DROPS / 95 / 17

Gypsy Ballad by DROPS Design

DROPS Bolero cardigan in Alpaca.

Size: XS - S – M – L – XL - XXL

Materials: DROPS Alpaca from Garnstudio
200-200-250-250-300-300 g colour no. 7139, grey green
and use:
DROPS Vivaldi from Garnstudio
50 g colour no. 02, brown for the edges

Drops pointed and circular needles size 3.5 mm or the size you will need to obtain the correct knitting gauge

Have you knitted/crocheted this or any other of our designs? Tag your pictures in social media with #dropsdesign so we can see them!

Want to use a different yarn? Try our yarn converter!
Not sure which size you should choose? Then it might help you to know that the model in the picture is approx. 170 cm and uses size S or M. If you are making a jumper, cardigan, dress or similar garment, you will find a graphic with the measurements of the finished garment (in cm) at the bottom of the pattern.

100% Alpaca
from 3.20 £ /50g
DROPS Alpaca uni colour DROPS Alpaca uni colour 3.20 £ /50g
Wool Warehouse Direct Ltd
DROPS Alpaca mix DROPS Alpaca mix 3.30 £ /50g
Wool Warehouse Direct Ltd
DROPS Needles & Hooks
You can get the yarn to make this pattern from 16.00£. Read more.

Pattern instructions

NOTE: This pattern is written in British English. All measurements in charts are in cm. For conversion from cm to inches - click here. There are different terms for crocheting in British and American English. If this pattern includes crochet, click for "crochet terms" here. For this pattern in American English, please click here.
Knitting Gauge: 23 sts x 30 rows on needles size 3.5 mm with Alpaca in stocking sts = 10 x 10 cm.

Bind off (for the armhole):
Bind off inside K5 sts. All bind off’s should be done from the right side. Bind off as follows after 5 sts: Slip 1 st. as if to knit, K1 psso. Bind off as follows before the 5 sts: K2 tog.

Rib: *K2, P2*, repeat from *-*.

Back piece: Cast on 82-92-100-112-124-138 sts (inclusive of 1 seam sts each side – all seam sts are knitted in garter st throughout) on needles size 3.5 with Alpaca.
Knit in stocking sts with a seam st each side. When the piece measures 5 cm inc. 1 st each side on every 2-2-2-2.5-2.5-2.5 cm a total of 6 times = 94-104-112-124-136-150 sts. When the piece measures 17-18-19-20-21-22 cm bind off each side for armhole: 5-7-8-10-13-17 sts 1 time. Continue to bind off 1 st for armhole on every 4th row – see bind off tips – 2-4-5-8-10-12 times = 80-82-86-88-90-92 sts. When the piece measures 33-35-37-39-41-43 cm bind off the centre 28-30-30-32-32-32 sts for neck. Continue to bind off at each neck side on every other row 1 st 2 times = 24-24-26-26-27-28 sts left for each shoulder. Bind off when the piece measures 35-37-39-41-43-45 cm.

Left front: Cast on 22-22-25-26-28-30 sts (inclusive of 1 seam st at the side) on needles size 3.5 with Alpaca.
Please read all of the next section before continuing!

Insert a marking thread inside the outermost st mid front. Continue in stocking sts – at the same time inc for the rounded edge mid front as follows: Cast on new sts on every other row (i.e. at the end of every row towards mid front) 3 sts 3-4-4-5-5-6 times, 2 sts 2-3-4-5-7-8 times and 1 st 9-9-8-8-8-8 times – after the last inc. insert a marking thread inside the outermost st mid front.

Increases at side: At the same time when the piece measures 4 cm inc. at the side as done for the back piece. After all inc. are complete there are 50-55-59-65-71-78 sts on needle.

Neck shaping: When the piece measures 17-17-18-19-20-21 cm bind off for neck mid front. Bind off on every 4th row: 1 st 3-3-4-4-5-5 times, on every other row: 1 st 13-13-12-12-11-11 times and then on every 4th row again: 1 st 3-4-4-5-5-5 times.

Armholes: At the same time when the piece measures 17-18-19-20-21-22 cm bind off for armhole as done for the back piece. When all dec for the neck and armhole are complete there are 24-24-26-26-27-28 sts left for shoulder. Bind off when the piece measures 35-37-39-41-43-45 cm.

Right front: Knit as left front, but reverse.

