Free knitting pattern: Light Flyweight

light flyweight

Here’s the simple pattern of Light Flyweight sweater. There is not too much pattern in this to be honest, the pieces are almost rectangular and the shape is partially created while making the narrow crocheted edges. The flair of this piece comes from the generous dimensions and luxurious material, the sweater is so oversized that you can drape and gather it in multitude of ways. Narrow, too long sleeves balance the outlook. Yarn is lovely laceweight kid mohair-silk blend.

You need:
4 balls of Rowan Kidsilk Haze
8 mm knitting needled
blunt point needle for sewing
2.5 mm – 3 mm crochet hook

Size and gauge:
This garment is one size and will fit from s to xl. If you are short ar very tall you might want to adjust the length. The horizontal gauge is about 8-9 sts for 10 cm. More important than the exact gauge (the dimensions are so generous that small fluctuations are totally acceptable) is that all cast ons and cast offs are loose enough. So work your technique with a swatch until you get absolutely no pull for your gauge.

Chart:
light-flyweight

Front and back (identical):
Cast on 120 sts to 8 mm needles. Be sure that the cast on edge is loose enough. Knit stockinette stitch for 63 cm. On RS knit 40, cast off 40 loosely enough, continue working with remaining 40 sts.

Right shoulder: On the 1st RS row with 40 sts cast off three sts on the beginning of the row. On the second, third and fourth cast off one st. On the fifth cast off remaining 34 sts.

Left shoulder: 1. WS, purl, all RS knit. 2. WS cast off 3 sts from the beginning of the row, 3., 4. and 5. cast off one sts from the beginning of the row. Next RS cast off remaining 34 sts.

Sleeves:
Cast on 24 stitches. Knit stockinette stitch. When piece measures 13 cm increase one st on the left side, 26 cm on the right side, 39 cm on the left side, 52 cm on the right side. When the piece measures 65 cm cast off all 28 sts.

Finishing:
Block or steam the pieces lightly. Sew the shoulder seams from the top using backstitch – all seams are sewn in similar way. Sew the sleeve seams. Measure the sleeve opening from top just in case and pin the side seams together leaving an equal sized opening for the sleeve on the top. Sew the side seams from the top. Now attach the sleeves to the body but turn the sleeve seam on top, continuing the line of the shoulder seam. Sew from top.

Crochet 2 rounds of single crochet stitch on the hem and sleeve openings. Gather the garment lightly while crocheting, don’t try to make a pouch shape, aim for slightly inwards turning hem for slightly softened shape (see the image above to get the idea). Crochet 2 rounds around the neck opening, but now see the diagram and gather the garment in between marks so that the neck opening will be approximately 98 cm altogether (or adjust the size to your taste).

More images in this post and here.

The big one

I’m not sure if I’m the only one who has spent the late eighties with mohair yarn and patterns for giant sweaters with dropped sleeves. It’s a shame that I haven’t kept the pattern magazines from there, it would have been nice to see if my memories are accurate… …I remember the endless parade of mohair sweaters…

jattipaita1

This is not real eighties style – I maxed the dimensions of a simple sweater so that it can actually be used as a dress. The material is very lightweight – Kidsilk Haze knit with 8 mm needles – so it is quite easy to gather or tie the excess and mold the sweater to another shape. Dropped shoulders I kept, stretched the sleeves oversized and sewed the seams from the top. Couple crochet rows gather the neck opening and protect the hem and sleeve openings.

jattipaita2

Adjusting the petal halter

Olga Buraya-Kefelian (Ravelry link) made a genious job for Interweave Knits summer issue with the Petal Halter top – I just did not get my eyes off from it. I have promised myself not to make any knits from patterns anymore, but I could not resist this. I love the construction of this top, but I have some doubts how it will go with my body type. I have some ideas for the adjustments, let’s see how they will turn out.

Petal-Halter-2

I’ve had a longing for a knitted dress for ages – just haven’t bumped to the right pattern yet. While I flipped and turned the pages of IK back and forth, pondering about making this top I came up with an idea to extend it to tunic or dress. One more petal would make it probably a tunic, with two it might be a cute short dress. Because my body and  body conscious clothes just don’t mix I’m considering making it A-lined. Every petal should be slightly longer than previous and I would gather the extra while sewing.

There was two giant cones of Yeoman bourette silk in my stash, it’s quite thin but I’m using it doubled with decent results. I’m making my version from top down, sewing it petal by petal to see how my adjustments turn out.

Best in show

So I made this little (noooooo – it’s quite big!) necklace thingy one day and thought that it might be fun to share the process with you.

rosettefinished2

My starting point was some leftovers of iridescent silk taffeta. I planned to use it as a top part of a summer dress, but I end up using just a little piece to it so I had plenty of leftovers. I also wanted to make the dress in simple everyday style… …but the idea of some sort of item that upgrades it (or any other plain dress) to more festive occassion just nagged on my brain.

