Ravelympics Wrap-up

Jill P.:

Here it is, I medalled!

It was a close call, but I finished my dress.  Though, to be fair, I didn’t block it until after the flame went out.  Here it is in all it’s glory:

Specs

Pattern: #20 Ribbed Mini Dress by Mari Lynn Patrick in Vogue Knitting Spring/Summer 2007

Yarn: Filatura di Crosa Zarina.  I used a little bit over 7 balls.

Started Aug. 8, 2008 and finished in the early morning of Aug. 24, 2008.

I made the medium size, which had about 2 inches negative ease.  My row gauge was off, so I made quite a few adjustments in the raglan shaping and overall to replicate the right size.  I knit it in the round until after the waist ribbing.  Then I worked it as one piece flat until the armholes.  Then worked the fronts and back separately.  I think I knit a few extra garter rows for the button placket since it was looking a little snug to me.  I was having trouble getting my crochet border on the neckline to look polished, so I decided to pick up stitches and work about three rows in garter stitch before binding off.  I used some buttons I already had.  Kind of cheapies from Jo-Ann’s.

I wouldn’t quite call those invisible decreases as they do in the pattern.

Before I washed it, it looked really tiny.  It was super tight and a little shorter.  I washed it (more like wetted it) in the sink and then just laid it out flat to dry.  Now the yarn is super soft and it really relaxed.  I guess it was to be expected with superwash wool.  I bet if I machine dry it, it will snap back to its smaller size.  I am really happy with the fit now.  It’s still a shorter dress but no longer indecent.  Yay, liking things you finish!

I have recently become dissatisfied with my stockinette fabric.  My purls are always so much looser than my knits.  If I do my purls continental or if I knit backwards they are the same size as my knits.  But both of those ways are kind of slow to me.  My English purling is a lot faster.  I’ve been trying different things.  So far I’ve decided to keep my usual purling but to put a lot more tension into it.  But then I have to remember to do my knits loose like usual.  I’ve tried using a smaller needle for the purl side, but then my purls come out smaller than my knits.  It’s frustrating.  My new thing is just converting everything into the round if possible.

I’ve always been a firm supporter of doing things in pieces.  I don’t mind purling and I do like the stability of the seams.  I think part of it is me rebelling against this (what I consider) modern way of doing things.  I think for patterned fabric I could still do things flat.  But for stockinette it’s a lot easier to do things in the round.  The skirt part of the dress, done in the round, went so much faster than the top part that was done flat.  There are so many advantages to knitting in the round, it’s hard to argue with.

I’ve just started the ProtoPretty DNA Shell and have decided to convert it.  Because there’s a different pattern on the front and the back it might not be a smart idea.  But all even rows are purl, so it’s pretty simple to sub.  My gauge is a little looser, but I didn’t feel like switching needles.  So I’m just going to make the small size instead of the medium.  According to my calculations it will be less than an inch smaller all around.  And I have a limited amount of yarn.  Oh, I’m using the Bouton D’Or New Bamboo that you got me in Paris!  Very exciting.

Next time I’ll tell you about my trip up the Central Coast.  Fun!

Jill B.

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5 Comments

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5 responses to “Ravelympics Wrap-up

  1. Congratulations! It was a really ambitious 17-day project and I’m so impressed you finished. It looks great! I’ve been eyeing this pattern for so long and yours is great inspiration. I know what you mean about rowing out on stockinette. I tried a bunch of things too. Ultimately for me, what works best is knitting continental and purling English. I actually sometimes am *too* loose with the knitting side, so I have to consciously rein it in a bit so that it doesn’t end up bigger than the rows that are purled.

  2. Jill!
    The dress is fantastic! I think all of your stitches look great…knits and purls. This dress has a great retro vibe about it. Congrats!

  3. Peggy James

    Wow! It’s lovely! Great work! I like brown colour and you wear it well!

  4. Your dress is amazing and you look totally awesome in it!

  5. I have the same issue with stockinette. On her website, Cat Borhdi suggests using two different sizes of Denise needle tips on one cable (it would work with Knit Picks Options, too) to get the same sized stitches on the knit and purl sides. You’d have to experiment to see if you need to change one or two sizes on the purl side, but it’s worth a shot if you have to knit flat. I haven’t tried it yet, but it makes sense. By the way, just took a look at your project archive on Ravelry. You’ve knit so many gorgeous pieces!

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