Friday, July 17, 2009


i always thought that smocked tops and dresses were so cute but the sewing looked complicated, and i was afraid to try. i looked up a few tutorials, at Kuky Ideas and Heather Ross's dress pattern.
Smocked top
i only had 3/4yd of moda quilting fabric, so i used my own measurements. I cut out 2 rectangles 22in W x 17in L. i sewed 1/2" side seams and made a 1/4" hem on both top and bottom.
Smocked top
i used black elastic thread for the shirring because that's what i had on hand. i didn't mark any lines, just followed the previous sewing line with my presser foot. i did a crappy job keeping the seams even, but fortunately the style is very forgiving and it's not that noticeable. it took me a few tries to get the tension just right but after i adjusted it was smooth sailing.
Smocked top
for the straps i cut 2 strips 1.5" wide and the entire 44" width of fabric. i folded the long edges towards the center and pressed, and then folded in half, topstitching narrowly on each side. then i pinned the straps in the back and adjusted the fit. i machine stitched the straps to the top, because it makes for a stronger seam than handsewing, and because with this style you can't really see the seams.

i think the style is very cute and it's great for summer, but it's not the most flattering for my body type. it definitely screams out, "i have no boobs," but what can you do when you don't have any chest to speak of? it's very comfortable to wear, and i will be making a summer sundress version eventually, noboobs be damned.

it was a little cooler this morning, so i managed to get some pictures of Tangled Yoke without melting.
Tangled Yoke Cardigan
Pattern: Tangled Yoke Cardigan from Interweave Knits Fall 2007
Yarn: 2 skeins of Delly's Delights O So Soft 100% Alpaca, bought at Rhinebeck 2008
Needles: #4 knitpicks options, #3 and #1 addi turbos
Size: 34"
Started: June 21, Finished July 7
Tangled Yoke Cardigan
i countered the stretch of alpaca by knitting at a slighly tighter gauge. i shortened the sleeves and sleeve ribbing to fix the proportions. i don't think i changed anything else. i believe i blocked the sweater a bit longer than the schematic. i also blocked the chest width to 33" instead of 34".
Tangled Yoke Cardigan
this sweater was a little boring to knit, but i love the results. i've only worn it for about 5 minutes so i can't say for sure, but i am surprised that it hasn't stretched out and doesn't feel too drapey for a 100% alpaca sweater. perhaps the yarn was spun a bit tighter at the mill to give it more resilience. only time will tell.

the yarn is wonderfully soft and feels great against the skin. i think i say this every time i finish something new, but this is my new favorite sweater. it's timeless and classic, and i'm sure that i'll want to wear it every day once the weather turns chilly.


  1. I'm glad to hear that it's not as complicated as it looks! However, I don't think even with my boobs I'd look good in something like that. Smocking is awfully cute for girls' sundresses though!

    Love the TYC! Nice buttons too!

  2. Ooo, love how your Tangled Yoke turned out! Off to queue that one up!

  3. Love the top and the Tangled Yoke!

  4. Wow, I really love that cardigan! And I think I might try making one of those tops too.

  5. I love your top!!! I have never tried smocking before.

    The cardi is just lovely, and it fits you very well. Great work as always.



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