Monday, 14 March 2016

PINEAPPLES & PEARLS TOP


PINEAPPLES & PEARLS TOP

As I was working on one top, my friend Rajeshwari shared this picture… and I *knew* that this was going to be on my to-do list.  Coincidentally I had a visitor from Perth (Australia) who gifted me this absolutely soft and lovely Milford Satin cotton yarn.. well, seems like the Universe has said it all.. I just gotta follow suit! J

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



Materials used : Today I’ve used the absolutely fantastic Milford Satin knitting cotton yarn, with a 3 mm crochet hook 


http://www.spotlightstores.com/fabrics-yarn/yarn/cotton-crochet-yarn/milford-satin/p/BP80145282017-ombre-pink

For Indians : Milford Satin is like our Indian Red Rose or Anchor knitting cotton in thickness, or the superb Indian H.P Peecock knitting cotton

Skill level :  Intermediate to Advanced.
This pattern requires some stitching / sewing of the yoke to the lower part of the top.  This bit also needs Intermediate sewing skills as the yoke (being a circular pattern) needs to be adjusted to fit the lower part of the top.

Abbreviations used : (Using U.S terminology)
fsc : Foundation single crochet                                 dc : Double crochet
ch : chain                                                                     ch-sp : chain space
sp : space                                                                     rep : Repeat
dc 3-tog : Double Crochet 3-together

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.

dc 3-tog : Double crochet 3-tog : [yo, insert hk in st or ch-sp, yo and pull up a lp ; yo and draw through 2 lps] 3 times (4 lps on hk) ; yo, draw through all lps on hk.  One dc 3-tog made.


Quick analysis of what we’re going to do here today.  Our pattern is in two parts.  One parts starts pretty easily and regularly from the base of the top and we then work our way to the shoulders of the top, but we work only till the end of the yoke.  The other part is the circular yoke.  The rounded pineapple patterned yoke that we work separately, and then attach on to the other part of the top that we first work.  The lovely yoke works its way across the shoulders as well, and I love how that looks.. so hopefully we’re going to get that right too J

This pattern is an Intermediate to Advanced level because of its unique construction – not because of its easy-peasy stitches.  As we advance to the shoulders, we are going to make it a semi-circular finish, and not the “regular” flat top finish – but we’ll work that out as we go along.. so let’s get started.

And then at the end of it all, I added a little bling in the form of pearls. That’s right at the end.. in the finishing stage.









But first we will work on the lower part of our top. 

Our pattern repeat is 14. 
Now I’d like to add here that I’d suggest you work a little less than actually needed for your round waist, as the pattern has a “V”-st that adds to the width.  Usually when one uses a “V”-st, one skips stitches in the pattern – in this pattern we do not skip any stitches, so my comment.

BACK / FRONT : (Make two)




Start with fsc needed for half the round waist measure.

Our “V”-st here is (2 dc ; ch 2, 2 dc) all in the same st or ch-sp.

Row 1 : dc in the 1st 7 fsc ; (“V-st” in the next fsc ; dc in the next 13 fsc) ; 
rep (to) till the end.  Turn.
In the last rep, there are only 7 fsc

Row 2 : dc in the 1st 7 dc ; (“V-st” in the next “V”-st ; dc in the next 13 dc) ; 
rep (to)  till the end.  Turn.
In the last rep, there are only 7 dc

Note : Remember that the “V”-st has 2 dc’s and these dc’s are not counted as part of the 13 dc.  So though I’ve not said ‘sk next 2 dc’, you will ‘skip’ the dc’s that are part of the “V”-st and only work in the 14 dc’s between two sets of “V”-st
Rep Row 2 till your project reaches the armhole level.  We will then shape for the armhole.  

Rep Row 2 till your project is just under the armhole.



Decrease Row 1 : sl-st in the 1st 3 dc ; 
(sc in the next dc ; hdc in the next 2 dc ; dc in the next dc) ; 
*“V”-st in the next “V”-st ; dc in the next 13 dc* ; 
rep *to* till the last 7 dc ; [dc in the next dc ; hdc in the next 2 dc ; sc in the last dc]. Turn.

