July was a good selfish knitting month and I finally took a little time to finish my Custom Green Tunic I started mapping out back in June. I know that Fringe Association is having a knitalong where you design your own sweater but honestly after dragging my feet on this one I think I just want to knit a sweater from a pattern. It’s so much easier and I don’t have to do a lot of math or try the sweater on as I go so frequently. Lazy? Perhaps. Do I care? Not one bit. LOL Plus with all this GRE Prep (have I mentioned how much I hate geometry?) I feel like my brain needs simple over the next month. But let’s get into the details of what I did create.
This is a circular yoke tee and I like to use the The Knitter’s Handy Book of Top-Down Sweaters eBook: Basic Designs in Multiple Sizes and Gauges as a starting point. They give you a lot of math and do a lot of work for you but I modify and change things up based on my gauge that’s never really what anyone else gets and how I want my sweater to look. I also know my measurements so I also like to use what I learned from Sweater Modifications for Custom Fit with Amy Herzog to try to tailor a sweater to my actual size. Since I like how my Madigan sweaters fit and how my cape fit I decided I’d do another circular yoke knit. To hide my increases instead of making them a feature I decided to do a knit front and back stitch for my increase and I hid it in the knit 2 rows and purl 2 rows for the top half of the sweater, which is similar to the Madigan construction. It works nicely at camouflaging. Perhaps next time I’ll do some eyelets with yarnovers.
I also decided I wanted to do a curved hem and that was going to require some short row shaping which I love to do now with German Short Rows (if you haven’t tried them yet, seriously watch that video and it will change your life!). I also decided instead of a tee I’d make it tunic length to wear with some of my heavy leggings in the fall/winter.
And once I went tunic length I decided to do a split hem, much like on North Fork but a bit cleaner this time. Really, I was using this as an opportunity to really rework skills I haven’t perfected yet and make things cleaner. The yarn is a cotton mill ends bag of 1 lb of yarn that I picked up at AC Moore for the sole purpose of having something inexpensive to experiment with and surprisingly it didn’t have any knots and held up well. I’d buy it again (I also still have a second bag of it so it will become something else in the future I’m sure).
But that’s how my green tunic came to be and I really like this piece. I do feel like my curved hem is slightly off center but that’s just me being picky. I’m still wearing this baby and often. I’m sure it will be a layering piece as the days get colder. I’m always pleasantly surprised after I block a knit and try it on when it does exactly what I wanted it to do. I’m still trying to gain more confidence in my knitting – I know, I know – but I’m still learning and I’ve got a ton more I still want to learn too!
So what are you doing to challenge yourself with your knitting? Share!