Friday, 7 July 2017

SHELLED OFF-THE-SHOULDERS TOP


free crochet off the shoulder top pattern



SHELLED OFF-THE-SHOULDERS TOP


I just made an off-the-shoulder top – with a removable collar and was immediately requested to make another *similar* one – and this is what I’ve decided to design for the next client.

I was inspired by the chart that I am going to use for the top frill portion of my top.  Check it out at http://celeidapaixaoportrico.blogspot.in/2016/10/vestido-ciganinha-em-croche.html but there is no written pattern in English but do go and check it out and see if you can understand the blog post.
For the main portion of the top, it is a pretty simple one row pattern repeat.

I was inspired by the photo for the frill, here are my pattern notes as I work on my project.

Thanks for joining me once again as we work on and discover this new pattern together. J
As always, I request you to please go through my really detailed instructions for lots of ideas, tips and tweaks.

Do check my long Pinterest link for all the free patterns I’ve written up over the years right at the bottom of this blog.

Materials used :  Today I’ve used ~ 200 gms of some the stunningly lovely Indian White Rose knitting cotton yarn with a 3.0 mm crochet hook

For Indians : Our lovely Indian Red Rose and Anchor knitting cotton yarns are a good substitute.  I’d also suggest Alize cotton yarn – and you can get all of this with an easy mouse click on the top right hand side of this blog (read : Click here to buy yarns Online)

For Non-Indians : The yarn I’ve used is a regular knitting cotton which technically (prescribed) uses a 2 – 2.5 mm crochet hook.  I like a slightly larger hook to give more stretch to my yarn and work.  Among international yarns I’ve used in this weight category , I’d say Aunt Lydia Cotton 10, DMC Petra, Sullivans (Australia) knitting cotton and Hilaza Eclat Rustica will work.

Difficulty level : Intermediate to Advanced Skill level. 

Gauge : Gauge is not important.  You can make this top for any size.

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/

fdc : Foundation Double Crochet : This is a unique way of starting a project directly with a row of double crochet stitches.  This makes your whole project neat and even.. in a way that you need to do once, to agree!  If you are familiar with fsc, you’ll wonder why you never used this start before !

Chainless dc start : Instead of the usual dc row 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 video at http://www.mooglyblog.com/chainless-starting-double-crochet/ .  In case you are unhappy with this start, do continue with the usual ch 2 or ch 3 start.  However, all instructions are given assuming that you’re using this chainless dc start. 

fpdc : Front Post Double Crochet : Post stitches are stitches worked around the post of a stitch of the row below. 
How to work the fpdc :  yo, hk into sp between posts of st from row below – going from back of stitch, around st and into the front of the st ; yo, pull yarn through the sps (3 lps on hk), (yo & pull through 2 lps) twice.  One fpdc complete 


yo, hk into sp between posts of st from row below – going from front of stitch, around st and into the back of the st ; yo, pull yarn through the sps (3 lps on hk), (yo & pull through 2 lps) twice.  One bpdc complete


How to join with single crochet : Check the links below :

How to join with whip stich : Check the links below :


Abbreviations used :  Using U.S Terminology

fdc : Foundation double crochet                             ch : Chain
dc : Double crochet                                                 sp(s) : Space(s)
st(s) : Stitch(es)                                                                         hk : Hook
lp : Loop(s)                                                                   yo : Yarn Over
sk : Skip                                                                          sc : Single crochet
fsc : Foundation single crochet
fpdc : Front post double crochet
bpdc : Back post double crochet

Instructions : (Using U.S Terminology)

free crochet off the shoulder top pattern


I started this pattern off with the round chest measure and we will work down to the base of the top – so first you need to decide how long you want the top, and check out the measurements for that part of the body – so if you are taking this top all the way down to the waist, you will need to work half the round waist measure for your starting line – and if you are working it only till the mid-riff.. yup, you got it.. it’s the half mid-riff measure you will start with.
Also note that in patterns like this, you will need to take the largest body measure for your start count.  This means that if your chest measure is slightly more than the waist measure, that’s the measure (chest) you will use.

Please note that as always you can make this top any length you want and for any size – just read through allllllllllllll my detailed instructions. Thank you

For this pattern, I’ve been inspired by two different patterns.  I am using one pattern for the base of the sleeveless top and the next pattern will be for the yoke/poncho/neck + sleeves… I am not sure what to term this second part, so the several terms for you to choose from ;)

As Amelia Earhart said “The most effective way to do it, is to do it” , so pick up your yarn and hook and let’s do it.