Sleeve: Cast on 70-74-78-86-90-94 sts (inclusive of 1 seam st each side) on 2 needles size 3.5 with Vivaldi (use both needles to ensure the edge becomes stretchy). Remove 1 needle and knit 4 rows stocking sts (= roll over edge). Change to Alpaca and continue in Rib with a seam st each side. When the rib measures 3 cm knit 2 rows of garter sts and continue in stocking sts. At the same time after the 2 rows of garter sts bind off for sleeve cap each side on every other row as follows: 3 sts 1 time, 2 sts 3-3-4-4-4-5 times and 1 st 4-4-6-6-7-8 times. Continue to bind off 2 sts each side until the piece measures 11-12-13-14-15-17 cm. Then bind off each side 3 sts 1 time. Bind off the remaining sts when the piece measures 12-13-14-15-16-18 cm.

Assembly: Sew the shoulders. Sew in the sleeves and then sew the sides and the sleeve together.

Rib: pick up approx 344-368-384-416-440-464 sts (divisible by 4) along the whole edge on circular needles size 3.5 with Alpaca (begin at the centre back) – Note: Make sure to pick up enough sts (28-28-30-30-32-32 sts) between the marking threads on both front pieces so that the rib doesn't become too tight. Knit round as follows: P 1 round, K 1 round and continue in rib. When the rib measures 3 cm change to Vivaldi. Knit 4 rounds of stocking sts and bind off loosely.
To ensure the edge doesn't become too tight make a yo after every 8th st while binding off (knit and bind off the yo's as sts).

The cardigan may be held together with a pin, a kilt pin or a brooch.


Do you need help with this pattern?

Thank you for choosing a DROPS Design pattern. We take pride in providing patterns that are correct and easy to understand. All patterns are translated from Norwegian and you can always check the original pattern (DROPS 95-17) for measurements and calculations.

Are you having trouble following the pattern? See below for a list of resources to help you finish your project in no time - or why not, learn something new.

1) Why is the knitting/crochet tension so important?

Knitting tension is what determines the final measurements of your work, and is usually measured per 10 x 10 cm. It is provided like so: number of stitches in width x number of rows in height - eg: 19 stitches x 26 rows = 10 x 10 cm.

The knitting tension is very individual; some people knit/crochet loosely while others work tightly. You adjust the knitting tension with the needle size, which is why the suggested needle size only serve as a guide! You need to adjust this (up or down) to ensure that YOUR knitting tension matches the knitting tension provided in the pattern. If you work with a different knitting tension than provided you will have a different yarn consumption, and your work will have different measurements than what the pattern suggests.

The knitting tension also determines which yarns can replace each other. As long as you achieve the same knitting tension you can replace one yarn with another.

See DROPS lesson: How to measure your tension/gauge

See DROPS video: How to make a gauge tension swatch

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2) What are the yarn groups?

All our yarns are categorised into yarn groups (from A to F) according to thickness and knitting tension – group A contains the thinnest yarns and group F the thickest. This makes it easier for you to find alternative yarns to our patterns, should you wish to switch yarn. All yarns within the same group have a similar knitting tension and can easily replace each other. However, different yarn qualities have different structures and properties which will give the finished work a unique look and feel.

Click here for an overview of the yarns in each yarn group

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3) Can I use a different yarn than what the pattern suggests?

The important thing when changing from one yarn to another is that the knitting/crochet tension remains the same. This is so that the measurements of the finished piece will be the same as on the sketch provided. It is easier to achieve the same knitting tension using yarns from the same yarn group. It is also possible to work with multiple strands of a thinner yarn to achieve the knitting tension of a thicker one. Please try our yarn converter. We recommend you to always work a test swatch.

Please NOTE: when changing yarn the garment might have a different look and feel to the garment in the photo, due to individual properties and qualities of each yarn.

See DROPS lesson: Can I use a different yarn than the one mentioned in the pattern?

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4) How do I use the yarn converter?

At the top of all our patterns you’ll find a link to our yarn converter, which is a helpful tool should you wish to use a different yarn than suggested. By filling in the yarn quality you wish to replace, the amount (in your size) and number of strands, the converter will present good alternative yarns with the same knitting tension. Additionally it will tell you how much you’ll require in the new qualities and whether you’ll need to work with multiple strands. Most skeins are 50g (some are 25g or 100g).

If the pattern is worked with multiple colours, every colour will have to be converted separately. Similarly, if the pattern is worked with several strands of different yarns (for example 1 strand Alpaca and 1 strand Kid-Silk) you will have to find alternatives for each, individually.

Click here to see our yarn converter

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5) Why do I get the wrong knitting tension with the suggested needle size?

