Monday, April 27, 2015

Prudence Or Deborah?

I was recently asked to explain the difference between these two patterns by a knitter who was trying to choose between the two. The Deborah Beresford Vest pictured at left was the second version. This vest was designed to take advantage of the many colours available from Shelridge Yarns. Two strands of yarn are held together: one colour is switched out at a time to create the colour transitions.It’s an updated version of The Prudence Crowley Vest with a different stitch pattern. The pattern uses simple reverse stocking stitch borders on the armholes and bottom edges to allow for easy finishing with multiple yarn ends.

The fit of both vests is very forgiving and will flatter many body shapes. The classic vest back gives the garment structure, while the front is constructed as a simple straight piece of knitting with angled edges creating points at the front. The colour changes create a strong, slimming vertical line on the front of the body. The front edges fold back into a shawl collar. The simple textured stitch patterns lay flat and create a gentle transition at each colour change, subtly blending the shades.

Each vest is worked in two pieces. The back is knit from the bottom edge up. The front is knit in one long section like a sideways scarf with increases at each end. The edges of the vest back on Prudence are self finishing and include instructions to smooth the normally used uneven stair step bind off methods. It was designed with self striping yarns in mind. These projects are a wonderful introduction to garments for the beginner, as there are no buttonholes and minimal sewing. The front edges can be folded back into a shawl collar shape or left to stand high on your neck. 

Deborah has a slightly more drapey feel on the body. It's a little heavier due to the double standing of the fingering weight yarn. I've weighed my samples, the difference is 127 grams. This version also allows the knitter to completely customize their colour choices. Just chose a range of colours knit from dark to light and back to dark again in sequence.

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