I'm now into the heavy-duty knitting part of this tunic. I really like looking at the cables going in different directions in this sweater, and I'm also having a great time seeing pictures of some of your tunics grow as well! Have I made mistakes along the way? Well, I always do! But I tell my students that in order to be a good knitter, you have to be a good ripper. When I was working a couple of 3/3 cables instead of 4/4 cables in that center cable panel, back I ripped. I'm glad I did as it would have been one very uneven center cable if I hadn't fixed it.
After I finished the back I could have worked the front (which is identical to the back) between the sections that I marked off for it. Instead, I decided to work on one of the sleeves, so that we could look at how the sleeve grows from that original cable yoke strip. For the small size, I needed to pick up 46 stitches between areas marked for the front and back. I started with what will be my right sleeve and picked up my first stitch right next to the back. Unlike the back, the sleeve does not have a center cable, just 2 slipped stitches between the smaller cables as you can see in the picture.
The increasing at the sides of the sleeve is identical to the back. I wanted to get going on this sleeve to show something that will be very important to finishing the tunic and make the sleeves fit correctly. Some knitters who have done this tunic have had a problem with the armholes ending up much too narrow. After looking at some of the pictures of the finished tunics on Ravelry, I think the problem is in the finishing of the underarm seams. Before sewing up the side and sleeve seams, make sure to sew together the front and the backs to the sleeves along the areas where you first did all the side increases and ended up casting on stitches.
I have sewn the first of these 4 underarm seams here to show you, and once again I sewed them together with right side facing me. This seam will be under your arm and will give your tunic great shape and enough width.
My first sleeve is going very well, and I was surprised to see that after you do those first side increases and cast on stitches, that you just work evenly from that point on. Only the front and back flare, while the sleeves stay the same width all the way to the end. Now with the sleeves and the front to be finished, I will be keeping extra busy with the two weeks that will pass until my next post in the New Year. Thanks to those of you who have been answering (and asking!) questions, and I wish you all the best this season! Keep Knitting and Happy Holidays!