Tuesday, December 15, 2015

New Release: Tessie

Remember summer?

I love summer.  Walking around in bare feet, spending lazy afternoons knitting in my backyard, letting the kids ride their bikes up to the old-fashioned candy store on the square, staying up late, and being able to forget about a schedule some many more days until summer?

Oh wait, I was going to talk about this little number.  I am actually not 100% sure what I should call it.  It's kind of a vest, but it has sleeves, so that's not quite right.  It's kind of a cardigan, but it's pretty skimpy to fully qualify, so that one is out, too.  A shrug?  The construction is similar to many shrugs I've knit in the past, but shrugs are usually more cropped than this little sweater.  So "Tessie" it is.  No label, or all the labels - you can call it a shrug, cardigan or vest.  But I'm just going to call it Tessie.          

Tessie is the perfect compliment to a summer outfit.  I wear a lot of sleeveless tops & dresses, but there are times where I feel a little underdressed just walking around in a little sleeveless, cotton tank top.  Throw this on top and I immediately go from "A little naked - aren't you the mom of a teenage boy?" to "classy and stylish".

Construction is simple.  Cast on at the back of the bottom hem and work increase rows until the cardigan goes around the body to create an angled hem that is longer in the back and visually "nips in" at the waist.   Then continue on with the established stripe pattern until you divide the stitches into 2 front sections and 1 back section and basically work those to the shoulder before seaming.   The cap sleeves are knit as part of the body, then given a little more length with a handful of edging rounds.

This pattern pairs perfectly with a "combo pack" from Wonderland Yarns - this is one full skein of Mad Hatter sport-weight merino yarn, and one mini skein color pack of Mad Hatter yarn.  Because I wanted to stay within the size range I could get from one combo pack of yarn, this pattern is written for 8 sizes ranging from a Child's Size 6 up through a Women's Medium (that's the sample size in the photos, shown on a 37.5" bust, and it took just about every last yard of the yarn to make it.  If you tend to need  every last yard that I recommend for my patterns, I'd recommend either buying a second full skein of your main color - in the sample, that's the gray yarn - or being flexible about the length of your sweater - you can always work one stripe less if you're running short on yarn.)

Instructions are both written and charted - three charts visually spell out the stripe pattern, and the written instructions supplement the charts by telling you things like when to jump from one chart to the next, when to divide the stitches into a back and 2 fronts, and how to work the neckline shaping.

Tessie is just the thing to throw in your bag when you're meeting friends for lunch at that place where the air conditioning is always turned up a little too high.  Make one for your daughter to wear over her sleeveless Easter dress since you know it's almost always too chilly at the end of March for those dresses anyway!  Or grab it to throw over your summer tank top when you're headed somewhere that's not overly casual, or when your daughter needs to cover up just a skitch more.  It's a great wardrobe piece that will prove to be useful in all sorts of situations!

You can buy Tessie now as an individual pattern download on Ravelry here, or as one of 12 (soon to be 13) patterns in the Color Packs & Stash Scraps eBook collection!

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