The Stockholm Dress

What do you get when you combine:
16 balls of sock yarn,
two months of time,
a half dozen pairs of circular needles,
278,318 sts,
vintage knitting magazines,
the desire to knit something for your honeymoon,
and an encouraging friend?

The Stockholm Dress

The Stockholm Dress

Front View

Three-Quarters View

Side View

Back View

Making It

After knitting my purple skirt, I got some wild idea that I should knit a dress. This idea was encouraged by my knitting mentor (who makes me think I can do anything), Ida Riley Duncan’s Knit to Fit book, vintage Vogue Knitting and McCall’s magazines, and a husband who thinks like my mentor does. “Well, it is just math, and you are good knitter, so do it.” (My husband does not knit.)

With help from Knitting Mentor, I chose to use Elann’s Sock-It-To-Me in grey heather. I wanted to knit at a fine gauge because fine-gauge dresses and skirts look good, the nylon would prevent sagging, and the stable gauge would prevent seating out and bagging. I also bought Addi Turbos in sizes 0 and 1 in lengths ranging from 12″ to 60″. I ended up working up a gauge of 35 sts and 48 rows over 4″ using the size 1 needles.

I case on provisionally for the waist and knit downward in the round on US size 1 needles, increasing at eight points around for the skirt. When it was about the right length I removed the provisional cast-on and knit the bodice in the round. I split the work and worked back and forth for the armholes and the v-necks (the front is a deeper v-neck whereas the back is a shallow v-neck). When the body was finished, I used three-needle bind-off for the shoulder seams. The sleeves and I had a battle. No matter which sort of sleeve shaping I used (and I used multiple resources to do the math!), I could not get a good looking cap. So instead I worked a set-in, top-down sleeve using short row shaping. I tried on the dress, which was now mostly complete, to determine the final length of the dress.

I finished the dress using hems. For the v-neck I picked up stitches using the size 1 needles, knit several rows, and switched to the size 0s. I worked a turning row and the inside rows on the smaller needle. I then tacked each stitch down by hand sewing it into place. I also worked hems on the sleeves and lower edge of the skirt, except I went into them straight from the body with no need to pick anything up.

As a final touch, I created an alphabet chart and duplicate stitched my name and 2009 into the inside hem of the skirt.

I started the dress on July 24th and finished the entire thing by September 24th. Perfect timing for an October honeymoon in Sweden!


Shoulder, Three-Needle Bind Off, Wrong Side

Sleeve, Picked Up Stitches, Wrong Side

Sleeve Hem, Wrong Side

V-Neck, Right Side

V-Neck, Wrong Side

Increases, Right Side

Increases, Wrong Side

Lower Hem, Right Side

Lower Hem Detailing, Wrong Side

Wearing It

Hiding From Rain

Hanging Out With Some Goats in Visby, Gotland, Sweden

Good Man
(Who Took All Of These Photos and Measured Me… Multiple Times)

One thought on “The Stockholm Dress

  1. Comment from: Auntie MO [Visitor]
    HOLY CRAP, You are INSANE and the dress is fab. It looks really great on you and with your name in it, no one can steal it off your back like me! Frankly, I knit on number 17 timber poles, and that just about kills me. I am so impatient. Saw some beautiful gloves knit on small needles in last years VOGUE. I will NOT be knitting them for myself because at almost 50 years now, I figure I would be dead before I ever finished them. HOpe you guys are having a GREAT time. Come to SEOUL! We have room.

    Love Mel
    10/16/09 @ 18:22

    Comment from: stephanie (as in the eldest aunite) [Visitor] Email ·
    What an incredible, conceptual, educational, executionable piece. Visually says the whole story without reading a word, but the story adds color. I’ll have to spend more time with this!
    10/16/09 @ 20:53

    Comment from: Amyable [Visitor]
    I’m speechless. You are a very talented woman. Not only is the dress a masterpiece, it looks absolutely fabulous on you.
    10/17/09 @ 14:44

    Comment from: Ramsey Papp [Visitor]
    Wow the dress is gorgeous! Makes me want to knit, although since I haven’t done it since I was about 10 I think I could never finish it in my lifetime! Gotland looks really cool too, picturesque. Perfect honeymoon spot. Have fun!
    10/20/09 @ 13:02

    Comment from: Mom [Visitor] ·
    Your dress is stunning and looks like it fits perfectly. Yeah, Math! I have to say that I think the “goats” you are sitting on look rather like sheep. ;-)
    10/21/09 @ 19:01

    Comment from: admin [Member] Email
    I originally had sheep. Then ram. Then I changed it to goat.
    10/21/09 @ 19:19

    Comment from: Joanne [Visitor] ·
    WOW! That is gorgeous. I want one. :) Who is your knitting mentor? I hope you have that dress forever and it wears like iron. I am just thrilled for you. I have the tank top I knit on my honeymoon and it’s rather worn after 11 years! Wish I’d thought of your dress instead. :)
    10/23/09 @ 11:12

    Comment from: Andrea R [Visitor] Email ·
    Beautiful dress!!! lovely color and design as well. As your mentor said: you can do anything!
    01/17/10 @ 18:03

Comments are closed.