September 23, 2004


Why, it's a finished baby sweater!

[Click here for a BIGGER view.]
[And don't forget to peek at the back!]

And the baby gift is completed! A fluffy baby sweater with very clever construction: The front piece is basically just a rectangular piece of fluffy yarn, and the back piece is an extra wide piece in a finer gauge yarn that wraps around the sides to the front. I've never seamed a sweater with this kind of construction before, so putting it all together was like working a jigsaw. As for finishing, the sweater has buttonbands at the back, so I didn't knit the neckband in the round. I picked up stitches along the neck, purled the first row so we'd have a charming little half ridge of garter at the edge, and then worked the neckband ribbing back and forth. [Footnote: If this sweater did not have a closure at the back, I would have knit the neckband separately and sewn it on using free-loop backstitch because babies have such adorably huge noggins and my cast-on edges are stretchier than my bind-off edges.] After the neckband was completed I picked up stitches for the buttonbands and knit them on. And of course, I documented all of this for you in a slideshow because we all like pictures:


Pattern details: Pattern from Phildar's Layette Hiver 2004 using yarns Oxygene and Brumes, and 2.5mm and 3mm needles. I knit the sweater in size 18-24 months so that the recipient can get a good amount of wear out of it. Even though all that ribbing on 2.5mm needles is like a valium at times, I enjoyed knitting this sweater and working the finishing details on it, and I learned some new methods of shaping in the process. The big plus: The baby's mother was really happy to receive it!

P.S. My favorite baby gifts to knit and give are now (in the order shown) sweaters, hats and toys. I tend to procrastinate when I knit booties, so I haven't been knitting those as gifts as much as I used to.

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48 comments to this entry:

