This is going to be a slightly picture-heavy post but since I don’t post finished objects that are knit for the kids very often, I thought maybe you wouldn’t mind? I didn’t think so.
I was struck with an urge to knit the kids some Christmas sweaters this year, which I never do. I had originally purloined the idea from Jenny and then the idea kind of took on a whole life of its own. Without realising it, I kind of ended up wanting to knit something for all of us for Christmas since we aren’t doing gifts this year.
For James’ sweater, I asked him what he would like since he understands about colours and clothes now. He asked for “O-lee-o” which means Orange in toddler-speak. I asked him if it would be okay to add some blue to the orange. He informed me that this would not be okay. I then told him gently but firmly that it would have blue. He ignored me at that point so either he was super mad or didn’t care. I’m going with the latter since he’s been telling me all about his “Sl-oo-wee-oh” since it was finished and he was dying to wear it to the park today (Win!).
I can’t believe how lucky I was to find these two colours. They work perfectly together because the navy is just perfect with the loud pumpkin colour. I’m still marvelling at my good fortune with these colours.
Pattern :: Wonder Years Cardigan by Elizabeth Smith (The Brown Stitch) in size 5-6 years
Yarn :: Sweet Georgia Yarns’ Superwash Worsted in colours ‘Pumpkin’ (2 skeins) and unlabelled navy blue (1 skein) (both were from the seconds wall at the studio)
Needles :: 5.00mm circulars
Superwash yarn is always quite stretchy so I’m actually thinking about washing this again and re-blocking it. As you can see, it is a little big on James. Like quite big. He is currently wearing 4T and 5T but because I had enough yarn, I knit another size up. This was a tip I picked up from the Knitmore Girls – if you have the yarn, knit it bigger and they will wear it longer.
I did tumble dry it on low to see how it would ‘act’ in case it was ever thrown in by accident. I’m definitely not planning to machine wash and dry this regularly, which I rarely do with our superwash items except socks. It was fine so I won’t be worried if something were to happen.
I made no modifications except to add the stripes at the bottom of the sleeves since I knew I was cutting the second ball of Pumpkin close. I really didn’t want to buy a third ball of yarn for what might only be a few rows of knitting. I knit three striped in total, then started the cuffs. I knit the sleeves in the round although I thought about knitting flat and seaming for added structure. I’m thinking I’ll do that for Norah’s since this sweater could benefit from some more structure as it is so stretchy. Or a tighter gauge. But then I’d have needed more yarn … I also added a ‘purl ridge’ to the end and beginning of all the ribbing, which I really like the aesthetic of in many sweaters.
I also added a little bit of length in the sleeves which means we have to roll them for now. He’s going to grow again at some point and having too-short sleeves will mean this gets pushed to the back of the dresser drawer. I erred on the side of caution and added about 0.75” of length.
The last item that isn’t a modification on this sweater so much as annoying was the buttons. I needed 23mm buttons to complete the front band and try as I might, I could.not.find.anything.anywhere. Nothing. Nada.
The owner of my LYS was very helpful and I ended up buying unfinished wooden buttons. I gave them a very gentle sand and painted them with navy toll paints! I think I need to seal them if I want to ever wash the sweater again because toll paints aren’t water tight if left to soak. My dad, thankfully, has many clear stains and I’ll take them off and finish them properly one weekend when I’m not working.
If you follow me on Instagram, you will have noticed that I have already started Norah’s Christmas sweater. She is getting the same cardigan in different colours. It’s kind of fun knitting a smaller and therefore faster second sweater!
Are you knitting anything for Christmas? Do you enjoy or dread Christmas knitting? I’d love to hear your thoughts below!
Happy Knitting :)
All images © Rachel Smith Anderson