Never have I been so happy to finally reach the yoke! The body seemed to go on forever. When I finally reached the end, I thought joining the sleeves to the body would be easy. . . not so much. My first few rows were rather awkward and cumbersome to work. Some underarm stitches were seriously stretched out (notice the white elongated stitches in the sleeve detail below?).
The one thing that helped was using two circular needles and transferring the sweater from one circular to another (just as one would work the stitches from one straight needle to another). Once I got a few rows in, the yoke became easier to work and I switched back to using just one circular.
I usually work a sweater in one of two ways: in pieces or top-down. My only other experience working a sweater from the bottom-up involved various pieces (the front and back were not connected). Perhaps my difficulty with the yoke came from lack of experience? In any case, I got past it and I’m certain I can “fix” my stretched-out stitches when I seam the underarm area. A few duplicate stitches will hide any other messy stuff. What’s a watermelon without a few seeds?