Saturday, February 24, 2007

Blue and yellow baby sweater: in stages

Patricia had really liked the Cobalt and Sunshine State Homespun, but rather than make that afghan in stripes, I decided to make a baby sweater in similar colors using Caron's Simply Soft, worsted weight. I will try to write down the recipe, but for now here is the start of it:

A blue and yellow striped back, 40 stitches wide and 35 rows of garter high (roughly a square). The two fronts are 24 stitches wide (a four stitch overlap), and the button holes were supposed to be smack in the middle of every fifth ridge, but they ended up being five ridges of garter apart. No matter, six buttons on the front is plenty for any mother to button. Better than seven. And I only had six.

Then I seamed the shoulders, stitching together 8 on each side. For the sleeves, I picked up 20 stitches on the front, one for the shoulder seam, and 20 stitches on the back. Decreased to 39 shortly after, and then decreased one on each side (a stitch in) every six rows. For the last stripe, I didn't do the decrease but left it at 29 stitches, and then did six rows of K1, p1 ribbing.

At one point, I had tried decreasing at a rate of every eight rows, but thought it wouldn't be enough. So the sleeve you see above (front right) was later ripped out, as I preferred the steeper tapering, front left (below).

Rebecca and Felix took back-to-back turns helping me. Or were they trying to fool me with their similar markings?

Oh, and things I learned with this project: Never, ever, try to do both sleeves at the same time when working in stripes unless you use FOUR skeins of yarn. Inevitably it will tangle into an impossible mess which will result in much swearing (possibly) and ultimate ripping out, or worse yet, cutting the yarn.

And decide the size of your project by considering when the baby is due and what season the baby might be able to fit your handmade garment. Hopefully, Patricia has air conditioning as this might fit perfectly in August.

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