The first time that I made this sweater for Ella, my cousin’s new baby, I used cashmere. Her mom and dad work in Manhattan and I thought that it would be great for the little one to greet NYC in style. Cashmere is wonderfully soft and warm, the perfect fiber to surround a new baby. However, a cashmere sweater is not the most practical garment for an infant. After it’s been hand-washed once or twice, it might be stored away even before it’s been outgrown. So Ella will also receive this practical version of her little sweater. It’s larger, but it’s still soft and pretty. And worked in mercerized cotton, it’s sturdy and machine washable, too.
I placed buttons on the top half of the cardigan to leave room at the bottom for a bulky diaper, and I knitted the ends of the sleeves in seed stitch to make a nice cuff. As adorable as Ella looks in her cashmere cardigan, I hope that she’ll get lots of wear from this easy-care cotton version.
Provence 100% mercerized Egyptian cotton
Provence is a mercerized cotton yarn with a subtle sheen and an interesting structure. It’s a three-ply yarn, each ply of which is formed from 3 finer plies twisted together. The multi-ply structure of the yarn gives it a slight ripple on the surfacethough it knits up into a smooth, soft fabric. It comes in 47 colors brilliant colors. And because it’s machine washable it’s an especially good yarn choice for children’s garments.
Learn more about mercerized cotton.
How big or small to make a buttonhole depends on the size of the buttons you plan to use on your sweater. For peace of mind, work a sample buttonhole on a swatch, using the yarn and needles required. When shopping for buttons, bring this swatch with you or adjust the buttonhole technique to comfortably fit your pre-selected buttons.
The button should fit snuggly in the hole. If it slips out too easily, make a smaller buttonhole. If it's difficult to get the button through the hole, make your buttonhole larger.
Learn how to make a bound off buttonhole.