After spending a day and a half on ripping out the band around the bottom of the hood and knitting it again, I finally finished it. Here you can see the end of the band, which includes a buttonloop. The top rib of the band was knitted with shaping and kitchnered to the lower rib.
Note, try to get the buttonloop the right size. This will probably mean it'll be a little big. At least it always winds up that way for me. Remember, you have to adjust in increments of the height of one stitch. And it's hard to estimate without the completed buttonhole to put the button through.
So, when you get it a smidge big, use the yarn tail from the kitchner row and do a little overcast reinforcing at the point where the two ends of the buttonloop join the body. Slide the button through. See how it fits. Do you need more overcasting a little higher to make the loop smaller?
Remember, your goal is to have the loop expand a bit to get the button through, but not make it so small that you have to fight with it to get the button through. We're looking for snug, not tight here.
The buttonloops down the front will be a little different.
In the photo above, you see the saddle shoulder. Note that the rib from the band around the bottom of the hood runs off the edge and forms two of the cable segments.
I think I did something pretty slick here.
Two strands of the cable will run onto the sleeve and make a loop. The other two strands of the cable will do the same thing as the bottom hood band and run onto the edge of the shoulder and down the front and back (see photo below).
This is the saddle at the top of the shoulder, and the left front has been knit down to the bottom of the sleeve opening. Note that the shoulder band has one of it's strands running down the edge of the sleeve opening.
Since taking that photo, I have started on the right front, and am to the beginning of the first buttonloop. Once I get it finished, I'll pick up stitches across the back of one saddle strap, the bottom of the back of the hood and the other saddle strap. The back of the band at the bottom of the hood has the cable run off the edge, and it will make another small loop on the back.
Then, I'll work down the back for a short distance and start the Saint John's cross for the back. You can see the finished cross as a swatch in Viking Patterns for Knitting. It will be spectacular!
Partway through the cross, I'll get to the bottom of the sleeve opening and add extra stitches for the underarm shaping (which will join the fronts and back), and then probably continue until the cross is done.
Then, I'll pick up stitches around the armhole for a sleeve, knit that, do the other, and then finish down the front of the sweater.
The end of this description is just to give you an overview of what is planned.