Bérangère Cailliau is a talented knitwear designer living in Northern France. For the past 6 years, she has designed a large collection of knitting patterns that are fun to knit and easy to wear.
Her latest sweater pattern, Daintree, was designed as part of the second round of our yarn support programme. It is an extremely versatile garment with two different sleeve options that accommodate those living in both the northern and summer hemispheres.
In this interview, Bérangère shares more about her design process and the origins of this pattern.
Hello Bérangère! Could you tell us a little about yourself?
I live in the north of France with my husband, our 3 children and 2 cats. I am also a teacher in Kindergarten as well as a knitwear designer! I love making all sorts of crafts with my hands, especially knitting. There is hardly a day that passes without knitting. I have been designing patterns for about 6 years now: mainly shawls along with some sweaters and cardigans.
As a knitwear designer, what is your philosophy?
I love to design shawls and clothing that people can wear easily. Colours, stripes and textural stitches are fun to play with. I also like to add small details on sweaters or cardigans knitted in stockinette stitch to add some originality to the pattern.
Daintree is such a beautiful, versatile design. What inspired this latest pattern?
For Daintree, I was first inspired by the cable pattern, particularly the lines that start and end in the cables. I then imagined how to use it and thought it might be very pretty on the side of a sleeveless sweater.
As I knit it, I thought it would be lovely with long sleeves as well. That’s why I decided to knit and write the pattern for both versions; sleeveless and with long sleeves.
What was your favourite part of the design process and why?
I really enjoyed knitting the sample because I was able to discover how the yarn matches up with the pattern I originally imagined.
Very often, the behaviour of the yarn will influence my designs. I modify a lot of things while I knit according to the behaviour of the yarn but also my inspiration while I am knitting it. Often, the final design is quite different from my initial idea because I follow my inspiration while I knit it.
You were part of the second round of our Yarn Support Programme this year. Which yarn did you choose to work with?
I used Canopy Fingering – a blend of alpaca, merino and viscose. I love fingering weight yarn and this one is very pleasant to knit. It is very soft and the viscose from bamboo makes it supple and comfortable to wear. I really like the slightly mottled colour of the River Dolphin colourway that I used in the long sleeve version.
What advice would you give to knitters who want to cast on for Daintree?
Sit comfortably with your needles and yarn. Make sure that you are focused when you start knitting in order to quickly retain the cable pattern. Then, you can fully enjoy your moment of knitting while watching the sweater grow on your needles.
Thank you for sharing more about this beautiful pattern with us, Bérangère!
Pick up your copy of Daintree via Bérangère’s Ravelry Store. It’s a classic sweater pattern that can be worn all year round!
You can find out more about knitwear designer, Bérangère Cailliau and her collection of patterns on Ravelry or Instagram. Details of your local or online Canopy Fingering stockist can also be found on the Stockists page.