Henley #2 Completed
I finally finished my mom's Henley Perfected. I made the smallest size with a few additional small modifications to accommodate her short torso and arms.
The other modification I made to the original pattern was to double the button and buttonhole bands to match the doubled collar and hems. I know some people have been complaining about the roll in the i-cord edged bands I used for the Interweave pattern. Personally, I like the casualness of a rolled band. It's a design element I introduced deliberately, but I understand how it would bother some people. Fortunately, changing it is really simple.
To make a doubled band, follow instructions for the band until you come to the bind off step. Instead of binding off, work a turning ridge row (as you've done for the hems). Then work to match the right side band. For the button band, it's straightforward enough. For the buttonhole band, you'll need to make a second set of buttonholes to match the first set. I recommend blocking the bands before whipstitching them into place. You'll also need to use the buttonhole stitch (do this with cotton thread, not the yarn you used for the sweater) to sew together the two buttonholes together. Incidentally, the buttonhole stitch is also great for reinforcing regular buttonholes - a must for any knit where you actually plan to use the buttons. Because the button needs to go through two layers of fabric, a shanked button with enough height to clear the doubled band is necessary. You can buy them already shanked or make them yourself from regular buttons (there's a great Knitty article on how to do this).
To further increase the utility of this sweater (and hopefully give it a chance of actually getting worn by my mother), I sewed on buttons on the opposite face of the button bands to decrease the wear and tear on them. I forget exactly where I learned this, but it's a neat trick.
I used just 7 skeins of Alpaca Silk for this, one less than the pattern called for. The discrepancy is due to a combination of shortening the sweater and my lack of swatching for this project (which is what inspired me to use Alpaca Silk again). In fact, I had actually wanted to use a lighter yarn for this. Alpaca is a little heavy for the temperate California climate my mom's lucky enough to live in, but I got lazy. I was pretty sure my gauge in Alpaca Silk wouldn't change all that much between June (when I made the sample sweater for Interweave) and now. And since swatching is one of my least favorite parts of knitting (I know, bad Connie!), I decided to go with what I know.