Hi friends! We're winding down to the final knitalong weeks. This week, I'm going to go over blocking and seaming. Next week will be the final week, where we pick up stitches for the collar and knit that final portion of this sweater. Woo hoo! I'm excited to see them all come to life, a little sad to see this KAL come to an end though. Ok, let's get started on blocking. If you have finished the back panel, both front panels and both sleeves, then it is time to block your work. Do not seam your sweater before blocking. It's easier to block the panels first, then seam. 


For anyone new to knitting, blocking is the process we use to set the finished knitted piece into the correct measurements by getting it wet or steaming it. I use it to set curling edges to be flat and to spread open lace patterns. I'm not a big fan of heavy blocking because our yarn is so chunky - it can take a long time to dry AND I like the 'just off the needles' look as opposed to a flat pancake knitted look.

To get started, when you block, you'll need these supplies:

* pins, any type will do. I prefer ones that have a ball head so they don't get lost in my knitwear.

* a spray bottle full of water or a cup of water

* blocking mats, I used these. A towel also works great!

blocking supplies

Steps to follow:

Step 1) To begin, block your back panel. Start with the back bottom hem and pin out to specified measurements written on the pattern spec page, as best you can. You want to make sure your garter ridges are running strait across and not willy nilly. The center cable may dip down, as your can see on my sweater shown on the left here. You'll want to create an even horizontal line for your hem when blocking. See photo on the right. 

After your back panel is pinned. You can begin to spray or flick wanter onto your it. I prefer this method to fully submerging your panels. I pay special attention t the panel edges and get them the most wet. I don't tend to get the center as wet unless I feel it really needs it. I am a big fan of this blocking method but of course you're free to use any method you like.

Step 2) Repeat this process for both sleeves.

Step 3) For the front panels, I like to block the two fronts side by side. You could block them one on top of the other with right sides together if you’re short on space. The main thing here is that you want to make sure your front panels match and are mirror images of each other. The garter stitch ridge stripes should line up. Below is a photo of what mine look like during blocking.


You'll block these in the same way you did the other panels, paying special attention to the panel edges. 

Step 4) Wait for your panels to dry - hopefully only a day or 2. 


Seaming - a quick video to guide you through this!

Key things you'll need to seam your sweater: darning needle and embroidery floss or a strong yarn in a color that matches your sweater.

I recommend seaming your panels in this order: 

1- side seams first

2- all raglan armhole edges next

3- sleeve inseams last

In this video I go through the mattress seam stitch, a simple seaming stitch that works wonderfully for this sweater. We'll meet back here next week to knit the collar!