I thought it was about time I made an item of clothing since it has been a while since I did my Chevron Sweater. This one is called Indian Summer Lace, because I’m hoping for an Indian summer especially so I can wear it more this year before the weather cools off!
This is quick to work up because it uses broomstick lace – so each row is really deep! Because I wanted to add interest to what is a relatively simple top, I’ve used 4 different variations on the stitch – traditional, straight, crossed and chain ridged. You can use them all like I did, or just the ones you prefer the look of.
The top is worked in rows from the front bottom up and then down the back, to make one piece, which is then seamed under the arms and down the sides. It is a super simple, cropped, boxy shape which makes it easy to adjust for any size.
Scroll down for printable pdf patterns! (US and UK notation)
- You will need any dk weight yarn – approximately 600 yards if you are making no adjustments. I used SMC select Extra Soft Merino Cotton.
- 4mm crochet hook
- Either a standard 30cm/12” ruler (which is around 3.6cm/1.5” wide) or a 25mm circular knitting needle – or a similar item which has a circumference of around 7.5cm/3”. (I will refer to this item as the ruler throughout!) If you are working the chain ridged lace, you will need to be able to slide loops off the other end of whatever object you choose so do not use a regular 25mm knitting needle with a stopper at the end (unless you can remove it).
- Tapestry needle, for making up.
Adjusting the sizing and fit:
Adjusting for bust size:
The broomstick lace fabric made on this scale is pretty stretchy and drapey so the pattern as written will easily fit anyone who is a bust size 34” to 44”. If you are smaller or larger than this, then subtract or add a multiple of 20 sts to the foundation chain to adjust the overall size. The foundation chain should be half your bust measurement plus 0-4 inches of ease (remember, blocking will stretch it out a few inches too).
Adjusting the sleeve length:
The pattern is written to give elbow length sleeves. For shorter or longer sleeves, add multiples of 20 stitches when instructed to add the chains for the sleeves. Note that if you are working longer sleeves, you may need a longer ruler or to use a stitch holder for the loops that pop off the end of your ruler.
Adjusting the waistline:
As you will see, the pattern includes an instruction to nip in the waist. You can skip this if you prefer, nip it in at the front or back by less or more depending on your preference. You will be able to try the top on at this stage so you can pin it to see what works best for the fit you desire.
Adjusting the length:
Add or subtract rows before you start the sleeves. Remember that this will alter the position at which you can nip in the waist.
Adjusting the neckline:
The neckline can be made deeper or higher by starting the divide for the neck a row earlier or later. Bear in mind that the wide neckline is designed to show off the collar bones so that the boxy shape is not too overwhelming. But if you wish to narrow the neckline to fit a smaller frame then you can do so, making sure you use add multiple of 10 stitches on each side.
Broomstick Lace Stitches:
Please see my separate post Fancy Broomstick Lace Stitches detailing how to do each stitch. Video to follow soon!
Foundation Row: Begin with an fsc of 100 – or chain 101 and sc in 2nd chain from hook and every chain (100sts)
Lower front – Work 8 rows of broomstick lace – *traditional, straight, crossed, chain ridged, then repeat from *.
You have completed the lower part of the front, we will now add extra width for the sleeves.
Sleeves – Chain 40. Place a st marker to hold the chain from unravelling. With a new ball of yarn, chain 40 and slip stitch into the other end of the row just worked, so that on each side there are two chains. Fasten off this new ball and insert the hook back into the original chain, removing the marker.
Now work the next row of broomstick lace, drawing up a loop from each chain and stitch all the way along.
Work 5 rows total before dividing for the neckline – traditional, straight, crossed, chain ridged, traditional.
Neckline – mark off the centre 40 stitches of the work. We will not be working these stitches.
Work the next row of broomstick lace (straight) but stop once you get to a stitch marker. Continue to work just one side of the front for the next 2 rows (crossed, chain ridged).
Special note on crossed rows for neckline section: Please work the very first and last stitch as for “straight” rows. This is so that later, when you are working the single crochet edging around the neckline, you can work into this loop and not get a wavy edge. The multiple of stitches has been adjusted so this will work out!
With a new ball of yarn, join just after the second stitch marker and work 3 rows of broomstick lace so that both sides are even.
