Tuesday, July 4

No Gauge Swatch Top

I'm very pleased to present my latest creation - the No Gauge Swatch Top. This is something that I came up with last year for some of my handspun, and have been wanting to do another in a cotton yarn. I think it's going to get a lot of use! I'd be very happy to put up the pattern if there is any interest in it. It's basically very easy. As I said - no gauge swatch necessary. It's started on the bias at the center plackets. So basically cast on 2 sets of 3 stitches and increase until the bias triangles are big enough. On this particular version I made the center placket just a tiny bit wider than maybe I should have, and have had to go over the neck opening with a couple of rounds of single crochet. Knitting around the neck opening would work just fine too - it's just a bit harder to gauge where you're at with a knitted edging than a crocheted one.

I picked up along the sides of the front and back bias knit plackets, deciding how long I wanted the neck opening/shoulder to be and cast on that many stitches between the front and back - then just knit back and forth - I threw in a couple of short rows towards the top, and one down at the bottom to give me a bit of waist shaping. 3 needle bind off along the bottom side seams, moving up into an inverted V gusset treatment for the underarm. Then I found a simple lace edging and just did a sideways garter stitch edging to bind off the sleeves. After all that I tried it on (see last post). I decided that it could be a bit longer, so knit the garter stitch edging that I used on the sleeves around the bottom of the top, did a couple of rounds of single crochet around the neck opening and voila - she is done! I wore it all day yesterday, and think that it could use just a few more rounds of single crochet around the sides and back neck edging. One of these days I'll do a version that doesn't have a V-neck on the back - but I really like tops with a low back. I personally just like a low back on a lot of my tops.

I guess I could use a few sit ups though - funny how you think you look pretty good until you see yourself in a few pictures. Still, not too bad for a gal my age!


I also picked up my new spindle yesterday. I read a post on the Spindlers list, that Bill from Copper Moose was making spindles again! I've done a bunch of the cable 4-ply yarn on my American Beauty that I bought from him, and it really is probably my very favorite spindle, so when I heard there were more to be had I jumped on getting another one. Also the pricing is very reasonable. I ended up with a Zebrawood spindle which is just beautiful. It's lighter than my composite AB spindle - very very nice - but I still think I prefer the first one I bought from him.

I also got some "Garden of Eden" roving that is 70% wool/30% silk. The colour is quite a bit different than what is shown on the website - but still oh so pretty and sooooofffftt. As you can see, I've already started spinning it on my brand spanking new spindle. I'm thinking it will probably end up being cable plied just like the other silk blend that I've been spinning. I am determined to get enough yarn for a top out of this.

Last night I started crocheting a little bag. I really need something to hold my camera and extra fibers while I'm walking. I'm planning on a boxy little bag that has a long strap that I can wear diagonally across my body. I want it to have handy pockets that will accommodate my camera, and spindle.... Probably need to get back to that now.

Anyway - hope everyone is enjoying the 4th of July weekend! I'm really enjoying having some time off - back to work tomorrow, but at least it's a short week.

Have fun!

17 comments:

Monika said...

It's amazing, Abi! I really like it and I think it fits you very well. A pattern would greatly appreciated. Is this the one you thought of offering to Knitty.com? You should have, is it still possible? Or maybe for magknits? Great job!

monkeemaven said...

Gorgeous!

Areli said...

Your top is gorgeous! The fit is awsome, plus it's construction is so interesting.

Lois said...

the top is pretty, and u look gorgeous!

KNIT A NEW DREAM said...

Absolutely wonderful sweater! It looks great on you!! Sue

leahpd said...

I love that top! You really should post that pattern somewhere. Colors, design, awesome...and very unique!

bungalowmum said...

looks really lovely!

meg said...

Lovely top! Looks great on you & the lines are really flattering.

mp said...

I'd love your pattern. Let us know when it's ready and where please. You look scrumptious in it too.

Rain said...

It's fantastic. It fits great and looks really good on you.

I hope you do put up the pattern as I'd certainly knit one.

opportunityknits said...

Hi, first time I'm reading your blog and Wow, this is so pretty and the construction is so unusual too. You look great in it - the blue goes splendidly with your skin tone :)

Dominique said...

Abi, it's absolutely stunning ! I would never be so clever to come up with this, so a pattern would be much appreciated !

Judy said...

Hi, and thanks for visiting my blog! I think you and Donna are right, that is Sockotta yarn.

That's a very pretty top, too -- you should submit it to Magknits or Knitty!

LaBean said...

Amazing. I like the top. I wish I could just think something up like that. Where's my creativity? Oh yeah, wasted on English composition class in high school! :)

Robknits said...

I love interesting construction in a knitting project! Very creative, Abi, with very good results. And thanks for the garter tip you left on my blog -- I'm gonna give it a try.

Jen said...

That top turned out really cute, great idea!

Anonymous said...

That is a gorgeous ANGST top. You do beautiful work! I would like to see the pattern too. Do you think it would work up well in a rayon yarn. I have some handpainted rayon waiting for a pattern.