This year, I am determined, will be the year that I make myself actual fitted garments rather than just socks and shawls. I will definitely be making socks and shawls too, but now feels like the right time to move on to more complex items as well.
I bought On The Hook from Verity Castledine on her Truly Hooked stall at Yarndale 2017 and had a chat with the lovely woman herself about adapting the patterns to fit a bigger body and she reassured me that it would be easy and yet it has taken me another year and half to take the plunge.
I have a terrible habit of just buying single skeins of beautiful, hand dyed yarn and so I had to make a purchase especially to make a new top! Again, Yarndale to the rescue and this time in 2018 I found myself at the EasyKnits stand, drawn the the richness and vibrancy of the semisolids. I chose 2 skeins of Deeply Wicked, a super wash merino, 4ply yarn in a deep purple called Queenie
Armed with my yarn and my book I set out to make the Isla Top, modelled here by my garden chair!
The pattern is written for a UK size 10/12 and I wear a size 18/20 so I knew that changes would need to be made. The pattern says where more stitches will be needed to increase the size but does not give suggestions for how many and so it was guesswork and oh so many tryings on to work it out. My exact stitch counts are on my Ravelry project page and would be useful as a starting point for anyone of a similar size wanting to make this top but trying it on, especially when adding the armholes, was invaluable to make the top fit my body.
Once the solid top bit was complete with the band fitting across my back nicely and armholes in place it was smooth sailing down the lace pattern from there on in. I took a photo of how far I’d reached with my first skein of yarn, a nice crop top but not what I was looking for!
And so I joined skein two and kept on going. I had originally hoped to get some sleeves onto the top as well but from this point in it was clear that I would need a third skein to manage that and I wasn’t prepared to try and source one of the same dyelot. But look how well it fits, all that trying on was well worth it!
Once I had reached a length I was happy with I had some yarn left and so I added little cap sleeves rather than keeping it as a vest top. By the time the top was finished I had just 15g remaining from my 200g of yarn.
These indoor photos really don’t show the lovely colour as well as the outdoor ones do.
In the end I am absolutely thrilled with my finished top and the experience of making it was quite enjoyable. I am pleased that I started with crochet which I am much more comfortable
bodging adapting as I go along and it has given me the confidence to try a knitted garment next. Watch this space to see how I get on!