Ta daaaaa! I finished my 12 tops in six months. Yippee!
Pattern: Aleita Shell by Bonne Marie Burns, from Interweave Knits Spring 2008.
Size: Small, but at a slightly looser gauge. Finished top is about 34″.
Yarn: Katia Linen, colorway 8, five skeins (I only used a little of the 5th skein).
Needles: US 6 / 4 mm
Ravelry: Project page
- I did an I-cord bind-off for the back neck stitches, starting with the three held stitches from the right front neck edge, and grafted the end to the three held stitches at the left front neck edge. The pattern has you bind off the back neck stitches, knit neckband pieces from the held stitches at both front neck edges, sew them to the back neck, and graft the ends.
- I only went down two needle sizes (to US 4) for the hem ribbing instead of three (to US 3).
- Added 1″ to length before starting the waist shaping.
- Added an extra column of knit stitches at the side seam, since I didn’t like the large area of purl stitches that would otherwise be at the sides.
There is a small error in the pattern in that it tells you to slip the edge stitches with the yarn in back. That’s fine when you’re working on the RS, but you have to slip the stitches with the yarn in front when working on the WS.
I’m happy with how it turned out. I’ll be able to wear it as a tank top or as a vest over another top.
The pattern has some very nice details, and I’d definitely recommend it, but it’s probably not a good project for a beginner or for anyone who hasn’t made several sweaters before. The techniques include picking up stitches behind existing stitches for the front overlap, and knitting a separate neckband and seaming it (plus grafting stitches). Also, there are a lot of things going on at once at the bodice – splitting the work for the front overlap, decreasing for the neck edge, increasing for the chest, binding off for the armholes and separating the work, decreasing for the armholes, and maintaining the neck and armhole edges in the edging pattern. After doing most of it with counters and marks on paper, I finally gave in and charted it out. Then it was a breeze to just follow the chart. Should have done that in the first place, of course.