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Remember the ballet surplice? It is finished, and in use. I think it’s edible. And, despite her initial protests, Nelly seems to like it, don’t you agree?

After all my research about blocking I ended up sewing the pieces unblocked and then wet blocking it once it was all done. The finished surplice was looking a little grubby so a wash seemed sensible. The hardest part was finding a place for it to dry, spread out and undisturbed.

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Do you remember that I knitted the body in one piece? I cast on the fronts and back all in one go and, after the ribbing, worked about ten rows on left side only, then the same on the back and the right side, to make the hole for the tie to feed through. To close the hole I joined the whole lot up again by knitting across both parts and then carried on as one piece. I divided it up again at the underarms, into the two fronts and the back, to shape the armholes.

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I love it that there are no seams up the sides. It looks better. And, since I am not terribly fond of sewing seams (well, I’m not great at getting them looking perfect) it was lovely not to have to sew up something else at the end!

Try it! You could do it with cardigans too. Cast on one side, then the back and the other side. Just check, before you start, that the ribbing is going to work out and adjust the number of stitches if you need too. You can always increase or decrease a stitch or two after the bottom band if you’ve added or dropped some at the beginning.

Also, watch out for increases at the sides, and decreases at the front, if there are any. If your pattern calls for lots of casting on and off as you knit up the body, you might find it helps to write out the pattern as one piece, before you start.

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A final word about the yarn. It is Rowan’s Cashsoft Baby DK in Pixie. The colour is just like coconut ice, the colour of wee ballerinas. And, to touch, ahhh it is so super duper soft and squishy. Perfect for keeping littlies cosy and lovely for us to cuddle!

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