Decrease Row 2 : sl-st in the 1st 4 sts ; 
*“V”-st in the next “V”-st ; dc in the next 13 dc* ; 
rep *to* till the last “V”-st.  Turn.

Decrease Row 3 : sl-st in the 1st ch-2 sp of the 1st “V”-st ; 2 dc in that 1st ch-2 sp ; 
*“V”-st in the next “V”-st ; dc in the next 13 dc* ; 
rep *to* till the last “V”-st ; 2 dc in the ch-2 sp of that last “V”-st .  Turn.

Decrease Row 4 : sl-st in the 1st dc ; 
*“V”-st in the next “V”-st ; dc in the next 13 dc* ; 
rep *to* till the last 2 dc ; dc in the 2nd last dc.  Turn.

Decrease Row 5 : dc 2-tog over the 1st 2 dc ; dc in the next 13 dc ; 
*“V”-st in the next “V”-st ; dc in the next 13 dc* ; 
rep *to* till the last 2 dc ; dc 2-tog over the last 2 dc. Turn.
We will now shape the neckline, and continuing to shape the armhole as well.

Decrease Row 6 : dc 2-tog over the 1st 2 dc ; dc in the next 12 dc ; 
“V”-st in the next “V”-st ; dc in the next 10 dc ; hdc in the next 2 dc ; 
sc in the next dc ; ch 2, sk next 2 dc (of the “V”-st) , 
sc in the ch-sp, ch 2, sk next 2 dc(of the “V”-st) , sc in the next dc. Turn.

Decrease Row 7 : sl-st in the 1st 2 ch-sps and the next 7 sts ; sc in the next 2 sts ; 
dc in the next 3 sts till the “V”-st , 4 hdc in the ch-sp of the next “V”-st ; 
dc in the next dc and in all dcs till the last 2 dc ; 
dc 2-tog over the next last 2 dc. Turn.

Decrease Row 8 : dc in the 1st 7 dc ; hdc in the next 2 dc ; sc in the next dc.Turn.

Decrease Row 9 : sl-st in the 1st 4 sts ; sc in the next 2 sts ; hdc in the next st ; 
dc in the next 2 dc  .Turn.

Fasten off and weave in ends.

We’ve completed one side of the top – so do the exact same set of instructions for the other side of the top.
Once you’ve got both the front and back of your top, attach the sides till the armhole.

We will now work on the yoke in a round, circular motion.

YOKE :



The pattern repeat for the yoke is also 14.
For calculating how many stitches needed, I’ve basically checked my fsc chain against a well-fitting top to see that it works for me.  
There are two things that I’d suggest : (a) Work in even multiples – which means multiples of 8, 10, 12 etc and (b) It probably doesn’t matter if it is too ‘loose’ as this can be an off-the-shoulder and / or you can thread in a tie through the top and pull it tighter. If you are making this for yourself, ensure that it goes easily around the head and fits closely aruond the neck. I found that this worked for me (the second time around J.. yup frogged it once)

Start : with a fsc chain in multiples of 14.  Join with a sl-st to the 1st ch.
Ensure that you keep your chain flat.
We will now work in rounds.

Our “V”-st for this section is (2 dc ; ch 3, 2 dc) all in the same st or ch-sp.

Round 1 : “V”-st in the 1st fsc ; (ch 3, sk next 6 fsc, “V”-st in the next fsc) ; 
rep (to) till end ; ch 3, join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 2 : “V”-st in the 1st “V”-st ; *(ch 3, 9 dc in the next “V”-st) ; 
ch 3, “V”-st in the next “V”-st* ;  rep *to* till end ; 
ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.       
Note: You should have an even number of “V”-sts at the end of the round.
May I also suggest at this point, that you throw this lovely little circle of shells around your neck and see that it goes over your head easily, and is an neat neckline for you.. else back to Round 1 and add / reduce stitches.

Round 3 : “V”-st in the 1st “V”-st ; *(ch 3, dc in the next dc ; 
[ch 1, dc in the next dc] ; rep [to] 7 times) ; ch 3, “V”-st in the next “V”-st* ;  
rep *to* till end ; ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.         