Love that sweater - how unique with the fluffy yarn front!! Who wouldn't have been happy to receive it!!
Cute, cute, and cute some more!!
How do you make everything look soooo cute!! I've already checked like 5 times today to see if you updated. I have to admit I watch with bated breath to see each new item you knit (nope - don't have a life). Also, we visited the Alsace this past weekend and I shopped in my very first Phildar shop! And bought Coton N°8 or something and made a bucket hat in one night (the cutest ever - it's Murphy's law that this happens after the Bucket-along). I wanted to write you immediately, but didn't want you to think I had no life. So, now that I'm out of the Loser Closet...... :) I'm also a brand-spanking-new Phildar Phan! I want to go back to Ribeauville next weekend for more Phildar and Chevre Chaud. Once again, major props on the babe(y) sweater!
The furry yarn gives the sweater a teddy bear look. For some reason I think it needs to be coupled with a hat with ears. (I know, scary sugggestion... it's still early here in the US and I haven't had all my coffee yet). Very cute.
What an interesting sweater construction! What are your favorite toys to knit? I'd love to see them.
awsume becky! thats some motivation for me to finish up the back side of my sirdar sweater for my nephew.. I put it aside for bigger projects but I know how fantastic I will feel if I get the sleeves done! I may come bothering you with seaming questions when the time comes :) I got the book you reccomended the finishing one.. so hopefully I can do it myself!!
Interesting construction, and very cute result!
What a sweet sweater I can just inagine a snuggly a fluffy sweater would make an already loveable baby even more huggable. Great job as usual!
You did it !! I have almost finished my baby dress (taken from the same pattern). I will put my photo as soon as possible on my blog. Our approach are different because I knit (or knitted ?) the neckband and the buttonbands separately. I have to sew them to the dress ... Aaaarrgh I need a Doliprane.
Hey Becky, Cute sweater! It looks soft and warm. I'm quite sure both baby and mommy are going to love it. So what's next on your knitting needles? I know that you are taking a break, but what's the fall/winter line up looking like? BTW, I decided to make the red sweater you made for Captian D. for both of my sons (4 yr. old and 11 mos.). King Drop Stitch will be 1 next month (the baby). :)
hi - did you short row the shoulders for a smooth line. i just did that on a sweater that i have been putting off due to fear of finishing. it's so beautifully (i must say) knit and it has such exquisite detail that i wanted the shoulders to be perfect. i short-rowed but one can see the wrap stitch and i'm going to take it apart. would love to know your technique if you've short rowed shoulders. it's all about the wrap stitch. what is the good of no hole if one can see the wrap stitch on the right side. ick. ps: due to major, major techno difficulties i didn't start the blog yet. will do it soon, i know - soon as i get my own computer up and running again.
Now that is one wonderful baby sweater! It looks so cuddly and comfortable, that's going to be a happy baby and mom :) Great colors too!
I like the rather sophisticated design for a baby. That is really nice.
That is so adorable - what a creative piece! I love how you mixed the different fibers! Such a lucky baby to get such a cool sweater from the crafty rabbit!
Any baby (and mommy) would love to get and wear this fluffy confection!!
i just love the construction of that sweater. the way the back it worked to fit the front panel is just too cool. and the mixture of textures looks great together. your slideshow details are fantastic. the pieces are wonderful even before seaming.
Wow, I go away on vacation for 2 weeks and you have 2 completed projects! Girl, you work fast! What an adorable and interestingly constructed baby sweater! I guess you just have to have faith that the puzzle pieces will work out?
Woo... very nice and very cute! I'm now into baby knits since the arrival of my nephew :o)
that front looks really soft and squishy. I like the button bands in the back...great job!
Oooh nice work (as always) thats a very cute little jumper ...lucky baby.
Too. Cute. May he wear it well.
Incredibly cute! What a lucky baby and mommy!
Ooooh fluffy and lovely! I can just imagine a little fat baby in it! That's an interesting construction as well, never seen anything like it before.
I am so excited to see this knit! I was going to do the very same sweater, but the yarn was impossible to get so I opted for the odd pullover with the ribbed front pocket and shoulder buttons in bright orange (brown fuzzy pocket). I think I mistranslated the French shaping instructions on this one, though, as the top of both the front and back look a bit off, so a frogging I will go tonight. Still, your sweater is fab and keeps me determined to fix my own knitting to look as clean as yours!
Love the wild textural contrast! From the back, it's Bonpoint, and from the front it's Oilily! Great project. And I love when you talk about free-loop backstitch. xoxo Kay
WooHoo! The sweater looks great! I knew it would. :) So glad that you got it done and delivered to the very lucky (and I'm sure chuffed to have such a gifted and gifting friend) mum and baby. Funny story- I have decided to make baby sweaters for all my friends' new babies as they arrive wether the mothers be knitters or not. No one felt it would be appropriate to knit anything for my son since I am a knitter myself! Funny, eh? :) Congrats on another fabulous FO!
