My second summer knit this year is something I have no doubt I will wear like crazy. The Harnett Tank by Allyson Dykhuizen is a classic. This tank is knit bottom- up, in the round, and has stripes.
Ignore the slightly rumpled effect because I didn’t block before taking these photos.
The things I like best about it are that racerback (obviously), the smooth, clean finish of the arm and neck shaping in seed stitch, and the way it fits true to size. I made a 29.25″ and it fits exactly like I’d want a tank to fit. Oh, and did I mention the stripes?
The fact that it makes for excellent tv knitting is a bonus. (I finally gave in and watched the newest Dr. Who episodes. I had to get used to the idea of no David and no Donna.) This was one of the sweaters that made me want Vintage Inspired Baseball Knits. Besides all of the ideas for team colorways, I love vintage sports clothes. Baseball tees, shirttail hems, and stripes are the kinds of things I put on in the morning without even thinking. I grew up in the early eighties wearing baseball-style tees and painter pants. This is so up my alley.
I normally wear a 32″ – 34″ but I knit the 29.25″ because this Stroll Tonal yarn has some spring to it and I find knitting a size down is almost always the key to a better fit, and this does fit perfect. It’s not tight but still covers any stray straps and feels very light in summer heat. There’s no sagging or rolling at the neckline or bottom band (thanks to the seed stitch) and the racerback is in just the right place to not have to wear another tank top underneath. I probably will layer this when I wear it out just because it is so hot and I chose a wool yarn, but I like that at a different time of year, I don’t have to.
One of my modifications was to try for jogless stripes by slipping the first stitch of the second row in a new color then knitting as usual.
For example, when I am switching to blue stripes:
Round 1: knit around
Round 2: sl 1 stitch, k around
Knit the next two rounds as normal, then repeat this process for the white stripes, etc.
These jogless stripes made it necessary for me to change the increase and decrease rounds a bit so the stitches were nice and neat. I, basically, added a plain knit stitch on either side of each marker between the decrease or increase stitches.
For increases: * k1, kfb, k to 2 sts before marker, kfb, k1, sm* repeat from * once.
For decreases: *k1, k2 together, k to 3 sts before marker, skp, k1, sm* repeat from * once more.
Considering this was tonal yarn, I think the jog issue turned out fine. If I’d been using a solid color, I think it would have been an invisible tranisition.
I also stopped knitting the front straps at 8″, rather than 8.5″ just in case it stretched a little with wear.
A note about the Stroll Tonal: It’s not something I would normally choose for a summer-weight project, but I wanted to try tonal stripes so I bought some on sale. I love it. It’s lightweight and doesn’t itch against my skin at all. I can wear this indoors at any time this summer and even outdoors when it’s not too hellish. In Gulf Coast Texas summers, I look wilted, oily, and frizzy within seconds of walking outdoors. Every woman I know faces the day armed with a Chi. Those were normal curls on my head when I went out to take project photos, but by the time I finished these few shots, they were slowly becoming a brown clown wig. Now, when camping in Utah this tank can be worn all day and I won’t be a sweathog.
I actually have some more Tonal to combine with Gynx sock yarn for a fingering weight version of the Knickerbocker Tee from this same book. Then, I want to do another one in our school’s football colors because.. well, this is Texas.
This Post Has 14 Comments
Terrific knit ~ love the colors you chose and how well it fits on you. That racerback is one of the nicest I've seen. I'd live in this tank, too!
I love your tank, its perfect! LOVE the stripes and the racer back!
It's just perfect! I just got back from the Gap, where I bought an armful of tanks, so I understand the love. 🙂 I never wore them much in Idaho because it's cool enough sitting in the shade, but Iowa is humid and needs tanks and shorts. 😛 The stripes are amazing! The tonal color is so interesting, it spices up plain ol' stripes perfectly!
You look fantastic in it! Clearly I need to get myself a racer back bra so I can make it too 🙂
I did a jogless stripe that I liked recently – on the second round with a new colour you lift the stitch below the first stitch in the round and knit it together with the first stitch – not sure if that is a great explanation?! But, it works a treat 🙂
Very nice! That's a great summer tank! I love those two yarns together. The tonal blue is gorgeous. That's good to know how you avoid jogs – I've always knit into the stitch below, but slipping is much easier!
I feel like I should be really into Dr. Who. I'm a huge sci-fi/fantasy fan and have unhealthy obsessions with Neil Gaiman and Douglas Adams. I was actually in line yesterday (for hours) to buy Gaiman's new book and to get signing tickets for when he's here next week. Someone in line was telling me to start with the 9th doctor. Your thoughts?
Thank you, Evelyn! It is a very good project to have handy for when everyone wants to watch tv or something. It was fast and didn't require too much attention.
Thank you, Sarah!
Thanks, Vanessa. I agree about the tonal. I'm going to have to do more stripes this way. I want another one of these in cotton or a cotton blend for the summer, though I wore this all of that day and as long as I wasn't working outside, I was fine with the weight of it.
Thank you, Libby! I'd love to see your take on this top.
And thanks for the tip. Now that I think about it, I think I actually used your jogless technique on a cowl I made. But if I don't do something regularly in knitting, I always forget how. I have a Techknitter bookmark for these occasions.
Thanks, Stephanie! You know, I have never read a Neil Gaiman novel, though I hear about him a lot. That would be a really good idea for a summer read. First up I have Game of Thrones and the Mars Trilogy to finish.
I say start with the 9th doctor, too. Christopher Eccleston is only in it briefly, but he's fine and those episodes set the stage for the following ones with David Tennant, who is so, so great. In fact if, it weren't for Tennant's ability to pull you into these plot lines with lower budget alien costumes and effects, I don't think I could have convinced my kids to watch it with me. Personally, I have a soft spot for low budget and find the character interaction like a good play. I just got Hamlet starring Tennant and Patrick Stewart- very excited to see that. Okay, I went all geek on you there.
Ah! I love Game of Thrones too! Have you started it yet? Are you on Goodreads? And what is the Mars trilogy?!?
I am reading the second book in GOT series and its just as compelling as the first so far. I'm on Goodreads, but not really. I uploaded a few random books on my shelf into my library and then sort of forgot about it.
The Mars Trilogy is by Kim Stanley Robinson and is fairly new sci-fi. It's very science sci-fi and feels like I'm reading about the colonization of a planet, and the various characters and moral questions it involves, that actually happened. I've only read the first book, Red Mars, but got the others for Mother's Day.
Lovely! I do love the stripes, and thank you for the detailed analysis of the Tonal, I was actually curious.
Thank you, Monica! I'm glad it was helpful. I really like the effect on stripes. I'll definitely use this yarn again.