Last summer I decided to crochet a cute-looking top — Tassel Top from the MODE at Rowan Summer Crochet 4 Projects booklet by Quail Studio.
I thought it would look cute on me. I could wear it to the beach over a pair of shorts. I only live a couple of miles from a lovely beach and go there a lot with my husband, Neil. So, I got the yarn — Rowan Creative Linen in the creamy white shade Cloud (620) – from the generous Rowan people and got started.
Well, a year later and I have finally finished it. You may be wondering why it took me so long? This is a long story and there are several answers to that question.
Answer number one: There was a mistake in the pattern.
The pattern instruction stated to “work 1tr into each stitch”, so I did. When I got to the decreases for the armhole area and up towards the neck, I couldn’t work out why the neckline was not going to be at my neckline but, if I continued, it would finish somewhere near my chin. It was completely elongated! I hadn’t noticed that anything was wrong before the armhole decreases because I usually make my tops longer in the body and often knit or crochet more rows to fit. So, I ripped it back to the armholes thinking it was my body shape — it usually is — and tried again making adjustments to the decrease rate. No, it was just not working. Finally, the penny dropped “is the pattern wrong?” and I contacted Rowan to check the pattern for me. After a few days, they came back to confirm that it was indeed an error with the pattern. The instruction “work 1tr into each stitch” was meant to be “work 1htr into each stitch”. An htr is a half triple crochet and is shorter in height than a tr (triple crochet) which is why my Tassel Top was so elongated. If I was going to finish this top I was going to have to start again from the very beginning.
Answer number two: I didn’t take into account my body shape.
Reluctantly, I did start all over again, but this time with half triples. I also added some shaping to the waist area by decreasing stitches towards the waist line and then increasing stitches towards the bust line. You can just about see the decreases in the photo below; I’m pleased they are almost invisible.
Then I got to the armhole decreases again. No, still not working for me. Now this time it was not the pattern but my body shape. This top was really never going to work for someone with a large-ish bust who needs to wear a bra. I made some calculations, ripped it back and tried again. Eventually, I got it to work but had to change the design of the upper part of the top so it suited my body shape and could be worn over a bra.
Answer number three: Summer was over – autumn had arrived.
By now the summer was over and autumn was upon us. The latest Rowan Magazine was out and I had my eye on Kellie, the Fair Isle jumper.
So, I left the Tassel Top aside, unfinished, promising myself that I would pick it up again next summer.
Answer number four: Next summer arrived.
Well, I did pick it up again, but now I had to finish the neckline and the straps. As I had changed the design of the upper chest area that meant that the number of stitches stated in the pattern for the straps would be incorrect for my top. I would need quite a few stitches less. More calculations for me to do but I got there in the end by crocheting a tension guide to work out the number of stitches needed for the straps. I used double crochet in rounds for the straps and the neckline, just as the pattern suggests, but instead of rejoining the yarn at the centre back, I rejoined the yarn at the top of one of the armholes. This would disguise the join and also hide the end of the double-crocheted rounds. Look…..no join or end visible…
After sewing the side seams together, well, I actually crocheted them together, I then decided to add a crocheted bobble stitch edge to the hem instead of tassels. Not that I didn’t like the tassels, I just thought they would eventually get very ragged after washing and wearing a few times.
Well, I feel I have almost completely rewritten this pattern. I didn’t intend to change it from the outset; it just happened. The mistake I made was looking at a photo of a garment on a model who looked great and didn’t take into account how different my body was from hers. Normally I do, but the cuteness of the top and the image clouded my judgment. Luckily, through lots of perseverance, I have ended up with a very wearable top that does look very similar to the original design.
But, does this top look cute on me? Probably not.
Has this ever happened to you? Have you ever chosen to make a design based on how good the model looks and not take into account that your body shape is totally different? Did you manage to make it work or has it been left in an unfinished heap!
So, what do you think of my Tassel Top? Please leave me a comment by scrolling down to “Leave a Reply” below.
Thanks for reading my blog all the way to the end!