Knits Fall 2009 Gallery: Freyja Sweater


FALL 2009



Freyja Sweater

by Courtney Kelley

from Interweave Knits Fall 2009

Sweater Shown is 34 inches modeled
with zero ease

Courtney Kelley's Freyja Sweater sets Bohus-inspired colorwork elements into the yoke of a seamless sweater. Fitting a circular-yoke sweater can be tricky: for a handy guide for plus-size knitters and a detailed discussion of fit for all sizes, check out Lisa Shroyer's adventures in upsizing the pullover on the Inside Knits blog tomorrow.  

Changing the colors of the body or yoke accents can change the look of the entire sweater. In its bones, the Freyja Sweater is classic, easy to wear, and almost universally flattering.


Interweave Gallery Gals


Toni says: This stunning sweater is hands down my favorite from the fall 2009 issue. Although I’m generally a jeans and t-shirt kind of gal, this would also be fabulous when paired with a skirt and boots. The texture of the yarn is heavenly, and I loved the colors. The length of this sweater ends perfectly at mid-hip, and the gentle shaping works well on my fairly straight figure while the simple colorwork draws attention to my face.

Height: 5’ 5 ½”
Bust 35”
Underbust: 31”
Waist: 29”
Hip: 37”
Torso: 15”

Brenda says:
This is a beautiful sweater and simply sumptuous with the alpaca yarn. Unlike some of my sweaters, the softness of the yarn allows this to be a worn-alone sweater. The fit on this sweater is perfect.

I'd probably choose a different color combination, though, because these colors are very light for my skin color; plus I tend to wear brighter colors. 

Height: 5' 5"
Bust: 33 ¾"
Underbust: 29 ½"
Waist: 27 ¼"
Hip: 37 ¼"
Torso: 16"

Kathleen’s Fit Notes

This one goes on the “make it!” list for me. I love the Bohus look and this sweater is a wonderful example. Both Toni and Brenda look great in this sweater, though I agree with Brenda that her coloring would really benefit from brighter colors. Toni’s peaches-and-cream really shines with
this colorway!

The Freyja fits Brenda perfectly, as her bust measurement is close to the model’s bust measurement. Toni’s just a bit over an inch larger than Brenda in the bust, but I think a size 36 would be better for her—roomier and a bit longer in sleeves, too.

Don't forget to check the Inside Knits blog tomorrow for some upsizing tips from Lisa Shroyer!

Some links you  might find helpful:

Measuring yourself and your clothing

About positive and negative ease

Measuring tutorial with photos

What do you think? Leave your thoughts in the comments!

Other Things You May Like to Check Out:


Knitting Patterns, Sweaters
Kathleen Cubley

About Kathleen Cubley

Hello daily knitters! I'm the editor of Knitting Daily. I've been obsessed with knitting for about ten years now and my favorite projects are sweaters. I like the occasional smaller project, but there's nothing like yards of stockinette with a well-placed cable or a subtle stitch pattern here and there. I crochet a bit now and then—especially when I need to produce a baby blanket in time for the baby shower. I've been in publishing for 20 years and I'm finally exactly where I want to be: at the crossroads of knitting and communication. I live in Spokane, Washington and when I'm not knitting I enjoy gardening, snuggling with my dogs, swimming, reading, and playing in the snow in the winter. But, really, I'm pretty much always knitting!

39 thoughts on “Knits Fall 2009 Gallery: Freyja Sweater

  1. Not enough models to really consider this a gallery at all… what happened to the other girls? But Toni and Brenda – you both look so wonderful in this sweater!! Lovely!

  2. What about some plus-sized models?  Aren’t there any chunky chicks at Interweave!?  I love that so many of your patterns are sized up, but it would be really great to see some of the styles on larger women!

  3. again, i’m sorry, but there is no diversity on model size here.  according to measurements, no one you’ve shown is over a size eight.  might as well just have a shot of bertha.  i’m really disappointed in this gallery.

