It was a hot summer. Record-breaking in fact, in our neck of the woods. Knitting is at a minimum for me during the summer due to heat, not to mention the warmth of the summer sun is a constant force of beckoning. Who doesn’t want to be outside during short summer months? On the other hand, the knitter in me is always looking to move forward with the stash and there is the cool of the evenings.
I thought linen; lightweight and stays in the theme of summer. I’ll pull the linen from the stash to work up. I’ve had this bundle for a number of years, had never knitted with linen before and wanted to give it a try. I had purchased it for a darling top that caught my attention with it’s open stitch weave and detached cowl. It is amazing to me how an experienced knitter can always find new things to take on. Between the new yarns, new-fangled stitches, and that never-ending flow of patterns, there is ALWAYS opportunity for taking on something new.
The pattern I had chosen, while beautiful and curious, I questioned its wearability in my changed lifestyle (from employment to retirement). So, it was off to research what to do with this linen. Between my magazine/book collection at home and Ravelry’s pattern database, there is no end of choice.
I was hoping to find a layer as opposed to a linen top. A linen layer, I felt would be casual and versatile as I could alter the pieces underneath. And, always with age in mind, I give considerable attention to those underneath pieces. Narrowing the field of possibilities to this end, I came across a few patterns. I liked the idea of volume due to the nature of the translucent fabric I knew I would be creating.
Choice made, a [free] pattern, working up gauge, following the pattern with adjustments for personal fit, the project was pretty straight forward. I carried on with the usual steps. (I might add was thrilled when I saw this in my latest Sundance catalog, a source of inspiration for me.)
The best part was realizing that I had, for once, finished a project in time for an event where it would be perfect.
Well, photos don’t lie. Beautiful photo shoot, however there was a problem. A problem with the garment. (Yes, again. If you are a follower of hollyknits, you know what I mean.) Why hadn’t I seen this in the mirror? The tunic itself didn’t look the way I wanted. When this happens to me, I ask myself, “what specific thing is it that is bothering me?”
This allows me to pinpoint the exact issue that then leads me into what I could do about it. In this case, the bodice was too long. I measured it on the table. fine. I put it on and measured it on. NOT fine. Then, I realized why I hadn’t noticed. This fabric is especially stretchy through the bodice. Laying down, the fabric folds into itself and measures one way, and when on, stretches and measures another. So, back to the drawing board and ripping out the bodice, I took out some 2 – 3 inches. I figured I could fine tune with shoulder strap altering. While the bodice seemed exceedingly short on a table surface, when it was on it stretched perfectly to the baby-doll flounce hemmed tunic I was after. And, BACK to the photo shoot site with the same outfit for a do-over. This is a time when you gotta love your hubby. really.
Here fashioned with jeans and a linen top underneath, I am happy with my new linen layer and yes, it missed every opportunity in the wearing of it this summer.
In keeping to our effort of photographing around local non-typical locations, we chose a popular garden store. We felt the shed and array of patio stones a delightful background for this summer look.
Here is a before and after of my edit.
Down deep, I am not comfortable in front of the camera but I have written about it before and now again in how photographs can be such a helpful tool in the designing, wearing, presenting, and overall happiness of your hand knits.