I fell in love with this pattern when it first appeared on Ravelry, so you can imagine my joy when it came up for testing. No matter that I’d never done stranded colour work before or duplicate stitching, I jumped to volunteer for testing. I sent up a desperate appeal for India’s only cotton yarn (we’ve never heard of any other than threads) and a friend kindly volunteered to send me some. Which she duly did to me in Hyderabad and I set out to make the dress.
As you can see, the idea was a good one. Only, in the execution, user error crept in and the project was a fail. For several reasons, including: my first colour work, and it shows; it ended up too small even though I made it 6-months and Chandra was around 5 months old then and she is a small baby; I’m mortal afraid the red/maroon will run, so I’ve not even washed it; I don’t like the long floats from the duplicate stitch.
Pattern: Paisley Baby Dress by Mimi Kezer of Pastiche Knitwear (a Ravelry shop). There’s a matching hat. In addition to colour work and stranding and duplicate stitching, I also did my first picot edge hem.
Yarn: Laura (the only cotton yarn sold in India for handknitting, as opposed to thread). It’s DK-ish. It’s fine, but not a luxury cotton, while not quite a dishcloth one either.
Time: About eight days, so it’s fairly easy, considering I’d never done a colourwork pattern before.
Size: Too small for Chandra
I have this now and don’t quite know what to do with it. For one, it’s small, for two, the colour might run (I know I should have tested for fastness before I used it, but I needed it in a hurry and was getting it from another city sight unseen, plus I needed it in a hurry!), for three I don’t like the long floats and finish of my duplicate stitching on the bodice and for four the stranding and the cotton make it a dense thing. I’m half tempted to sew up the bottom and turn it into a bag. Or maybe when my doll has a doll of her own she will use it for her wardrobe.
I’m thinking I might make it in acrylic, which would make it lighter and the elasticity of the yarn would make better looking stranding.
I knit both colours with my right hand for this project, but have since started using the left for one strand and knitting it continental, scooping the yarn with the RH needle in a motion which is very similar to crochet and therefore quite quick. I haven’t purled with it yet, so I cannot say how fast I’d be that way. I do not appear to have tension issues either. Much happier with the two strands kept apart than forever having to detangle (disentangle?) them.