  4. I would only consider this for a young girl. This is not a style suited to anyone but children, or men with disproportionately narrow shoulders, and adding a fitted body only compounds the fashion faux pas created by the colourwork at the yoke. Even the traditional Bohus knitters had the good design sense to limit their colourwork to fairly boxy garments, with tight wrists and waists, thus compensating for the visual enlargement caused by their trademark embellished yokes. And like others, I’m disappointed in the lack of diversity in the models of these galleries – we all have different fitting issues, my being a fairly large bust (42″) topping smaller waist (28″) and hips (36″). The former “real world” models gave me a visual clue to work from. But back to this pattern: even with my measurements, I would be uncomfortable wearing something that so glaringly drew attention to my bust. I would invariably cause people to focus on my chest rather than my entire ensemble. 

  5. This sweater is a perfect fit for Brenda and too too short on Toni. I like the style, but the colors are beyond insipid. The oatmeal is fine, but the pastels are bleah-so-what, which led me to flip right past in the mag. I don’t know that I’d make it — but maybe with punched up color as a weekend project…..

  6. This is my favorite sweater in the gallery!  

    The sweater is very pretty on Toni.  Brenda looks great in the sweater also, but if she feels it would be more flattering with vibrant colors, maybe she could just change the color of the yarn in the yoke pattern.


  7. This is a lovely sweater.  I heartily disagree with McKennaO — children aren’t the only ones who look good in this style.  The yoke draws attention to the face — not the bust.  If you have a pretty face that you would like to highlight, then WEAR this!!  This is such a casual “classic”.  One more thing…why would anyone even mention the colors?  We are all KNITTERS.  We can change the colors to be anything we want, so what’s the problem???

  8. One of my two least favourite designs in the current issue (the other being Rosamund’s Cardigan, which you also showcase in this gallery).  I personally like designs with a bit more edge or innovation, and with the little amount of free time for knitting I have, something this "been there, seen that" would not be where I would choose to spend my knitting minutes.  I agree with the commentator below — showing designs on women with different body types would be most appreciated.

  9. We really need to see some size variation in ALL of the galleries. The average size of an American woman is 5’4″ and a size 14. That’s not my size (I’m taller & a size 14), but it is a lot closer to most of us than these lovely, slim ladies. My bra size is a double-D – how will this look on me? What about  hips? I really loved the galleries when they had more variation in sizes. From reading other comments, that is what we want. Is there some reason we aren’t getting it?

  10. First of all I want to say thank you, Knitting Daily, so very much for doing the galleries.  Thanks to the mag., the models, the photographers, Sandi and Kathleen….  I always enjoy looking at the galleries.  I have found myself quite surprised before by sweaters that I passed by in the mag but LOVED the way they looked on a model who was about my size.  Quite useful, they can be.  However, I have to agree about the diversity is size and shape being lacking in this gallery.  I agree with another commenter who said that color is something we can all change as knitters so I’m not too fussed about seeing sweaters on different hair and skin tones, but different sizes and shapes get me quite excited.  And I have to admit that I have not yet looked at the other galleries already posted from this IK issue.  Maybe there is more diversity there.  If not, I do miss it. 

    Regarding this particular sweater, it looks awesome on Toni.  (That seems to happen a lot, doesn’t it?)  The fit is perfect on Brenda, but I agree she might want to make a different color scheme.  And while I will say that this sweater is one I wasn’t so very interested in flipping through the mag, I am still glad to see it in the gallery.  There are always some patterns that catch my eye and some that aren’t my style, but I do recognize that they don’t publish IK just for me.  🙂  And as I said above, seeing some sweaters here that weren’t necessarily on my radar has often changed my mind about them.  I’m not sure about this time…. maybe.  It’s pretty, just probably not the right one for me.

    PS.  Toni, I hope you get to take one of those perfect for you sweaters home one of these days.

  11. Although the style is dated, it is pretty on both models because they have square shoulders. I think it would be very nice in a dark color like plum with bright jewel tone colors in the yoke.  An FYI to those with sloping shoulders like mine, my experience is that it will probably not be flattering.

  12. I hope everyone reads Lisa Shroyer’s great blog post about how she modified the pattern a bit to fit a larger bust.  Her version, in brighter jewel tones is a real beauty.  And, the pattern in the magazine is sized up to a 50″ bust circumference, which is great! 

