Thursday, January 2, 2014

Baby cardigan finished!

I finished this baby cardigan for my niece just in time to get it in the mail so it could arrive before Christmas (we actually live locally close, but I didn't get it finished before Robert and I left to go visit my family, so I had to mail it).  I'm so happy with the way it turned out!  

I've been wanting to stretch my colorwork knitting skills, and this was definitely a good step in that direction.  The body and sleeves of the sweater knitted up quickly (after I decided on the size and started over), and the colorwork band was pretty easy.  The scary thing about this pattern was the STEEK! (Eek!)
 In the photo above you can see it before I cut it, with rows of hand stitching reinforcing it on either side.  Since this yarn is superwash (I wouldn't want to give a baby gift that can't be machine washed) and I had never done a steek before, I was worried about it unraveling.  The pattern (Trieste Cardigan from Interweave Knits Fall 2013) doesn't give much direction on how to reinforce it.  I decided to go with store-bought double-fold bias tape in a matching color.  I think it worked well and looks professional.  I machine-stitched the bias tape encasing the raw edges immediately after I cut the steek.  Then I hand-stitched the free edge to the inside of the sweater, and then picked up and finished the button band as directed in the pattern.
 I'm not totally sold on the button-hole-band construction - it has two layers, with matched yarn-over buttonholes pretty much floating free.  I'm kind of tempted to sew the buttonholes shut and sew in some snaps.  Here's the back of the sweater:
The pattern is the Trieste Cardigan by Kelly Straub from Interweave Knits Fall 2013.  It is the 6-month size.  The yarn is Knit Picks Stroll Sport (which is 75% Superwash Merino Wool, 25% Nylon) in Mink Heather and Blue Topaz.

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