Originally, I had planned to add a typical button band to my cardigan. But, of course, I changed my mind (because I like to make things difficult for myself). Once the sweater was nearing completion, it occurred to me that a vertical button band would totally break up the beautiful, simple horizontal lines of the sweater. So what’s a girl to do? What could I use to close up my sweater invisibly?
My first thought was to use hooks and eyes. I bought a couple packs of great big hooks and eyes (sized to be used on a coat), and attached them to the front edge of my sweater.
I sewed 20 stupid little hooks in place, and then I tried it on. And then, I just about cried. It looked terrible! It was all weird and pucker-y. It pulled at every single hook when I wore it. (Of course some of the terrible-ness came from me sewing the hooks on incorrectly-too far from the edge, but a part of it was just the nature of the hooks. Hook-and-eye fastenings work best with stiffer fabrics, not soft, stretchy wool sweaters.)I immediately cut off the hooks and eyes. I’ve still got them, so maybe I’ll use them for another project down the line, but definitely not another sweater.
Instead, I bought myself a nice long separating zipper and sewed it carefully by hand along the front plackets. Because the zipper has absolutely no stretch to it, I made sure to sew it in very carefully.
When I closed up my sweater this time, I was overjoyed with how it turned out. The edges match up perfectly! There’s no unsightly gap or puckering, and I even managed to make sure the zipper didn’t buckle or pull at the front of the sweater. Victory!