The needle size provided in the pattern serves only as a guide, the important thing is to follow the knitting tension. And since knitting tension is very individual, you will have to adjust the needle size to ensure that YOUR tension is the same as in the pattern – maybe you’ll have to adjust 1, or even 2 needle sizes, up or down to achieve the correct tension. For this, we recommend that you work test swatches.

Should you work with a different knitting tension than the one provided, the measurements of the finished garment might deviate from the measurement sketch.

See DROPS lesson: How to measure your tension/gauge

See DROPS video: How to make a gauge tension swatch

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6) Why is the pattern worked top-down?

Working a garment top-down provides more flexibility and room for personal adjustment. For example it is easier to try the garment on while working, as well as making adjustments to length of yoke and shoulder caps.

The instructions are carefully explaining every step, in the correct order. Diagrams are adjusted to the knitting direction and are worked as usual.

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7) Why are the sleeves shorter in larger sizes?

The total width of the garment (from wrist-to-wrist) will be larger in the larger sizes, despite the actual sleeves being shorter. The larger sizes have longer sleeve caps and wider shoulders, so there will be a good fit in all sizes.

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8) What is a repeat?

Diagrams are often repeated on the round or in height. 1 repeat is the diagram the way it appears in the pattern. If it says to work 5 repeats of A.1 in the round, then you work A.1 a total of 5 times after/next to each other in the round. If it says to work 2 repeats of A.1 vertically/in height you work the entire diagram once, then begin again at the start and work the entire diagram one more time.

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9) How do I work according to a knitting diagram?

The diagram depicts all rows/rounds, and every stitch seen from the right side. It is read from bottom to top, from right to left. 1 square = 1 stitch.

When working back and forth, every other row is worked from the right side and every other row is worked from the wrong side. When working from the wrong side, the diagram will have to be worked reversed: from left to right, knit stitches are purled, purl stitches are knit etc.

When working in the round every round is worked from the right side and the diagram are worked from right to left on all rounds.

See DROPS lesson: How to read knitting diagrams

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10) How do I work according to a crochet diagram?

The diagram depicts all rows/rounds, and every stitch seen from the right side. It is worked from bottom to top, from right to left.

When working back and forth every other row is worked from the right side: from right to left and every other row is worked from the wrong side: from left to right.

When working in the round, every row in the diagram are worked from the right side, from right to left.

When working a circular diagram you start in the middle and work your way outwards, counter clockwise, row by row.

The rows usually start with a given number of chain stitches (equivalent to the height of the following stitch), this will either be depicted in the diagram or explained in the pattern.

See DROPS lesson: How to read crochet diagrams

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11) How do I work several diagrams simultaneously on the same row/round?

Instructions for working several diagrams after each other on the same row/round, will often be written like so: “work A.1, A.2, A.3 a total of 0-0-2-3-4 times". This means you work A.1 once, then A.2 is worked once, and A.3 is repeated (in width) the number of times provided for your size – in this case like so: S = 0 times, M = 0 times, L=2 times, XL= 3 times and XXL = 4 times.

The diagrams are worked as usual: begin with the first row in A.1, then work the first row in A.2 etc.

See DROPS lesson: How to read knitting diagrams

See DROPS lesson: How to read crochet diagrams

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12) Why does the piece start with more chain stitches than it’s worked with?

Chain stitches are slightly narrower than other stitches and to avoid working the cast-on edge too tight, we simply chain more stitches to begin with. The stitch count will be adjusted on the following row to fit the pattern and measurement sketch.

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13) Why increase before the rib edge when the piece is worked top-down?

The rib edge is more elastic and will contract slightly compared to, for example, stocking stitch. By increasing before the rib edge, you avoid a visible difference in width between the rib edge and the rest of the body.

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14) Why increase in the cast-off edge?

It’s very easy to cast off too tightly, and by making yarn overs while casting off (and simultaneously casting these off) you avoid a too tight cast off edge.

See DROPS video: How to bind off with yarn overs (yo)

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15) How do I increase/decrease on every 3rd and 4th row/round alternately?

To achieve an even increase (or decrease) you can increase on, for example: every 3rd and 4th row alternately, like so: work 2 rows and increase on the 3rd row, work 3 rows and increase on the 4th. Repeat this until the increase is complete.

See DROPS lesson: Increase or decrease 1 st on every 3rd and 4th row alternately

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16) Why is the pattern slightly different than what I see in the photo?

Pattern repeats can vary slightly in the different sizes, in order to get the correct proportions. If you’re not working the exact same size as the garment in the photo, yours might deviate slightly. This has been carefully developed and adjusted so that the complete impression of the garment is the same in all sizes.