    It looks great on you ladies!  Thanks for the gallery. 

  13. I have to say that I’ve found this set of gallery photos (all 4 sweaters) very disappointing, including the comments suggesting that no one should mention the lack of diversity of shape in the models. No one is criticizing the women in the photos, who all seem like lovely people, and who I think are quite brave to put themselves out there in this way.

    But, to be honest, just showing me the garments on additional model-sized people *isn’t* helpful to me, because I’ve already seen them on model-sized people. And if IP isn’t interested in any comments other than “oooh, I love it” then they should discontinue the comments section of the galleries.

    Although, I agree that if I don’t like the galleries, I can just stop viewing them. Which is probably the best plan for me after this one anyway, since I just find it frustrating. Shame, cause I really used to look forward to them.

  14. This sweater has a lot of possibilities.    The Fair Isle part draws ones eyes up and highligts the face of the wearer.    It can be made as flashy or as subdued as the knitter wants.    Darker colors in the body of the garment would be slenderizing and the colorful treatment around the shoulders and neck would draw attention away from and more generous middle.

  15. I love this style of sweater! It makes my narrow shoulders look wider. Plus when I had no boobs, it drew the eye up, and now that they’re a bit big, it still draws the eye up! Very cute!

  16. While I understand the desire for Knitting Gallery models in varying sizes, as I recall, Sandy explained in earlier postings that Interweave has only the sample sweater to work with for the photos.  When she tried fitting the sample sweater on larger models, there was lots of feedback about how useless that was, given that the sweater couldn’t drape correctly.  Sure, it would be great if Interweave could hire knitters to make  five different sizes of each sweater for the Gallery.  However, in that instance,  perhaps I wouldn’t be able to afford the magazine!  And, judging from the comments in the Gallery, it appears that the majority has a pretty good sense of what style, line, drape, and color works for them – would showing the sweater in a larger size really change your opinion of  this sweater?

    I have been fascinated viewing the sweaters on “regular” people whose real jobs do not include modeling.  It has been amazing to see the difference lighting, posing, backgrounds, etc. make in selling a sweater.  The Knitting Galleries have helped me to avoid falling for a sweater that looks good in the picture, but I know won’t work for me in real life.

    Happy Knitting!



  17. Thank you so much for the galleries!  Most of the posters just don’t get it that there is only ONE sweater to try on.  Do you really want to see a size 18 gal poured into a size s/m sweater?  Unless larger samples are knitted, you are not going to see larger models.  I personally LOVE the galleries!  Keep up the good work!  I also agree that there are many times I would have passed on a sweater in the mag only to see how lovely it is on the gallery gals.  I loved the latest issue…very exciting, and love this sweater!


  18. i like this better on both brenda and toni than on the magazine model.  it often seems to me that when fitted sweaters are photographed for the magazine, the model’s wide shoulders pull and the upper sleeves look too tight, and as if the armhole was cutting up too high.  as for the problem with modeling the only sample sweater, maybe the galleries could be amended afterward to add photos of larger sizes on the knitters who knit them? 

  19. I agree the sweater looks better on Toni & Brenda than on the model.  I’ve always thought the IK models themselves were at least alot more “real” looking that in regular magazines.  I think the galleries are great and we have to take them for what they’re worth.  I don’t normally care for this look, but it is cute on the models.  I also don’t have alot of knitting time anymore, so I choose my projects more carefully. 

    Everyone has a right to their opinion, but some comments are so silly.  It is still up to the knitter to tweak the design or skip it altogether.  I find the comments about how different people will tweak the design for their body type to be very helpful, so keep those coming, fellow knitters! Its great when we can learn not only from IK but from each other.  I personally have a long torso and am bottom-heavy, so I usually have to add to the length of most sweaters while still possibly tweaking the width at the bottom so I don’t have hip area be too tight. 

    Thanks to IK and the other posters for offering up good advice!