Round 4 : “V”-st in the 1st “V”-st ; 
*[ch 3, sk next dc, sc in the next ch-1 sp] ; 
rep [to] 6 times) ; ch 3, “V”-st in the next “V”-st* ;  
rep *to* till end ; ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.   

Round 5 : “V”-st in the 1st “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] 5 times ; ch 3, “V”-st in the next “V”-st* ;  
rep *to* till end ; ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.     

Round 6 : Increase Round : “V”-st in the 1st “V”-st ; ch 3, “V”-st in the same 1st  “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] 4 times ; {ch 3, “V”-st in the next “V”-st ; ch 3, “V”-st in the same “V”-st } * ;  
rep *to* till end ; ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.       

Round 7 : “V”-st in the 1st “V”-st ; ch 3, 2 dc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 3, “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] 3 times ; {ch 3, “V”-st in the next “V”-st ; ch 3, 2 dc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 3, “V”-st in the next “V”-st ; ch 3, sk next ch-3 sp, sc in the next ch-3 sp} * ;  
rep *to* till end ; ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.         

Round 8 : “V”-st in the 1st “V”-st ; {ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 3, sk next 2 dc, sc in the next ch-3 sp} ; (ch 3, “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] 2 times ; rep (to) once ;
rep {to} once ; rep (to) once ; ch 3, sk next ch-3 sp, sc in the next ch-3 sp* ;  rep *to* till end ; ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st. 

Round 9 : “V”-st in the 1st “V”-st ; 
(ch 3, sk next ch-3 sp, “V”-st in the next ch-3 sp) ; ch 3, “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, “V”-st in the next “V”-st ; rep (to) once ; ch 3, “V”-st in the next “V”-st ; 
ch 3, sk next ch-3 sp, sc in the next ch-3 sp} * ;  
rep *to* till end ; ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st. 

Round 10 : “V”-st in the 1st “V”-st ; ch 3, 8 dc in the next “V”-st ; 
(ch 3, “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, 8 dc in the next “V”-st ; rep (to) once ; ch 3, sk next ch-3 sp, sc in the next ch-3 sp }* ;  
rep *to* till end ; ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st. 

Round 11 : “V”-st in the 1st “V”-st ; ch 3, dc in the next dc ; 
[ch 1, dc in the next dc] ; rep [to]  6 times ; (ch 3, “V”-st in the next “V”-st) ; 
ch 3, sk next ch-3 sp, sc in the next ch-3 sp ;
*rep (to) once ; ch 3, dc in the next dc ; rep [to] 7 times ; rep (to) once ; ch 3, sk next ch-3 sp, sc in the next ch-3 sp* ;  
rep *to* till end ; ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st. 

Round 12 : “V”-st in the 1st “V”-st ; ch 3, sk next dc , sc in the next ch-1 sp ; 
[ch 3, sc in the next ch-1 sp] ; rep [to] 5 times ; (ch 3, “V”-st in the next “V”-st) ; 
*ch 1, “V”-st in the next “V”-st ; ch 3, sk next dc, sc in the next ch-1 sp ; 
rep [to] 7 times ; rep (to) once * ;  
rep *to* till end ; ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st. 

Round 13 : “V”-st in the 1st “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] 4 times ; (ch 3, “V”-st in the next “V”-st) ; 
*ch 3, 2 dc in the next ch-1 sp ; ch 3, V-st in the next “V”-st ; ch 3, sk next ch-3 sp, rep [to] 5  times ; rep (to) once * ;  
rep *to* till end ; ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st. 

Round 14 : “V”-st in the 1st “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] 3 times ; (ch 3, “V”-st in the next “V”-st) ;
*{ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 3, sk next 2 dc, sc in the next ch-3 sp ; rep (to) once} ; sk next ch-3 sp, rep [to] 4  times ; rep (to) once* ;  rep *to* till end ; ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st. 

