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Suprised during Repairwork

This week I got a chance to mend a beautifully knit cardigan.  The style was complex,  there were several different sorts of fiber and many colors of ecru.  The finishing work was loverly.

So the problem was that the neckline on this oatmeal-colored DK wool cardigan was a scoop front.  To finish it off, instead of a “standard ” ribbing, they had made this wonderful pleated ruffle with another lace-weight color of ecru.  To attach it, there had obviously been live stitched picked up off of the DK body.  And now, the three inches or so of the right front lace had separated from the boy of the sweater.

It was a sensitive repair.  Because of the way the lace would fall when the sweater was hooked shut  it was probable that the inside of the seam would show at times. I needed to graft live stitches, using the best match for yarn I could find.  And all this would be happening on the right front of a scoop neck – just where the cleavage might be, and where a languid hand might be poised during a coquettish moment.

Well, it seemed a bit much to charge the customer for an entire ball of yarn, so I went to my stash to find a match.  Look!  There was a  possible suspect in a swatch I had made for another purpose a few years ago.  Great!  No need to dig any further.

After picking up all the stray stitches on both sides, I decided not to do a graft, but to simply bind off the lace stitches, then sew them to the body as a general seam.  Wow, was I happy with the results!  Looking good!

As I was admiring the rest of the sweater for possible holes or seaming needed, I was really enamored of the workmanship. It had a princess seamline, knit in and not sewn in later.  It had pleats around the bottom put in a slipstitches.  I thought, “Wow!  this is really an heirloom caliber job!”

Then I noticed the commercial labels sewn into the back collar – Size S, Made in China.  Well, handmade for sure.  And no slouch either.

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