You have now made the front of the top. For the back of the top, we will reflect the rows about the last row worked so that when the top is seamed together they will match up (i.e. a straight row will meet a straight row).
Work the next row on both sides using the stitch for the 2nd row previously made. If you have followed my sequence then the last row worked will have been a chain ridged row. The row before that is a crossed row – so work another crossed row.
We have finished the neckline and will now join the back.
Back – Your newest ball of working yarn will have finished at the neckline (not the sleeve edge). Chain 40 and sl-st into the first stitch on the other side to close the neck. Fasten off this ball and continue with the other yarn.
Work 6 rows across the whole width, reflecting the sequence used before. You should finish with the same stitch as you used on the first of the sleeve rows (traditional).
Fasten off the yarn to work down the lower back portion.
Lower Back – Count 40stitches in from where you left off and re-join the yarn. Place a stitch marker 40 sts in from the other end so that you don’t work too far on the next row.
Work 8 rows in sequence. Work an extra row of sc so that the back matches the front.
You should now have something resembling a fat cross with a hole for the head:
Blocking and Making Up:
Please block the top at this stage – it is much easier to block it flat at this point. Blocking straightens out the lace – see the difference in my before and after? I wet blocked mine – please use your preferred method for your yarn choice.
Once blocked, fold the top in half and seam under the sleeves and sides. I slip stitched the sleeves together on the inside, matching the stiches. For the side seams, I stitched the sc edges together firmly, carried the yarn down the sides and the stitched the nest pair of sc edges.
Finish the sleeves by working 2 rounds of sc around the cuffs. Do the same at the neckline, but on the second row around work an sc3tog into each corner. If your sleeves go a bit frilly (as mine did) then you can block them again (as I did) which fixed this problem.
Hemline/Nipping in the Waist:
Try on the top and decide if you want to take in the waistline or not. If not then you can finish by adding a final round of sc around the bottom, fasten off and weave in all the ends.
To take in the waistline at the front we are going to make a pleat in the fabric pointing towards the sides. This pleating eliminates 10 stitches on each side. Join at the 1st stitch on the front and sc 20 times.
Place a st marker 11 stitches ahead of where you are. Fold the work so that this stitch, and the stitch immediately preceding it are aligned over the next stitch. Insert the hook through the marked stitch, through the preceding stitch (from back to front as it is folded) and through the next stitch to be worked. Completed the sc working through all 3 layers. Work an sc through all 3 layers for the next 4sts – this has made a pleat eliminating 10 stitches from the round.
Sc 30 times. Now make the 2nd pleat:
Insert the hook into the next stitch. Skip the next 8 stitches. Insert the hook from the back to front of the next stitch (fold the work over to make this easy, we are making a double fold). Now insert the hook through the next stitch from front to back (fold the fabric back). You are working through 3 stitches at once. Draw up a loop and complete the sc. Sc through all 3 layers for the next 4 stitches – this has made a second pleat eliminating 10 stitches from the round.
Work 20 sc to complete the front. Do not fasten off but work the back.
To take the waistline in at the front, you can either repeat as for the front, or work larger pleats than before like I did. This is the same process but the pleat is 10 stitches wide, not 5. This has the effect of eliminating 40 sts.
Sc 20 times.
Place a st marker 21 stitches ahead of where you are. Fold the work so that this stitch, and the stitch immediately preceding it are aligned over the next stitch. Insert the hook through the marked stitch, through the preceding stitch (from back to front as it is folded) and through the next stitch to be worked. Completed the sc working through all 3 layers. Work an sc through all 3 layers for the next 9sts – this has made a pleat eliminating 20 stitches from the round.
Sc 10 times. Now make the 2nd pleat:
Insert the hook into the next stitch. Skip the next 18 stitches. Insert the hook from the back to front of the next stitch (fold the work over to make this easy, we are making a double fold). Now insert the hook through the next stitch from front to back (fold the fabric back). You are working through 3 stitches at once. Draw up a loop and complete the sc. Sc through all 3 layers for the next 9 stitches – this has made a second pleat eliminating 20 stitches from the round.
Work 20 sc to complete the back.
Fasten off and weave in all ends.
Your top is ready to wear – bring on the sunshine! :)