Monday, April 19, 2010

Marvelous Design

Every knitter should make at least one Baby Surprise Jacket (BSJ), a pattern designed by Elizabeth Zimmerman (EZ) in 1968.

It is phenomenal how the sweater is knit in one piece, entirely of garter stitch, and requires only two seams at the shoulders.

Strategic increases and decreases provide the shaping for the sleeves and body.

This is the second BSJ that I've made, and I have another one on the needles. The first one (pictured here) was made from acrylic baby yarn, but this one is made from a worsted acrylic/wool blend on size 8 needles and using 6 ounces of yarn.

I added the collar that is explained here. If I hadn't run short of yarn, I would have made the collar deeper. A hood can also be added to the basic sweater.

The pattern works well with scrap yarn stripes. Since the sweater is knit in one piece, the stripe pattern is different on the front and back, especially if they are at the beginning of the sweater.

You will notice that the sweater is a little fuller under the fourth teal stripe. This is done to allow for the bulk of a diaper. Didn't EZ think of everything?

The pattern is available at Schoolhouse Press. I recommend ordering the A-B-C-SJ (Adult, Baby, Child's Surprise Jacket) not only for the multiple sizes but also because the directions are quite a bit easier than the original pattern. The DVD is also extremely helpful and includes the pattern for the BSJ in infant sizes. 

This sweater is a true delight to knit. 


  1. The idea of knitting a sweater makes me nervous, but I may just have to give this one a try. It's very cool looking.

  2. Another gorgeous knit! I really think this jacket is so pretty.

  3. Very pretty and I love the colors.

  4. Tried one of these....made me crazy..gave up:)

  5. Hi Nancy! This is really nice! You're such a talented woman!



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