A Couple of Sweater Questions

Dudes: I'm so excited. My first ever sweater is almost finished. Well actually, it's my third sweater. The first was an utter failure and is in a pile in the back of a closet somewhere. The second didn't fit and went to my nephew. However, this one fits and looks FAB!
Here are my two issues that I'm hoping I can get guidance on:

1. The bottom of the sweater is knit on 5s and the body and sleeves are knit on 6s. I didn't do the two sizes smaller thing because I don't like the bottom of my sweaters too tight. However, I don't like loose cuffs. I'm thinking that I should do the cuffs on 4s. Do you think it will look too awkward?

2. This is also my first time blocking a sweater. I read somewhere that you can wash your sweater in cold water on the gentle cycle and then put it on your woolly board to block. I'm hoping this is an approved method because it would be super easy. If not, is it the old and wash and then roll up in towels?


Buckus Maximus


Bill's picture

could you knit a small swatch of the #4 ribbing?
I suspect it will be just fine!

vsidart's picture

For a first blocking attempt, I'd bypass the washer all together and just use one of the "soak" type products out there... We like Eucalan, but I've used several others as well with great success. This isn't the moment to discover that your wool doesn't like the machine!

QueerJoe's picture

1. US4 needles vs US5 needles will hardly show a difference I bet...I'd go forward with confidence using US4 needles for the cuffs.

2. I would HIGHLY discourage you from washing your sweater in the machine...even on a gentle cycle with cold water...better method is to fill your washer with warm water, add a little conditioning shampoo and just let it soak...no agitation. Then let the machine spin the sweater. You may want to re-fill the machine with warm water to rinse the shampoo and let the machine spin out all the excess water again. The key is no agitation, no change in water temperature and no harsh chemicals...all factors than can felt wool. After that, the woolly board blocking would work out fine.

steve kadel's picture

at that small a guage, i don't think the 4s will be a problem. agree with above on blocking

all i know of love, is love is all there is

we put birds on things

Shibaguyz's picture

1. I have done similar on all of our sweaters for the same reason.
2. if you don't have a washer you can stop and start and drain (like some older front loaders), soak it in a tub then use your hand-dandy Sham-WOW to dry it. We started rolling my fo's and Jason's handspun in the Sham-WOW a while back and it is fab!

talk to you soon...
The Shibaguyz

talk to you soon...
The Shibaguyz

grandcarriage's picture

LOL! I love it. A new use for the Sham Wow! I love the Shibas. I used to work at a show kennel with Basenjis. Shiba's are like much fuzzier basenjis. Lovely dogs and that's a great picture of you two.

Joe-in Wyoming's picture

Have to bow to greater wisdom than mine on laundering sweaters. However, I am looking forward to photos. -- Books, knitting, cats, fountain pens...Life is Good.

Books, knitting, cats, fountain pens...Life is Good.

No one will ever notice the cuff and waistband were done on different size needles. I do that trick all the time due to my own large waist line. and I like tight cuffs. As for blocking I dont really block anything. I dont use purewool that much, I prefer a machine washable and dryable wool. Looking forward to seeing the sweater when finished.

grandcarriage's picture

I like snugger cuffs as well, so #1 sounds fine.

As far as 2 goes, I have a commercial steamer, BUT... If you've been careful to keep you knitting clean as you work it...You can also just take a really good steam iron and steam block it. (Press very gently and inundate the fabric with the steam... Pin as usual or use your wooly blocks. OR. You can just mist it heavily with a plant mister and run the iron over the surface to convert the mist to steam: I do this when I want the sweater on my body instead of drying in my flat for days.

Joe-in Wyoming's picture

Of course, we all know better than to try to iron the fabric while it is ON your body. LOL -- Books, knitting, cats, fountain pens...Life is Good.

Books, knitting, cats, fountain pens...Life is Good.

Buck Strong's picture

You guys rock! Thanks so much.

"A man may fight for many things. His country, his friends, his principles, the glistening tear on the cheek of a golden child. But personally, I'd mud-wrestle my own mother for a ton of cash, an amusing clock and a sack of French porn." Blackadder

To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be back in Eden, where doing nothing was not boring-it was peace.
~Milan Kundera