Thanks everyone! I always feel doubly reassured about the gifts I knit when I get other knitters' feedback. P.S. to Evelyn: Welcome back! Kathleen: Welcome to the World of French Yarns. I never would have thought to use Coton No. 8 for a bucket hat. Very clever of you! P.S. I love, love, LOVE chevre chaud. My husband makes it all the time for us to eat with salads. Even during the sweltering summer months we'd fire up the oven in the evening and have us some chevre chaud. Yum! Theresa: I wonder if the leftovers would be enough for a matching teddy bear hat? ;-) Lauren: I've discovered I like knitting colorful caricatures of animals, like the chicken I recently knit and the ostrich I knit a couple of years ago. You can see them by visiting my gallery page. Liz: I've got lots of things planned for this fall and winter. Some jackets for my husband and son, some Rowan things and a Noro/Debbie Bliss cardigan for myself. Probably something Phildar, too. (Still trying to decide on what, though.) P.S. King Drop Stitch has got to be the cutest nickname, ever. Phyllis: I always short-row shoulders that are slanted, and I agree that it makes for very neat shaping. You can find excellent illustrated instructions for wrapping stitches for short rows AND hiding short row wraps in Nancie Wiseman's Book of Finishing Techniques and in Vogue Knitting.
That is so cool - I'd never thought of using different types of yarns in the same garment! It opens up all sorts of interesting possibilities.
Thanks! Cute nickname, but when he gets close to your projects, you instantly see why its so fitting. :)
Babies have big noggins... no kidding! Imagine if as adults our heads were proportioned the same as a baby's head is to it's body (scary thought - I think I've had too much time to think today). The sweater is adorable, very different design from the typical baby stuff out there. I'd love to see it on an actual baby now! (amazing rabbit that you are, I just know you could pull that request from your magical hat...)
I have been in love with this sweater since my copy of Layette arrived! No one I know that is pregnant at the moment is finding out gender so I will have to wait (possibly quite some time) for the right opportunity to knit this one myself. Yours is just gorgeous!
What clever construction! Beautiful job, Becky :)
As always you've done an amazing job. The baby sweater looks both very snuggly and very classy. I enjoy reading your blog very much-it inspires me to try different colors and often reminds me that simple colors can make a pattern seem "classic" even if the design is a little unusual.
It's lovely! I love it when it looks so simple but with a twist to it. Brava fluffa!
Bonjour Becky! Wow, this is a great little sweater! I would love to make it, too! Just curious, where did you learn all your finishing techniques? I feel so medium about my stinks to waste a really nice knitting project on crappy sewing! Please please let me know where I can learn to be the Finishing Goddess that you are!!!!
What a cute sweater! I love the unusual construction and the fluffy front section! Really sweet and much more sophisticated than the nephew stuff I've been knitting. I'm going to have to take a look at the French toddler patterns I think!
that sweater is the cutest! the baby will be so comfy and happy wearing it, i'm sure. i'm not too keeon on baby booties either, although they really are horribly cute: a couple of weeks ago i had to make FIVE booties to get a pair that matched ...
There you go again, with another hit! Such a sweet sweater, and what an intriguing design, and beautifully executed as always. I'm a big fan of baby knits -- that was what brought me back to my needles after years of -- well, let's just say, years of doing other stuff. Right now I'm buzzing through a dark green cashmere cable cardigan for my nephew's b'day (lucky boy!). Thanks for brightening my day!
becky, you always make it seem like you make sweaters overnite. you must be made of knitting magic!
what a great sweater! very original and still as cute as everything you make. i swear, girl, you have some speedy hands. :) i also wanted to let you know i moved my blog to a typepad server - and i promise to post more regularly now that it's already getting chilly here in nyc. :) come by and check it out sometime! :)
Okay, that sweater is much cooler than most of my sweaters. Phildair is the *coolest*. And you, of course, did a fabulous job -- it looks perfect! The combo of a skinny rabbit and a Phildar pattern always makes me happy Yay fluffy sweater! What a beautiful gift!
I like that fluffy yarn. How cute. Nice construction, and thanks for the slide show ;-)
oh that is tres cute! but wow, what bizarro construction! I think I would have gone mad just trying to get that puppy together - as always you did great. One question, is the neckline still stretchy when it's buttoned up?
Becky me encantaría ver tus revistas!!! Mañana voy a scannear la Para Tí para que la puedas leer mejor. Con todo gusto te la envío... Debo advertirte que vas a encontrar que los modelos son todos para tejer en 2 agujas, como se teje acá. Pero no creo que tengas problemas para adecuarlos a tu manera de tejer! Un besito grande! Joji
oh so cute! very interesting design -- not finding any Phildar around me & after seeing so much you knit from them, I must check it out!
Such a nicely finished sweater. I can't sew well, especially with such thin baby yarn. I so envy your ability to pay attention to such details.
Thanks for the kind comments! A lot of you have further pinpointed what made the sweater such a nice thing to knit and give: It's in typical baby boy colors and has a simple stitch pattern, but its clever construction and use of novelty yarn gives it a sophisticated twist. Re the neckband: It's stretchy (without flaring out) even when buttoned up. Even though I didn't sew it on using free-loop backstitch, I picked up the same number of stitches as required in the pattern so that helped, too.
that is absolutely the most precious sweater ever. i love your site, it is one of my favorite knitting blogs to visit! i am attempting my first sweater (as soon as i turn in my masters thesis, of course) and love looking at your site for inspiration. Thanks!

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