Pan Am Jacket

Pan Am Jacket
Ashley Rao

Cropped, trapeze-style cardigan with double-breasted front and dramatic texture.

Enlarged Charts (corrected 12/12/11):

Finished Size 33½ (37½, 40, 44¾, 50½)" bust circumference, buttoned. Cardigan shown measures 33½", modeled with slight ease.
Yarn Classic Elite Yarns Mountaintop Collection Crestone (100% wool; 100 yd [91 m]/1¾ oz [50 g]): #5103 smoke, 14 (16, 17, 19, 22) skeins.
Needles Body and Sleeves—Size 6 (4 mm): two 40" and one 12" circular (cir). Sleeve cuff facing—Size 4 (3.5 mm): 12" cir. Adjust needle size if necessary to obtain the correct gauge.
Notions Ten markers (m); two stitch holders; tapestry needle; two 1⅛" buttons.
Gauge 20 sts and 24 rows = 4" in Chevron patt on larger needles.
CORRECTION: Shaping Chart: Size 44 3/4" (Green)Raglan: "Every 2nd row through row 21, then every 4th row once (row 25), every other row twice (rows 27 and 29), and every 4th row alternating with every 2nd row through row 65.

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22 thoughts on “Pan Am Jacket

  1. It looks, to me, that there are still errors for size 44 3/4″ on the corrected charts.  Row  27 doesn’t show the inc every 4th row, then 2nd row as the corrections say, starting on row 21. 

  2. I pride myself on being a skilled knitter.  I can follow any pattern.  Yet this one has driven me crazy.  I finally have gotten to the border with the buttonhole.  I still haven’t gotten the picture of how this closure really works.  Perhaps if there was a photograph showing right and left sides of the front open then the layout could be deduced. No way should this pattern be listed as “intermediate”.  The instructions for starting the body were mind boggling.

  3. Elaine,

    I’ve read the pattern over before starting, trying to figure it out.  Can you help?  I’m confused about when the shaping chart comes into play.  If you are able to provide a more thorough explanation, it would be appreciated

    Thank you,


  4. I read thru the comments on Ravelry – focusing on those who had finished the garment. It appears that the beginning is the real challenge. Now to study the pattern and the other information. Then to begin!


  5. The shaping correction is vital—try the sweater on as soon as you create the armhole. I was really glad I did! I had to add 2 inches to the sleeve (12 stitches–I did it in the form of a grommet because I REFUSED to start over!)

    Despite that, this is one of the finest sweaters I have ever made–

    Blessings, Kathy (SkyBlueKayak on Ravelry and twitter)


  6. Thanks, Kathleen, for doing the PanAm KAL—I have been wanting to do this cardigan from the time I saw it in my Interweave Knits W2011—it looks like it is going to be complicated and I am so glad I won’t have to do it alone! Thanks for the larger versions of the charts—that will help. I am choosing a sport weight Saxon wool yarn from Catskill Merino Sheep Farm in New York, color is a smokey blue (no name). The wool is labeled as a sport weight, but feels more medium than that—will know for sure when I swatch.


  7. I am excited to do the Pan Am KAL.  I bought some Berroco Vintage Worsted today as a sub for the Classic Elite yarn.  I have knit with the Berroco before and find it a nice price range, especially when I am trying something new!  I have skimmed the pattern and plan to really go over it today.

  8. I am planning to write out the instructions in my knitting notebook so I can check off each row as I knit it.  It may be an anal way to approach it but it does work for me as I make fewer mistakes and don’t “forget” where I am in the pattern.  I am therefore pleased with the timeline for doing the various segments of the project because this will be slow going for me.  I have never before undertaken such a complex project and I really appreciate all the comments made by others doing the KAL.  I was wanting to review some of them today before attempting to swatch the chevron pattern having done only the Roman Rib pattern for my first swatch but I can’t seem to locate the previous posts.  Any suggestions for finding the string of posts?

  9. I love this sweater and have started it but I don’t understand how to start it! I cast on 70 stitches but the stitche count and the first row stitches don’t match up. Help!

  10. I started the Pan Am jacket before my lovely sister in law let me know it was the latest project. I have just resurrected my spinning wheel after setting it aside about 25 years ago, so the chevron pattern seemed a perfect way to accommodate the rather interesting yarn I have been creating. I did find getting started a bit challenging and sleeping on it before beginning was a great help. After reading through I decided to ignore the written shaping chart and just work off the graphs. Although it sounds a bit time consuming I have been ruling a line along each numbered row and noting to the side if there is an increase. The larger charts (thank you!) make it much easier to see and noting the increase may not be necessary. Stitch markers are a must, you will drive yourself insane in the early stages without them. Once you are underway the chevron pattern is quite easy to follow from your previous rows. If you want to try it out before you start just mark off a section of one of the graphs a few stitches more than the pattern (say 25) and follow the graph for more than 16 rows. I too found the number of cast on stitches didn’t work so I just made the first and last stitches the selvedge and then just followed the pattern. I am a jewellery maker as well as a knitter so I plan to make a unique sterling silver button to put the finishing touches to the jacket. Good luck everyone I looking forward to following your progress.

