New Design: Cape Sleeved Cardi

ETA: This design has been selected for a crochet-along beginning September 15. See here for more information.

ETA2: Please see the end of this post for a small amount of errata.

WARNING: There are 3 videos on YouTube demo-ing this design. While I appreciate the enormous commitment the person has placed in my design, incorrect instructions are given in the videos. While you can certainly review the videos and I’m sure you’ll gain some answers to your questions, you should understand that they are incorrect. In addition to other mistakes, the demo of the linked stitch is incorrect. And, this wouldn’t be a huge issue. But, the person demo-ing is using Super Saver, at least a 2 size difference from the yarn used in the pattern. The videos would take me about 1-1/2 hours to review in depth. So, I gave up watching them in their entirety. I am not trying to “call out” someone for doing something incorrectly. We all make mistakes. I am solely trying to reduce the numbers of emails I am receiving because people are confused by the contradictory video instructions.

Welcome to my new free pattern from Caron International Yarns. Cape Sleeved Cardi in Caron Simply Soft Light. Same Caron Simply Soft, in a lighter weight version. (That link right there in this paragraph is the link to the free pattern. Just click on the words “Cape Sleeved Cardi.”)

If you subscribe to Caron Connections, you would have received this introduction of my design by email.

Delicate lace and broomstick stitch details come together with a flattering cape sleeve silhouette in designer Kim Guzman’s Cape Sleeved Cardi. Crocheted in Caron Simply Soft Light, this charming cardigan is a lightweight layering piece that you’ll want to wear all year.

I don’t want there to be any confusion. This design isn’t made in broomstick lace. I think that it may have reminded someone at Caron of something looking like a broomstick element. But, the design is actually made in linked stitches, not broomstick.

You may not have heard of linked stitches. But, they are certainly worth knowing. I like them because they produce a thinner fabric. And, since the stitches are linked, there aren’t big holes in between the stitches, even when working with the tall ones. Because the fabric is thinner, you use less yarn. Linked stitches don’t use yarn overs in the traditional fashion. You pick up loops on the side of the previous stitch and these serve as your yarn overs.

When working with linked stitches, you’ll just want to remember that you are working with the same number of loops as a traditional crochet stitch. A linked half double will involve three loops and you pull through all three loops at once to close. A linked double will involve the same three loops, but you’ll [pull through two loops] twice. A linked treble will involve four loops and you’ll [pull through two loops] three times. Here is a video I’ve done for a linked half double.

[youtube]You see how you aren’t actually yarning over to make the stitch. You are using loops already available. The stitch is the same, though. You’re just joining them together so there isn’t a lot of bulk.

For this new design, Cape Sleeved Cardi, I’ve used linked double trebles. Usually a stitch this tall will have wide open spaces between the stitches. But, through the beauty of joining them, the stitch is more evenly distributed. And, really, I kid you not. When you don’t have yarn overs throughout, you literally use less yarn.

One other thing you may discover, especially when working with the taller linked stitches, is that they are hugely similar in mechanics to Tunisian crochet. However, please be aware that my linked stitches, that I use in all my projects with linked stitches, use the vertical bars on the side of the previous stitch, not the horizontal bars (making it exactly like Tunisian Simple Stitch).

For clarification, if you know Tunisian crochet already, I am not using the standard simple stitch bar. I am using the bar that is for the closing chain that runs up the middle. Neither method is incorrect. You can literally use any Tunisian crochet stitch to link the stitches. Linked stitches are nothing more than join-as-you-go Tunisian crochet. For me, I prefer the look of using the bar out on the side. All the current YouTube videos show the more typical Simple Stitch method. I’m not fond of the look of Simple Stitch, so I use a different spot for placement. Please review my linked half double crochet video to see which bar I mean.

And, for anyone who has not yet tried Tunisian crochet, don’t be scared! You will pick this up in no time! It’s just a linked stitch. A stitch made by picking up loops in the side of the previous stitch. Easy peasy!

In my next video shoot, I’ll try to get the other linked stitches so that you’ll have them for reference. But, in the meantime, I really think you’ll understand the concept through your knowledge of traditional crochet once you see the video for the linked half double.

Just a note: This design also includes a reverse single crochet. Stop being scared of it! See my video (and all my other videos) here. I used it only for embellishment, so it can be easily omitted. But, you should get over that fear. It’s only crochet. Nothing at all to be scared about!

Top-Down Construction

This design is worked in one piece, starting at the neck, splitting at the armholes, working from the armholes down, then joining to complete the sleeves. I’ve not worked in the round with the sleeves due to it changing the stitch pattern, so there is a very slight amount of seaming at the sleeves only.

