Ambergris is a “curious substance” found in the bowels of sick whales, the perfume from which was used to make fine soap, candles, and perfumes. This pullover, initially published well before I began the White Whale books, was my first Moby–Dick–inspired garment. I styled it after a traditional fisherman’s sweater and incorporated the chains, ropes, and whale tails that first came to mind
when I revisited this novel.


1200 (1300, 1475, 1650, 1850, 2050) yds worsted weight yarn. Sample shown in Cephalopod Yarns Traveler (worsted weight; 100% super- wash M erino wool; 250 yds/4 oz per skein) in Archam.

Size 7 (4.5mm) 29-inch and 16-inch circular needles and set of 4 dpns, or size needed to obtain gauge

2 cable needles

6 stitch markers in two colors (4 in one color for cable charts, 2 in second color for side seams)

Stitch holder or waste yarn to hold unworked stitches

Yarn needle

Row counter (recommended)

Skills Used

Cables; picking up and knitting; seaming; circular knitting; twisted stitches


32 (36, 40, 44, 48, 52)-inch bust circumference. Pullover is meant to fit with 1 to 2 inches of positive ease. When only one number is given, it applies to all sizes.

Finished Measurements

34 (38, 42, 46, 50, 54)-inch bust circumference 24 (24, 26, 27, 28, 29) inches long


18 sts and 28 rows = 4 inches in St st. To save time, take time to check gauge.

Special Abbreviations

T1L: Twist 1 Left: Skipping next st on left-hand needle, purl second st through back loop and leave on needle. Knit first st on left-hand needle, then slide both sts from left-hand needle.
T1R: Twist 1 Right: Skipping next st on left-hand needle, knit second st and leave on needle. Purl first st on left-hand needle, then slide both sts from left-hand needle.

Pattern Note

The body of this pullover is worked in the round in one piece to the underarms, where the back and front are split and worked separately.
Waist shaping is worked through a combination of additional ribbing and decreases and increases at the side seams. The sleeves are worked in the round to the underarms, at which point the sleeve caps are worked back and forth. The collar edging is picked up and worked after the shoulder seams are sewn and the sleeves are set in.