Sunday, 21 June 2015

CYN-FULLY BEAUTIFUL TOP

 
CYN-FULLY BEAUTIFUL TOP

There’s a birthday coming up.. and what better gift than one hand made with love.  As I was going through the many pattern I have in my ‘to-do’ list, nothing seemed to grab me, and then this one was shared on my Facebook page.. oh how have we managed without the internet and social media, pray? J

Lovely as this pattern is, it’s taken quite a lot to write this down, and there are several bits where one has to ‘ad-lib’, so I’m putting this down as an Intermediate to Advanced skill level.

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



Difficulty level : Intermediate to advanced crochet skills

Materials used : Today I’ve used a light 3 ply acrylic yarn,  with a 3 mm crochet hook
For India : This one would work really well with our Anchor knitting cotton or Red rose cotton and 3 mm crochet hook, or the Laura knitting cotton and a 4 mm crochet hook

Abbreviations used :
fsc : Foundation single crochet                                    dc : Double crochet
ch : chain                                                                                ch-sp : chain space
sp : space                                                                                rep : Repeat

Stitches used :
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.

“V” - stitch : V-st : (dc ; ch 1, dc) all in the same st or ch-sp.

Shell stitch : (2 dc, ch 1, 2 dc) all in the same st or ch-sp

Quick analysis of what we’re going to do here today.  We start this lovely pineapple top from the neck and work down to the waist.  This pattern looks like it is going to be an easily alterable one for all sizes.. so work on the pattern repeat and customize it.  The bottom part that snugly fits the waist is the one that got me smiling – love that flat fittedness of the base of this top.  Depending on how flat the tummy is (of the person intended for this creation), you can increase or decrease the waist flat piece.  Of course, this is just as I am looking at the pattern, and have not worked it out yet.. let’s work through together and see how this one unravels.

This pattern is worked in rounds, and as its pretty low along the neckline, it looks like it can be made without a back opening. However, if you wish to have a small opening around the back for one single button, I’d suggest that when you work the border, you could work back and forth in rows and work that one button-hole slot in.

With this pattern, I’d urge you to use the fsc start, because on one side we’re going to work down our blouse / top, and then we’ll return to this fsc row / round to work the border.  The fsc offers a good space on both sides for this purpose – so much better than a simple chain… so come on.. let’s all try this fsc start here.

Right.. so let’s get started.

Start with fsc and in multiples of 18 for the number of stitches you need to go around the neck.  Keeping this fsc row flat and ensuring it doesn’t entangle, join with a sl-st to the 1st st.
(I’ve decided to go with ten repeats and have started accordingly.  It looks like the designer has ten repeats as well.  The number of repeats will only determine how ‘deep’ your neckline goes.  I think it will work best if you settle for an even number of repeats, if you can)

Round 1 : V-st in the 1st fsc ; 
*ch 3, sk next 4 fsc , sc in the next fsc ; ch 2, sk next 3 fsc , 5 dc in the next fsc ; ch 2, sk next 3 fsc, sc in the next fsc ; ch 3, sk next 4 fsc, V-st in the next fsc* ; 
rep *to* till end, where you will just ch 3, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st. 
(as the V-st has started this round).

These first two rounds are always the hardest.. Figuring out how many stitches you need, and then working that first round to completion.. but we’re over the *worst* now.. so let’s settle down and enjoy the rest of this creation now.

Round 2 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of the 1st V-st ; V-st in the same 1st V-st ;
*ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 2, sk next sc and ch-2 sp, [dc in the next dc ; (ch 1, dc in the next dc) ; rep (to) 3 times] ; ch 2, sk next ch-2 sp and sc , sc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 3, V-st in the next V-st * ; rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 3 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of the 1st V-st ; 2 V-st in the same 1st V-st ;
*ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 3, [sk next dc, sc in the next ch-1 sp ; (ch 3, sc in the next ch-1 sp) ; rep (to) 2 times] ; ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 3, 2 V-sts in the next V-st * ; 
rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 4 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of the 1st V-st ;
[V-st in the same 1st V-st ; ch 1, V-st in the next V-st] ;
*ch 3, sk next ch-3 sp, sc in the next ch-3 sp ; (ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp) ; 
rep (to) once ; ch 3, rep [to] once* ; rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 5 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of the 1st V-st ;
[V-st in the same 1st V-st ; ch 1, V-st in the next ch-1 sp ; ch 1, V-st in the next V-st] ;
*ch 3, sk next ch-3 sp, sc in the next ch-3 sp ; (ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp) ; ch 3, rep [to] once* ; 
rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 6 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of the 1st V-st , {V-st in the same 1st V-st ;
ch 1, [dc, ch 2, dc in the next V-st] ; ch 1, V-st in the next V-st} ;
*ch 3, sk next ch-3 sp, dc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 3, rep {to} once* ; 
rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Now we will start on our second pineapple, and at the same time, we’re doing to be adding one shell stitch before and after the pineapples.  If you see, this far, we’ve had only one V-st.  I add this note here, as instructions are going to start getting lengthy with lots of brackets / parenthesis, so good if you can visualise what we’re doing as well. 
  