For those of you craving that top-down construction, this design answers your call! But, if you’re looking for a fitted sleeve design, this isn’t it. I was requested to make a cape-sleeved design, which is basically a kimono style sleeve. It isn’t fitted.

This garment is one of those things that you’ll want to throw on for a chilly evening. Or, have available at the office when the air conditioner puts too much chill in the air. Nice, comfortable fit. Sleeves at 3/4 length so they don’t get in the way. Light-weight fabric, without a lot of bulk. Really tall stitches so that it works up quickly. Worked from top-down so that length is easy to adjust. What more could you want in a cardigan??!! 🙂

And, remember that my natural tension is a little on the loose side. If you tend to crochet tightly, you’re going to automatically want to go up in hook size in order to meet my gauge.

Even if you’ve never made a crocheted garment before, this one is a truly enjoyable starter project. Even if you don’t want to swatch, you can use your garment as your swatch. See this search on gauge for more information. You can start it and get through the yoke. Measure it against the schematic or on your body to see how it fits. If you have to take it out, the garment is so quick-to-stitch that it’s not going to be a life or death situation if you have to take it out and start again with a different size hook. And, besides, why not? You’ll be practicing and perfecting your tension on a new stitch and stitch pattern. It doesn’t hurt a thing to take it out and start again. The benefit of working in acrylic is that washing isn’t going to produce a lot of significant change in gauge. The fabric is light. It’s not going to be too weighted down. Lastly, it’s an easy fit cardigan. This is the perfect choice for a first garment! Don’t be scared! Jump in with both feet (and both hands).


Errata: There appears to be a one-stitch difference in stitch count for the beginning of this project. Please use the following in order to maintain the stitch count:

Row 1 (RS): Sk first ch, *sc in next 4 ch, 2 sc in next ch; repeat from * to last 4 ch, sc in each of 3 ch, 2 sc in last ch, turn-83 (89, 95, 101, 107) sc.

Round 2 of the trim (the reverse single crochet round) is worked into the front loop only. Then, when you get to round 3, it is worked in the unused back loop of round 1.


  • Bridget Jones

    I LOVE this! Its definatly on my “to make” list!

  • Super interesting post! I wonder, is there any reason you couldn’t sub in linked stitches in any situation where you would be working straight dc, hdc, etc?

    • crochetkim

      I would absolutely try a linked stitch substitute in some projects. The thicker fabric may be desired for some things. But, if there is a desire to change the fabric slightly and make it thinner, with more drape, certainly give it a try. And, I personally prefer the cute look of linked stitches to standard stitches.

  • Anne

    Thanks for clarifying Caron’s mention of broomstick lace – I didn’t look too closely at the pattern because of that. However, now that I’ve read your post, I’m definitely going to try this cardigan!

  • Dena

    Well, duh! I’m totally up for a CAL on this pattern!!

  • I’m with Anne. When I initially saw the pattern I didn’t look closely as I’m not yet a broom sticker (maybe someday!). It does seem the perfect cardi to keep at work – just in case. I imagine that it’s easy to wear with most anything.
    I’ll be adding it to the queue!

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  • LindaM/SC

    Kim, I tried working this pattern twice and my st count does not match yours. On row 3 I only get 102 sts and yours is 111 and completeing row 20 I get only 156 and you have 239. Can you help me figure out what I’m doing wrong? thanks


    • crochetkim

      The only way you could be having a problem is by missing stitches. For row 3, you should mark 16 stitches and in those 16 stitches, you work an increase. This takes the stitch count from 95 to 111 (95+16). Be really careful, especially on the linked stitches row. When you pull up the last loop of the linked stitch, that could be where you are missing it. You will want to count the stitches on every row to make sure that you get the correct count.

  • crochetkim

    Reblogged this on WIPs 'N Chains and commented:

    We have begun prepping and swatching for the crochet-along. We’ll be starting September 15.

  • Very pretty!!! Can’t wait. Thanks for the pattern.

  • Kris

    Hi, wanted to know if you could give a way to make this a little bigger, I’m a 3x gal and would love to try this

  • Marie

    Can I make this into a 4x by using a larger hook? 2 sizes larger hook?

    • crochetkim

      Using a larger hook will give you a much lacier garment and will also cause everything in the garment, everywhere, to grow. And, the only way you’ll know how much bigger is to swatch then do the calculations to see how much of a percentage different you’ll get. While this does work, especially with children’s clothing, once you hit adult female, there are some things that don’t grow even when the rest of the body is getting bigger. The most obvious is the shoulder width. The bust may have grown to a size 60″, but the shoulders pretty much stay the same. So, if you simply increase everywhere by using a larger hook, you may end up with something that won’t sit on the shoulders.

