Gradiance Yarns

Bringing gradients to your knitting, crochet, and spinning

The Baby Cardigan from Hell

On the 26th of February I started making a baby cardigan.

A friend asked if I could make a baby Cardigan for a 3 month old that had just been born. She was it hand-knitted from real wool and was willing to pay good money for it.

A friend who appreciates the work of a hand-knitter. A rare thing indeed.

The loopy baby cardigan with another project I used for sizing in the background.

Now just over a month has passed, and if you’ve ever made a baby cardigan before, you are probably now wondering what on earth could possibly be taking me so long.

You see, the request came with one condition: that it be covered entirely by loops. Yes, I was asked to make a “loopy lou” cardigan for a baby.

Having no idea what one of these was, I did what most do and took to Google. Ah yes, a cardigan made with the loop stitch. No problem.

Naturally my next step was Ravelry: to source a pattern. Ah, problem. I could not find one. Not even an old pattern from the 80’s as my friend told me the style was from.

I’d have to design my own. Or “wing it” as it actually feels like.

So I cast on in a nice neutral undyed superwash merino fingering weight yarn.

My Swatch!

I even did a swatch! Like a real one that I measured. And I found an old baby cardigan I knitted and measured and made a few calculations for my new design.

Then I cast on for real. Really excited about this new design.

The yoke.

I made it through the yoke. The loop stitch was easy. A little slow, but easy nonetheless.

Next I moved some stitches on to spare yarn so that I could turn them into sleeves later on. I don’t know what this “scrap yarn” thing is people seem to mention.

Then the rest of the body. It has to be full length. So I carried on knitting the loop stitch. And knitting. And knitting. And knitting some more. Getting a little more tired of the loop stitch as I go along. But the end comes and a few rows of garter stitch for the hem and the body is done.

The garter stitch hem was a delight to knit.

Next sleeves. Now there weren’t many stitches for each sleeve and each one only needs 11.5cm of knitting. So I popped in the double pointed needles and thought to myself: almost done. Boy was I wrong.

I’ve so far completed 6cm of one sleeve. I now despise this thing. Loop stitch in the round. What was I thinking!? I loathe having to work on this horrid horrid project.

It is slow. It is fiddly. And the maneuvering to get the loop stitch completed is stretching the first stitch on each needle more than I am comfortable with. Evenings feel like torture trying to complete this thing. It is a soul sucking nightmare.

Other projects, patterns, and yarns are calling out to me. I’ll make you happy. I’ll keep you interested. But I just know if I even humour them I’ll never finish this thing in time.

Right now, I’m wishing for a miracle. Maybe the knitting elves will visit me in the night and complete the sleeves. Maybe the cat will eat it. Maybe the family will discover that the child is actually allergic to real wool and I can shove this blasted thing into the depths of the coat cupboard never to be seen again!

OK maybe not that last one. Wool is too lovely. And so I must persist and test the limits of my patience.

Will I finish this. Yes.

Will I charge my friend for it. No. I’ll have a new design.

Will I share the pattern with you. Yes. I’ll put some kind of warning about it being a soul destroying project though.

Will I charge any other friend who asks me to make them one. Yes. One million pounds (plus cost of yarn and comfort food).

Leave a Comment

    • Knitaway1111
    • 11th July 2017
    Reply

    It looks great and your friend will appreciate it I’m sure. Nice to have something to grow into. Well done in persevering Sam. Perhaps I shouldn’t actually say but I have an original 70s pattern for coat and hat in this stitch that I made for my daughter (up to 18mths old). Loved it.

      • GradianceYarns
      • 11th July 2017
      Reply

      Thank you. She was very happy with it. WOW! Up to 18 months – that is an even more impressive feat for this stitch pattern! Congratulations!

    • RW
    • 30th June 2017
    Reply

    A 3 month old that had just been born? 🙂

      • GradianceYarns
      • 30th June 2017
      Reply

      Absolutely 🙂 That wasn’t my best English! The baby had just been born, and the cardigan was needed for when it would be 3 months old.

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