What do you get when you combine:
16 balls of sock yarn,
two months of time,
a half dozen pairs of circular needles,
vintage knitting magazines,
the desire to knit something for your honeymoon,
and an encouraging friend?
The Stockholm Dress
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
Hiding From Rain
Hanging Out With Some Goats in Visby, Gotland, Sweden
(Who Took All Of These Photos and Measured Me… Multiple Times)