Saturday, January 7, 2012

Tie-Neck Top

I started this top on June 17, 2011, right after getting back from Bead & Button.  It is from the August 2011 issue of Knit 'n Style, one of the (too) many knitting magazines to which I subscribe.  The yarn is from the Premier Yarns Deborah Norville Collection - Serenity Garden Yarn - a Dralon Microfiber.  The pattern called for a US size 7 (4.5 mm) needle, but I had to go down to a US size 5 (3.75 mm) needle to get gauge.  I ended up picking the colorway that was in the magazine - #80004 Gems, and I purchased 6 skeins even though I am knitting the 32 inch size, which only calls for 5 skeins.  I often buy an extra skein, especially if the yarn is variegated as is this one.

Of course I modified the pattern to knit it in the round and now that I have the front done I am going to try to pick up stitches from the front shaping rather than casting on stitches for the increases.  We will see how well that works.  I also plan on doing a three-needle bind off at the shoulders.  Being an avid "in the round" knitter I was very interested in a recent blog post by Wendy Johnson in which she discusses the merits of knitting pieces and seaming.  I have long felt that seams can interfere with the drape of a garment, but she points out the fact that in knitting in the round you are actually knitting a spiral, which can also affect the drape, even causing the knitting to be skewed, depending upon the weight of the yarn.  In my knitting I tend to leave seams only where they serve a structural purpose, but now I shall consider my modifications a little more carefully.

The reason that this piece ended up sitting in my unfinished objects pile for so long was the fact that I realized when I started doing the neck shaping the blocks of color would get a lot larger.  Now if I had knit the front and back separately, the blocks of color would have been twice as large in the body as they are, and so the change would not be as drastic and I was a little worried about the aesthetics of the piece.  On the other hand, by knitting in the round I had avoided the whole challenge of matching the colors at the sides.  I am glad that I purchased an extra skein, however, because each time I started a new skein there was wastage as I matched the color sequence between the two skeins.  I am however, happy with the way it is turning out and I think I did a pretty good job of matching the color blocks on the two top front pieces.

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