I'd long been thinking about a simple crochet t-shirt or tank, and then I saw this amazing knitted tape yarn at String Harvest. I knew it had to happen.
I found a pattern that looked ideal: Drops 202-30 Sunday Sorbet. A free pattern from the Garn Studio website
Of course what I don't yet know is how to properly read a crochet pattern. I saw the note that this gauge of yarn would work, but failed to notice that it would then be worked with double strands. The pattern is intended for something much chunkier.
I also struggled for a while with the US vs UK terminology and my first few swatches were very tall and narrow. Hmmm. The whole top is just treble crochet (UK term). Once I got that straight I realised my swatch was exactly half the intended size....
So I just took the instructions for the size L (the third of six sizes) and doubled everything!
That kind of worked as there was no pattern for the number of rows, only the number of stitches. the colour changes and the armhole/neck shaping was introduced once the garment had reached a certain length.
To that end, the pattern seems to have an error. the modelled version on their website clearly shows the white band starting before the armhole, yet the pattern would have had that colour introduced much later. I asked a question on their website and while they were very prompt to reply, they didn't really resolve my dilemma. So I just switched colours when I thought it looked good.
In case this is the first of my blog posts you've ever read. I should let you in on a terribly kept secret: I love beige!
My favourite colours are all the neutral beige/brown/greys. I may as well be a donkey reincarnated as a crafting human.
If you like something a bit more colourful, these Cotton Lily yarns do also come in some pastel like colours. Here I've used, from the bottom up, Champagne, Egret, Ivory and Light Taupe.
Cass from String Harvest was really helpful and sent me a few photos through Instagram of my various colour selections laid out next to each other. Thanks to those pictures I shelved the idea of using a much darker grey for the bottom band. Nice service!
Once I'd figured I was doing twice as many stitches as the pattern intended, I also figured I'd need twice as much yarn (see, I kind of understand this crochet thing!). I put in a second order for another ball of the three colours other than the Ivory. I used up exactly both balls of the bottom two bands, about half of the one Ivory ball and about 1&1/4 of the top Light Taupe.
I had it finished at Christmas time and tried it on to find the armholes were too tight up under my arms and needed dropping an inch or so. I also thought my Light Taupe top band was a bit thin and sickly looking.
It was a relatively quick fix to unravel the shoulder straps, add another 5 rows of treble crochet to the front and back necklines then start the shoulder/neck reductions again.
It turns out you really can make this stuff up as you go!
I wet blocked it and then steam ironed it. It was firmish when I first put it on but it certainly grows when worn and is just perfectly comfortable and as close to not wearing anything as is decently possible.
Which is just what you need when it's hot, smoky and windy! I do have a short depth of field focus on these pictures but how bad is that bushfire smoke background. It's just awful.
Any more details I've forgotten? Oh., yeah, size 2.5mm hook. Countless hours, as in I didn't count, but it took ages. :)
My daughter was taking the pictures which always means horizons that are wonky and the funny end of shoot shots when she refuses to stop...