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PROGRESS - my crochet project log

Sugar 'n Cream Halter

illustration
PROJECT SUMMARY
COMPLETEDTYPEFIBERCOST?TIME?WEAR IT IN PUBLIC?
July 2005crochetcotton< $10mediumstrictly beach-wear.

I whipped this together over the fourth of July weekend, but only just got around to sending it through a washing cycle. I was hoping that it'd aquire a bit more length, because if you pull down on the bottom edge, it does stretch to hip level. Maybe I need to try a little more aggressively blocking. All I did was throw it in the wash and hope for the best. Doing this top in sugar n' cream is a little bit like doing a serious drawing in crayon; afterwards you kinda wish you'd used a more sophisticated medium. But I was curious to see what a top made out of worsted cotton would be like, and I'll say one thing for it, that top part (done in HDC ridge stitch, every other row worked in the back loops) is opaque as can be.

This is pretty much free formed. I made the top part after studying a few examples of L-shaped tops hither on and yon on the internet. And then I picked a stitch out of my stitch encyclopedia (fan cluster pattern) and made the body.

I really like how the L-shaped cup shaping worked out, and I think I will definitely use it again. Before I began, I actually did a little sketching, a little math, a little minature paper cutting out to see if I could figure out how to custom fit one. The diagram to the left is the results of my investigation, stashed here for future reference. Who knew that algebra would actually come in handy one day? In my case, I determined X by measuring, and I guessed at what I'd like x+y to be based on the height I wanted to have the point of the cup go, and Y based on a rough measurment of where I thought y would go on me, and then the rest fell into place.

I'm glad I figured out ahead of time how to do the sizing, because I wouldn't have wanted to frog and redo that part; I was using a slightly smaller hook to keep the stitches tight and opaque, and for the first time in my crochet history, it actually hurt my hands. I think because the cotton is so not-smooth, and with the smaller hook I really had to work to get it through the stitches. I'm glad it doesn't feel like that to do anything else, I could never crochet as much as I have been if it was all that painful! Once I got to the modified fan cluster pattern I used for the body, however, it was much better.

The fan cluster pattern is probably the most complicated I've used to date (there are 4 rows that repeat to make the pattern), made more complicated by the fact that the original pattern is given with the fans stacked on top of each other vertically, and I wanted to have them alternate because I find that more pleasing to the eye. So I really had to concentrate at first, but in the end it becamse pretty easy and quite fun. I would like to try it again one of these days with a more suitable material. I think something finer and softer and witha lot more drape would be a much more natural and pleasing choice for this stitch pattern.

The halter strap I added as soon as the cups were done, and then when the body was done I made a second strap that went from one side of the back, looped through the halter strap and then attached to the other side.

As an afterthought, I decided to make a matching belt out of some left over yarn. I used a star stitch from my stitch encyclopedia and just tied strands at the end.