Saturday, December 10, 2005

My first steek. And I survived. So far. I've been working on my first stranded sweater for 2 years, give or take. It is for Kurt and he is tall. His arms are longer than the extra large pattern suggests. There are a lot of stitches in this sweater. And it is my first steeked sweater.

I started by blocking my pieces. That part was easy enough. I had to use the top of the chest freezer to fit the pieces.

Tradition requires two rows of machine stitches when steeking. I started with a straight stitch "in the ditch" and then sewed a four stitch zig-zag just inside. I shortened the stitch length on both.

I received lots of great advice on steeking from my friends at Christian Artisans. However, I just couldn't see sewing such a loose fabric without stabilizer.

I added this part myself. I've had fabric jammed into the stitch plate too often in the past and I sure would have hated to see something like that happen to this sweater. Too many stitches, to much of my life invested. And Kurt really would like to get this sweater one of these days. He's watched me work on it for a very long time.

The stitching went well, though it was strange sewing something with so much give. My sewing did not distort my knitting however and I was very glad. I think this part worried me more than the actual cutting.

This part worried Kurt. He didn't know I intended to cut his sweater. He had never seen anything like this before. But, he couldn't have been too worried. He ended up sleeping through most of the process.

I asked Kurt to hold the baby for me for long enough for me to get through the steeking process. Kurt stayed up past his bedtime to help me. After all, he wants his sweater.

Aren't they cute?

I have a hard time getting "hands free" time that is not devoted to cooking, cleaning or laundry. As a result, I don't know how long it will take to sew the sleeves into the sweater.

Here I have completed the cut. Whew! I kept thinking I would accidentally cut another part of the sweater while I was cutting the steek. I've done that before when sewing other things.

I've torn away the stabilizer from the back. I like that it helps me see my stitches. I think it will make it easier to sew in the sleeves. We'll see.

I took Michael in for a well baby check yesterday. His doctor recommended moving him out of the bassinet and into the crib. So we did that today.

Apparently, moving him will become more stressful as he gets older. Here he is all tucked under the beautiful quilt June made for him.

This was his first nap in the crib. You should have seen the look on his face when he woke up and didn't know where he was.

Michael is now 10.5 weeks old. He weighs 15 pounds, five ounces. He is 24 and 3/4 inches tall. He is growing very fast. I just wish he would get some hair. I can't wait to see what color it will be. Most days I think blond. Some days it looks like it will be the red with which he was born. Right now, he looks mostly bald.

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