Part 1 : Front and Back

We will work two identical halves for this pattern – so one each for front and back. 

I am going to start this top from the chest down (i.e top down)– and so there are some calculations you will need to make right now.
There is no shaping for this top, and we will be working only two rectangles that will make up the front and back portion.
There is no shaping for the armhole, and our first row will be just under the armhole and just above the bust.

I am going to add an elastic right around the top (i.e behind the first few rows).  The round measure that you will then need to start with will be the round chest / bust measure.  Ofcourse you will also need to figure out how long you want your top – so if you are working this as a long top, then you will need to check which measure is larger – chest or waist, and use the larger measure to start.

I have decided to work this with just a thin sliver of a shoulder ‘strap’.

Finally, you can always work this pattern from the waist up as well.  I just wanted it this way as I want the shelled pattern to face this way – so if this does not matter to you, then you can work waist up as well.  Right then, let’s start.

Start Row 1 : with fdc in multiples of 6 + 1.  
You will make a start foundation double crochet chain length = half the round waist.

In the following row, I plan on working with the fpdc or front post double crochet.  However, this does not really affect the pattern, and it is not going to show either, as it is going to be hidden under the frilly collar – so you could work a dc in each stitch all around as well.
For a “How to work a fpdc”, please check the top of this blog.

Row 2 : fpdc in the 1st fdc and in each fdc till end.  .  Turn.

In the following row, if you have worked fpdc in Row 2, you will need to work a bpdc or back post double crochet till end. 

For a “How to work a bpdc”, please check the top of this blog.

If you have worked a dc in Row 2, then just work dc all the way till the end.

Row 3 : bpdc in the 1st fpdc and in each fpdc till end.  .  Turn.

Row 4 : fpdc in the 1st bpdc and in each fpdc till end.  .  Turn.

From the following row onwards, we will use a “V”-st which is (2 dc ; ch 1, 2 dc) all in the same st or ch-sp

Row 5 : dc in the 1st st ;
*sk next 2 sts, “V”-st in the next st ; sk next 2 sts, dc in the next st* ;
rep *to* till end.  Turn.

From now on, we will work each “V”-st in the ch-1 sp of the earlier “V”-st unless otherwise mentioned.

Row 6 : dc in the 1st dc ;
*“V”-st in the next “V”-st ; dc in the next dc* ;
rep *to* till end.  Turn.

And that’s our pattern.. D..O..N..E !
Rep Row 6 till you have the length needed.  Fasten off and weave in ends.

Work the same instructions for the other side of your top as well.


Part 2 : Shelled collar

free crochet off the shoulders top pattern

free crochet off the shoulders top pattern





For the beautiful shelled / lacy collar bit, we will work it separately and then join it at the centre of our top.  This collar bit is worked in a round.

See the two different ways one can wear this top :)

I will as usual give a general idea on how to work on this.  The main thing that you need to keep in mind is that you get the stitch count for the pattern, and then you need to decide what kind of a neckline / collar you’d like. 
So what do I mean by this?  Well, we start off with a large round that will be the first line of our pattern. 
Once you work this round, put it around your neck and see how “high” you’d like this.. High means that it will be closer to the neck and low would mean that it would be more like a boat-neck and will flop over the shoulders.

Once again, using these ideas, one can make this for any size. Please also go through all these detailed instructions before you start as some of them may affect what you need to do.

Our stitch count is in multiples of 7.

Start Round 1 : with fsc in multiples of 7. 
Keeping the chain flat, join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

Check out this video on how to keep your chain flat without twisting when working with a longer chain length

Round 2 : sc in the 1st fsc ;
*ch 1, sk next fsc, 3 dc in the next fsc ; ch 3, sk next fsc, sc in the next fsc ;
ch 3, sk next fsc, sc in the next fsc* ;
rep *to* all around till the end and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 3 : sc in the 1st sc ; ch 1, dc in the next dc ;
*(ch 1, dc in the next dc) ; rep (to) once ;
ch 2, sc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 2, dc in the next dc* ;
rep *to* all around till the end and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 4 : dc 2-tog in the 1st dc ;
*(ch 2, dc 2-tog in the next dc) ; rep (to) once ;
sk next two ch-2 sps and sc, dc 2-tog in the next dc* ;
rep *to* all around till the end and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

Remember that you must try your project on to see that the round neck works for you – else it is going to be a lot of rip rip ripping n frogging back – and no one likes that.. so check now that you like how it fits around the neck!

