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  The Great Adult Tomten Garter Two Person Knitalong
For weeks Adrian and I have been taunting each other with ideas of big, garter stitch EZ jackets. (Don't we all need one?) BSJs and Tomtens are happily abounding in all corners of the world (thank god - I don't think I'll ever get sick of seeing 'em) but the elusive 'adult versions' of these sweaters have always been a somewhat intriguing and rare occurrence.

Well, in our common pursuit for modern elvish clothing, an entire wardrobe of garter stitch, and by-the-seat-of-your-pants knitting, Adrian and I have committed ourselves to a whopping two-person knitalong in hopes of one day dawning the hood of the true Zimmermann disciple. The Adult Tomten Jacket. (See some particularly fetching child versions here and here)


After securing the perfect yarn for the job (straight from Northern Montana) it didn't take long to get a quick garter stitch swatch underway and start Tomten-ing myself into oblivion. (Adrian's yarn is equally luscious, if not moreso - she's working a slightly chunkier version than mine!)


Of course there are a gang of mods that will be involved. The original design isn't famous for its flattering fit on adults, although this can be easily remedied with some commonsense shaping and fit modifications. I don't think EZ would have it any other way.

Adult Tomten aka Oversized Garter Swatch

Until next time, we'll be floating away down garter river dreaming of that pointy hood at the top of the mountain.


Gorgeous color.
I'd love to hear about the mods you do to this sweater.

The purl bumps really make the red flecks in the yarn sing. It's going to be beautiful.

I got lost in link heaven. Thanks.

Nothing says summer like a nice warm EZ sweater! :) I so wish I didn't have 1,000 other projects already in the works or I'd be right with you, I'd love a pointy little hood of my own, and would definitely need the support of someone more knowledgable than me, but alas, too many other obligations right now.

Wonderful. I always love seeing your photographs - so gorgeous! You have a great aesthetic.

This will be fun to watch....Thanks!

what a neat idea - can't wait to hear and see all the mods!

Im sure it will be wonderful!

I see a color trend here lately, eh? I don't know this jacket pattern and I am curious to see how the adult version compares to the links you provided. I can tell I like the combination of yarn and stitch already.

I'm sure I couldn't sway you from the project and I"m very interested to see how it will turn out...I just tried it myself, sans modifications and it wasn't working for me. Visit
for the details. Some mods on the hood may be needed, unless you will look fab with the grim reaper look. ;) best of luck! I can't wait to see how it turns out.

I know Mountain Mahogany when I see it! :-) I happen to have a pile of that colorway too. Mine's probably going to be a neck-down pullover from Knitting Pure & Simple, but I'm really intrigued by this idea of yours, and curious to see if it will change my mind about my intended project. ;-)

mmmmm...gartery goodnes...

OMG i cast on for one of these almost two years ago...knit about 4 inches and then thought "i'll work on this later!" i started it in summer and i didn't want to lug around a bunch of bulky big kureyon for this jacket. then i promptly forgot all about it! i didn't know mods had to be made for this jacket. maybe that is why i stopped..i some how knew.... hahaha. :) i can't wait to see how your's comes out.

can't wait to see the finished gnomey goodness!

There's a way to make that look flattering on an adult?? I'm very intrigued!

This will be fun to watch! I love the color of your yarn. I'm working on the adult version of the BSJ too--all from a variety of handspun in natural colors. It is a fun project. You'll enjoy it.

Ooh, I can't wait to see how it'll turn out. I've always loved the cuteness of the mini tomtens, I think an adult version will be great!

Oooooo, this'll be fun to watch!

cannot wait to see the tomtens finished up. it's an amazing cardi.

I will be watching your progress closely. I loved knitting my mini tomten for my baby and I have plans to make the others their own version. We could be one of those sickening matchy matchy families ;).

The instant I saw that first picture, before I read about its source, I thought, "Gee, that looks just like the Beaverslide I've got in Juniper Heather..."

I've really enjoyed the yarn so far -- you get the rustic appearance, without the, you know, twigs and things. :)

I am gobsmacked. Just last night, I had a dream of an adult tomten from frogged Rowan plaid... I will follow your progress avidly.

How exciting, an adult version. I cant wait to see how it looks. Isnt garter stitch such a relaxing knit too.

How interesting, I'm sure you'll make it look great on you.

I'm watching my boss at the yarn shop make a child sized version and he sometimes looks like he's in pain. But it *is* an adorable sweater...

