In case you can't tell what it is, it's the Emelie cardigan by Elin Berglund. I've had this in my queue since this time last year when the pattern was released. The simple yet elegant design really caught my eye, and when I found out that it was knit almost seamlessly from the waist up I knew that this was a pattern that I could definitely knit up. Once I got into a rhythm with the ribbing and (finally) got past it and onto the body, the cardigan is practically knitting itself. It also helps that I'm using new needles too, which I swear since switching to is making the cardigan fly off the needles!
The lace panels on the front really help to break up the monotony of the stockinette body. I don't think I've been bored once so far. When I reached the 13" mark on the body I was actually quite surprised that I had knit up the body portion so quickly and was ready to divide up the stitches for the armholes. Normally it takes me a month to knit up a cardigan and that is if I knit on it exclusively, so I was amazed that it took me only a week to knit the body. It was so easy that I kept going over the pattern to make sure I didn't mess up somewhere!
One of my favourite design details in this pattern is the fake side seams using Elizabeth Zimmermann's method for garments knit in the round. This technique helps to create structure and prevent sagging when the drape of the fabric is heavy. I've never used this technique before and was pleasantly surprised as to how easy it is and how polished it can make a seamless garment look. I think this is something I will definitely use again and will try to incorporate when knitting another cardigan or sweater in the round.
All that I have left to do is sew up the shoulders, pick up stitches for the sleeves, and knit the button bands. I'll admit that the idea of having to sew up the shoulders is what's stalling this project. It's been a while since I've had to use mattress stitch anything and will most likely have to wait until the Munchkin is either napping/sleeping or out playing hockey with Dad before I can tackle this step.
I'm also a little iffy about knitting the sleeves, seeing as to I can get "second sleeve syndrome" pretty darn fast. I'm considering picking up the stitches and knitting the caps on both sides before putting them both on either one long ass circular or on two circs so that I can knit them both at the same time. I figured this way I'd get the sleeves done faster and I can avoid the whole SS syndrome.
I'm dying to finish this and get it blocked and ready to go. Luckily for me the weather is still quite warm and I won't be able to wear this cardigan just yet. With less than a week left in August I'm really hoping that I can at least get this completed before the month is over. Wish me luck!