baby hydrangea sweater

September 21, 2014

I bought this yarn on a lark and knit this sweater on a lark.  I really just wanted to try out the yarn, Malabrigo Arroyo, a new to me yarn, which felt fantastic in the skein.  I rarely buy variegated yarn, and am pretty good about not buying yarn without a specific project in mind.  But you know how you just sometimes walk out of the yarn store with a faint sense that you have no idea why you made a purchase?  I took it home and thought, wait, it's variegated, I'm not a fan, what's up?  And what on earth can I do with a single skein? (Baby sweater always seems to rescue the single skein and I love love love knitting teeny baby sweaters anyway.)

It was only after I cast on that I realized why I was so drawn to this: for the last month I have been drying hydrangeas, heaps and heaps, and the melange of colors must have spoken to me.  So very hydrangea-ish and purty.

Arroyo is one of those big-sigh yarns.  It's so lovely to knit; so soft and well behaved.  Each stitch will bounce into place properly and practically salute you, so eager it is to do the right thing.  The stitches are very even, and if you have a problem achieving even tension in stockinette, I don't think you will have a problem with this, it takes care of all that on it's own.  I doubt it's needle fussy, but it loved my Caspians.  The skein is 335 yards, just enough to knit a 3-6 mos. size baby sweater.  The yarn is machine washable in cold, but must pat flat and let dry in the shade.  I broke my own rule as I really prefer baby knits to be machine washable AND dryable, but, oh well, rules, sometimes they are annoying and need to be ignored.  

If you hate DPNs as much as I do, here's a tip:  I knit this little sweater top down and in the round.  When I get to the separation of the sleeves, I put the sleeve stitches on a stitch holder until the body is done.  When I go back to the sleeves, I cast on one stitch at each end, knit them back and forth flat, then use those extra two cast on stitches for seaming.  This avoids the dreaded DPNs!  Also, this is the fastest little sweater to make, great to knit stripey with extra bits of yarn languishing in your stash.  Find out how to do that here.  Would you believe me if I told you I knit this in one night?  True.  No, thinking back it must have been two nights.

Edited 9/22:  My friend Cindi said her experience with Malabrigo is that it pills like crazy.  Agree, that's an understatement for Malabrigo Worsted.  Everyone raves about that stuff because it's so soft, and while it is, before I was even done with my garment it looked ratty and worn, worse than pilling.  I was hoping that since Arroyo was superwash it would not have that problem.  I'll ask the mother to get back to me (if she can remember!).  If any reader has used this yarn I'd love to hear from you. xo

My links

Malabrigo Arroyo at Webs and Jimmy Beans


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  1. It turned out pretty. And thanks for the tips on the sleeves.

  2. How lovely. It looks so cozy and comfy ; )

  3. LOVE the colors! Hydrangeas are some of my favorites! Did you really knit this in only 2 nights? I've never knitted a baby sweater but, if it's that easy, maybe I'll try! I'll keep your notes in mind!

  4. Thank you for the tips - it looks fabulous

  5. Perfect sweater for dried hydrangeas! My experience with malabrigo is that it pills! Badly. Any sign?

    1. Cindi, so true! My experience for Malabrigo Worsted exactly. I was hoping that since Arroyo was a superwash it would no have that problem. I edited my post to include this and to see if any reader has any experience with this yarn. xo

  6. that sweater is SO pretty! Malabrigo does pill like crazy, but you can get a Lilly Brush or a Gleener, and you can de-fluff it. That helps. But you have to be disciplined about sweater upkeep to keep a Malabrigo sweater in top form.

  7. Beautiful sweater...but, yes, Arroyo pills terribly! I just saw a toddler wearing the sweater I had made for him and it was a mess...unfortunately that means I won't be using this lovely yarn anymore!

  8. Adorable sweater in beautiful colors.


  9. Proof positive that inspiration is all around us! It's beautiful!!! Two short nights, huh? You are SO good!!!

  10. What an adorable baby sweater. The variegation turned out beautifully with no pooling. I always dreads pooling, and I too dont like knitting sleeves on dpns either. I will remember your tip for adding the extra 2 sts to knit them flat.

  11. You could always try Magic Loop for the sleeves. It works very well for small circumferences, although being attached to a whole little sweater might make it a bit cumbersome. Might be worth a try though if you hate seaming. Such a tragedy about the pilling. One thing though, babies don't wear their clothes for very long, so maybe all it would need is one shaving at the end of its run for each recipient, just enough to tidy it up for the next baby in the family. (That colorway is just gorgeous. No wonder you couldn't resist it!) Chloe


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