Friday, March 29, 2019

RIFT: Before and After

Edgings are important. In most cases they make a statement and add character to the design. Edgings create the polished look of the design, not only in the “neat, accurate” meaning of this word, but also in the way they tie together the entire look.

So, after I spent a day hysterically swatching all of the ribbing stitch patterns I knew and then some more I found on the Internet (none of them fit), I finally calmed down and started to think logically.

An excellent time-tested design construction, the plain sweater with a ribbed edging exists already and I don't need to invent anything new. I just need to re-work it. Why not simply switch the stitch patterns? And the plain sweater with the ribbing at the bottom, in my case, turns into a ribbed sweater with a plain edging. Voila!

As I needed to frog the bottom of the sweater anyway, I took this opportunity to make more changes. I made the sweater slightly shorter in front, longer in back, changed the width of the edging to be more visually appealing and added the same edging to the sleeves, but only half as wide. Now when I look at my red sweater, I feel all the parts are in harmony with each other and I feel content, and hope you do, too!

Yarn: Malabrigo Rios in shade Ravelry Red
Pattern: Rift by Lena Fedotova

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Monday, March 25, 2019

RIFT: Wrong Version And Why I Re-worked It

I'd like to show you the WRONG version of my red sweater before it was RE-WORKED and share my thoughts on why I decided to make some changes.

Friday, March 15, 2019

RIFT: Neckline Edging

The edging I used for the neckline of Rift mimics the knit roll edge and is made with the help of slip stitches worked in front loops only, in a spiral with front side always facing. This makes the edging roll up naturally. Cute, neat and simple!

Frankly, the edgings take most of my time. In my opinion, crochet (due to its nature) misses the basic edgings, the edgings which can be used whatever stitch patterns you chose, for example, like classic ribbing edgings in knitting, or i-cord. They fit almost everything and allow you not to think about the edging at all if you don't want to.

In crochet, you have to "invent" the edging every time you start a new project. It depends on the stitch pattern, how tall the stitches are (and if you mix the stitch patterns, some border sts are short, some are tall), the difference in the gauge of main st pattern and edging also matters. You have to think in advance about the ways you can deal with border sts to achieve neat edging easily too.

I wish someday I'll dive deeper into this and find some working solutions for crochet edgings. And this knit-like roll edge seems to be a nice neckline solution for almost every stitch pattern, because it starts with a base round around neckline (no matter what st pattern is used, you just need to fill the entire neckline with single crochet stitches) and continues with slip stitches for four-five rounds.

Yarn: Malabrigo Rios in shade Ravelry Red
Pattern: Rift by Lena Fedotova

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Wednesday, March 13, 2019

RIFT: In Progress

Even the simplest design may lead to lots of discoveries, things to be learned, and skills to be polished! I planned on finishing this sweater in a week or two, but even after working on it for a month I still had a lot of things to think about. But now these decisions have been made and I am very happy with the result!

1) I am not a fan of the straight neckline lines of the basic raglan. I was curious how I could avoid this without working short rows which would break the accurate horizontal ribbing stitch pattern. The solution was a combination of round yoke construction (for front and back) and raglan (for sleeves).

2) The uneven raglan increases are used to create a perfect fit. The yoke circumference matches the body measurements and a relaxed oversize fit is achieved by adding extra stitches at the underarm. Extra short-rows are worked across the back to finish the yoke shaping and create a higher back neck.

3) I am using Malabrigo Rios and switch the skeins every second row to avoid color pooling. It took some time to discover the best way to do this neatly, as well as a way to join in the round in ribbing stitch pattern (do not ch-1 and you'll get much more accurate and invisible join!).

4) The neckline edging mimics a knit roll edge and is made with the help of the slip stitches.

5) Decreases are evenly placed along each sleeve creating a taper towards the cuff. Love neat narrow cuffs!

When I was writing this, the sweater was not finished yet, so I expected to have more things to think about. For example, the bottom edging, which I planned on working in the same ribbing stitch pattern, but vertically-oriented. To be continued!

Yarn: Malabrigo Rios in shade Ravelry Red
Pattern: Rift by Lena Fedotova

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Tuesday, March 12, 2019

RIFT: Color and Getting Started

I'd like to share the design story of my upcoming pattern and it begins with the color. My favorite color in February was red.

Starting the design process with a rich, hot, red color meant that the remaining design elements should be simple: I chose top-down raglan construction, relaxed fit and a simple stitch pattern. A piece of cake, but frankly, such simple designs require a lot of attention: neat stitch work, accurate edging, smooth color flow, perfect fit, no extra fabric or wrinkles at armholes, etc.

I don't mean that the super-cool design may skip any of these, just that the simple ones do not have those cool elements that could distract you from the possible flaws. One can never be overly perfectionist with something minimalistic in style and simple in shape. And I love it!

Yarn: Malabrigo Rios in shade Ravelry Red
Pattern: Rift by Lena Fedotova

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