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Tuesday, 24 May 2016

YET ANOTHER LOVELY SHELLED CROP TOP



YET ANOTHER LOVELY SHELLED CROP TOP

I have been really lucky in receiving really lovely gifts of yarn off late.  This was my recent gift - the fantastic Milford Satin yarn, that my friend gifted me from Perth, Australia.  I’ve been enjoying making some absolutely lovely stuff with all this yarn, and if you’ve been following my blogs, you know what I’m talking about. If you’ve just joined me, well then go through all my blogs and you’re in for a lovely surprise.

As I work on this pattern, I’ve written down my notes that I share with you.


Materials used : Today I’ve used 2 balls of this superb Milford Satin yarn,  with a 3 mm crochet hook Optional : Stitch marker

Size made : I’ve made this for a bust size 34” using the yarn quantity above

Abbreviations used : (Using U.S terminology)
fsc : Foundation single crochet                                   dc : Double crochet
ch : chain                                                                      ch-sp(s) : chain space(s)
sp(s) : space(s)                                                           rep : Repeat
yo : Yarn over                                                           sk : Skip
lp : Loop                                                                       hk : Hook


Stitches used :  (Using U.S terminology)
fsc : Foundation Single Crochet : To refresh your skill on the fsc, please view this superb video by Tamara Kelly at the link  http://www.mooglyblog.com/foundation-single-crochet-fsc/

Chainless dc start : Instead of the usual start with ch 2 or ch 3, I’d like to introduce this lovely new way of starting a dc row.  Do take a look at this self explanatory super video http://www.mooglyblog.com/chainless-starting-double-crochet/
In case you are unhappy with this start, or do not like it, do continue with the usual ch-2 or ch-3 start.  However, all instructions will be given assuming that you are using the chainless dc start.

How to do a picot stitch : A neat video link to refresh this procedure. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6GGlzZZl3I8

How to join : So the regular methods used to join granny squares works for joining of the sides and shoulders of our project as well.  Here are two methods.

Quick analysis of what we’re going to do here today.

We’re working this pattern in one piece, starting with one sleeve, working past the body, making a small slit in the centre of the body to allow your head to squeeze through, then completing the other side of the body to the sleeve.

So take a quick look at the chart below to see what I mean here.


Points to note :
1.       We start with one side of the sleeve and work to the other sleeve.  Now you need to decide right at the start how long you want this sleeve, especially if you (like me) are fussy and O.C.D about how the shells “face”.  You *could* work one row of shells and then work the body (back and front at the same time in one row), finish the other sleeve and then decide how long you want your sleeves ; come back to Side 1 where we’ve started and lengthen the sleeves, but your shells on this first sleeve will then face the opposite direction. (Once again take a look at the chart)
2.      You need to decide whom you’re making this for and see where you want to keep the opening for the head.  Do as I usually suggest, and keep a well-fitting top (of the person for whom this is intended) handy to check.  If you make an error and it does not go through the head, this will surely be one W.I.P that will become a R.I.P!
3.      The shell pattern itself can be tweaked a lot. Here it is a 8-dc shell, but depending on the thickness (or thinness) of your yarn, you could change the number of dc per shell.  That said, I will be writing our pattern as charted.






Our stitch count repeat is 13 (and this equals one shell in pattern)

May I suggest yet again, work a quick gauge swatch which is just a few stitch count multiples and one repeat. Thanks.

So remember to keep your measurements handy now.

Start : with fsc in multiples of 12 + 1 which will be the round arm measure for the sleeve

Yes, I hear your question “How do you know how many fsc you will need?”.  
Right – so you work in such a way that you have multiples of 12 + 1 – knowing that one set of 13 = 1 shell.
You will then need to do the first pattern repeat to see how wide each shell is for you, to calculate how many inches make one shell, and therefore you will be able to work out how many repeats you will need to get the length you need for your sleeve.  Easy enough, right?

Row 1 : sc in 1st fsc ; *ch 3, sk next 3 fsc, sc in the next fsc* ; 
rep *to* till end.  Turn.

Row 2 : dc in 1st sc ; sc in the 1st ch-3 sp ; 
*8 dc in the next ch-3 sp ; sc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp* ; 
rep *to* till last ch-3 sp ; sc in that last ch-3 sp , dc in the last sc.  Turn.

In the following row, we’ll use our decorative picot stitch.  
Check the top of this blog for a “how to” do a picot stitch.  We will use a 3-ch picot which is (ch 3, sl-st into the 3rd ch from hk).
We will use our beautiful picot stitch between 2 dc’s.

If you are a beginner, and want to do this pattern, but are unable to figure out how to work the stitches after this picot row, remember that you can still do this pattern, even if you do not do the picot , and it will look as beautiful.

Row 3 : sc in 1st dc ; *dc in the next dc ; 
(picot followed by a dc in the next dc) ; 
rep (to) 6 times ;
sc in the next ch-3 sp* ; 
rep *to* till last ch-3 sp ; sc in the last dc.  Turn.