Round 15 : “V”-st in the 1st “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] 2 times ; (ch 3, “V”-st in the next “V”-st) ;
*{ch 3, 2 dc in the next ch-3 sp ; ch 3, dc in the same ch-3 sp ; 
ch 1, dc in the same ch-3 sp ; ch 3, 2 dc in the same ch-3 sp} ; 
rep (to) once ; sk next ch-3 sp, rep [to] 3  times ; rep (to) once* ;  
rep *to* till end ; ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st. 

In the following round, we’re going to work on the 6 dc we’ve made in that centre ch-3 sp.  The instructions have a lot of ch-sp numbers.. so please try to follow along with the chart as well.

Round 16 : “V”-st in the 1st “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, “V”-st in the next “V”-st) ;
*{ch 3, sk next 2 dc, 3 dc in the next ch-3 sp ; 2 dc in the next dc ; dc in the next ch-1 sp ; 2 dc in the next dc ; 3 dc in the next ch-3 sp} ; sk next 2 dc, rep (to) once ; sk next ch-3 sp, rep [to] 2  times ; rep (to) once* ;  
rep *to* till end ; ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st. 

Round 17 : “V”-st in the 1st “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, “V”-st in the next “V”-st) ;
*ch 3, dc in the next dc ; {ch 1, dc in the next dc} ;  
rep {to} 9 times ; rep (to) once ; sk next ch-3 sp, rep [to] once ; rep (to) once* ;  
rep *to* till end ; ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st. 

Round 18 : “V”-st in the 1st “V”-st ; [ch 3, sk next ch-3 sp, sc in the next ch-3 sp] ; 
(ch 3, “V”-st in the next “V”-st) ;
*ch 3, 2 dc in the next dc ; {ch 2, 2 dc in the next dc} ;  
rep {to} 9 times ; rep (to) once ;  rep [to] once ; rep (to) once* ;  
rep *to* till end ; ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st. 

In the following round we’ll use our dc 3-tog.
Round 19 : “V”-st in the 1st “V”-st ; sk next two ch-3 sps, “V”-st in the next “V”-st ;
*(ch 3, sk next 2 dc,  dc 3-tog in the next ch-2 sp) ; rep (to) 9 times ; “V”-st in the next “V”-st ; sk next two ch-3 sps and sc, “V”-st in the next “V”-st * ;  
rep *to* till end ; ch 3 and join with a sl-st to the 1st st. 

Round 20 : sc in the 1st ch-3 sp ; (ch 3, sc in the next ch-3 sp) ; 
rep (to) all around and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

Round 21 : 3 sc in the 1st ch-3 sp ; (sk next sc, 3 sc in the next ch-3 sp) ; 
rep (to) all around and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

In the last following round, we will use our decorative picot stitch.  
Our picot is a 3-ch picot = (ch 3, sl-st in the 1st ch)




Round 22 : sc in the 1st sc ; (sc + picot in the next sc ; sc in the next 2 sc) ; rep (to) all around and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

Fasten off and leave a tail for attachment of yoke to top.

Finishing :
Now that we have our yoke and the lower part of the top, all that’s left is to join it up.. but that’s a little tricky too.

Get your makers ready. 
1.       Fold yoke in half and find the centres for front and back.  Align it to the front and back centre of the lower part of the top. 
2.     As you have an even number of large scallops, the centre of your yoke will be between two scallops.
3.     Ease the rounded edge of the scallop along the circular end of the top, and pin it down.  Remember that as there is a circular edge for the yoke, you will need to ease the circular yoke portion against the straighter lower edge.
4.     Pin all the way till the end of the armhole for the lower portion on both sides and then sew the two portions (back & front) down to the yoke.
5.      To finish the armhole neatly, I ran a round of dc all around that edge.  I thought about a row of picot around that edge, but decided against it .. so just putting it out there as an idea for you.
6.     I similarly ran a round of sc all around the neck edge too.. and yet again, you could do a round of picots all around here too.


As you can see there are pearls scattered all over my yoke bit.. well, I cheated.. As I’d used a variegated yarn, I found that the lovely pineapples and all that hard work did not really show through, so I sewed in the pearls after I’d finished the yoke.
I do like how the variegation has worked themselves into a neat pattern for the lower part of the top.



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.

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

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