  • karen hillman

    So at Beginning at neck edge, ch 70 (75, 80, 85, 90). The Beginning of the Pattern where it tells you how many to Chain. Is this where we add 1 extra St to each set of chain sizes for the garment. Because the stitch count came out different and did not add up for one of our CAL GALS. Is that what we are doing ?

    • crochetkim

      My change within the group has been as follows due to the one-stitch difference is:

      Row 1 (RS): Sk first ch, *sc in next 4 ch, 2 sc in next ch; repeat from * to last 4 ch, sc in each of 3 ch, 2 sc in last ch, turn-83 (89, 95, 101, 107) sc.

      • karen hillman

        I just Added an Extra Chain……..Instead of 70 chains , I did 71 chains and it came out to 83 stitches.
        New Question: When we are getting ready to split for the Sleeves…It says to SK 45 Sts….Do we SS all the way for 45 STS ?

        • crochetkim

          You don’t slip stitch across the skipped stitches. You completely skip them. This will be the sleeve. You will have a big hole for the sleeve opening. You do the chain for the underarm, skip the stitches completely and start stitching again in the next stitch.

  • karen hillman

    Divide for Armholes
    Row 1: Ch 1, sc in each of 25 (27, 31, 34, 37) sts (front), sk 45
    (47, 55, 57, 59) sts (sleeve), ch 6 (8, 10, 12, 14) , sc in each of 55
    (61, 67, 72, 77) sts (back), sk 45 (47, 55, 57, 59) sts (second
    sleeve), ch 6 (8, 10, 12, 14), sc in each of 25 (27, 31, 34, 37) sts
    (opposite front), turn.
    Could you explain the 6 chains and SC in ea 55 STS

    Pretty Plz, Sorry to bother, but I’m on a Roll Here….

    • crochetkim

      Try not to over think it. You do exactly what it says. Sc in 25 sts, sk 45 sts (when you count them put a marker or piece of yarn in the next stitch, if it helps), ch 6, sc in 55 sts, sk 45, ch 6, sc in last 25 sts. You will literally skip 45 sts. It will leave a hole. Just bend the fabric so that you can get to the next stitch.

  • karen hillman


    THNX A BUNCH !!!!!!!!!!

    😉 😉

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  • karen hillman

    My Gauge is 11 Stitches by 4.75 Rows = 4 Inch Swatch
    Using a H/8-5.00MM Hook by Boye
    RedHeart 4 Worsted 100% Acrylic
    Thats what I have as far as yarn goes.

    • karen hillman

      Sorry I meant 6 rows

    • crochetkim

      Karen, are you participating in the crochet-along? I have practically an entire book in the past messages to go over gauge. And, unless you want a cardigan which has no drape and no flexibility, you will have to adjust the pattern in order to use an aran weight yarn. This is going to produce a very stiff garment and isn’t recommended. But, it’s possible that something could be done in order to adjust it. It will just take some extra time and effort.

  • victoria gibson

    I started making this off the video on youtube wish i would of know about your site im half way done and the vidoes are no longer on youtube.

  • I’d like to do a CAL on this. Can’t seam to find how to get to the CAL. Help!! 🙂

  • I like your video but I would like to please know where I could get the instructions for the crochet cape sleeved cardi.

  • karen

    I am so glad I found this page. I have tried this pattern a few times now, all aloog with the youtube video. and complete diasters occured. Finally someone posted on the video site a link to your youtube site, which clairfied a lot, Thank you so much for a beautiful pattern. and CORRECT instructions! I;m trying the pattern again. Hopefully, I wont mess it up again.

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  • Stephy

    Hi Kim,
    I hope you are still getting these comments. I am now on row 6 of my third try. I must. E misreading the pattern very consistently because, once again, the cardi is increasing on one side of the front and staying straight on the other. The net effect if I were to keep going (which I did twice and have had to tear out twice) will have me end up with a very strange cardi with a diagonal opening down the front. My problem starts with row 3, I think. Instead of marking the 14 stitches evenly spaced apart, I divided 83 by 14 and got 5.928 etc. which I rounded to 6. Then I put 2 sc in every 6th stitch. That gave me 97 stitches. On row 5, I did the 2 sc in every 7th stitch. At the end of row 6 I recognized that I was having the same slanting problem….again! I hope you can understand what I’m doing and tell me what I’m doing wrong. Thank you very much. Btw…I’m making a size Small for my 17 year old granddaughter who just graduated from high school. She loves the look of the cardi!

    • If there is significant increase on one side, it is the linked stitch biasing. Sometimes Tunisian crochet will do that. There’s really nothing you’re doing incorrectly. There are subtle differences in the way each person makes their stitches that will sometimes cause this effect. What I would suggest is that you alternate the increase on linked stitch rows to make it more even.

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