Round 5 : sl-st into the 1st ch-2 sp , sc in the same ch-2 sp ;
*ch 2, 4 dc on the next dc 3-tog ; ch 2, sc in the next ch-2 sp ; ch 4, sk next two dc 2-tog, sc in the next ch-2 sp* ;
rep *to* all around till the end and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 6 : dc in the 1st dc ; ch 1, dc in the next dc ;
*(ch 2, dc in the next dc) ; rep (to) 2 times ;
ch 2, sc in the next ch-4 sp ; ch 2, dc in the next dc* ;
rep *to* all around till the end and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 7 : dc 2-tog in the 1st dc ;
*(ch 2, dc 2-tog in the next dc) ; rep (to) 2 times ;
sk next two ch-2 sps and sc, dc 2-tog in the next dc* ;
rep *to* all around till the end and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 8 : sl-st into the 1st ch-2 sp , sc in the same ch-2 sp ;
*ch 2, sk next dc 2-tog, 4 dc in the next ch-2 sp ; ch 2, sc in the next ch-2 sp ;
ch 2, sc in the next ch-2 sp ; ch 4, sk next two dc 2-tog and sc in the next ch-2 sp* ;
rep *to* all around till the end and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 9 : sl-st into the 1st dc ; dc in the same 1st dc ; ch 1, dc in the next dc ;
*(ch 2, dc in the next dc) ; rep (to) 2 times ;
ch 2, sc in the next ch-4 sp ; ch 2, dc in the next dc* ;
rep *to* all around till the end and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 10 : dc 2-tog in the 1st dc ;
*(ch 2, dc 2-tog in the next dc) ; rep (to) 2 times ;
sk next two ch-2 sps and sc, dc 2-tog in the next dc* ;
rep *to* all around till the end and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 11 : sl-st into the 1st ch-2 sp , sc in the same ch-2 sp ;
*ch 2, sk next dc 2-tog, 5 dc in the next ch-2 sp ; ch 2, sc in the next ch-2 sp ;
ch 2, sc in the next ch-2 sp ; ch 5, sk next two dc 2-tog and sc in the next ch-2 sp* ;
rep *to* all around till the end and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 12 : sl-st into the 1st dc ; dc in the same 1st dc ; ch 1, dc in the next dc ;
*(ch 2, dc in the next dc) ; rep (to) 3 times ;
ch 2, sc in the next ch-5 sp ; ch 2, dc in the next dc* ;
rep *to* all around till the end and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 13 : dc 2-tog in the 1st dc ;
*(ch 2, dc 2-tog in the next dc) ; rep (to) 2 times ;
sk next two ch-2 sps and sc, dc 2-tog in the next dc* ;
rep *to* all around till the end and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

I have stopped at this point and have a collar of nearly 5.5” length, which I think is just right.

If you want a longer collar, rep Rounds 11 -13.

For our last border round, we’ll work a ch – 3 picot stitch, which is (ch 3, sl-st into the 3rd ch from hk).  For a quick “how to” on the picot stitch, check the top of this blog.

Last Border Round : For my final round I have worked sc in all the ch-sps (2 sc in each ch-2 sp) and work a picot in each dc 2-tog all around.


Part 3 : Finishing



Once you have completed both the front and the back pieces, you will join your two shoulder bits and then the sides to finish off the top. 
The photo above (not mine - designer's work) plus the chart above that will show you how to join as well.

Now comes the slightly complicated bit of attaching the collar to the top.
1.       Fold your top in half and mark the centre front and centre back.
2.     Fold your collar in half and mark the centre front and centre back.
3.     Mark the two sides for the top – so for this, a good thumb-rule would be to see where your bra straps go and that’s where you would need to attach the collar.  You can attach it slightly further than this too, but the collar will determine the armhole opening, so once you *think* you have it right, slip the top (bottom bit I mean) on and see that you *do* have it right.
4.     Place your collar onto top of the lower part of top and match the centre markers and start pinning the collar all the way to the side markers for both back and front.
5.     Using one of the joining techniques given at the top of the blog, join the collar to the lower part of top. 

And that’s all the confusion and complication done!  Great job!
Fasten off and weave in all ends.  Block as needed and lemme see your creativity on some social media.  Remember to tag me and please share my blog post so that someone else can also enjoy all this loveliness!

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Here are some of my older creations.  Have fun with these free patterns too