I never thought I'd design a Granny Square garment.
And yet here we are!
This design came about sort of by accident. I was just playing around with some stitch patterns for square construction tees and, well, granny squares are so meditative that I just kept going with it!
It was also nice looking with the lightweight yarn in a natural fiber. So, yeah. It was pretty!
What I also never imagined, though, was that it would end up in a spinning magazine! The Harborside Tee is, in fact, now in print and on newsstands in the Place Issue of Ply Magazine!
The handspun yarn used for this sample was spun from flax top by the incomparable Samantha Stopple. Seriously, y'all, I was SO impressed with the consistency and her uncanny ability to match the yarn I used in the original sample, which was the now discontinued Koan from Shibui Knits, which is 70% linen and 30% silk.
Here's the prototype with Koan:
And here's the handspun version:
It turned out so well!
It's a bit more rustic looking, being 100% linen, but it should wear beautifully.
Here's one of the images from the magazine (don't you love that brick wall and the tapestry in the background!?):
(Photo courtesy of Ply Magazine)
And you know the great thing about this design?
It's SUPER customizable.
You can substitute in just about any kind of yarn because you work from the center out to your desired dimensions.
Now I will caution you that these plant fibers really seem to like to shrink back when you wash them! So if you want yours to be wash and wear instead of wash and aggressively re-block every time, then I highly recommend washing and blocking your front and back pieces before joining so that you know how the yarn will behave.
And if you use a superwash wool yarn, you may see the opposite happen, as superwash has a tendency to relax and grow with washing.
So know your fiber content and know your measurements. Then all you have to do is decide you want it to fit!
Super snug with some negative ease?
Same size as your bust measurement with a tiny bit of shaping added with blocking? (Modeled on me with 0" ease.)
A couple inches of positive ease so you have a bit of room to move? (Modeled for the magazine with 2" positive ease.)
Or oversized and drapey for a boxy layering piece?
I think they'd all work well!
I'm actually working on a third version right now! It isn't going to be as big as I originally had in mind (I was hoping for about 4" of positive ease) because I ALSO wanted to transition into the sleeves at the peak of the red section of the yarn.
Here she is all pinned out for the neck and sleeve openings:
Oh and that gorgeous gradient yarn is from Wolle's Yarn.
So my vision was that I finished the join and began the sleeves still in the most red section of the yarn, but I didn't quite get there. There's a TINY bit of of the next color shift at the end of the join and the sleeves begin with that slightly less red section.
But I think it's going to turn out all right anyway. AND I think it'll be super cool to see the sleeves shift into the golden yellow as they lengthen. We'll see how long I can make them before I run out of yarn!
And you know I really do think this would be fun with additional transitions through the gradients with an extra skein or two.
Or stashbusting! You could totally do that with this, too.
In fact, this would make a great stashbusting blanket pattern, too. Just skip the joining and sleeves parts, obviously!
Oh, speaking of joining, I should probably tell you more about it!
See, there's no sewing here.
Nope! The shoulder and side seams are created at the same time as the final round on each square in a braided join style. If you haven't tried a "braided" crochet join before, go take a peek at this post for the written instructions on joining standard granny square motifs.
The joining for Harborside works similarly. Here's a look at that split hem and side seam (photo courtesy of Ply Magazine):
Isn't she cute!?
For the sleeves you'll add yarn back on and then work in the round again in the same manner as you worked the rounds for the front and back. Optional decreases are included in the pattern as written to reduce the sleeve circumference by about 2" (5 cm) and can be worked in paired rows for additional decreases if needed. So what do you think?
Are you tempted to make a granny square top now, too?
I'm telling you, it's such a great piece to work on for summer crocheting because you can put it down and pick it back up pretty much any time or anywhere once you get going!
Until you get to the joining, at least. Or until you get too hot, I suppose. I only have so much tolerance for working under larger pieces of fabric during the summer! If that's you, too, then I might be tempted to recommend beginning this for an early fall finish instead of a summer garment. But it's really up to you! So head on over to Ply Magazine today to get your copy of the Place Issue, which includes not only the pattern for Harborside but also an article from Samantha about her experience spinning for it PLUS all the other articles in a beautiful magazine!
It's available both digitally and in print or you can find it on select newsstands or check with your local yarn shop to see if they carry it!
You can see a few more pictures by clicking through to the project gallery on Ravelry here. I'll be adding more to my red and yellow version soon, too, I hope!
But, y'all. Bear with me a second here. I'm having a moment.
I have a crochet garment pattern in a spinning magazine featuring z-twist yarn. It's so coooool!!!!
I never get tired of seeing my name in print. It's exciting every. single. time. And this one is just a little bit more extra special. Crochet. Handspun. Garment.
Okay. I'm done nerding out now.
Happy crocheting, y'all!!
Check out that no-sew shoulder seam and sleeve transition!! (Sorry, I couldn't help myself.)