Round 7 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of the 1st V-st , { shell stitch ; 6 dc in the next ch-3 sp ; shell stitch} ;
*ch 3, V-st in the next dc ; ch 3, rep {to} once* ; 
rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 8 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of the 1st shell stitch, 
{ shell stitch in shell stitch ;  dc in the next dc [ch 1, dc in the next dc] ; rep [to] 4 times ; shell stitch } ;
*ch 3, V-st in the next V-st ; ch 3, shell stitch in shell stitch * ; 
rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 9 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of the shell stitch ; shell stitch in shell stitch ; 
*ch 3, sc in the next ch-1 sp between 2 dc, [ch 3, sc in the next ch-1 sp] ; rep [to] 3 times ; 
ch 3, shell stitch in shell stitch ; ch 1, V-st in the same ch-1 sp } ; ch 3, V-st in the next V-st ; ch 3, shell stitch in shell stitch * ; 
rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 10 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of shell stitch , shell stitch in shell stitch; 
*ch 3, sk next ch-3 sp, sc in the next ch-3 sp ; [ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp] ; rep [to] 2 times ; 
ch 3, shell stitch in shell stitch; ch 1, V-st in the same ch-1 sp } ; ch 3, V-st in the next V-st ; ch 3, shell stitch in shell stitch * ; 
rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 11 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of shell stitch , shell stitch in shell stitch ; 
*ch 3, sk next ch-sp, sc in the next ch-3 sp ; [ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp] ; rep [to] once ; 
ch 3, rep {to} once ; ch 3, V-st in the next V-st ; ch 3, shell stitch in shell stitch * ; 
rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 12 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of shell stitch , shell stitch in shell stitch ; 
*ch 3, sk next ch-3 sp, sc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 3, rep {to} once ; 
ch 3, (dc, ch 4, dc) in the next V-st ; ch 3, shell stitch in shell stitch * ; 
rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 13 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of shell stitch , shell stitch in shell stitch ; 
*ch 3, sk next ch-3 sp, dc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 3, shell stitch in shell stitch ; 
ch 1, 7 dc in the next ch-4 sp ; ch 1, shell stitch in shell stitch * ; rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 14 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of shell stitch , shell stitch in shell stitch ; 
*ch 3, sk next ch-3 sp, V-st in the next dc ; ch 3, rep {to} once ; ch 1, dc in the next dc ; 
(ch 1, dc in the next dc) ; rep (to) 5 times ; ch 1, shell stitch in shell stitch * ; 
rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 15 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of shell stitch , shell stitch in shell stitch; 
*ch 2, sk next ch-3 sp, V-st in the next V-st ; ch 2, shell stitch in shell stitch ; 
ch 3, sk next ch-sp , sc in the next ch-1 sp ; (ch 3, sc in the next ch-1 sp) ; rep (to) 4 times ; 
ch 2, shell stitch in shell stitch * ; 
rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 16 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of shell stitch , shell stitch in shell stitch ; 
*ch 3, sk next ch-sp, V-st in the next V-st ; ch 3, shell stitch in shell stitch ; 
ch 4, sk next ch-sp , sc in the next ch-3 sp ; (ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp) ; rep (to) 3 times ; 
ch 4, shell stitch in shell stitch * ; 
rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 17 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of shell stitch , shell stitch in shell stitch ; 
*ch 3, sk next ch-sp, V-st in the next V-st ; ch 3, shell stitch in shell stitch ; 
ch 5, sk next ch-sp , sc in the next ch-3 sp ; (ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp) ; 
rep (to) 2 times ; ch 5, shell stitch in shell stitch * ; 
rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 18 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of shell stitch , shell stitch in shell stitch ; 
*ch 3, sk next ch-sp, V-st in the next V-st ; ch 3, shell stitch in shell stitch ; ch 5, sk next ch-sp , sc in the next ch-3 sp ; (ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp) ; rep (to) once ; ch 5, shell stitch in shell stitch * ; 
rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 19 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of shell stitch , shell stitch in shell stitch ; 
*ch 3, sk next ch-sp, V-st in the next V-st ; ch 3, shell stitch in shell stitch ; 
ch 5, sk next ch-sp , sc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp ; 
ch 5, shell stitch in shell stitch * ; 
rep *to* till end, and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.


