Modification Monday: Monochromatic Penguono

Original Pattern: Penguono

Knitter Extraordinaire: Clare (Ravelry ID)

Mods: Clare changed the brightly coloured sweater to a monochromatic version, and also eliminated the back welts, added pockets, lengthened the sleeves, and reduced the front panel to avoid the original crossing over effect. Great details and more photos can be found on her project page, here.

What Makes This Awesome: Comparing the original pattern and Clare’s version is an exercise in creative thinking. I mean, looking at Stephen West’s pattern and then imagining the sleek, timeless version that Clare created takes more than a bit of creativity! Choosing to knit it in a solid colour emphasizes the beautiful stitch details and panel construction, and I love that she added pockets! The longer sleeves make the cardigan easier to wear, and more trans-seasonal- I love the proportions Clare achieved, the sleeves are beautifully balanced in relation to the rest of the cardigan. I bet she will be wearing this gorgeous sweater for many years to come!


  1. Barbara   •  

    You’re not kidding! I would never have recognised this as being based on that cardigan pattern. Those pockets are brilliant. I love an excuse to check out Stephen West’s photos – they’re always so fun and colourful!

    • Clare (aka Napagal)   •  


      Thanks so much! The pockets are my favorite part of the mod. I am so proud they worked out.


  2. Clare (aka Napagal)   •  

    Hey Julie,

    I am honored to be featured here today. I think the Modification Monday column is a brilliant idea. I know, as a knitter, I am always fascinated by how knitters customize designs to suit their wants and needs.

    Penguono is a super fun project. It builds in an unusual way that keeps the whole thing interesting at every level, even if you make it in just one color. 😉

    Happy Monday to all, and thank you for checking out my Penguono!

  3. miss agnes   •  

    It is a beautiful cardigan, but I think the virtue of the original lies in its riot of colors and original shape. So I’m not over the moon with this version, honestly.

    • Clare (aka Napagal)   •  

      Miss Agnes,

      I agree that Stephen’s Penguono was one of riotous colors, and I really love many of the Penguonos that embrace his original vision. But for me, I was drawn to the shape and lines of Penguono, rather than Stephen’s rainbow palette. I envisioned it as a neutral, kimono-type cardi I could throw on at any time and with almost anything in my wardrobe. Indeed, I have not taken off this cozy jacket since I finished it. I might even make another one in a dark color, and maybe slightly bigger. I will definitely keep my pocket mod though….love me some pockets in a jacket/cardi! 😉

      Sometimes, I will make a design that is similar to the one envisioned by the designer. But there are also many times that I will use a pattern to serve my own needs and/or wants, which can mean a very different FO from the designer.

  4. Ann   •  

    Love this version! Stephen West is a creative genius but I find his latest creations difficult to follow. It seems like they should be on a runway show. So often bizarre and over the top. But that is what makes Stephen, Stephen!

  5. Di   •  

    That will be a long time classic piece. I love how all the texture pops in a single color-it gets missed when multi colored-plus no hiding a zillion ends!

    • Clare (aka Napagal)   •  


      Thank you. I have hardly taken it off since I finished it. Warm and cozy and comfortable and looks good over everything. And yes, the ends were no problem, especially with the Shelter.


  6. Andi   •  

    Oh yes Julie, you picked a good one here!
    I love how she took inspiration from the construction rather than the loud bright colors and turned it into something special.

  7. Nele   •  

    This is so elegant, and the shape and construction really stand out in this single colour version.

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