Tag Archives: Josephine Top



I don’t know why I let her languish for three weeks, unseamed. I think I was afraid she wouldn’t fit. And I didn’t want to know that.

Last week, I pinned it together and realized that it would be fine. I started the seam and then got sidetracked by the toe-up sock. So many projects, so little time!


Last night, I finished seaming. It didn’t take long. And voila! C’est Josephine! It’s very comfortable to wear. Kids were still asleep when I left the house, so no action shots. Maybe tomorrow. But here’s a detail of the neckline. I love the rolled reverse stockinette edging.


The same edging is on the seed stitch sleeve. (And this picture below is pretty close to the actual color.)


The little cord tie is sweet. I laughed out loud when I read the instructions: “Cast on 300 stitches. Bind off all stitches.”



Josephine Top, Summer Interweave Knits, 2007

Karabella Vintage Cotton, 6 balls for smallest size

Started: May 22, 2008 Finished July 29, 2008

Mods: I made it shorter, adjusted so the ribbon goes *under* the bust, and raised the deep V neckline so I wouldn’t have to layer over another garment. Skipped the rolled reverse stockinette edging on the hem; the cable cast on is a nice edging in itself.

I’m happy with how this turned out. I didn’t love working with the yarn; it has a lot of spin and kept twisting back on itself while I was knitting. The knitting also biased, partly due to the twist, and partly as a function of the lace pattern, I think, but steam blocking took care of it.

Happy dance!



Josephine of my dreams

and the Josephine on my needles aren’t quite matching up. :sigh:

I finished one shoulder of the front this evening, held it up, and realized that the eyelet row wasn’t going to land where I want it to be (under the bustline, not on it). But in order to add some length on top, I have to take it back to the armhole bind off, and add it *before* the armhole.

So I frogged back to the armholes. Rip-it, rip-it, rip-it.

I’ll have to redo the back, too, after I finish the front. :sigh, again:

But look at all the practice I’ll get with short-row shoulders! Hey, I’m trying to find the bright side. Work with me.

Sunday’s piano party was fun. The premise of the group is that the more you play for others, the more comfortable you’ll be playing in public. It’s a small, non-threatening group. So far, so good. I also go to a bigger group that meets bi-monthly at a local piano store, but I’ve missed the last several meetings. Something about spending all my free time knitting instead of practicing!

I wore this:

cable tank front

cable tank back

I love this pattern; it’s ingenious. It’s knit smaller than body size, and it stretches to fit (negative ease). The ribbing on the back makes it work. The pattern is the cabled tank from Vogue Knitting Spring/Summer 2007. A quick knit with 6 skeins of Berroco Cotton Twist (cotton/rayon blend).

Josephine’s shoulders: short rows

I’m a big fan of the three needle bind off for shoulder seams. I’m in this for the knitting, not the sewing! Fewer sewn seams = happier knitter. Josephine has slightly sloping shoulders instead of a straight across seam, so I needed to learn a new trick before I could use a three needle bind off. Short row shoulder shaping! I found a very good tutorial at Knitty. Worked like a charm. I couldn’t figure out how to simultaneously short row the neck shaping (I ended up finishing in the middle of the shoulder when I tried it), so the neck has a stairstep bindoff, but the shoulder is perfectly smooth. No problem; picking up stitches for the neck on a stairstep bindoff is easy. Here’s the back of Josephine:

jo back

And the shoulder:

jo shoulder

Modifications so far: shorter on the lace portion at the bottom (reduced by 1/2 repeat) because I’m short and want it to end at hip length, and also I think I’ve arranged things so that the eyelet row that will hold the drawstring will be right under the bust, instead of on it. I think it will look more flattering that way.

On to the front! The other modification that I’m planning is to raise the V-neckline. I hate wearing layers; I don’t want to have to wear a camisole under this. The pattern as written has a very deep V-neck, suitable for a cami underneath, or else a sewn-in lace inset. Neither idea excites me, so I’m just going to start the V neck a bit higher. Fingers crossed!

On the piano front: I finished reading Katie Hafner’s A Romance on Three Legs: Glenn Gould’s Obsessive Quest for the Perfect Piano last night. I’m not much of a Bach fan; my preferences tend more towards Mozart and Beethoven, but I do love all things piano. I didn’t know much about Gould other than that he recorded two definitive versions of Bach’s Goldberg Variations, early and late in his career. It was really interesting to learn about him as a person (beyond idiosyncratic) and the piano he loved, but even more interesting to learn about Verne Edquist, the piano technician who tuned and regulated the piano to make it into Gould’s dream come true. You can learn more about the book here:

Look Inside this book


Back to knitting!


Saturday was World-Wide Knit in Public Day. There were lots of activities going on in town, but I was out camping. I love getting away; it’s like getting new eyes. Everything looks different.


My camping gear worked out fine, except for one missing item. Wool socks. I couldn’t get my feet warm enough at night, and that made me regret not bringing these.


I made these in 1997, I think. They’re from Anna Zilboorg’s book, Fancy Feet. I was lucky enough to have a class with Anna at Stitches that year; she taught me to carry both colors in my right hand (I knit English-style). I had previously taught myself to knit continental style so I could carry a color in each hand, but two in the same hand was much faster for me.

Back to WWKIP Day. What did you do? I spent the afternoon on a blanket in the grassy part of the campground. I made a bracelet (beading), worked on Josephine, and on my log cabin blanket. Bev and Laurie were knitting with me, so I think that counts as our contribution for WWKIP Day.

jo 06.08

lc 06.08

I’m not sure when I’ll declare the log cabin done; right now it measures about 34 inches square. It’s not big enough yet, maybe 48 inches will be the right size? I’ll have to buy more yarn soon. This was perfect campfire knitting, too. No need to look too closely, just knit, knit, knit, until it was time to pick up a new color.

We had a great campfire singalong Saturday night. I can count the chords I know on two hands, but it’s enough for a good singalong, and that’s enough for me.

Josephine in her finery

The Josephine Top is coming along. I’m at 8 inches on the back; it’s time for the second set of decreases in the ribbing section. The pattern is easier to remember than I initially thought, so I’m cruising along with only an occasional glance at the chart.

jo 06.09.08

Here’s a closeup of Jo with her new stitch markers between each ribbing and lace section. See the bright lime green rubber one on the end? I need one more new marker!

jo markers

And I think this looks like a tiara, which is fitting for the Empress.

jo tiara

My pattern writing is stalled for now; I’m pretty focused on making progress on this project. All things in their time.