  20. Seems universally flattering (if two models who are virtually identical can be considered universal), a good everyday sweater. Not a fan of that blah colorway though. And for crying out loud – the intro actually refers to fitting a plus-sized model, but once again we don’t see one! Get a clue IK!

  21. Hi All!

    Take a look at Lisa Shroyer’s blog about making this sweater in a larger size: The Freyja Sweater: A Fit for All Women. There are some lovely photos if Lisa in her sweater–she made a 44″-inch bust and did several interesting modifications. Lisa also chose a fab amethyst for her main color, so you can see another colorway, too.


  22. This is a beautiful sweater!  More items like this, please, that can look good on a variety of ages and body types and are easy to “tweak” for oneself!  Excellent choice.


  23. This was a gallery of size and shape comparison?  The bust measurements are within 1 1/2″ of each other and they’re 1/2″ of each other in height.   It should be called what it is – two average height, slender,  women wearing the same sweater design.   At least the original model looks to be more than an A cup. 

  24. Thanks Kathleen for sharing the link to Lisa Shroyers sweater. While I am not a plus size model , Lisa’s site showed me that this sweater really looks good on all body types. I found it even more flattering on her than Toni and Brenda. Her colour choices were wonderful. Seems to me that this pattern can be customized fairly easily with colour and sizing issues. Beautiful!!!


  25. I, too, am a plus size and always long for pictures of plus-sized models in these great patterns. Please consider adding photos that help us know what the larger sizes look like when finished.

  26.   I did not like this sweater as pictured on the model for the magazine–something about the way it emphasizes her bust or maybe it was even the color.  I would not have considered making it.   However, seeing it on your real women I have a very different opinion and really like it.  Glad I took a look at the gallaries (which are always a favorite part of your web site for me).  I would like to see what this would look like in brighter colors as that would probably be my choice too.

    Peggy, S Calif 

  27. These ladies look lovely! That said, this really contrary to what I thought the point of the gallery was: to see the same sweater on a few (at least 3 or 4) different ladies and then discuss what we would change about the pattern to suit our own shapes. The brave and kind models Toni and Brenda are so close in measurement to each other and the original model, it just isn’t useful unless you show a few others. Some commenters have said that we should keep in mind that the sample sweater is just one size… but that didn’t stop the other previous galleries! We had girls who were up to a 36 or 38-40 bust still wearing them and often times they looked very good! We also had *smaller* sized women… bigger and smaller hips, busts, etc. You know, “apples”, “pears”, long-waisted, short-waisted, etc. Let’s not forget that there was a LOT of useful dialog and tips coming from those galleries from last year. They were a 10 out of 10 for me almost always, thinking about what I learned. I’m 5’10 and a size 18 myself. I don’t need to see a woman as large as I am modeling these… but to have such a small selection of “real world” gals (is it really a “selection” when there are only 2?) and ones that have NEARLY IDENTICAL measurements to each other and the original model is not that helpful (and somehow – can’t quite explain it – a bummer). Sorry! Thanks again, though, Brenda and Toni – we’re not saying we don’t want to see YOU lovely gals modeling… just MORE lovely gals.

  28. It is really nice to see citical comments now being accepted, and discussed in this forum.      That is how we improve and develop. (the one & only comment I have ever previously posted, in which I said I didnt like the garment was followed by 20 nasty put downs of my quite reasonable comments)     However, I do quite like this sweater, it is just not for me as the neck is too low for such a warm knit.  I do find that the circular yoke does not always sit well, and the back neck is often too low for comfort.    The pattern is very nice, and I do love the flattering waist shaping, as my size is  small and waisty!

    Please keep these forums going and yes, please more diversity in the ‘real everyday’ models.


  29. I am addressing this to Amanda@4:  Don’t you read INTERWEAVE publications much?  They have models in all shapes and sizes – which is one reason I subscribe to this magazine!  Yes, they have slim models as well, but I have seen plenty of plus-sized models. 

  30. Honestly, how does showing two models of about the same size help your readers decide if the pattern is good for them?   Women come in all sizes.  Please use some models to reflect that. 

  31. As always the galleries are great. But for this to really work we have to see the garments on women with different body types and heights. There just isn’t much difference between these two models.