The piece can be worn with long chain and it settles nicely on the chest. But you can shorten the chain until the ends of the fabric piece meet and voilà – you have an extravagant collar. It reminds me vaguely for the prize rosettes from all kind of shows, hence the name of the post…

You need:
Iridescent silk taffeta. The warp on this particular fabric is mustard yellow and weft greenish turquoise, the resulting overall color is beautiful antique gold. You can use other fibers as well, but the iridescency (warp and weft in different colors) really contributes this piece. The edges are unfinished and you can even unravel them intentionally a bit, so the weft color gives a beautiful halo around the motifs. If you try different fibers, make sure that you can iron steel sharp pleats to the fabric. And of course you can combine colors and textures.

I did not measure the piece of fabric I used but I think that about 50 cm is more than enough.

A small piece of lightweight fusible fabric.

Fabric cutter and/or scissors plus some surface protection if you use cutter. I prefer cutter for round and smallish shapes, scissors for stripes, rectangular pieces and large shapes that are unpractical to cut with my cutter and smallish protective mat.

Some suitable thread and a needle.

2 large jump rings.

A piece of chain (or more jump rings to make a chain).

Clasp.

Add some beads, crystals or additional chains for your taste.

Pattern for the basic shape is coming really soon in PDF format, but this is really simple – you can probably figure it out from the pidtures!

Cut the basic shape from the folded taffeta 2 times. Trim about 6 mm from the pattern edges and cut the smaller piece from the fusible fabric once.

Cut four 10 x 30 cm pieces and four 8 1/2 x 30 cm pieces out of the taffeta, the long side was in the warp direction in my piece so I got the green out from the frayed edges.

Cut 2 about 2 cm ribbons, length of the whole fabric width.

Iron all pieces. Iron the fusible fabric to other side of another taffeta shape.

Now pleat the rosettes. A steam iron does a good job on this. Use a small piece of scrap fabric and gradually go up to the warmest setting your fabric can take without damaging using the steam all the time.

With silk there is at least two signs when you are close to burn the fabric. The silk has distinct smell and just before you are about to burn the fabric, this smell is accentuated. Don’t mix it to the smell to the smell of burning silk (the smell of burning hair). Smells are hard to describe, but I’d say that the smell of silk has some nutty aromas in it, it is not all pleasant but not disgusting either. The other sign is that the fabric stiffens a bit. It will relax back when it cools down.

When you find the right setting for your iron start to make small 7-8 mm pleats to the rectangular pieces. The setting is really good if your pleated pieces stay in a small nice packets like these.

rosettepleats

Decently pleated rosettes should look like this:
tightly packed, not springing open.

Now it’s time to sit at your sewing machine for a while. Sew the taffeta pieces together from the short upper seams from the WS. Open the seams and turn the right side up. Now stitch around the base piece about 6 mm from the edge – the tubes for large jump rings are formed to the narrow upper edges. You can fray the unfinished edges of the main piece a bit.

rosettebase

This is the base piece, fusible fabric inbetween the pieces
gives it some body. Note that the seams and top stitching on the RS
form tubes for jump rings on the top.

Sew few stitches on the middle of the rosettes. If you use sewing machine to this, you probably need to be very careful and help from the wheel a bit, these babies are quite thick. Unravel the rosette edges a bit.

You can adjust almost everything in this project, but there is one rule.

Thou shalt plan your arrangement..

So open the rosettes and use pins to keep them open.

Roll the long fabric strips loosely around your hands so that you get few loops, larger than the diameter of the larger rosette and use a pin to attach the loops from the middle.

rosetteribbonloop

Here’s how to fold the long ribbons.

Now put the main piece to a working surface and plan how you are going to arrange the pieces to it. The fabric loops go under 2 rosettes and the rosettes should be nicely overlapping. I did not try to make a symmetric piece, but of course you can do that if you want to (then it might be a good idea to make on extra rosette for the center point). Mark the arrangement to the base piece with pins or lightly with fabric pen.

rosettefarfalle

The pleated rosettes look like giant farfalles before sewing.

Now attach the rosettes to the base with few stitches. A good starting point is the middle – just take away the pins from the rosette when you are working with this. Use a few stitches to attach the rosette edges together – without these stitches your rosettes look like giant farfalles! For some rosettes it might be enough to attach them from the middle, for some you might prefer to add few additional stitches around to keep the rosette in place.

rosettestitch

Here you can see the edges of the rosette stitched
together on the WS of the rosette.

For rosettes with fabric loops attach the fabric loop on the base piece first with few stitches.

rosetteback

You don’t need too many stitches to attach the embellishments.

Be gentle when working with rosettes. There is no way to iron or clean the piece when it’s finished, so don’t squeeze it or sweat on it!

rosettearragement

And here’s the arrangement without the chain.

Now attach the jump rings to the main piece and the chain to another jump ring. You can attach the clasp to the end of the chain or to another jump ring. If you have another embellishments, now it’s time to attach them. I had to make the chain from 18 mm jump rings, my hometown crafts supplier did not have any chains…

rosettefinishedback

So here you can see the jump rings, clasp and chain attached.

rosettecollar2

And this is the finished piece used as a collar, as a necklace and again as a collar!

And that’s pretty much it. Wear and enjoy!

Store the piece on a flat surface or hang it loosely (not squeezed between the clothes on a clothes rack).

