Green Stockings Craft & Design

January 3, 2011

Knitting a Steampunk Dress

Filed under: Crafting — Tags: , , , , , — GreenStockings Craft & Creative Events @ 12:00 PM

I’m a great knitting improviser, but I never write down or otherwise record what I’m doing, so I rarely end up with a useable pattern at the end. So as I embark upon my epic dress knitting, here’s (hopefully) a tutorial of sorts leading to the pattern.

Thing I learned for this pattern: provisional long-tail cast on with waste yarn. Knit & Tonic has a pdf instruction booklet about how to do this. This was such a “duh” moment for me once I’d done it.

The plan for the dress is to knit the skirt first, then pick up to knit a cabled/ribbed midsection (with a much smaller needle, and held with elastic thread), and then some sort of cross over v-neck top. There will be a pair of bloomers, and a leather raygun shoulder holster.

Steampunk, dress, knitting, provisional cast on, in the round, cotton

Also: I feel like such a good knitter – I actually made a gauge swatch! I picked up the handiest knitting contraption at a church bazaar, and it’s one of those “how did I work without this before?” items – the Susan Bates Knit Check for gauge and needle size.

So from my swatch, I know that I’m knitting 4sts/inch & 5rows/inch (worsted weight cotton, size 6 needles so that the fabric won’t be so dense and heavy as to be unwearable), so for my 48″ high waist, I (provisionally) cast on 192 stitches and knit 1 inch (5 rows) before increasing every 4th stitch in the fifth row. Now, 240 stitches.

I knit 1 more inch (5 rows), and then increased every 4th stitch again (adding another 56 stitches) for a total of 296 (1.5x the number I started with). Because I don’t want to have successive increase lines showing since the stitches are so big, I started the increasing at the third stitch the first time in this round, and every 4th stitch after that.

I’m presently knitting 2″ (10 rows), and then will increase again. And then figure out what the total length should be and go from there.


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