Little Niece’s Favorite Dress

by therevknits

Little niece has refused to wear anything but pyjamas (must be washed EVERY night), a swimsuit, or dresses since she showed up at my parents house for the girls’ yearly summer stay at Nana & Papa’s house. Big Niece and I, standing around in tshirts and shorts, just rolled our eyes, but Little Niece does have some seriously cute little summer dresses.

When we sat in front of my MacBook and looked at together, Little Niece found a rainbow dress on the first page of kids patterns. I didn’t like the silhouette and I realized quickly that all Little Niece cares about is color scheme and object (DRESS), so Mom (a.k.a. Nana) and I took out a measuring tape and the dress we think is most adorable on Little Niece and started making notes. Ale has the perfect cotton for this (Rubino) in loads of colors that I could combine for a rainbow, but it’s a little light for me to use for my first design for kids. Off to the yarn store!

We went to the Yarn Basket in Osage Beach, MO (my favorite shop away from my favorite shop). I kept thinking: lightweight, cool, drape, hard-wearing, thicker than Rubino. And there she was: my go-to yarn. For a yarn snob like me, it’s hard to wrap my mind around the fact that when I need to knit something quick, light, soft, and washable, I turn to a yarn with 75% acrylic content, but my LYS owner turned me onto Berroco Weekend. I still grab it early and often. Sure, it splits because of its construction, but splits are easily repaired in this yarn and tiny snags in inconsistencies disappear. I grabbed 5 100g skeins just to be sure I’d have enough for some colorwork.


On Sunday evening, after the hustle bustle stress joy of Sunday worship and Sunday school had faded, I picked up hooks, needles, and the yarn wound into center-pull balls. I used Tunisian Simple Stitch to make the top piece of the sleeveless little sundress for which we had drawn a schematic, and then kicked myself over and over again as I tried to cast on the body of the dress around the Tunisian edge. Ale said, “What are you doing? You’re in your own world over there.” When I replied, “I’m trying to create a way to combine Tunisian crochet and knitting,” he told me that perhaps there is a reason you don’t see a lot of patterns with that combo. Body cast on. Top frogged, but cast-on edge saved.

Monday. The day I insist is my “day off” even though there is always something work-related to accomplish on Mondays. I knitted ferociously, and managed to complete 3.25 of the 4 body stripe repetitions between phone calls and emails. Went to the hospital for a visit; took my knitting. Picked up the top stitches again and started knitting up (good thing this is just a test piece). I became wound up in the conversation, and now that piece is too long and looks like a bib. Crap. Prepare to be frogged, top piece. Again.

Little niece’s test dress looks a little weird so far, but so did the dress we used as a template. Hope skinny Little Niece doesn’t look like Piglet when it’s done.