I’m knitting, seriously!

kidmohairpile

Hi! Here’s the proof that I’m still knitting!

rosettedetail2

And this is a detail of a little sewing project I plan to publish really soon!

DIY midsummer

Midsummer is big celebration day in Finland, but I’m not too exited about it. Weather in Finland in June is unpredictable at its best, so I’m spending my midsummer day home, cleaning my wardrobe and implementing some instant reward DIY projects.

I trashed a tunic and a T-shirt dress with my beloved fabric cutter. I forgot to photograph the white tunic at it’s untouched state, but the black one is this basic, almost sheer American Apparel dress. Note all the cat hair… :-S

aa_dress

I’ve used both dresses mainly as undergarments. The idea was to incorporate them to layering like before – but I wanted to give them a right to stand out as their own, as independently interesting pieces.

From the white tunic I cutted out triangles and occassional quadrangles. The outlook of the surface is bit mosaic like. Assistant was available all the time, ready to give a hand… …er… …paw.

helper

This was more time consuming than I thought, I got tired after the front and left the back untouched.

cutted_I

To the black dress i made only simple slits, lightning fast DIY project:

cutted_II

Excuse my laziness, I tested both out with the same silk cotton knit dress. But you get the idea.

cutout_IIb

cutout_I

I guess that I’m actually going to use these!

I’m back!

Ohoi… …I’s me! I know that is has been terribly quiet in this blog in this spring, butt I have an explanation. Sort of. In my studies I have drifted somehow to making animations and some sort of realtime visuals – and oh boy, those are time consuming crafts. Plus there is no chance to knit while doing either of those, so my actual knitting time has shrinked down to one third (or less) compared to the times gone by.

The slower knitting pace has also forced me to think of my knits and myself as a knitter. Unfortunately many of my knits lie in my wardrobe untouched since the photoshoot for the blog. I’m not able to incorporate them to my outfits. I really do enjoy knitting as a process, but on the other hand I really would like to produce clothes that I actually want to wear. Now this is even more true, I don’t have too much extra money to spend on yarn.

I know that things have changed in my way to dress myself up, too. There is less pressure for formal wear, and I find myself playing with layers and volume more and more. Some – not all – of Wenlan Chia’s knits fit to this approach pretty well. I actually wore the Karate Sweater today when visiting grocery shop – oh yes, the morning was chilly, now the sun seems to peek out a bit…

juhannus

My scarves I tend to use frequently (at least in wintertime), and when I wear ankle socks in my boots they certainly are a handknitted pair. I love the idea of Butterfly dress as a part of my layering experiments, although I hesitate to taking Her Fragility out of the garment cover. Selma cape has also found her way to regular use. But that’s about it, folks.

Now I need to figure out what to do to all of the unused garments. I see lots of giveaways happening in the near future, somehow frogging is really difficult for me.

Cabled cuteness

Oh those cabled little pieces… …when sewn together they magically formed this cute little number.

changeling6

Almost too cute for me. But I’m definitely in love with the clever construction, beautiful buttons and lovely yarn (Plymouth Yarn Suri-Merino in unusual heathered dark seafoam color). This knit really reminded me that actually I like seams…

changeling5

There is not too much cover in the back. Unfortunately the back photos were not too good, but you get the idea…

changeling3

I will publish my notes here in April – but I doubt that I will write actual pattern out of this. The construction is quite difficult to scale to different sizes without serious test knitting. But for brave at heart this will give a nice knitting challenge! Although it will probably require some trial and error to get it right the small pieces knit up pretty quick and result is very rewarding.

Bits and pieces

changeling_pieces

This is a bolero (I’m not kidding).

Cardigan with DPN:s

When I ripped the Selma pattern from Anthropologie, I thought that it will be the last time I’m doing such things. But this company chooses the knits so well that I’m walking the path again.

cablebolero2

This should be something like Changeling bolero. It is built from narrow cabled stripes – so narrow that it is easiest to work with DPN:s. I love the yarn, it is Plymouth Suri merino. “Like knitting through clouds” described someone in Ravelry yarn page – and I completely agree. The colour is equisite, too. Vibrant blue-green and grayish purple mix up to extraordinary, colour changing shade of gray.

cablebolero1

This is an attempt to illustrate the structure. The longer stripe forms M-shaped figure, the ends of the M are on front and form the top and bottom of button band. The bottom of M is middle back, it is sewn together with the corresponding opposite M-shaped stripe. The other piece forms the middle fron, sleeve and part of the back. I still need one small triangular piece for the front.

I don’t have too much yarn, I suspect that I need at least one ball more. So if you happen to have an extra ball Plymouth Suri Merino colour 791, lot 282 I could certainly purchase it!

The bolero seemed to be very small in the product image. Later I saw a real life version on a real person – and the yarn is considerably thicker than I thought, and the bolero is so much larger. But I think that it might be cute even as small version like this. If the unconventional structure actually works…

****

Edit: I finished the first cardigan half and sew it together. It looks lovely! It might be too small for me – but I’m not going to have any trouble finding a new home for it. And there is enough yarn, after all.

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