I love sweaters with simple all-over stitch patterns. I find the repetitive stitches soothing to work with just enough interruption to keep my attention. Varina is worked mostly in double seed stitch (a multiple of 2 stitches and 4 rows) and accented with a narrow cable-rib panel along the center front and back. Worked from the bottom up in four easy pieces that are seamed together, this pullover features a slight A-line shape for ease of movement and is finished with a mock turtleneck that includes extensions of the two cable panels.

The yarn shown here, a terrifically luxurious blend of merino, yak, and alpaca, produces a light and lofty fabric that booms beautifully with wet-blocking, and feels sumptuous next to the skin.

Finished Size: About 40 (431/2, 47, 501/2, 531/2) (57, 601/2, 64, 67)” (101.5 [110.5, 119.5, 128.5, 136] [145, 153.5, 162.5, 170] cm) circumference at bust/chest, and about 431/2 (47, 501/2, 531/2, 57) (601/2, 64, 67, 701/2)” (110.5 [119.5, 128.5, 136, 145] [153.5, 162.5, 170, 179] cm) circumference at lower edge. Sweater shown measures 47” (119.5 cm) bust/chest circumference, worn with about 6” (15 cm) of positive ease.

Yarn: Worsted weight (CYCA #4 Medium). Shown here: Lion Brand LB Collection Merino Yak Alpaca (70% merino wool, 15% yak, 15% alpaca; 126 yd [115 meters]/50 g): Oatmeal, 8 (9, 10, 10, 11) (11, 12, 12, 13) balls.

Needles: Body and Sleeves: Size U.S. 9 (5.5 mm); Neckband: Size U.S. 8 (5 mm): 16” (40 cm) circular. Adjust needle size if necessary to obtain the correct gauge.

Gauge: 19 sts and 26 rows = 4” (10 cm) in Double Seed Stitch using larger needles, after blocking.   12 sts of Cable Panel = 2” (5 cm) using larger needles, after blocking.


  • A garter-stitch (knit every row) selvedge stitch is worked at each of the needle throughout.
  • When there is only one number or measurement, it applies to all sizes.
  • The Cable Panel chart is worked in back and forth in rows and in also rounds. When working back and forth in rows, work odd-numbered chart rows as RS rows, and even-numbered chart rows as WS rows. When working in the round, work every chart row as a RS row.
  • The Tubular method of binding off was used for the funnel neck on the sample shown; a tutorial is available online at
  • A list of abbreviations is provided at the end of the instructions.