ribbing for one inch, then bind off using standard bind off (not Knit Lace Bind Off as for bottom band).

Repeat along left front edge.

Take neckband stitches off of waste yarn. You will pick up stitches along the front bands also so the neckband ribbing will go all around the top. If you want to start and end with k2, you need a total number of stitches that are a multiple of 4 + 2. With RS facing, pick up a total of 62 stitches (you may have a different number if you started with a different cast on number of stitches). Do k2 p2 ribbing for one inch, then bind off using standard bind off (not Knit Lace Bind Off as for bottom band).

For the sleeves, pick up the stitches from the waste yarn, and make sure you have a multiple of 4 stitches. I picked up a few extra stitches from the armpit to make the join nicer and ended up with 44 stitches in the round (you may have a different number depending on your sleeve circumference, or if you are knitting flat and then seaming the ribbing). Do k2 p2 rib for 1 inch, then bind off using Knit Lace Bind Off.

The bolero stretches a LOT and is not meant to button in front, but you can add buttonholes or toggle loops if you want. You can also increase the number of stitches for the left and right front segments to allow them to cover your front.

If you make this, please be sure to message me on Ravelry and let me know how it turned out!

If you like romance novels, please check out my list of free short stories, novellas, and novels available on my blog! I write Christian contemporary romance and romantic suspense as Camy Tang, and Christian Regency romance as Camille Elliot. Click here to knit the antique scarf pattern from my Regency romance novel, The Spinster's Christmas.

Comments

  1. I like this. Your bolero is really pretty.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I really liked this. I, too, am always looking for ways to use up leftover yarn. Thank you for your generosity in making this a free pattern. It is always appreciated!
    KnitAweigh
    Ravelry

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No problem! I created this pattern because when I did a Ravelry search, I couldn't find what I wanted, not with the limited yardage of the yarns I wanted to use. So I figured, if I needed something like this, then other people might, too!

      Delete
  3. pretty nice blog, following :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! I don't really post that often, though, I'm more active on Facebook and Twitter.

      Delete

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