OK, this is great.  We’ve now reached the section where we divide for our armholes. 

And here’s where we start working things a bit on our own.. the ‘ad-lib’ I’d mentioned at the start ..

So put your work down, and let’s see where we will place our four markers.  As advised earlier, it is simpler to divide off if you’ve kept an even number of pineapples – so say we have 10 pineapples, four each define the back and the fronts of our top, and one each define the sleeves.
So place markers on either ends of the fourth markers for the front and back each.  We will be dividing one stitch before the top of the pineapple (so in the V-sts).

Now here’s where the chart gets a little hazy, because on the chart the designer has not indicated how many (if at all) stitches to keep between the fronts and backs under the armhole.  So here’s what I suggest.  Mark off these sections and see if the top fits around the chest and arm/ armhole of the intended.  IF it does, then you continue with the last bit of the top per instructions below.  If it doesn’t, then I suggest we add ch (in the pattern repeat count of 14)

We will continue to work in rounds, and in the ch-sp kept for the armhole, we will work one pattern repeat per 14 ch.  
One pattern rep for this round will be (one V-st ; 1 shell stitch in shell stitch ; one set of 9 dc , one shell stitch in shell stitch and one more V-st). 
Now depending on how many chs you have kept for your armhole, work this pattern set.  Remember that you may end or start the round before the armhole ch-sp with a V-st, so ensure that you do not duplicate any sts in this combination, and end with the correct st to continue on the round.  



Round 20 : sl-st into the ch-1 sp of shell stitch , shell stitch in shell stitch ; * ch 1, 9 dc in the next ch-4 sp ; ch 1, shell stitch in shell stitch ; ch 3, sk next ch-3 sp, V-st in the next dc; ch 3, shell stitch in shell stitch * ; rep *to* till the ch-sp (for the armhole) ; work the pattern rep as above in the ch-sps you’ve kept for the armhole(s) and continue with the pattern *to* till end , and join with an sl-st to the 1st st.

Now before you carry on with the pattern, please check that the round you’ve just made equals the bust size you’re making.  If not, please go back and tweak the pattern repeat in the armhole area.

I am sure by now you have figured out our pattern rep for the pineapple pattern.  
So working along the lines of our pattern repeat of (Rounds 14-19 followed by Rounds 12 and 13) , we’ll work our pineapple patterns. 
The only difference is that in Round 13, as we have 7 dc in that ch-4 sp, but from here on we have 9 dc in the same ch-4 sp.  I am sure you can figure out how to work this change though.

The number of pineapple pattern repeats you make will depend on how long you want your top.

The last bit of our pattern is made up entirely of {shell stitch in shell stitch ; ch 1, shell stitch in next shell stitch} and once again we’re going to work this bit on our own.  
Now what I’ve done is see if that last round I’ve made is loose/ tight enough for the person intended, and then worked my shell stitch in shell stitch accordingly – but basically, we will work {to} in each shell stitch , V-st and dc all around… In the “fanned” section of the pattern (i.e the [dc, ch 1, dc part that leads to the next pineappley bit), I’d suggest you work three {to} pattern bits.

However, IF you think that the last round of pineapples has made the base of your top too loose around the waist of your intended, I’d suggest that you can tweak the number of shell stitches here, such that you ‘decrease’ the round.

We will work a total of 12-15 rounds in all shell stitch (as per the photograph of the designer’s creation) OR as long as you want your top to be.


  
Finishing : Great so we’re nearly done with our superb top.  The finishing goes all around the armhole, and it’s a simple (sc ; ch 3, sk 3 sts, sc in next st).  Now the sts that you skip will determine how ‘loose’ and ‘large’ that armhole opening is.. so if you want a tighter armhole opening, sk more stitches.


Rounds 2 and 3 will be (sc in the ch-3 sp ; ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp). 

Do these three rounds around the neckline as well for a lovely neat and similar finish.

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

Fasten off and weave in ends.  Give yourself a big pat on the back as this one has really been a great project – but totally worth it, I’m sure you’ll agree.

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Have a great day and see you soon. J

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