Friday, July 13, 2012

What I've been Knitting: Cap Sleeve Lattice Top by the Purl Bee

Phew! Wednesday night I finally finished knitting the Cap Sleeve Lattice Top, by Purl Bee that I cast on at the middle of June... Overall I love the result! It's sooo exciting when something you make actually fits. Apologies for the cellphone pics, but sometimes it's the only way to actually get a picture, to take it myself. ; )

Read on for the nitty gritty knitting details of my top.

ABOVE: The top left picture is the completed Purl Bee top, and the other two pictures were taken during my own knitting process. This project proved why I LOVE Ravelry (a knitting community where you can buy patterns, and read others knitter's thoughts about patterns). I have learned in the past to read completed projects by my fellow knitters. So before I got to work I read up on this pattern and took some much needed advice and made some adjustments. I'll break it down:

1) I decided to knit it in the round, as opposed to starting at the back and knitting up and over = time saver.
2) I made the body portion at least 2-2.5 inches longer than the pattern requires and made the lattice section 2 inches shorter, raising the bust line well above the bust instead of right at the bust (or in some cases in the middle of the bust, yikes). Another lesson to knit based on your own body measurements.

And that's basically it.

As for yarn, I bought Berroco weekend yarn, which is a combination of cotton and acrylic and I wish I had read the reviews about the yarn before purchasing, because it splits pretty badly. It doesn't break, but it's not spun that tightly so you can easily divide the yarn with your needle while knitting. This was not a problem for the stockinette body portion as much as it was for the lattice portion. It's awkwardness required me to be extra careful thus extra slow (plus when I had to tear out the lattice section a few times, it was a bit of a bear to deal with)... but I really like the color and the price was affordable. So whatyahgonnado!?

Since the Berroco is a larger yarn than used in the original pattern, my gauge was off. So in order to knit a size large, I cast on for the small. (Of course I didn't realize exactly how much my gauge was off until 4 inches into the project when I measured the piece and it was 8 inches too wide, WHOOPS! so the starting took a while, as I had to rip it out and start over maybe twice!).

So I knit the entire piece in the round (2.5" longer than the pattern) and then I divided the stitches in half to do the back of the lattice. Then I knit the front of the lattice and attached it to the other side of the body with the kitchener stitch. My first time using this stitch on such a large project.

ABOVE: is a picture of the top with the right side out, seen left and the reverse side out, seen right... For a while there I preferred the reverse side as it seemed more subtle and more vintage in a way, less sporty and more feminine. But after completing the kitchener stitch it left a big ridge and also the reverse side of the lattice wasn't as beautiful as the right side out. SO I finished it to wear it on the right side out. Maybe one could purl instead of knit but then do the lattice on the right side as suggested...?

I also decided to knit it in one color because I felt that it made it more of a staple, a more timeless piece that I could wear for many years. And a perk to using thicker yarn is that the lattice section is a little more dense and thus I won't have to wear a camisole underneath. Anyway, that wraps it up! I really love this top and managed to wear it out and about on a warm summer day. Looking forward to wearing it with skirts and dresses. Now on to knitting some projects that have been sitting unfinished on the side lines!

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