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  • theknottingway

A Sweater Recipe

Ever since I've unraveled that sweater dress over the summer my son has been itching for me to knit with it. Periodically, he grabs one of the balls and brings it to me asking what I'm going to make with it. He really likes the color and I told him I would use it to make him a new sweater.

Welcoming my son's input, I asked him how he'd like his new sweater to look. Together we decided on pockets and a hood. The pockets were important to him. He needs a way to keep all of his nature treasures safe after all! I'm sure parents of small children can relate. There are always bits of interesting pinecones, rocks, or sticks in all of the pockets of my household. The hood was my suggestion and seemed easier than fussing with a hat. It will also have buttons, since I thought this a practical way for him to master this skill.

Knit child's cardigan featuring buttons, hood, and pockets.  The blue and green variegated yarn stands out against the white backdrop of a porch swing.

I wanted an easy to wear and knit pattern, nothing fussy. The yarn itself has a lot of interest because it is a variegated blue and green, therefore an intricate pattern would be easily overwhelmed. Also, my son is hard on all of his clothes and I feel a simple pattern will be less likely to snag and easier to spot clean. I decided on a basic stockinette with a two inch wide two-by-two garter stitch border on the bottom. Stitches will be picked up along the front for a button band and along the edge of the hood and knit in the same two inch wide border.

This should be a fairly straight forward sweater to knit, the pockets, hood, and button band being the most difficult parts, but not too much so. The sweater will be knit from the neck down, starting with a provisional cast-on so that stitches can be picked up later for the hood. It will have raglan sleeves and be close fitting without body shaping. The pockets will be set in.

Knit hooded child's sweater showing button and button hole placement technique.  Sweater knit in a blue and green variegated yarn.

While researching ways to add button holes I came across this article at Gathered. It provided a lot of practical information and offered solutions to several common problems. My favorite tip was to not only plan and mark spots for the button holes but simultaneously mark where the buttons would go. That way when you are done knitting the button band, the spot is already marked and the buttons will line up correctly with their corresponding hole and be straight. It really made sewing those buttons a breeze! I will certainly be using this technique again.

This will be the perfect sweater for my son! What features would you include in your perfect sweater?

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