Make sure to follow instructions and diagrams for your size!

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17) How can I work a jacket in the round instead of back and forth?

Should you prefer to work in the round instead of back and forth, you may of course adjust the pattern. You’ll need to add steeks mid-front (usually 5 stitches), and follow the instructions. When you would normally turn and work from the wrong side, simply work across the steek and continue in the round. At the end you’ll cut the piece open, pick up stitches to work bands, and cover the cut edges.

See DROPS video: How to knit steeks and cut open

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18) Can I work a jumper back and forth instead of in the round?

Should you prefer to work back and forth instead of in the round, you may of course adjust the pattern so you work the pieces separately and then assemble them at the end. Divide the stitches for the body in 2, add 1 edge stitch in each side (for sewing) and work the front and back pieces separately.

See DROPS lesson: Can I adapt a pattern for circular needles into straight needles?

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19) Why do you show discontinued yarns in the patterns?

Since different yarns have different qualities and textures we have chosen to keep the original yarn in our patterns. However, you can easily find options among our available qualities by using our yarn converter, or simply pick a yarn from the same yarn group.

It is possible that some retailers still have discontinued yarns in stock, or that someone has a few skeins at home that they would like to find patterns for.

The yarn converter will provide both alternative yarn as well as required amount in the new quality.

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20) How do I make a women’s size garment into a men’s size one?

If you have found a pattern you like which is available in women’s size it’s not very difficult to convert it to men’s size. The biggest difference will be the length of sleeves and body. Start working on the women size that you think would fit across the chest. The additional length will be worked right before you cast off for the armhole/sleeve cap. If the pattern is worked top-down you can add the length right after the armhole or before the first decrease on sleeve.

Regarding additional yarn amount, this will depend on how much length you add, but it is better with a skein too many than too few.

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21) How do I prevent a hairy garment from shedding?

All yarns will have excess fibres (from production) that might come off as lint or shedding. Brushed yarns (ie hairier yarns) have more of these loose, excess fibres, causing more shedding.

Shedding also depends on what is worn under or over the garment, and whether this pulls at the yarn fibres. It’s therefore not possible to guarantee that there will be no shedding

Below are some tips on how to get the best result when working with hairier yarns:

1. When the garment is finished (before you wash it) shake it vigorously so the looser hairs come off. NOTE: do NOT use a lint roller, brush or any method that pulls at the yarn.

2. Place the garment in a plastic bag and put it in your freezer - the temperature will cause the fibres to become less attached to each other, and excess fibres will come off easier.

3. Leave in the freezer for a few hours before taking it out and shaking it again.

4. Wash the garment according to the instructions on the yarn label.

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22) Where on the garment is the length measured?

The measurement sketch/schematic drawing provides information regarding the full length of the garment. If it’s a jumper or a jacket the length is measured from the highest point on the shoulder closest to the neckline, and straight down to the bottom of the garment. It is NOT measured from the tip of shoulder. Similarly, the length of yoke is measured from the highest point on the shoulder and down to where yoke is split into body and sleeves.

On a jacket measures are never taken along bands, unless specifically stated. Always measure inside band stitches when measuring the length.

See DROPS lesson: How to read a schematic drawing

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23) How do I know how many balls of yarn I need?

The required amount of yarn is provided in grams, eg: 450 g. To calculate how many balls you’ll need you first need to know how many grams are in 1 ball (25g, 50g or 100g). This information is available if you click on the individual yarn quality on our pages. Divide the amount required with the amount of each ball. For example, if each ball is 50g (the most common amount), the calculation will be as follows: 450 / 50 = 9 balls.

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Have you purchased DROPS yarn to make this pattern? Then you are entitled to receive help from the store where you bought the yarn. Find a list of DROPS stores here!
Still can't find the answer you need? Then scroll down and leave your question so one of our experts can try to help you. This will be done normally within 5 to 10 working days. In the meantime, you can read the questions and answers that others have left to this pattern or join the DROPS Workshop on Facebook to get help from fellow knitters/crocheters!

Comments / Questions (25)

Sylvie PERRIER 12.03.2018 - 22:18:

Bonsoir, Je ne comprends pas les diminutions des emmanchures. Faut-il diminuer après 5 mailles de chaque rang? Et si oui quel est l'intérêt et fait-il faire cela aussi sur les manches? Merci de votre réponse.

