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Backbone Pattern


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Knitting: Backbone
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Pattern Details:

Pattern Details









Skill Level:

small skill level requirement Beginner

Basic Skills Necessary:

  • Cast on
  • Knit
  • Purl
  • Work in the round
  • Increase
  • Decrease
  • Cable
  • Pick up stitches

Pattern Description:

Backbone is a wardrobe staple, a sweater you can live in. I wanted a sweater that served the same function as a sweatshirt, but with an elegant look that could transition from casual to workwear without fuss. As a knitter, I wanted a point of interest to hold my attention while I was knitting, so I added a reverse horseshoe cable pattern down the back, which I think looks like vertebrae. With three quarter length sleeves and a buttoned collar, there's plenty of style in comfort.


20 sts/30 rows = 4 inches in stockinette st on size 6 needles

Sizing / Finished Measurements:

  • Bust size: 28 (30, 32, 34, 36) (38, 40, 42, 44, 46) (48, 50, 52, 54, 56) inches


  • 6 (6, 7, 7, 8) (9, 9, 10, 11, 11) (12, 13, 13, 14, 15) balls of Knit Picks City Tweed DK [55% Merino wool, 25% Superfine alpaca, 20% Donegal tweed; 123 yds per 50gm ball], shown in colorway Snowshoe
  • U.S. size 4 (3.5 mm) 24" (sizes 28 through 34) or 32" circular needles (sizes 36 and up)
  • U.S. size 6 (4 mm) 24" or 32" circular needles
  • U.S. size 4 (3.5 mm) dpns OR long circular needle for Magic Loop
  • U.S. size 6 (4 mm) dpns OR long circular needle for Magic Loop

You Will Also Need:

  • 11 stitch markers, 1 distinct for start of round, 2 distinct for cable
  • tapestry needle
  • 10 buttons (15 mm/5/8")

Preferred Brand/Yarn:

Knit Picks City Tweed DK



About Designer

About Designer

Kristen Hanley on

Kristen Hanley Cardozo lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her family and an increasingly large collection of yarn and knitting patterns. Kristen is a loose cannon, but also the best cop on the force. She designs knitwear whenever she gets half a chance.

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