I really wanted a top I could wear in the office in the summer, and I think I succeed! I’m glad I altered it away from the halter top. I have to be careful about halter tops and this definitely would not have worked for me the way it was designed. I started with the modifications suggested in Knitting Daily and expanded from there.
Future changes: I need to re-do the straps on the back that are supposed to cover my bra straps - they need to be moved about an inch each. I’ll do that before summer, but it’s gotten cold up here again. These photos were taking when it was 35F out, and before my morning tea too…
Modifications and notes:
With my gauge and compensation the top was only 34 inches around the bust after seaming. I blocked it out to 36 inches with a fair bit of stretching, so I hope the top won’t get too droopy with time.
5/9: Shoulder straps needed to be more then straps. I picked up 50 stitches for each, made some rapid decreases for shaping and just the right amount of coverage. The straps down the back split in two - one to lift the peak of the top set of petals and one to provide support and allow me to wear a normal bra.
5/8: I’m seaming up now - I left the tails long enough to use them. I’m weaving in all the ends along the seams as well to save time and keep the
stockinette neat looking.
5/6: For bust petal on the front half that will be the top-most point of the front I started as for the size 34, but increased 4 stitches at the point where it’ll start covering my boobs and then knit the front half an inch longer then the back half. The other bust petal got the same treatment, but I added the increases closer to the end. Pretty much I’m combining what I know about vertical and horizontal bust darts for this shaping… I decreased faster then described so the decreases happen over the same number of rows as in the other petals.
5/4: For the petals at my waist I cast on 56 stitches, but only worked 5.25” an then worked the decreases as directed for the size 34.
5/1: The two hip petals were knit just as described for the size 34.
The cast on seems tricky at first, but if you leave the non-working needle with the cable through the cast on stitches it gives plenty of flexibility to work the short rows. Then I just pull the stitches to the correct tension with a crochet hook.
4/30: My gauge is all off. The yarn claims to be 22sts and 28 rows in 4” on size 6. But on size 6 the fabric was too open AND I only got 20 sts. I dropped to size 5 and I’m getting 20-21 sts still, but I figure this fabric will drape in a way that will compensate for the strips being just a touch narrow. But row gauge is worse. On size 5 needles I’m getting 32 rows in 4 inches. I’d have to go back up several needle sizes to get row gauge. So I’m just ignoring it. I’m knitting to 6.5 inches like directed. I figure if the short rows and decreases are a little shorter then described it’ll be ok since everyone seems to be having width issues with this pattern anyway.
I am curious to see how the drape of this top affects it over the long run. Especially since I’m knitting it in a cotton/bamboo mix (drape = saggy if I’m not careful) OTOH the stitches run horizontally not vertically OTOH (I have three hands now) there are no structural cast on or bound off edges - the only structure is where the petals are sewn together. It’s an adventure!