  11. I appreciate the corrected charts as it means I can begin right away and not have to knock myself out to find my issue in “THE BIN”.  For those who haven’t heard about THE BIN, I moved, everything went into storage with someone else doing the unloading and prioritizing what went to the back (my life, my fibre work and tools)and what was placed up front (my kitchen stuff, I’m not much of a cook; salads, sandwiches, camping plates and utensils, the microwave, coffee pot, crock pot and dye pot are really what I use except at holidays [when I cook at my brother’s house in his kitchen] and these items traveled with me.).  THE BIN is 25’DX10’WX10’H and is packed full.

    My spinning wheel travelled with me along with a fleece and I bought another one in May, so I’m spinning my yarn for this project.  This is a life and mind saver.  Thank you so much,



  12. I hate seaming, and I hate how long sleeves always seem to take, so, I’ve decided to do my usual method of working everything together as one piece (makes trying it on as you go along a lot easier too).  I’m very glad I finished a big chunk of the spinning over the weekend, because it’s raining torrentially and the temp has dropped a lot from last week, which means that I can’t scour any of this year’s fleece today and my wheel will want to fight me with each turn.  I’ve learned the hard way that you should only start fights if you have half a chance of winning.  If it’s certain that you won’t win, compromise or do something else that doesn’t waste your time, energy or mental health.  Happily the yarn doesn’t seem to mind the weather at all.  Liam got the long double-pointed needles done for me and the oil is making them glide beautifully.  Liam is quite justifiably proud of himself, as am I.  Liam will get the next sweater.

    Pictures of the wool in progress are coming.  I just have to borrow the right cord to get them from the camera to the computer.  I’m blessed to have a neice who is very computer savvy, she got her degree in web design.  She gets the next jacket (after Liam’s sweater).

    I’ve got to get stitching,


  13. I’m planning to use Bernat Lana (merino) in a light grayish blue.  I bought this on sale years ago and am glad to have found a good use for it, finally.  I’m starting my swatching one needle size down, since my knitting always tends to be loose.

  14. I agree that the beginning is a challenge. The chart doesn’t align well with written instructions in some cases, so I am thinking of just going with the chart.  I have some specific questions (and comments) and hope someone in the KAL will help.

    I did receive my yarn today and knit a swatch – plus knitted one a few days ago just to get the hang of the pattern.  Yikes. Not sure it helps

    1. notes say selvedge stitches and M1 increases are included [WHERE] but do not show on the chart. Hum. Does this mean they are included in the total number of stitches on the chart and just not identified beyond the pattern? This does seem to change for selvedges on the front edge. I guess they mean CENTER FRONT edge?

    2. Is the first stitch of every row slipped?

    3. If 2 is Yes is it slipped purlwise always, or does it depend on pattern?

    4. Does every other row mean the same as every 2nd row?

    5. Front Neck Increases: on the shaping chart notes does this mean (RS) Sl 1, M1, work to last stitch [IN THE ROW?] etc – ?

    4.5: I am trying to match up numbers for total stitches at row 29 (since that is where it gives them). 

    Perhaps some of the confusion occurs when I try to match up the charts with the shaping chart notes. The raglan increases take in one or more (2 on sleeves) edge of every piece, so trying to count total stitches on various rows is hard (unless they are already on your needles). I was trying to chart it out better because I am going blind – even with the larger chart. Actually I was trying to chart out the increases on the chart for each piece and see if they added up to the total count provided for row 29.

    I wish knitting patterns were more precise – as for example the charts listed center front/ center back and perhaps top and bottom!  Obviously I have a lot of learning to do on this one. Also more frequent row counts would be a great help.


    Thanks in advance!  I’m torn between sobbing because this is so frustrating or just sleeping on it and hoping it becomes more clear.

  15. I just bought my yarn on Friday at Jimmy Beans Wool in Reno – I’ll be using Cascade 220 Heather in Chocolate.  I’m working on swatch now.  I had to print out all my charts in black and white because when you print in color, you can’t see the chevron changes well enough.  Don’t want to go blind!  I am very intimidated by this pattern but am viewing it as a challenge!  The nice people at Jimmy Beans told me they can assist if I get stuck.  Thank Goodness!

  16. I’m coming late to the party.  My name is Pam and I live in Connecticut. I’ve wanted to knit this sweater since it was published.  This knit-a-long is the perfect nudge to get me started.  I haven’t read through the 36 pages of comments yet!


  17. Again, I am looking for help with following the size chart.  For yellow, (37 1/2), as on the sleeve pattern, do I follow the blue pattern until row 57, then follow the yellow pattern?  I have never worked with a chart before, obviously.   Help is appreciated.

  18. I am getting a very late start but I am excited about tackling this complicated pattern.  I am using Lamb’s Pride Worsted 85% wool/15% mohair in Wine Splash.  Thanks for all the helpful comments.  Kentucky gal knitter.