Thursday, 14 April 2016



I was pleasantly surprised when the door bell rang and the postman handed me this pretty large box with a lovely stash of yarn from White Rose Yarns. This is a box of sample yarns sent by a friend .. So I thought I’d make something and “pay-it-forward”. J

I’m making this for a friend’s daughter and though I started off trying to keep this a surprise from the friend too – I could not wrangle out her daughter’s measurements without divulging the surprise.. ah well, the lil one should be suitably happy.

My friend gave me two choices for the dress and her first choice was a tutu dress.  With the yarns in hand, I’d manage a cute yoke very easily, so this is what I’ve made with crochet.

For the base, tulle or light chiffon gathered into the skirt, for the lower part of the dress, will do the trick.

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

Materials used : Today I’ve used our Indian White Rose cotton yarn,  with a 3 mm crochet hook. So I've used their regular knitting cotton as well as their metallic cotton.  This is the first time I am using this cotton, and it a superb yarn - softer and more pliable that our Indian Anchor knitting cotton.

Size made : I’ve made this for a 3-year old (Chest size 22”) and used about 70 gms of knitting cotton

Abbreviations used :
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 :
fsc : Foundation Single Crochet : To refresh your skill on the fsc, please view this superb video by Tamara Kelly at the link

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

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.  Our tutu dress is in two parts.  We start at the round chest (just above armhole) and work up towards the shoulders with our yoke first. 
We will then attach some tulle for the lower portion of our tutu dress.

For the yoke, depending on what size you’re making, I’d suggest that we work the first few rows back and forth in rows, keeping a small opening at the back to allow for one hook or button, and then we around the back and work in rounds.

As always we will work on a stitch count / pattern repeat and you can make this dress any size you wish, just changing the count to match the chest size.

Our stitch count repeat for the Yoke is 6 + 3.

The pattern for the front and back of the yoke is the same, so work two yoke sections.

The only difference is the depth (or how deep) of the neckline.  Depending on this, you will adjust the requirement for buttons at the back.
In case you decide to have buttons on the back of the yoke, then you will divide the top part of the back in half, and work the last say 2 rows in half and add on buttons later.

If, like shown in the chart, you decide to have a slightly deeper neckline and similar front and back depth, then you will be working same yoke pattern for both back and front.

Start : with fsc in multiples of 6 + 3. 

You work this for the Round Chest measure, and you need to decide on the (back) button placket length.  Work in rounds till the point you decide to keep that back placket opening, and then you will work in rows, back and forth.

As it is difficult to decide where each of us is working that back, I am going to write the pattern instructions in rounds, but you work in rows where it suits you.

Pattern instructions do not change if working in rows or rounds – just that your last st instruction will be a Turn for rows as against a join with a sl-st for rounds.

In the following row we’ll work our dc 2-tog. Now through this pattern, we’re using a special dc 2-tog.  Now with a regular dc 2-tog, you work half the dc on one st, and the second leg of the dc 2-tog on the next stitch, right?

So with our special dc 2-tog here, we will work the 1st leg of the dc 2-tog in one st, sk the next st and then work the 2nd leg of the dc 2-tog over the next st.  So we have a dc 2-tog but over 3 sts, having skipped the stitch in the centre.
This will be our special dc 2-tog through this whole yoke.

Row 1 : dc in the 1st 3 fsc ; (ch 1, special dc 2-tog over the next 3 fsc , sk the fsc in the middle ; ch 1, dc in the next 3 fsc) ; rep (to) till end.  Turn.

Row 2 : dc in the 1st 3 dc ; (3 dc in the next special dc 2-tog ; dc in the next 3 dc) ; rep (to) till end.  Turn.

Row 3 : dc in the 1st 3 dc ; (ch 1, special dc 2-tog over the next 3 dc , sk the dc in the middle ; ch 1, dc in the next 3 dc) ; rep (to) till end.  Turn.

Rep Rows 2 & 3 till your project reaches the neckline level , ending with a Row 3.

As we’re making this for a lil girl, there is no real armhole shaping. When we join the sides, we’ll just give it a neat finish with one round of sc.

Decide how deep you want your neckline.  We will then just work for the two shoulder straps, one at a time.

Neckline decrease
For this portion, I am going to re-start our Row count from 1.

Neckline Row 1 : dc 2-tog over the 1st 2 dc ; dc in the next dc ; (3 dc in the next special dc 2-tog ; dc in the next 3 dc) ; rep (to) once ; 3 dc in the next special dc 2-tog ; dc in the next dc.  Turn.

Neckline Row 2 : dc in the 1st dc ; (ch 1, special dc 2-tog over the next 3 dc , sk the dc in the middle ; ch 1, dc in the next 3 dc) ; rep (to) once ; ch 1, special dc 2-tog over the next 3 dc , sk the dc in the middle ; dc 2-tog over the last 2 dc.  Turn.

Neckline Row 3 : dc in the 1st dc ; (3 dc in the next special dc 2-tog ; dc in the next 3 dc) ; rep (to) once ; 3 dc in the next special dc 2-tog ; dc in the next dc.  Turn.

Rep Rows 2 and 3 till you reach the shoulders, ending with a Row 2.
Fasten off and weave in ends.

Re-attach yarn for the other side and mirror these instructions for the second side.

Once you complete both back and front, attach both the sections at the shoulder.
Go up to the top of this blog for a “how-to” explanation on attaching two sections.

And just like that we’re done with the crochet portion of our dress.

For the lower portion, I am going to measure 1.5 – 1.75 times the Round Waist measure and cut my tulle.  I will then run a few rows of loose machine stitch along one side of the cut piece, to gather it up.  Attach the gathered part to the lower part of our yoke and our dress is fully done.

As this is a cute frilly tutu dress, you could add several layers of tulle for the dress, and add some layers in shade.  The lower part will then stand out and will give your lil girl a lovely feel when she twirls.

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’ve made a few dresses, and here’s are the links for those creations

I also have some neat yoke patterns .. Enjoy