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Moderne Jacket Crochet-Along: Tackling the Back

March 19th, 2009

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I have been just so amazed this last week at the number of you responding to the invitation to join our CAL for the Moderne Jacket! For those of you who are just joining in on the fun, make sure to print your pattern soon as it will only be free especially to all the CAL participants until March 23rd.

This last week was a time for many of you to decide what yarn to use, making that swatch and starting work on the back. In my last post, I discussed what types of yarns would probably work best and decided myself to work with yarns that were different from the ones used in the pattern. The pattern calls for two different colors of yarn–but I decided to work with two yarns that were very similar in color. The two yarns I chose were “Vanna’s Choice” in Beige, and” Vanna’s Glamour” in Topaz. I liked the bit of glimmer that Glamour gave to my project, and so I chose a smooth, golden look to the jacket I am making my daughter.

So, how did my back turn out? Well, much to my surprise (and to some of you!) I found that after working my decrease rows, the 2 stitch pattern “shifts” by 1 stitch. Now, for many of you, this won’t be apparent at all – especially if you are working with two tones, or darker yarn, or a yarn with a texture, like Homespun. It is always amazing to me how the same pattern can look so different with a change of yarn!

Again, for many of you – this won’t even be an issue…but here is how I kept the pattern in line. I noticed while working this pattern stitch, that the first stitch I work into for the sc2tog was different in appearance than the second stitch I worked. (One is the stitch resulting from the sc2tog on the previous row, and the second is the ch1 done after the sc2tog). Keeping that in mind, on the rows that were “off” from the pattern, I did a sc at the beg of the row and an extra sc at the end of the row to make sure the stitch pattern lined up on itself as it did in the beginning. It was a little trickier for the raglan shaping as I was trying to line it up every row. I like how my back turned out, but it did take some forethought. I’m already thinking of doing this jacket again – but maybe a two- tone next time!

I’ve already started my fronts and keeping the pattern stitch “lining-up” will keep me busy. Next week, we’ll see how they “shaped-up”!

For CALers in the NYC, stop by the Lion Brand Yarn Studio to see the original jacket LIVE.

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  • Sally

    This is my first crochet project ever. I am working on the back size medium. It went fine for the first 10.5 inches, but I kept getting down to the final number of stitches in the raglan section in only 4-5 inches! I did that part over twice, (learned what frogging means :>)) and so this time I too it all out back to 3.5 inches and the first dec row thinking I must have decreased by mistake down in the bottom section which made me run out of stitches too quickly up in the raglan section. Maybe it was the tightening of the gauge that Rhelly mentioned – it did look tighter. Hope it comes out this time so I can move on. Love the project and can’t wait to wear it! Thank you all experienced crocheters for you input – it is really helping me understand what I’m doing!

  • Fay Baker

    How do you make the jacket longer? I’m still on back but not sure if I can just increase the 10 1/2 length or do I need to adjust the other numbers as well (ie, 3 1/2, 7 rows, etc. Thanks.

    Heather says: “Hi, Fay: I would increase the length before the underarm and after the shaping. Hope this will help you get the fit you would like!”

  • karen

    I’ve finished the back, but I am about an inch too long across the top neck. Every other measurement is correct. I have already ripped it apart once and counted stiches in every row as I went along. Did a new swatch- that was fine. Thinking maybe I’ll just go back and replace some pattern stiches for sc in the last row, maybe that will decrease the width and still keep the number of stiches. Would really like to finish this project…been crocheting for a long time, but this is the first garment. I’ve always been afraid of the shaping.

  • Joanne

    I am using two tones and dark colors, and one of the lucky individuals who need to adjust for the pattern shift. I saw your tip about adding SC stitches to both ends of the row following the DEC row, but I am not clear on what to do for the row after that one. Do I add a sc at both ends of every row until I get to the second decrease row when the pattern shifts back? And when a row ends with 2 SC, do I ch 1 at the turn? Am I correct to presume that I should never end a row with a sc2tog stitch? After tearing out the back piece 3 times, I’m experimenting on my swatch and nothing seems to work very well.

    Heather says: “Hi, Joanne: If you are lining up the stitches like I did, then you do that extra sc at the beg and end every row until the next dec row, where the pattern is correct again. Just make sure not to add a ch1 after or before those “extra” sc as that will add more stitches than you need. Make sure to count your stitches after every row and I have even been writing down what number I have to have at the end of rows in case I am called away. I hope this will help you with your jacket!”

    This is why prefer knitting and only crochet afghans. Thank you for any suggestions you can provide.

  • Marsha Stril

    I have torn my back piece out at least 3 times, trying to get the decreases to look even. Your comments help some, but it is still pretty frustrating.

  • Janice

    I’m having a time getting into the top stitches with identifying the single crochet and the chain 1 space with using 2 yarns. It seems that I am struggling to get the big N hook into the stitch. What am I doing wrong? Janice

    Heather says: “Hi, Janice: That second stitch was harder to go into than the ch1. You can either try to go into the space below that stitch, or just make sure that the stitch that results from the sc2tog is not too tight before you make the ch1. That will make that stitch a little easier to go into on the next row. Hope this helps you with that problem.

  • Misty

    I started rather late and am going pretty slow as I keep on making mistakes on my back and having to pull stitches out and start over. I thought I had finished my back right now but my gauge went way off somewhere along the way, the top is 2 inches wider than it is supposed to be. So I guess I will start over again! Does anyone have any suggestions on gauge?

    Heather says: “Hi, Misty: Check your stitch count for that part of your back. If your stitch count is correct, then it sounds like your gauge is too large, which would mean going to a smaller hook.”

  • Donna

    In response to Sue – it is too short and doesn’t hang right on me – if it is at the neck then the back is way too short, if the back is down where it belongs, then the collar rides down my back too far. I think it just is too small – I need to find a petite kid to give it to I guess.

  • BA

    Heather, I have tried to get the back decreases to work for the raglan shaping and something doesn’t seem to be working. Each side of the the raglan seems different. On one side it’s very obvious where the two slip stitches move in and create a sort of stepped in look (squared off). But on the other side the two slip stitches are creating a more gradual and smooth decrease. Am I doing something wrong?

    Heather says: Hi, Barb – You might want to try the decrease on that side of your work by maybe skipping the first stitch on the next row, or not doing a ch1 at the end of the row. It’s hard for me to know which you might have done, but you may want to try that. Just make sure that your stitch count remains correct. Also, you may want to trying sewing a little of that side to see if those “steps” will become less noticeable with the finishing.”