...I can't imagine an adult sized version. Good Luck!

Well I can absolutley see why you would want a Tomten!
In fact I'm so easily swayed I think I now want a Tomten too.
I look forward to the progress reports from both of you

I can't wait to see how this turns out! I'm exciting about tackling some EZ patterns myself in the near future.

Yes, this is what I was always thinking abaout it. worked a lot Tomten for lots of babys- but never a big one for ME ;o)
!!Elizabeth forever!!
Greets from Germany, Eva

I keep my Beaverslide sample card in my bag just so I can take it out and revel in its wonderfulness whenever I need it!

fyi the Tuttle Hamilton book has a ginormous jacket in it and will be arriving any day...

This sounds extremely exciting. I cannot wait to see what you two come up with. I'll be interesting to see the slight differences in approach and the male/female variations.

Cool. Knitting by the seat of your pants is fun.

I'm working on a baby tomten and can't wait to make one for myself. Adult tomtens rock.

Seriously, could that yarn be anymore beautiful?

Wonderful! Why shouldn't adults also revel in the comfort of Tomten?

I have always LOVED the picture of that little girl in her cool-ass Tomten! And she looks like she could be related to Abi's boy! Hilarious!

Speaking of Zimmerman models I have the huuuUUUGggest crush on the greying Paul Rudd lookalike who appears from time to time. Meg Swansen's son, I think?

1. Can't wait to see the Tomten final piece. Knowing you, BT, it will be amazing.

2. Cirilia, I'm so glad you said that about Cully (the guy who models many of EZ and MS pieces of art). I have had the hugest crush on him and keep hoping that he's going to be in one of the DVDs.



First off . . . I'm a huge fan. I check your site regularly and am always impressed with your latest creations. Thanks for sparking my own imagination.

Thanks, too, for the link to Beaverslide Dry Goods. What beautiful stuff! I just ordered enough Fisherman Weight yarn in a most beautiful shade they call Mahogony, to make a sweater--my first. I'm thinking the EZ seamless hybrid would be a good choice. I'm an experienced sock knitter (I know we part company there) so I'm used to going around in circles. If you have any suggestions or advice, I'm all ears!


Great plan and fabulous yarn.

Ooh, I'm excited to see the end results!

The second sweater I ever completed was an adult tomten sweater. It was adult sized -- I was 15 at the time. This was in 1976! I can see it now. I knit it out of beautiful dark red Takhi donegal tweed -- at the time it was the only Tahki you ever saw in the stores. I wish I still owned it. I put in a garter leaf pattern at the bottom and at the collar I improvised. Their was such a fad that year for hooded sweaters that it was hard to find a cardigan without a hood. I left the hood off.
It was not at all difficult so don't listen to the comments. A fun knit. Enjoy yourselves.

Valerie C.

Don't be silly, you know it doesn't have to have a hood. No hood, no gnomey look! I was just *studying* EZ's Tomtens and contemplating one myself. She has a beautiful one, pictured on page 46 of TOK, which EZ said was her very favorite knitted item ever. The contrasting stitches on the inside were overcast, every stitch, making it reversible. Blows my mind! EZ said (in her journal) that she loved that coat/jacket so much she wanted to be buried in it. Yikes. Think you will love yours that much?

Why don't you look at Hannae Falkenberg's patterns for the construction? They are for adults, only in garter stitch, and whith almost no sewing!

Yikes! I knit that jacket in a kid size years ago and was bored out of my gourd with all the garter stitch. (It look darling on its intended wearer.) I recently started one for my 2 year old niece but gave up on it (body's all knit up too!). Some of us actually LIKE to purl, EZ.

Anyway, looking forward to seeing your mods. Of course on a man, this won't look too bad but on a grown woman with boobs, watch out!

i have a tomten for me otn using rowan's big wool. glad to see i'm not alone.

i LOVED knitting with beaverslide but i actually found it pretty itchy and harsh on the skin, no scratch problems for u?

reading what you've written about EZ's Totem makes my brain itch to make one up of my own. very excited to see your and Adrian's versions.

i love that standing-collar Totem from The Opinionated Knitter

Our favorite Garter stitch worthy piece of work is Sally Melville's Einstein Coat. "The Knit Stitch". Fabulous.

Can't wait to see this finished! It'd be great if you could post your modifications, since I'm planning to make one for myself, too!
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