Victory is Mine

THREE YEARS after I started it, my Ribs and Lace Tank is finished! As you may recall, I attempted to knit it way back in 2007 when the pattern came out, before there was a Ravelry and before I had a blog, and I got 3/4 of the way through before I realized that I had drastically miscounted the number of stitches I’d cast on and it was way, way too small. So I hid it in a dark corner for two years, unraveled it last summer, and this summer I finally knit it again.

And hey, it looks pretty good!

Waiting 3 years to knit it again was actually a blessing in disguise, because in the meantime Ravelry came into existence and I learned about Svetlana’s modification of the bra top, which makes the garment much much more flattering. I abandoned the pattern entirely when I got to the ribbing, and followed Svetlana’s directions, except that I knit in straight ribbing for 5 inches instead of 4 before starting the shaping, because my bustiness demands more coverage.

Here I am embracing nature or something. The midriff holes mean I won’t exactly be wearing this in front of classrooms, but I’m actually very happy with the amount of midriff venting — it’s not so much that I feel uncomfortable, but it makes this breezy enough to wear on hot days despite the fact that it’s knit out of worsted weight cotton (Karabella Zodiac, to be precise). I originally thought of this as something I’d wear mostly to Burning Man & similar festivals, but I think it’s more real-world-appropriate than I anticipated.

Totally plausible. Obviously voting in favor of legalization this fall, but I would not assume that she is stoned right now.

I knit the whole thing on needles a size smaller than the pattern called for. The pattern recommends that you knit the skirt with US 10s and the top with US 4s, but I used 9s and 3s — I figured going down a needle size on top would give more boob coverage, and going down a size on the skirt would save it from being too loosely knit. My recommendation to you is to go down at least TWO needle sizes on the skirt — even knit on 9s, the lace looks sloppy, and since it’s cotton there’s not much blocking can do to help. Plus everybody on Ravelry complains that the skirt is too big. Mine is definitely bigger than I need it to be, but it’s not so big that I feel like it’s a problem. Oh, and definitely believe them about the negative ease — the ribs make the top really stretchy. My bust is 40″ and I knit the 37 1/2″ size (on smaller needles, too!) and it’s perfect.

I was frankly apprehensive about knitting this again; the reviews on Ravelry are so mixed, and cotton is not really my friend, but I’m very glad I did. This knit up very quickly, and came out surprisingly well!  But most importantly, I did not let my knitting beat me. And I cleared out space in my stash drawer! Victory is mine.

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