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Beach Cardi Crochet-Along: Belt or Buttons and the Cardi is Finished!

May 13th, 2010

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Hello everyone! Well we’re finally here – the finishing steps of this cardi and then its ready to hit the beach :) I hope that you are happy with your results so far, whether you went with long sleeve or short, collar or hood, and you are ready to get this sweater done and ready to show off!

The first step of finishing the cardi is to work a single crochet edging along the ENTIRE sweater. This means around the back, up the slit, around and up one front, around the collar or hood, down and around the other front, then finally up and down the other slit – phew! I know it’s a long way to go, but it really gives that edge a beautiful finish.

Nice clean edges!

When working this edging, just be consistent about what part of the stitches you are working into and keep those single crochets nicely spaced – generally pretty close together – to keep in looking straight and even. Also, it can help to work 3 single crochet in the same stitch at each of the corners to help turn around them nicely.

At this point you should also weave in any ends, something I know I’ve been putting off until now! For weaving in my ends, I like to work in a diagonal out one way and back another, then I tug at the crochet fabric from all directions before trimming it, to make sure that end moves as much as it is going to! This way it is more likely to stay put for the long term. Also, where I joined a new ball of yarn, I work those two ends in different directions so I don’t end up with a bulky area in my sweater where I am trying to hide two ends together.

Also you will want to block the sweater now, if you haven’t already, following the same recommendations as the post about blocking explained. If you did block the sweater earlier like I did, it is still a good idea to block the sleeves and hood or collar area that hasn’t yet been blocked. The difference is this time use a spray bottle to wet only the areas being blocked, after you have them pinned into place, or experiment with steam blocking, again only steaming the areas you concentrating on. As with before, however, be very careful with applying heat to acrylic yarns, as you don’t want to melt the acrylic component with excessive heat exposure.

Let’s get to the more fun finishing work–how are you going to wear this cardi? Do you like the open, free look of it as is or are you thinking of some type of closure? Do you want the belt and belt-loops of the pattern or are buttons more your style?

For the belt, follow the pattern as written by making a strip repeating hdc’s until desired length. The belt loops are simply a chain of 12 that you then sew to the sweater of the body, although as an alternative you could make them directly on the cardi: simply join the yarn to the top of where you want the belt loop (around the waist) by working into a part of the crochet fabric, then chain 12, and finish by working a slip stitch where you want the bottom of the belt loop to be – no extra finishing required other than weaving in those ends!

Personally, I like the idea of a button instead, but again you have some choices. You can easily buy a button or toggle closure that you like – given the more open nature of this cardi, I envisioned a single closure below the bust line instead of a full button band, but the choice is yours! Alternatively, instead of buying a closure, you can crochet one! Again working from the Moderne Jacket pattern, follow the (slightly modified) button instructions:

Rnd 1: Ch 2. Work 6 sc in 2nd ch from hook; join with sl st in first sc.
Rnd 2: Ch 1, 2 sc in each sc around; join with sl st in first sc – 12 sc.
Rnd 3: Ch 1, (sc2tog) 6 times; join with sl st in first st. Fasten off leaving a long end. Weave end tightly through rem sts. Flatten button slightly and stitch through all thicknesses to secure. Sew button on Left Front.

I worked a crochet chain loop for the “buttonhole”: Join yarn on the side opposite the button placement, chain 8 (or the correct amount for your button size) then work a slip stitch into same stitch as the join to connect the loop and weave in the ends. The result? A different, yet simple way, to finish your cardi!

I guess that wraps up this crochet-along! I hope you are all happy with cardis and have learned some new things in the process. I know how much I have enjoyed reading your comments and questions, both working through challenges and seeing your successes. Please continue to leave comments and post about your finished projects here, on Flickr and in the Ravelry group: I can’t wait to see how your cardis have turned out and if anyone has made other modifications! Thanks for going on this crochet-along journey with me and hope you join our other crochet-alongs in the future!

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  • http:thoughtsNspots.blogspot.com Linda Kennedy

    Has anyone successfully made this in a 3X size? Especially with fitting the arms! I want to make this but I can’t figure out the increases, especially for that large fo a size jump.

  • Linda from Pittsburgh

    I am working on the hood. I did decide to do short sleeves (just at the elbow) and found that a sc-2 together for the last row around drew them in a little bit so they weren’t so open at the ends. I also figured out that either my gauge was wrong (but I don’t think so) or I should have gone with a Large. It would really be helpful for the pattern to have actual size ranges instead of just S/M. I am a Medium so I went with the Small/Medium. I added 4 rows to each side of the front since my cardi just didn’t give enough coverage in that area. I can’t wait to be finished & see how it looks! Kendra, yours looks so cute and I am planning on the button like you did, thanks for the idea!

  • http://beachcardical Esther V.

    Hello,
    I’m way behind with too many other projects to do, but hope to work on it as we travel 2 1/2 days driving from Michigan to Montana.
    Anyway, I am still working on the body. I may know the answer, but the pattern says on Row 16 to repeat until piece measures 20 inches [I'm only doing mine about hip length], ending with WS row. What does WS mean and is Row 16, the WS row worked all those many inches? At least that’s what I’m doing.
    I’m not sure I’ve copied/ read all the comments left, but haven’t noticed this question yet.
    Thanks for all the extra instructions.

  • Jill A.

    Hi Esther V.,

    I am behind too. I am almost finished with the first sleeve. WS means Wrong Side. I made my body way too long. I thought the 20 inches was from the slit. I took out most of the work, but still have it 3 inches longer (it is for my tall thin sister). I hope I get it finished soon. Have fun on your trip. Jill :)

  • Jill A.

    Love the button. Thanks Kendra!

  • Joyce T

    ok, done with blocking the body. yes i’m behind also. going to start the sleeves. happy crocheting everyone.

  • http://beachcardical Esther V.

    Referring to above post. I figured out what WS meant before I read these posts. Thank you. However, my main question wasn’t answered: “is Row 16, the WS row worked all those many inches?” I guess I’ll keep on working with that row of instructions. I’m not sure I’ve noticed a difference in right or wrong side. [I just checked mine out, and there is a slight difference] but I can’t figure out how it can make a difference which one you end on. Maybe I’ll figure it out when finish up this part of the pattern.
    Thanks again.

    Kendra says: Hi! So what is happening is that you are repeating Row 16 until you have 20 inches total, but whether it is the WS or RS is arbitrary until the point where you end. As in, you want to end with a WS row, so when you move on to the armhole shaping, etc you are starting that on the right side. In all honesty, unless you can tell the difference, this is a minor point because it is symmetrical.

  • Evelyn Tucci

    Hi! I’m not that far on my cardigan either, just started the armhole shaping section tonight but sure appreciated the clarification posted out previously! I printed out all the weekly posts and keep them in a folder with my project to help me.

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