Exquisite Buttonbands: Part II

Today’s buttonband is one that I racked my brains over for a good couple of months when trying to elegantly finish a cardigan made with lovely Malabrigo laceweight.  In this case I wanted to make a double-knit band that would avoid sewing finishes of any kind due to the propensity of Malabrigo’s single strand to felt.

This method involves picking up the band (using Catherine Lowe’s crochet hook pick up method) and alternating picked up stitches with yarnovers to create the basis for double knitting,  You then knit the desired length of the band in double knitting and bind off.  Both a right side bind off and a wrong side bind off have attractive attributes so I suggest swatching both and seeing which you prefer.  In this case I used a wrong side bind off because I liked the purl bump accents in a yarn of this gauge.  In this case, the body of the sweater was knit at about 7 sts to the inch on a size 6 and the band was knit on a size 1.

As for the buttonholes, I took one of Catherine Lowe’s buttonholes from the Ravelled Sleeve that is recommended for use with ribbing and adapted it for use in double knitting.

All in all, I am very pleased with this band.  The only flaw is that I did not pick up enough stitches at the beginning of the v-neck (something Lucy Neatby discusses in detail in her video) and therefore the area puckers slightly.  Remember that you need extra stitches in your band at a stress-point of a garment like this in order for it to lie flat.

If you want to actually create a completely enclosed edge by picking up on one side of the and fastening the yarn down with a bind off on the wrong side of the fabric you might consider Kate Davie’s Steek Sandwich and Catherine Lowe’s Couture edging outlined in the Ravell’d Sleeve.

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