At this point we are going to add stitches for the front and the back at the same time, on either side of Row 3.

Till Row 3, we’ve made the first bit of the sleeve.  
When we add these stitches, these will represent the front on one side of the sleeve, and the back on the other side of the sleeve.

Now once again, working on the width of each shell made, calculate how many stitches you’d need to add on, in multiples of 12 + 1 (to get the length you’d need for your top).

Say your 12 stitches which = 1 shell is about 1.5” and you want to make a top of say 15”, then you will need to add for a total of 10 shells which means 120 stitches. This is for one side. Got it?

Once you’ve figured out how many stithces you need per side, add a chain of required stitches at one end of Row 3, in multiples of 12 + 1. 
Fasten off (Ensure that you do not tighten that last stitch too tightly as we need to use it, remember).

Re-attach your yarn at the other end of Row 3 and add the same number of stitches that end too.
So you now have a set of shells (till Row 3) in the middle, with two chain lengths on either side… and you’re at the end of one of those chains. Great.

So the next bit is a little confusing, but we can do it.

Now for the first bit where you have just ch-sts, you will do a rep of Row 1 which is {sc in 1st ch ; *ch 3, sk next 3 ch, sc in the next ch*} ; rep *to* till you’re at the 1st dc of the 1st shell from Row 3, and then follow the instructions below for Row 4. 

Row 4 : dc in 1st sc ; 
*(ch 3, sk next 2 dc, sc in the next dc) ; rep (to) once ; 
ch 3, sk next 2 dc, dc in the next sc* ; 
rep *to* till end ; ending with a dc in that last sc ; 
and then you will be at the 1st ch of the newly added section 
and you will now rep {to} from above till you are at the last ch.  Turn.

There.. that was not that bad, was it?

Now we will work back and forth on the full long strip we’ve made.

Row 5 : dc in 1st dc ; sc in the 1st ch-3 sp ; 
*8 dc in the next ch-3 sp ; sc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp* ; 
rep *to* till last ch-3 sp ; sc in that last ch-3 sp , dc in the last dc.  Turn.

Row 6 : sc in 1st dc ; 
*dc in the next dc ; (picot followed by a dc in the next dc) ; rep (to) 6 times ;
sc in the next ch-3 sp* ; 
rep *to* till last ch-3 sp ; sc in the last dc.  Turn.

Row 7 : dc in 1st sc ; 
*(ch 3, sk next 2 dc, sc in the next dc) ; rep (to) once ; ch 3, sk next 2 dc, dc in the next sc* ; 
rep *to* till end.  Turn.

Row 8 : dc in 1st dc ; sc in the 1st ch-3 sp ; 
*8 dc in the next ch-3 sp ; sc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp* ; 
rep *to* till last ch-3 sp ; sc in that last ch-3 sp , dc in the last dc.  Turn.


And before you know it, we’ve completed one pattern repeat. 



Rep Rows 6 – 8 till you have the width of your shoulder (which per chart appears to be four shells).

Note though that the 4-shell width is just a measure to go by, and you may need less or more.  
We will then break at this point and make your neckline opening, which means that we will find that space between the two centre shells, and divide at that point – working on just one part which will be your front or back. 
We will work this section till we complete the width of neck (or half Round neck) for both front and back, and join back again to complete the second shoulder.

Weird construction – but oh, so wonderfully interesting, isn’t it?

Ensure that you check the width of the strip you’re making for the shoulder and stop as soon as you have a perfect width for shoulder.

From the next row on, we’re going to work the exact same pattern repeat, but we will work only halfway up one side and then turn and work back again.  
So place a marker at the end of last shell that divides your work. 
Say you have 14 shells across, then you will place it in the space between the 14th and 15th shell – just after that last dc.

We will now continue with the same pattern repeat but we will turn at this halfway marked point at that last dc and go back. 

Continue rep Rows 6 - 8 with just this section for the front till you have your chest width.

You know what we’ve got to do now, right.. we have to work for just that sleeve portion.

So fasten off now, and re-attach your yarn to coincide with the point where you attached your yarn a few rows back to add your chains.

Remember if you had started with say 8 shells for the first Round arm, you will need the same 8 shells for this round arm.

Our attachment point will be the dc between the 8th shell and the shell adjacent to it.

Work Repeat Rows 6 – 8 for the pattern for the sleeve on this side, till you have a sleeve length desired. 
I’d suggest four shells is sufficient – as this is a straight cut sleeve and may not fall too well if made too long.  
That said, do experiment as I have not.. and if you find that it does work well, do add your comment to this blog, for others. Thanks.

Go back to the 1st sleeve we’d started with and work the same number of shelled rows as you have for this end.

Fasten off and weave in all ends.

Give yourself a big pat on the back as this one has really been yet another great project .. and so different from the others we’ve worked on together.. and once again, totally worth it, I’m sure you’ll agree.

And that’s done.. yet another project brilliantly executed ! J


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Have a great day and see you soon. J

I have a few other yokes made, so check these out














I have a few other tops made, and here are the convenient links for you