Thursday, March 20, 2008

I'm on a roll!

Another FO! These were the most productive couple months of knitting ever. Even when I wasn't working last year, I didn't manage so many non-accessory FOs in so little time. I'm not sure how I do it.

I had no WIP photos of this because it honestly took almost no time to knit.

Aleita Shell
Yarn: 3 balls of Rowan Calmer
Needles: 3.5mm and 4.0mm Addi Turbo circulars
Pattern: Aleita Shell, by Bonne Marie Burns for Interweave Knits Spring '08

Notes: I think this simple classic pattern got lost amongst the fluttery pastel butterflies of the IK Spring issue. It didn't help that this clean-lined pattern got knit up in a non-colour for the sample. I didn't even notice it the first time I flipped through the magazine. When I finally did notice it, a bit of mental arithmetic showed me that it would be the perfect project for those three balls of Rowan Calmer I'd bought, knit up, and frogged ages ago.

It's a great pattern. But I made a load of modifications:
  1. I made it shorter. There are two reasons for this- I am short in height and short in yarn. However, I may have overdone it a bit here. It could be a teensy bit longer.
  2. I made one fewer set of waist decreases and, correspondingly, one fewer set of bust increases. The reason for this is that my waist/bust ratio is higher than average. In other words, I have no waist.
  3. I don't know what all that neck band knitting and sewing was about, so I just skipped it. In fact, due to my being somewhat short on yarn and not knowing what the heck those neckband instructions were on about, I improvised a scooped back neck. It looks good and fits me pretty well.

Also, I either found a mistake in the pattern, or I am incapable of reading directions. I figure there's a 50/50 chance of it being either. To get nice even edges, the pattern has you slip the first stitch of every row. I've used this trick before and it's great; works beautifully. However, this pattern has three stitches at each edge knit in ribbing and it asks you to slip the first stitch purlwise with yarn in back. This works fine when I'm slipping the first stitch on the right side rows, but on the wrong side rows, slipping with yarn in back means the edge has a row of purl bumps instead of the nice knit V's:

You see how on the bottom edge, there is a nice row of elongated V's? That's how your nice slipped stitch edge is supposed to look. Then see on the top edge, instead of this, there is a series of bumps? Still neat, and kinda interesting in itself, but not matching the other edge. Unfortunately, I noticed this only after knitting about 2/3 of the bodice and couldn't be arsed ripping back. I did start slipping my stitches with yarn in front on the wrong side rows, which gave me nice V's, so starting a few inches from the shoulder, the two edges match.

So, if you're knitting this top:
on RIGHT side rows, slip first stitch purlwise with yarn in back;
on WRONG side rows, slip first stitch purlwise with yarn in front.

But, anyway, I'm pretty pleased with this top and hope I will be able to wear it lots. Not soon, though, because apparently they are predicting snow this weekend. The first weekend of spring! Snow!

Using up my Calmer in this top means I have knit up almost all the sweater-sized lots of yarn I have in my stash. (Except for the cursed alpaca. I'm not counting that, though.) Now I have to work down my sock yarn stash. I've promised myself one pair of socks for The Limey and one pair of socks for me before I'm allowed to even think about visiting a yarn shop.


Yvonne said...

That's in my queue, so it's great to see it done and on a real person. It looks great!

Nicola said...

Absolutely gorgeous. Having 4 balls of Rowan Calmer in the stash I'm tempted to try it myself - even tho' my bust-waist ratio is...ahem...let's say not quite as neat as yours.

Lovely piece of knitting and also looks fantastic on you. Well done.

Dee said...

that is very pretty

Heidirific said...

It looks great. I'm impressed that you're thinking about and knitting for "summer" already! I can't think about summer...

jriede said...

This looks awesome. Good work! It's in my queue, too.

Sara said...

wow, that looks great, and its one of the first things I've wanted to knit from that IK issue so its great to hear your recommendations for it. Wonder if rowan wool cotton would be good for it too....