Pattern: Soap Bubble Wrap by Connie Chang Chinchio, Interweave Knits Spring 09
Yarn: Lion Brand studio Cotton Bamboo in Cherry Blossom, about 5 skeins
Needles: US 6? I can’t remember, I started so long ago!
Notes: So… it’s probably a bad sign when I choose the detail shot for the first picture. But I love that lace pattern, which was lots of fun to do, and not bad at all in spite of all the charts (1 for each front and 2 for the back.) I really enjoyed the yarn as well, and would recommend it without hesitation. It behaves more like a cotton than a bamboo, with a nice dry hand, but the bamboo gives it some drape without becoming too stretchy. The pattern was really well written – I was always clear on what to do, as I always am in Connie’s patterns. Sadly, we have some operator error here.
sorry for my windblown hair!
The problem? It’s too big. I made the 2nd smallest size at a tighter gauge than the pattern called for, and I got the size I was aiming for – about a 35″ bust. I was hoping it would be nice and drapey without being like a bathrobe. The fronts can easily wrap too far around me, and they don’t stay where I put them because they are wider than I am. But that’s ok… really the problem with me and positive ease is that I have very tiny shoulders, and larger sizes tend to slide off. The photo below (which I didn’t bother to color correct like the others) gives a more accurate view of how large the shoulders are for me.
I think I could have knit less length on the back collar and maybe that would have helped a little, but I don’t think that’s causing the problem. The problem is that I don’t fit into grown-up sizes sometimes – I hate to shop because I am always consigned to shopping in the juniors department, as the continual upsizing of clothing sizes has sized me out of some misses brands entirely. Every 6 months or so I forget this fact, and think I wear a bigger size than I do, and wind up with a too large sweater (my Nantucket Jacket shares a similar problem – the shoulders are enormous on me and continuously slide down.)
Note how I am standing, with one hand on my hip, slightly at an angle. That’s because if I put that arm down normally the shoulder of the sweater will fall off. It’s also not as flattering from straight on. Let this be a lesson to you all about how models stand in knitting magazines (I’m not talking about this pattern – interweave is pretty good about getting different angles – but I’m looking at you, Vogue Knitting!) I think it looks really good in this photo, but it doesn’t stay in real life. I’m thinking of getting a wide belt obi style belt and belting it that way – I think that would hold it in place better than the knitted tie. It might also make me feel better about how high waisted I am – in some of the photos my husband took, like the one above where I’m seated, I appear to be belting my sweater right under my boobage, but I am not. That’s where my waist actually is. I actually went looking for a belt today, but walked away empty handed after convincing myself that I was not trendy enough to pull that off.
I would totally recommend the pattern – I think this would be so cute on someone with more curves than I have (read: any *sigh*) I wouldn’t recommend going for too much positive ease if you have narrow shoulders relative to your waist – since this is a dolman style it’s going to fit looser up there anyway. I would also slip the first stitch of each RS row of garter stitch edging – I didn’t (except on the tie) and wish I had. The pattern calls for doing your seam edges in garter stitch, which I personally find harder to sew up than keeping the selvedge in stockinette, but of course YMMV – I know people who prefer both! I thought about grafting the top seam of the sleeves rather than doing a 3 needle bind off. I didn’t, because I was worried about stretching.
Right now I don’t think I’ll wear it much because of the falling shoulders, but I’m not giving up – I’m going to definitely try it out with a belt. I’m not even upset that I made it too big, because I’m so happy that my knitting mojo is back again. I’ve come up with a plan that I’m now working on for the future, and suddenly I want to knit instead of sit around and worry all the time!