DROPS Design 13.03.2018 kl. 09:39:

Bonjour Mme Perrier, on rabat pour les emmanchures 1 x 5 mailles de chaque côté (= pour le dos on rabat ces mailles en début de rang sur l'endroit + sur l'envers = des 2 côtés, pour les devants, ces mailles sont rabattues uniquement côté emmanchure). Pour les manches, on commence à rabattre pour l'arrondi des manches par 1 x 3 m de chaque côté. Bon tricot!

Moira 18.04.2017 - 09:58:

When choosing a size to knit, should we go by the measurements given in the drawn diagram or the written finished measurements? For example, if I read the diagram correctly it suggests that the largest size measures 64" at the bust, but the written instructions say that the same size is 50 3/8" at the bust. Thanks in advance!

DROPS Design 18.04.2017 kl. 11:38:

Dear Moira, measurements in chart are taken flat from side to side in cm - you can convert into inches here. Happy knitting!

Catherine Edwards 26.03.2016 - 01:28:

When you reach the armhole are you suppose to make a 5 stitch garter stitch border on each side? In the main instructions the only mention of garter stitch is one stitch at each side for the seam but the Bind off (for the armhole) instructions make it sound like you're supposed to knit the first 5 stitches each side in garter stitch. Please clarify. Thanks.

DROPS Design 29.03.2016 kl. 08:58:

Dear Mrs Edwards, there is only 1 st in garter st on each side, bind off for armhole should be done inside K5 (ie 5 sts in stocking st not in garter st, pattern will be updated asap). Thank you. Best regards!

Reinagel 20.04.2015 - 16:37:

Bonjour et merci pour la réponse. Modèle boléro 95-17 A quel usage doit servir le crocher drops n° 5 ?

DROPS Design 20.04.2015 kl. 18:02:

Bonjour Mme Reinagel, effectivement, le crochet n'est pas utilisé et a été supprimé. Merci. Bon tricot!

Chris 05.08.2014 - 23:49:

Enjoying the pattern, but I'm wondering if I should bind off 10 stitches on the sleeve armhole before staring on the bind off 3, 2, 1 Is the pattern correct?

DROPS Design 06.08.2014 kl. 10:24:

Dear Chris, pattern is correct that way, you start sleeve cap binding off 3 sts 1 time ... Happy knitting!

Alexandra Thurl 10.05.2012 - 18:00:

Hallo Liebes Drops-Team, vielen Dank für die schnelle und genaue Antwort!!

Alexandra Thurl 09.05.2012 - 12:51:

Was bedeutet bei Bolero Drops Nr.95-17 Maschen für die Rundung des Vorderteils "am Schluss jeder Reihe gegen die Mitte zunehmen"? Heißt das, dass man am Schluss der reihe oder in der Mitte zunehmen soll? Der Begriff "gegen die Mitte" ist etwas irreführend. Und wo soll ich genau den Markierungsfaden einziehen, gleich nach der 1.Masche oder in der Mitte vorne?

DROPS Design 10.05.2012 kl. 07:57:

Man nimmt am Schluss der Reihe zu (also gegen die Mitte der Arbeit, nicht in der Mitte der Reihe). Der Markierungsfaden wird neben der 1. Masche eingezogen. Die Anleitung wurde zum besseren Verständnis etwas überarbeitet.

Dorothea Winter 17.04.2012 - 21:16:

Ich kann nicht verstehen, wo bei Drops Nr. 95-17 Bolero Jacke die Maschen am Vorderteil für die Rundung zugenommen werden. Ist es in der Mitte oder am Ende der Reihe? Vielen Dank im voraus und herzliche Grüße Dorothea Winter

DROPS Design 18.04.2012 kl. 10:02:

Am Schluss jeder R. gegen die Mitte.

DROPS Design NL 01.03.2010 - 14:20:

Hoi. Dat was ook niet helemaal duidelijk. Ik heb het patroon aangepast. Je moet een merkdraad plaatsen naast de eerste st langs het middenvoor. Je meerdert hier voor de ronde voorkant. De merkdraad is om duidelijk te laten zien hoe ver je bent met de meerderingen. Ik denk dat het nu veel duidelijker staat. Succes. Gr. Tine

Annemarie 26.02.2010 - 14:09:

Hallo, bij het voorpand van deze leuke bolero schrijft men: "Plaats 1 merkdraad naast de laatste st van het middenvoorpand" en "als het meerderen voltooid is, 1 nieuwe merkdraad na de laatste st van het middenvoorpand plaatsen". Hoe moet ik dat doen, en waarvoor is die merkdraad? Annemarie

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