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Archive for September 10th, 2008

Fun Knit: Finished Nanette Top

Wednesday, September 10th, 2008

I am delighted with my Nanette Tee. It’s done, and I even wore it on Tuesday… first to Rae’s and then to Dagwoods. I love this top! It was fast to knit, it looks good, feels good, and is washable/wearable. My kind of project!

jetsontop16longview.jpgI had a spectacular mistake on another project which will cost me thousands of stitches and over 3 weeks of concentrated knitting. I will detail that big oops when I get a little time. At this point, suffice it to say that I needed a quick successful project.

This top has a gauge of 3.5 stitches per inch, huge yarn (in my case, three yarns held together which makes a flatter fabric than one fat yarn). It started by saying “Cast on 50 stitches.” Yes, that was the right way to start after the knitting letdown of the year.

I held together a cotton/acrylic aran-weight tube yarn called “Kim” (related to Kelly which I have used before, but a solid color), plus a cotton/lycra DK weight yarn called Fixation, and then a strand of a fingering/sockweight yarn in soy silk, wool and a few other fibers, handpainted by Ellen’s Half-Pint Farm.

The Kim was raspberry, the Fixation was hot yellow-green, and the sockyarn was in tropical shades from deep blue to turquoise to green to yellow-green, with one strand of white throughout the skein. Very ColorJoy!

The pattern was written by Joan McGowan-Michael of White Lies Designs. I really love the way she shapes her designs for the actual shape of a woman. I’m not a large woman but I have a few curves and she built in hip, waist and bust shaping so that it fits very comfortably (despite the thick fabric) and looks great.

jetsontop33.jpgI love the shoulder shaping on this. It reminds me of Judy Jetson, which for me is a very positive statement. Love that futuristic idea! I have small, rounded shoulders and this shape really looks great on me because of that.

The pattern called for me to gather it at bust level, pulling down the neckline a bit into a sweetheart neckline. As lovely as it really would be, it just is not my style. It was just a little more girly/frilly to gather it than I liked.

I showed it both ways to a handful of folks and all agreed that the square neckline was more “me” than the neckline as written. I went with it. I think I will wear it more this way.

It is interesting to see what I do and do not know about knitting. For the record, I’m over 160 pairs of socks but I’ve knit exactly one long-sleeved sweater. I also have made a summer tee, a tank top (plus this one), and a dance top (cropped). This paragraph contains the entire list of garments made for my torso. And three of those five I did not use a standard pattern, instead I did a knit-to-fit procedure. This was printed pattern #2 for me, for an upper-body garment.

Therefore, I had a few questions every once in a while, which I asked of Rae. I have knit a number of baby garments but they apparently did not have as much shaping!

I would knit this again. It does call for a lot of stretch in whatever yarn is used, so I would have to think carefully about what to knit it in next. This combination was literally what I had in the cotton-realm, already purchased and ready to go. The Fixation is really stretchy so adding that made it fit right.

I must add for the knitters out there, that having two not-very-stretchy yarns and one very-stretchy yarn was a bit of a hassle. Not enough to stop me, and I have used Fixation enough to not worry about it. However, those who are not as confident as I am about holding three yarns together might wonder if they had made the right choice.

But look at these photos… can’t you see? Definitely the right choice this time.

Oh… I used 3 balls Kim, 3 balls Fixation and one hank Ellen’s. (Actually, I barely used any of the 3rd ball of Fixation.) I used size 10 needles and then my gauge tightened up so I cast on 5 extra stitches on the back of the top to add some width (doesn’t show when wearing). I shortened the length of the waist (between hip and bust shaping) and probably needed to knit more between the hem and the first hip shaping but it’s OK with a high-waisted skirt.

How long did it take? I started swatching on August 21, cast on perhaps August 22 or 23, blocked and finished all ends on September 8 and wore it on the 9th. Two and a half weeks? That is just what I needed.