I finished knitting Lumley Monday night and pinned it together quickly. Hmm. Yesterday night I then crocheted the body together to get a better idea of the fit. Crochet is great if you want to seam up fast - and if you want to undo that seam really fast too. I used mercerised cotton in a contrasting colour on the seams - that way it is easy to rip out and it also lets me see how visible the eventual real seam will be and where I may have to fudge a bit due to row-gauge issues.
The back fits me perfectly but the fronts continue to give me pause for thought:
1) The fronts have a very neat fit because of my bust. The cardigan is wearable but I need to have D. take a photo of me wearing the cardigan before I can decide if the fronts are too neat for my liking.
2) The fronts curl a bit despite me steamblocking them last night before seaming. I may need to wetblock them. Alpaca can be a bit of a drama queen at times.
If the fronts do turn out to be too tight for my liking I have thought of two possible solutions - and I'd love to hear your input here. I can either:
1) rip the fronts down below the armhole shaping and do some short-rows across the bust area which will lend extra length and ease.
2) Or I can rip out both fronts and knit them a size up, although maintain the armhole shaping for the size I've already used for the back and sleeves. This'll give me extra coverage in front without sacrificing the front shaping.
You may wonder why I'm willing to rip things out and reknit a big chunk of this cardigan, but I actually really like the design and I want the finished cardigan to be one of my go-to garments. It has been a long time in the making already and I do not mind spending extra time getting it right.
I'll be crochet-seaming the sleeves today and then assembling the entire cardigan before I get D. to snap a few photos. Who knows .. it might be perfectly fine and the size issues may well just be in my head. Let's hope. Regardless, knitting this cardigan has been a real learning curve - not because it has been a difficult knit but because I've had to learn to be a far more precise and patient knitter. I'd like to think I'm all the better for it.