It’s been awhile, I know. I had pretty major surgery back in the beginning of October(radical hysterectomy), then had to deal with hormones and getting them settled(still working on that) and then a few weeks of various sickness running through the family and I’m just now starting to feel sort of back to myself.
I would say that I am not the most creative person. What I am is a good copier or re-creater. I need something to inspire me and then I can make a garment in a similar fashion/style. I want the clothes I make to not SCREAM homemade but to look as if I bought them in a store, preferably a designer store at that. So I often peruse designer websites and clothing designs to find inspiration.
A few years ago I found this Oscar de la Renta cashmere sweater dress on some website and I quite liked it.
Being that it cost several thousands of dollars, I knew I would never be able to afford it, nor would I even want to spend that much on one garment anyways.
I saved the picture and figured maybe someday I could tackle knitting my own version. Fortune smile on me sometime last year when Knit Picks was discounting their capretta line of yarns, which are fingering yarns that contained a small amount of cashmere. I scoured Ravelry but couldn’t find a dress pattern that really had the elements I wanted, but I did find a separate skirt and sweater pattern I figured I could use as a guideline to make the basic shape of the dress.
It wasn’t until earlier this year that I finally decided I was ready to tackle the dress. Honestly, the hardest part was finding the right cable patterns I wanted to use and setting up the design. I originally had a much more intricate design, but it was way too many stitches wide for the bodice so I scrapped it. I did a block for each of the cabling parts I wanted on the needle sizes I wanted to determine how many total stitches I would need. I don’t know the exact date I cast on for this dress, but I believe it was somewhere around the end of April, beginning of May. By June I had completed the bodice.
I finished it(other than blocking it) on September 1, which means it took me about 4 months to complete which isn’t to bad when you consider it’s basically a circle skirt(meaning LOTS of fabric/stitches making up the skirt portion).
The front and back are the same, so it doesn’t really matter which way I put it on.
There are mistakes of course, places where it should be a left cable but I did a right and vice versa, which if you look closely at the rope cables on each side of the Celtic knot down the center you can probably find the mistakes!
Today was a day I finally felt a. good enough to wear it and b. the weather was right(not too cold since it’s short sleeved, but not to warm either as it is wool/cashmere blend).
I had to use my camera on my computer to take these essentially selfies and they are not the best quality but it gives you the idea of the dress on me(where it fits perfectly) versus my dress form(where it does not fit that well).
Close up of the cabling:
Finally, side by side comparison with the inspiration:
I love how it looks and how it feels(which, often is not something I can say for the stuff I make, I’m very critical).