Strawberry out of season

I braved a cold and windy day to take some photos of my newest top – once again, a summer top in time for winter. This is the Anker Tee designed by PetiteKnit.

I usually fall for a pattern and then search for the right yarn. In this case the yarn – Isager Trio 2 – came first. I was intrigued by the yarn content – 50% linen/flax, 30% cotton, 20% Tencel/Lyocell. The last is a fibre derived from trees, so essentially paper. I wanted to know how it would behave. I thought it would have a good drape and that the fabric would breathe. I thought that having a bit of paper fibre blended with linen sounded cool. All of this was intriguing enough to consider it, but the thing that really sold me was this gorgeous red shade, aptly called Strawberry.

I cast on for a size 5, to give zero ease. But I decided pretty quickly that the yarn was stretchy and what I really wanted was something between a size 4 and 5 to create a bit of negative ease. My row gauge was a bit off too, and I managed to fix both of these issues by making fewer sets of raglan increases. Basically, I cast on the number of stitches for size 5, followed the instructions for making the bands of ribbing with the associated increases, and then ignored the rest of the instructions and just knit it to suit me. I do this frequently with top-down knits – once I get the yoke in, the rest is usually organic and I just improvise.

I didn’t take notes, so I am not sure exactly what I did. I did put in a couple sets of waist decreases and corresponding hip increases. I ended up with about 2 inches of negative ease. The yoke pattern is lovely; it’s a really clever design, and it seems to suit nearly every body type.

I gave it a good soak, poured a cup of white spirit vinegar in the rinse water to stop the colour bleeding, rolled it in a towel to soak up excess water and then laid it out on a towel to dry. I didn’t need to pin it to shape, as the size was perfect as is and it came out of the bath looking just right. The ribbing, especially in this blended yarn, looked a bit wonky before the bath, but really smoothed out after a good soak.

I like this one a lot. I am a bit worried that the yarn may stretch with use, but I am going to be optimistic until proven otherwise. I think it is a nice summer tee, but also a great work tee to wear under a jacket. And, yes, it is definitely my colour. It is indeed a scrumptious strawberry, even out of season.

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