Wearing my own handknitted garment never gets old, especially when the garment is something I can actually wear as opposed to just drape over my shoulders or wrap around my neck. I will always love knitting shawls and cowls, and socks too, but I think I have grown a bit wiser in my old age to know that I am better off knitting tops and sweaters instead of items that need, first and foremost, a weather colder than what Dubai can offer.
I think I mentioned it a while ago that because of this shift in my knitting, my queue, that is the list of designs that I line up and plan to knit, has changed and continues to change considerably. The queue is merely a guideline, a glimpse of a knitter’s current frame of mind and preference and highly subject to change at any given time. Like when an opportunity to test a brand new design 🙂 This is what brought on this latest finished project. I bring you, Tschilp.
Designed by Anke, aka Fallsmache on Ravelry, using Susie Myers’ contiguous sleeve method. I saw Anke’s project for this and she happened to mention that it is ready for testing. I sent her a PM and asked if I could still sign up to test it, and she responded positively. I kinda liked the idea that I would have a deadline to work towards as well as try a new technique and have the opportunity to use up yarn from my stash. As soon as I received the pattern from Anke, I had no doubt in my mind that I wanted to use my Whiz Bang MCN from Two If By Hand. I used about 915 yards of yarn for this top.
I was skeptical at first, but I simply followed Anke’s instructions and before I knew it I was knitting up the top of the shoulders and most of the upper back. It really is a very clever construction. You work flat until you get to a certain length and then you cast on additional stitches to form the front neckline. Then you join the work and begin knitting in the round.
One of the two great features of this design is the neckline. I love LOVE this neckline! Some people who have seen this have said how flattering this neckline is for me, and I shamelessly agree! It’s not everyday that I get to knit something that suits me and that I love so I am going to shout it out at the top of my voice: I love this neckline!
The other great feature is the waist shaping. Usually, for a top-down construction, waist shaping involves first decreasing a set of stitches on either side of the garment then knitting straight for a few inches before increasing on either side again to accomodate the hips. Well, there’s a different and more fun way to do this now: ribbing! Yes! Ribbing! I could not believe it at first, because it seemed highly unlikely that a cleverly placed set of ribbing would actually help shape the waist. But it does! And, if using a semi-solid colourway, it would actually be a very subtle design element.
Anke’s design is amazing as it is. I followed it to the letter and love the end product so much that I have already worn it to the office twice! I did a bit of tweak though after finishing it, purely my own choice and nothing to do with a design glitch. The pattern asks you to use a cable cast on or the front neckline stitches. I guess my cable cast on was a bit too loose than it should be. I’m a modest woman and I would have been uncomfortable and too self-conscious if I kept it the way it was. A quick post on Ravelry came back with suggestions of picking up those front stitches and casting off using smaller needles. I did just that and it worked! Now I don’t have to hold the front even when I sit down or pick up stuff from the floor.
Thanks again, Anke for the opportunity to test this new design. I cannot wait for you to release it so that everyone else can knit this and see what exactly I am raving on about!
I have a good size of yarn left so I decided to knit a short-cuffed pair of ribbed socks. This is an older picture as I have actually already finished one sock. I love the colours on this yarn so much. I hope to finish the second sock before the weekend because, she doesn’t know it yet, this pair is going to my daughter, Viel.