f.o.: the dude sweater.

It’s hard to believe I finished this Knitter’s Dude by Andrea Rangel back in February 2021 and am just sharing it here, now. Because this cardigan, it was a triumph.

I knit this one for Doc as a Valentine’s Day gift and boy did it test my skills because it was my first ever steek. I had to cut into that beautiful work, friends. Yes, cut it right down the middle. For those of you that aren’t deep into this craft like me, you essentially knit about a 2 inch thick set of extra stitches in the front so that you can do your color work in a tube (it makes it easier if you don’t have to purl / do color work on the backside of the garment). Once you’ve completed the sweater, you crochet a reinforcement line down the front of what will be each button band and then you…just cut up the center. Viola. You have a cardigan.

The most important thing to know is you have to use sticky, untreated wool for your steek to hold. And you’ve got to be doubly sure of your crochet chain reinforcements before you cut because once you take scissors to garment, there’s no going back.

The other thing that really challenged me with this one was fit. Because of the techniques used, you can’t really “try it on for size” and doc is a big guy–broad chest and shoulders, tall. So I did a whole bunch of measuring and hoped for the best. Plus, when you block sweaters, the wool expands and often grows, so you have to be careful in understanding your fiber.

This Dude Abides was knit up using a more budget friendly untreated wool–Knit Picks Simply Wool Bulky in wendy for the main color way and winnie and coal for the contrasting color work. If you are looking for a pure wool that doesn’t break the bank and holds up really well, this is a workhorse and I’d knit with it again in a heartbeat.

Of course, my project notes are here at ravelry. Should I make one for myself? What do you think of my first steek attempt? Successful?

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