BSJ Stage 1

Welcome to the Baby Surprise Jacket Knit-Along! STAGE ONE

This is one of the most famous knitting patterns ever written.  Most knitters find Elizabeth Zimmermann’s original pattern interesting, challenging, and, above all, charming.  Remember:  Thousands have knit this sweater and you can, too! For an overview including materials, BSJ Welcome.

We are using a modified version of the BSJ Perpetual Knit-Along on Ravelry:

For lots of tips, see the BSJ Wiki:

Stage 1:  Rows 1-12

Information on different yarns and sizes:

IMG_0076 Source:  BSJ Wiki on Ravelry

IMPORTANT: Row counters are your friends. As are different stitch markers so you can tell the right side from the wrong side of the knitting.  Or put a safety in on the right side.  It’s really critical that you can tell which side of the garment you’re working on!

Be sure you have a way to know these two things

if you’re on a decrease row (usually the RS) or a knit-across row (usually the WS).

where the decreases are

Remember that a ridge is made up of two rows in garter stitch. For example 10 ridges is 20 rows. In the original pattern sometimes EZ refers to ridges and sometimes she refers to rows. Make sure you understand which one she’s referring to.

Slip or knit the first stitch? One thing to consider is that the shoulder seams (running wrist-to-neck along the top of the sleeves) is the cast-on joined to the 1st stitch of each row. If you slip the first stitch of each row, you’ll be seaming one slipped stitch to 2 cast-on stitches. If you knit the first stitch of each row, you’ll be seaming one stitch to one cast-on stitch.  Probably easier to simply knit the first stitch.

Cast On and follow the pattern for first 12 rows.

The 5th DECREASE row is different.  Inc 9 st evenly before marked stitch, do double decrease, knit to marked stitch, do double decrease, inc 9 st evenly to end.

It doesn’t matter if you have 2 stitches between increases, or 3 stitches, or if the increases are in exactly the same place on both ends of the row. You want to do 9 increases, and the usual decreases at both ends of the row. Do not squash all increases right next to each other because it’ll make the sleeve flare out funny. 

Need help?  Have any comments or suggestions?  Simply enter your comments or questions below.  There are several guild knitters monitoring this KAL to help with questions.

Categories: Knit-A-Long, Santa Cruz

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