Elizabeth A.S. Brooke

Crafting, traveling and everything in between.


From Polo-to-Tank Top

My second knit, my first tank-top and my first refashioned item!

My polo-to-tank top

An old polo shirt.

I used BurdaStyle’s Sadie pattern and cut up one of Chris’ old polo shirts. The top is just a bit snug, but I like it. I can’t wait to wear it over and over again!

I had a little trouble with the bias tape binding. The pattern calls for cutting up strip of fabric to use as the binding, which would have been less stiff than the bias tape, but I didn’t have enough polo shirt to do that. I don’t really mind the stiff binding as I think it gives the shirt and interesting look.

I also didn’t like how blind hemming the tape looked. The thread was a lighter green (I didn’t have a dark green spool on hand) and I thought it made the collar look tacky.

So, using a stitch called “Sephora” on my old Singer, I decided to do a decorative stitch instead. I like how it turned out. What do you think?

I originally had planned to add flowers or something along the left side of the collar, but the best I could come up with, using what I had, was this:

Too juvenile for a 30-year-old woman, me thinks.

I could have left the top plain; it’s all right like that. But, to me, if you’re making something, you’re able to put your own personal touches on it and make it yours. So why not go all out? I felt the top still needed something, but what?

I flipped through Jenny Hart’s “Sublime Stitching” book I picked up last Christmas while visiting my parents. I decided on a border along the bottom front of the shirt like this:

What do you think? I think I’m going to love it!

The embroidery floss matches the Sephora stitching pretty well and makes the top look more interesting. I can’t wait to finish!

And it shouldn’t take long. I finished the first vine in one evening. I’m using a simple backstitch for the stem and satin stitch (my first attempt at this stitch!) for the leaves.

(Thanks, Mom, for teaching me the basics of embroidery and thanks, Jenny, for this awesome book!)


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Hubby’s fingerless mitts

I completed Chris’ fingerless mitts last weekend. They turned out much better than I anticipated. I couldn’t be happier except if I had used wool instead of acrylic yarn. But Chris asked that I use yarn I already had on hand and, so, acrylic it was.

I had considered using Pamela Grossman’s “Knucks” pattern over at Knitty.com. I found it through the Elliphantom Knits blog. They look really cool and I figured Chris would dig ’em. (I planned to leave off the embroidery though. That wouldn’t have been Chris’ style.)

But after printing out the instructions and reviewing them more closely, I passed it over. It just seemed too difficult to tackle. I would have to knit each finger separately and then attach them to the palm part of the glove later. Too much hassle.

I had some fingerless mittens patterns, but they were designed for women’s medium-sized hands and were either lacy or too feminine —”Ladylike Lace Gloves” by MK Carroll in “Stitch ‘N Bitch Crochet: The Happy Hooker” and “Hurry Up Spring Armwarmers” By Renée Rigdon in “Stitch ‘N Bitch: The Knitter’s Handbook.”


So I decided to tackle designing a pattern on my own. I’d already made the crocheted “Ladylike Lace Gloves” for myself and my sister, so I sort of had an idea of how to go about it. Just in case, I studied the techniques for the thumb hole again in both the crocheted pattern and the knitted “Hurry Up Spring Armwarmers” and then began.

I used worsted weight acrylic yarn and four size 7 double pointed knitting needles. My pattern’s below and I’ve posted it on Ravelry. Adjust the needle sizes, yarn and number of cast on stitches to fit for your man’s hands. Chris’ hands, I suppose, are medium-sized man hands.

Hubby’s fingerless mitts
By: E.A. Seagraves
(Credit for the thumb technique goes to Renée Rigdon.)

Materials:
(4) size 7 (4.5 mm) double pointed needles
left over worsted weight yarn (medium weight/4)

Special abbreviations:
pm = place a stitch marker on the needle after the last stitch knitted
sm = slip stitch marker from one needle to the next
M1 = make one stitch, Insert the left needle under the loop between the stitch just knitted and the next. Pull up a loop and knit into it, creating one stitch.

Directions: (medium-sized man hands)

CO 36 stitches, placing 12 stitches on each of three needles. With fourth needle begin knitting:

Row 1-40 (or the length you want): K4, P4 around

Left Hand:
Row 41: (K4, P4) across 2 needles. On Needle 3, K3, place marker (pm), M1, pm, K1, P4, K4

Row 42: (K4, P4) across 2 needles. On Needle 3, K3, slip marker (sm), M1, K1, M1, sm, K1, P4, K4

Rows 43-47: *(K4, P4) across 2 needles. On Needle 3, K3, sm, between markers knit in front and back of the first stitch creating two stitches, knit across until one stitch left between markers, knit in front and back of the last stitch, sm, K1, P4, K4 (Repeat from * around until 13 stitches total between markers.)

Palm: Rows 48-61: Slip 13 stitches onto a stitch holder. Then continue K4, P4 around (minus the 13 stitches) for 14 rows. Bind off and weave in ends.

Thumb: Rows 48-54: Divide 13 stitches evenly on three needles, such as 4 stitches on Needles 1 and 2 and 5 stitches on Needle 3. Knit around 7 times. Bind off and weave in ends, using the yarn tails to sew any holes left around and between the thumb and palm. (I had holes below and above the thumb.)

Right Hand:
Row 41: On Needle 1, K4, P4, K3, pm, M1, pm, K1. On Needles 2 and 3, P4, K4 around.

Row 42: On Needle 1, K4, P4, K3, sm, M1, K1, M1, sm, K1. On Needles 2 and 3, P4, K4 around.

Row 43-47: *On Needle 1, K4, P4, K3, sm, between markers knit in front and back of the first stitch creating two stitches, knit across until one stitch left between markers, knit in front and back of the last stitch, sm, K1. On Needles 2 and 3, P4, K4 across. (Repeat from * around until 13 stitches total between markers.)

Palm: Rows 48-61: Slip 13 stitches onto a stitch holder. Then continue K4, P4 around (minus the 13 stitches) for 14 rows. Bind off and weave in ends.

Thumb: Rows 48-54: Divide 13 stitches evenly on three needles, such as 4 stitches on Needles 1 and 2 and 5 stitches on Needle 3. Knit around 7 times. Bind off and weave in ends, using the yarn tails to sew any holes left around and between the thumb and palm. (I had holes below and above the thumb.)