I bought some buttons to match some brightly coloured yarn. Then I decided that bright orange might not be the best colour for premature babies. So I compromised.
Fronts and back in one piece
I am knitting in two colours. The buttons will match the button band, but the colour scheme is a bit calmer. It is also more interesting to knit, even if there are more ends to sew in. The sleeves will have coloured ribbing.
Detail of inside
I have taken two photos of this work in progress. One of the right side of the body knitted in one piece as described in a previous post. I had to wind a second ball of wool, so that I could knit the second band. This would not have been necessary if I had used the pattern as written and knitted three separate pieces. The second photo is of the inside (wrong side) showing how the two colours are twisted together to make a neat join. Without twisting the yarn when changing colour, the two sections would have to be sewn together afterwards. This technique is used in picture knitting (intarsia).
A knitting pattern I use over and over again was published by Woman’s Weekly many years ago. It is a charity knitting supplement called Loving and Giving. There are patterns for a premature baby set, a hat and scarf set, fingerless gloves with a mitten top, an Oxfam top, a bed-jacket and bed-socks, men’s socks and a blanket made from squares.
I have not used every pattern in the leaflet, but I have used the premature baby clothes pattern more times than I can remember. A friend of mine, learning that I was knitting premature baby clothes, asked, “Who is expecting a premature baby?”
I explained that I donate the clothes to the special baby unit at the local hospital.
I used to knit Oxfam tops until I learned that the charity was unable to send all the tops they received and had to pay for storage of them. This situation may have changed. (Oxfam tops are T-shirts knitted in bright colours.)
The premature baby set consists of a cardigan, hat, mittens and bootees in three sizes. I do not always knit the cardigan. At present I have a partly completed set and plenty of yarn for more. I sometimes adapt the pattern to avoid side seams. As written the cardigan is made up of two fronts, a back and two sleeves. The button and buttonhole bands are a garter stitch border knitted as part of the fronts. More care is required with the knitting if the two fronts and back are knitted as a single piece, as in the photo. If mistakes are made with the buttonholes, for example, it takes longer to put them right than on a smaller piece of work. The extension to the bands is joined to the heads of the sleeves and the cast off edge of the back.
Fronts and back with bands and extensions
I also mentioned knitting avoiding a side seam in an earlier post.
I prefer to have my knitted items used locally than to send them to Knit for Peace. It is better for the carbon footprint. However it is good that there is an organisation, which matches knitted and crocheted items with those in need of them.
I enjoy knitting and find it a good leisure activity. My recent knitting projects have mostly been charity knits. For those of you, who may have been wondering, I finally found homes for my baby knits and the twiddlemuff.
When I offered to knit a sweater for a member of my family, I hadn’t anticipated such a big project. However, I wasn’t going to refuse outright to create something similar to the suggested picture. A compromise was required.
Detail of hem ribbing
Detail of neckline
Detail of raglan seam
Overview of front
A pattern I had used decades ago seemed suitable to adapt. The pattern was classic in style, but something more modern seemed to be required. Instead of a short 1×1 ribbed welt, I used longer 2×2 ribbing, which was echoed with a single layer neckline in 2×2 ribbing. The neckband was worked without a seam using a circular needle.
Instead of working the Aran pattern all over I restricted it to the front and back. After the matching ribbing on the sleeves, I worked the first row of the pattern and maintained an irregular rib throughout. The slip stitch pattern on the raglan seams was included to match the front and back.
The yarn was Hayfield Bonus Aran with 20% wool. The pattern was from The Aran Look by Patons No. 161.