If you knit and crochet, this dolman provides the perfect opportunity for you to play with both granny squares and knit lace. Don’t crochet? The purely knit version is just the ticket. Work the sections in alphabetic order, building the graceful butterfly shape as you knit.
Skill level: Experienced
Dimensions: Top is approximately 24” long. Measure around
your high hip and decide which size will fit best.
Yarn requirements: 1250 (1350, 1450, 1550) yds
Color: 007 (crochet version) or 008 (knit version
Pattern found on pages 20-22, 93.
Yarns with long color repeats are commonly used for self-striping but their versatility doesn’t have to end there. Butterfly Dream’s flirty, feminine design showcases a multitude of options by combining various knit and crochet techniques using the same colorway throughout the entire garment. By mixing areas of garter and eyelet rows, lace knitting and crochet motifs, the same yarn takes on different characteristics giving the illusion of a top created from many balls of yarn in different colors. Butterfly Dream’s sleeves are cleverly knit as triangular shawls with bias eyelet insets. The unusual construction of the top involves knitting each front and back together for each side. It’s as fun to create as it is to wear!
Rather than using dyes for the color gradations, Skacel Murano Lace slowly and gently shifts through its colorway in random combinations by spinning 2 plys of different solid colors together for a delightfully spontaneous effect. Sometimes solid, sometimes more tweeded, each variation takes on a different look depending on the technique used.
Butterfly Dreams combines lace knitting with random coloration, knit straight from the ball on one side and intentionally symmetrical coloration by deliberately choosing matching areas of color for the other. Color can be easily manipulated by winding off partial balls of yarn from the main ball to areas of desired colors. Once a similar coloration is found, a new yarn can be added to an old yarn easily at any time during knitting by using a weaver’s knot for seamless blending. The smaller balls are also used for the crochet motifs to change colors in each round on the front panel.
Each front and back begins as a triangular lace shawl, radiating from the shoulder to the length of the sleeve and gently rounds out with areas of bias eyelet knitting to a high hip length hem. In this case, the shawl areas of the sleeve were intentionally matched in color but the bias eyelet areas were knit from the ball randomly. Another option is to allow each side to randomly follow the yarn’s color way without intentionally matching them.
Once each side has been completed, stitches are picked up along the long edge with 2 strands held together to create a dense, tweeded coloration that serves as a frame and shoulder bands for stability. These bands combine garter stitch with eyelets for added texture and variation. Crochet motif panels for the front and back create an entirely different effect with the same yarn. Three rounds of different colors for the motifs in the front panel and one color for all 3 rounds in the back are joined seamlessly. The crochet panels are stitched between each completed side and small side seams join the front and back. Finally, a ribbed hemline panel, picked up and knit in the round creates a flattering bloused effect when worn over the waistband of pants or a skirt. A simple crocheted edging finishes the neckline and armholes, adding an elegant and easy trim in an accent color.