The Samosa Vest is marching along quite nicely. I’ve done it entirely ad hoc – no advance planning, no writing anything down (which is refreshingly liberating, for a change). It’s been sort of sculptural, with problems worked out on the fly. Still – there weren’t many. Here are the front and back views:
You can see that I’ve finished the body strips, wrapping the three primary ones around the front. I did some minor shaping on the fourth, to add a bit of of a bust dart to the general shape. Then I filled in two little patches under each arm. After that the front was substantively done. The next step was to pick up and knit the next strip, which outlined the upper back. I continued on from there, until the space in the center became too small for two mitered corners. At that point, I winged it – filling in the center back with a smaller shape, partially contoured with short rows, and a center-back join. The result is rather like a racer back, and is quite flattering on Younger Daughter (modeled pix when done).
I grafted off or picked up and knit the shoulders. Finally I worked an i-cord edging around the entire outer edge to give the body a bit more firmness, and for a more professional finish. It’s much nicer than the flabby chain selvedge edge that was there before.
Now I’ve got one last problem – there’s a Romulan (or Fire Kingdom) point at the top of each armhole. I picked out one side and re-knitted it, but the point remains. Time for some more noodling on possible fixes. Once I’ve got that repair done, it’s i-cord around the armhole edges, and I’m finished.
Suggestions for possible fixes would be most graciously accepted!
As you can see, I’m making quick progress on my Samosa Vest. Right now it’s just a single confusing strip of garter stitch knitting, with a couple of mitered corners and some angles thrown in. But when you pat it into shape, the concept emerges:
Ignoring the confusing letters for the moment, you can see the basic outline – the vee-neck, and the bottom edge that defines the width of the finished piece.
I cast on 13 stitches at A. I knit a garter diagonal band, increasing on one side of the strip and decreasing on the other every other row to achieve the angle. When my neckline was deep enough (B), I switched to working straight – a plain old 13-stitch strip until I was about 2 inches shy of my desired length. Then I worked a wrapped short-row miter, making the corner at C. I then knit across the bottom edge of the front, across the entire back (unseen, from D to E), then back across the front to the center point. Again, about two inches shy of the center point, I did another miter (F). After that I worked straight up to point G. I reversed the shaping of my initial angled strip to create its mirror image, from G to H.
Then exactly as I did in my Motley blanket, I cast off 12 stitches, added 12 and proceeded to work the second strip, knitting it onto the established edge strip as I went along. I worked miters again at points K and N. You can see I’m past O, headed back up to the shoulder where I initially cast on.
I will continue in this manner for one more strip. That will make the shoulders of the piece about as wide as the shoulders of the target tee-shirt I am using as my size model. At that point I’ll have to figure out how to fill in extra bits on the sides and in the center of the back. But so far the thing has come together exactly as I envisioned. And quickly, too!
…is no reason to rip it out because some other fool idea has wrestled you to the ground, wrapped yarn tendrils around your brain, and has refused to let go.
I only have two skeins of Noro Taiyo Sock yarn. That’s barely enough to make a skimpy shawl. You can see I’ve got five strips done. I have enough yarn to complete about eight pattern strips (and maybe a bit more) – a couple strips narrower than the ten strips specified by the pattern.
You can see that I was pretty far along, well into my second skein, and the growing shawl looks pretty good. The drape is nice too. In fact I’d recommend this yarn for the Lightning Shawl, but preferably 2.5 or 3 hanks, so that the final piece is of generous proportion. But I digress.
This afternoon after knitting on the thing for a whole week, I ripped it out. Every stitch. All that’s left is a pile of yarn balls and my two needles.
I’ve got this mad idea that I have enough yardage here to make a cropped, boxy vest type thing. And I want to do it somewhat along the lines of my Taco Coat:
Now this isn’t going to be as huge as the coat (that’s big enough to be a blanket with sleeves); and I probably will make it in one piece rather than a right and left, joined at the spine. But it will use the same idea of the outside edge and in working logic. The first strip will proceed from the shoulder into a wide V-neck, and down the front center, then mitered at 90-degrees, across the bottom of the hem and all the way around the back, returning to the front, climbing back up the front center and ending at the opposite shoulder. If I do this right it will work out not unlike a Surprise Jacket, with the only seaming being across the top of the shoulders..
I have no idea if this is going to work or not. Nor am I going to draft up a pattern before I begin. I’m going to cast on for that outermost strip, and as I go, compare it to a t-shirt with the boxy fit I am looking for. And then just wing it.
If nothing else, this project (code named Samosa Vest*) should make for some entertaining reading here, with lots of Doh!-moments and a few painful lessons learned.
* Just because. I am in India, after all, and a first cousin to the Taco Coat should also have a wrapped-snack-food name.