The latest Wonderful Wallaby is finished. Since this is my 8th, I wanted to pass along hints that I have gained from experience.
- Sizing—This pattern has been around for awhile. As written, it is definitely intended for a garment that is shorter than most of us wear them today, and it is also obviously intended to be worn as a sweater that replaces another inner top. If you live where a hoodie is most useful as an outer garment pulled on over other clothes on a chilly day, you will need to consider that in your sizing. My personal recommendation is to measure a garment that fits correctly, check your gauge, and make the size needed. Length is not a problem--just keep knitting. On the sleeves you will want to judge from the underarm down on another garment. For children, I make the sleeves extra long with tight ribbing. I’m going for 2 years of wear.
- Yarn—My personal favorite for child wear is Plymouth Encore. I get it from Webs.
- Edges—My personal preference, which sort of messes up the Wallaby signature—for the neck placket and the edges of the pouch pocket is to use seed stitch instead of garter. I like the firmer edge that it gives.
- Needles—This garment is a perfect place to use a circular needle set. I use cables as stitch holders all over the place with those little caps on the ends. I screw and unscrew tips as needed for needle sizes. I change cable lengths when needed.
- Do follow the pattern suggestion about marking your pickup row for the pocket stitches. It makes life much easier.
- I have made ties with a crocheted chain, with single crochet, with narrow seed stitch, and with I-cord. They all work, but the chain is a little skinny for convenience.
- Hood—The ribbing at the base of the hood makes the neck of the sweater fit very nicely. I always make the garter hood. I like the stretchiness and I like the contrast in texture with the body of the sweater. The pattern suggests that for a nice finish the seam in the top of the hood should be kitchenered. I did that on the first few that I made. However, since you are kitchenering a folded seam, you are putting together two furrows or two ridges. I just don’t like the way that looks. I began experimenting with #7 with stopping with a wrong side row, turning to the right side, folding the hood, and using a three-needle bindoff. It makes a slightly more pronounced ridge than the other garter ridges, but I think it looks much nicer than the other way, and it is still nice and stretchy.
What I will do differently the next time: I will put the underarm stitches on the sleeves and body on a firmer stitch holder than waste yarn. It is very hard to pick them up nicely when I get ready to weave them together.
Next up, a quick hat for my hubby and then a lovely pair of socks for ME, from some beautiful yarn my daughter’s family gave me for Christmas.