Seabreeze Saco Stripes

Saco Stripes knit by Tanis Fiber Arts

Pattern: Saco Stripes by Pam Allen

Yarn: Quince & Co. Sparrow in Moon and TFA Silver Label Mulberry Silk in Seabreeze.

Ravelry Project page here.

Mods: Knit the top in Seabreeze - a simple colour blocking mod that I like a lot. Modified the neckline shaping A TON in order to get a proper fit. Straps are wider and shorter. Finished neckline edges with icord edging.

Today I'm going to tell the story of the photoshoot that should have been. I had been putting off photographing and posting about this FO for a while because I had a vision of super cute FO shots that we'ed take at an ice cream shop. I'd order a pretty and photogenic ice cream cone, probably with sprinkles, I'd sit on a picnic table in the shade and look effortlessly chic and summery in my new hand knit top that just happened to coordinate beautifully with my ice cream. But time was running out, we would be leaving for vacation in a few days and had lots to do to prepare and taking a mid-morning ice cream break just wasn't a priority. We took these photos, which I'll admit I think are fine but not fantastic, in the office while I was toiling away. It took all of 2 minutes and didn't disrupt the day at all. Fine.

That same afternoon I ended up getting a spontaneous hair cut. I wanted a trim before heading out of town for nearly a month and my stylist could fit me in, so I took the appointment. Then, that evening, with freshly cut and styled hair, Chris suggested we treat the boys to an after supper ice cream! So there I sat, on a picnic table, eating my lovely and photogenic cone of soft serve, wearing my pretty new top and looking my best rocking a professionally styled hairdo... but with no camera. We all enjoyed our ice cream, I laughed with Chris over the irony of how the day had turned out and we went home. Imagine that the photoshoot had worked out ok? Picture me holding this ice cream cone in these pics. 

So... about this tank! Now that it's complete I really love it. It's incredibly comfortable. It was my first time knitting with linen and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I love the finished fabric and am very happy with the finished garment. I'll definitely be knitting more linen tops in the future, but I will probably not knit this pattern again because it gave me trouble and I did so many mods to the neckline in order to make it fit and of course I didn't take proper notes because by the time I got it right it was the third attempt and I was so over it. Obviously... now I wish that I had kept those notes.

Both the linen and the silk yarns that I was working with are quite unforgiving. After several failed attempts I ended up finishing the neckline openings with an applied icord edging. It was impossible to get it looking completely neat and tidy and I ended up closing a lot of gaps around the neck opening with duplicate stitch - which worked out super well. It tightened up the loose and gaping stitches that looked messy and resulted in a very neat and properly finished look. Despite the icord edging the edges do curl in a little bit, but I can live with it. 

Saco Stripes fails

Aye Yai Yai! I kind of  can't believe that I'm at a point in my life where I feel comfortable posting a photo of myself looking like that on the internet. Actually, I guess I'm not that comfortable with it because I started this paragraph with Aye Yai Yai! I felt like I had to share because these photos illustrate the issues with my first 2 attempts. Attempt #1 on the left has the neckline done exactly as written in the pattern, which frankly seems unlikely since the result looks nothing like those of the pattern shots. Why are the straps so thin!? In attempt #2 on the right my mods were too aggressive and the neckline ended up too snug. You can also see all the puckering and gaping I was having with the applied icord edging around the neckline. I was about ready to give up. I'm glad that I didn't. I'm not typically a perfectionist and I can live with something even if it's not perfect. I'm also not above putting a knit aside if it's just not working out, but I decided to give this tank one last go and it finally worked! I had made one version too big, one version too small, clearly the third version would come out just right. And it did. Huzzah!

Saco Stripes knit by Tanis Fiber Arts

My handmade summer wardrobe is still very small, but having a few special pieces to rotate in among my basic t-shirts feels like a big step. Handmade every day!