Sunday, March 23, 2008

Skirting the issues

Knitted skirts present a conundrum, the qualities of knitted fabric – which make it so suitable for upper body garments, such as stretch and drape, can sometimes work against us when knitting pants and skirts, drape is not good across the butt, and stretch not so attractive across the tummy!

Luckily this is not such a problem when knitting for littlies, the amount of fabric required is usually not heavy enough that stretching and dropping are a problem – unless a rayon or hemp yarn is used. Good old wool and cotton are stable enough and practical.

A few weeks ago I was experimenting with various designs incorporating “cherries” as a central theme, I had knitted a sweater and had moved on to a cardigan design, I wanted a lot of ruffling around the bottom edge of the cardi – culminating in a fitted, button up bodice. I started knitting and soon realized that the stitch pattern I was playing with was ideal as a skirt – a swirly, twirly, toddlers skating skirt. I knitted on and instead of a cardigan, the skirt became a dress, a cute, warm over dress…a bit of a dead end dress, I feel no desire to take that design any further at present – because I am still intrigued with the skirt.

I am not going to describe the stitch pattern that resulted in the billowing soft pleats, that is for another day, it looks crisp and neat now as I knit it in a DK merino and silk yarn, and as I knit I think about ideas for more skirts, for wee girls I imagine knitted skirts over winter tights and leggings, a tidy button front a-line with stripes, a red dirdnl with peekaboo side panels in a bright Fairisle, the grey and cream skirts that my daughter Charlotte lived in as a 3 year old – with matching striped sweaters and red argyle tights.

A pen and paper always sit beside me as I knit, as I am engrossed in the stitches my mind opens and ideas fly, catching them is important – the moment fleeting.

No matching suits, no skirts with pants attached, no flimsy fabrics or inappropriate styles, just cute, practical and beautiful skirts for little girls who love to dance and run and climb.

A very general outline, with generous boundaries – looks like Autumn has suddenly become my season of skirts!

1 comment:

Ruby Girl said...

What a cute little dress, you are so talented. The colours always seem to match your pattern so nicely.