Saturday, April 18, 2009

Girl's Knit Tank Top Pattern

I had a couple requests for the pattern that I used to make this:


So, here it is!  This pattern is knitted in the round.  Except for first four rounds.  Then it is split into flat knitting at the armhole.  The back and the front are the same.  Except the front is where I worked the straps.  I then grafted the straps to the back.  You can also bind off and seam.  Explained below!

Girl's Knit Tank Top
(approximately size 6)

Cotton Blend Yarn (3 balls)
(I used eco-cotton, 75% cotton, 25% acrylic)
Size 6 circular needles
Stitch Holders

Sorry, no gauge.  I had her try it on every 10-20 rounds to make sure it was heading in the right direction though!

Cast on 180 stitches.
Knit first four rounds flat.  (Or, if you want, you can do this in a seed stitch, instead of knitting, to mimic the pattern in the bodice.  There is a note below on seed stitch.)

*Tip.  Do not try to join the first round.  It's virtually impossible to cast on 180 stitches and start knitting in the round, on circular needles, and NOT have twisted stitches.  Believe me.  I would do 8-10 rows before realizing how twisted things were and would have to rip it all out and try again.  More than once.    Then I found the tip to knit the first four rounds flat.  That gives the piece enough weight so you can, carefully, check that nothing is twisted before joining!  You will have to later seam up those four rows but that is very easy compared to ripping things out three times!

After row 4, join in the round and knit each round until piece measures 10 inches or so. (rows 4-60)

Shape Yoke
*k1, K2tog* repeat around (120 stitches)
*k18, K2tog* repeat around (114 stitches)

Note: in the following row, I placed markers every 20 stitches.  (the last section had 14 stitches) It just helped me keep count when doing this series of stitches.  I also painted the marker that marked the end of my round pink with nail polish so it would be obvious when I had made the round. This isn't necessary, but I found it helped.

Continue knitting in a seed stitch (knit one, perl one; next round perl one, knit one) until yoke is about 2.5 inches or so.  (About 20 rows.)

(For those that don't know the seed stitch, it's a pattern of knit one, perl one.  Then in the next row or round, you do the opposite.  So perls are on top of knit and knits are on top of perls.  It gives the pattern you see here at the top of the tank.  The top is seed, the bottom is the knitting in the round that is stockinette stitch.)


Shape Armhole
Bind off first 8 stitches and continue in seed for 49 stitches. Place those 49 stitches on a holder or a scrap of yarn.

Bind off next 8 stitches and knit 49 stitches in seed.

Now, working flat in seed. (see note below) Decrease 1 stitch at the end of row. 6 times. (37 stitches)

(Note: when you switch to flat, instead of in the round, pay attention to be sure you have the opposite stitch above each stitch.  It's easy to see once you have the pattern going, so don't worry!)

Work until yoke measures 4.5 inches or so. (14 more rows)

Shape Neck.
Knit 6 in seed and slip to a holder.  This will be one of the straps.
Bind off 25.
Knit last 6 stitches, in seed.  Work in seed stitch on 6 stitches for tie for about 7" (63 rows).

Before ending, this is a good point, to try on your model.  See if the straps seem long enough.  The back will come up the same amount as the front.  If it looks good, Bind off.  Unless you are feeling brave enough to try the kitchner stitch then slip onto holder.

Pick up other 6 and knit on those 6 stitches for 63 rows. Bind off or, again, slip on holder if you are feeling brave.

Finish Back
Pick up back 49 stitches.
Working flat just like the front.
Knit in seed stitch, decreasing 1 stitch at the end of each row 6 times. (37 stitches)

Work until yoke measures 4.5 inches or so. (14 rows)

Bind off all stitches unless you are feeling brave.  Then, seed stitch first 6 stitches and slip on holder.  Bind off middle 25.  Seed stitch last 6 and slip to holder.

If you bound off straps, sew straps from front to back.  If you left the stitches live, graft 6 stitches from front to their corresponding side on the back. (I won't even attempt to explain this stitch.  I watched this video by the Knit Witch on youtube and followed along with her step by step!)

Weave in loose ends and seam up those first four rows.

Put on model and ask her to twirl!



Muma said...

I wish I could knit ..... gorgeous colours and your little girl looks fabulous in it.

Pam said...

Wow Beth each knitting project is more impressive than the last! This is awesome, you certainly have a talent there!

Tink said...

Thanks Beth. I'm going to try it out and see if I can make the changes to fit my 9yo granddaughter. She will love it.

Kenyetta said...

I cast on for this today!

Kathryn said...

Should I use a 16" or 24" circular? Can't wait to cast on for my niece!

Beth said...

Kathryn: I used 24" inch.

cbs1007 said...

Hi Beth -- I just saw your pattern when I was looking in Ravelry for something to knit for my daughter. I love this tank! I'm a new knitter -- just finished my first sweater, also for my daughter -- but I think I could do this. I hope you don't mind a quick question, though: Annie just turned 7 but she's small. I'm wondering if this will fit her or if I'll need to make it a little bigger. How do I have her try it on as we go and still keep it on the needles?!? And if I do need to add more length, where/when would I do that? Finally, I have some Mission Falls 1824 cotton that I was thinking of using. Does that sound right to you? Thanks SO much for any help. I really appreciate you sharing this pattern! Cynthia

Beth said...

Cynthia: I hope you get this! I looked for an email or your user name on Ravelry but couldn't find it.

I'm BethyKnitting on Ravelry. If you find this and have any questions, feel free to drop me a line!

I betcha it would probably fit her, maybe just make it a little longer.

To make it longer, just keep knitting the stockinette stitch until it feels long enough for you. Don't start the decreases until it's the right length. Mine is about 10" or 60 rows. The decreases start just under where the bust would be. You can just hold it up to her and make sure the length hits where you want. I wanted mine to hit around the hip. If you want it longer, just knit more than 60 rows THEN start the decreases.

After I did the decreases, my width around, just under the bust line, was about 26" around. It was probably a scootch too big for her, so it would probably fit your daughter nicely. The length from the top of the garment to where the "skirt" part (that's what I call the part before the decreases) is about 4.75" inches.

I wasn't so concerned about it being perfect but just generally hitting the right areas. I tried it on by wiggling the needles over her but that was really NOT a good idea! Most times it was ok but I lost stitches a few times!! Mostly just by holding it up to her. Once you bind off the bottom skirt part, it's easier to have her slip it on so you can test the length of the bodice and the straps, etc.

The Mission yarn sounds pretty! The yarn I used was about 75% cotton and acrylic. 100% doesn't have as much stretch but I think it would work for this. You don't want overly stretchy or it will stretch out of shape. And it's an easy fit garment so you don't have to worry about needing the stretch to get it on and off. But, beware, I learned the hard way. 100% cotton does not do well getting wet. Which is fine for this tank top but don't use it for mittens!! Snow and 100% cotton mittens are NOT a good mix!! LOL

Let me know how you do with it!!

cbs1007 said...

hi again beth! thanks so much for your quick and helpful response! i'm going to start the tank right away. we're headed to maine on wednesday so it will be my little vacation project. on ravelry, i'm cynthia1007. i haven't posted any projects yet because nothing i've done seems particularly worthy :-) although i may post my "kitty-pi" that i knitted for my two new kittens. pretty cute if i do say so myself. anyway, i'd love to chat with you. after looking through your blog, i think we may have a lot in common! will keep you posted on tank. thanks again!