Popping back into the “3 R’s” eco element and staying with the “learning” eco element, I’m thrilled to re-introduce you to Lake Breeze Tank. Not just refreshed, the pattern was striped back to a blank page and started from scratch – new grading, new writing style, new sizes, new text, and expanded info for substituting yarn. The elements that remained – the overall design aesthetic, the charted and written detailed decreases and increases, and the original yarn.
Eco Inspiration ~ A Lake Breeze Adventure
I thought it would be fun to look back at the somewhat rocky cruise Lake Breeze has taken. Thanks to Ravelry I was able to pull up my original project page.
I designed this tank to highlight the variegated nature of the slubbed cotton flamme. I wanted something light for summer. The neck line was an on the spot decision following the diagonal stitch pattern. The stripes highlight the waist by changing direction at the natural waist. Not shown in the pictures is the length. This is long enough to wear with cropped yoga pants.
Still young in my publishing career, it was this comment that encouraged me to plunge eyes wide shut into garment design:
A year of work and four tech edited versions later, Lake Breeze tank debuted in August of 2013.
And I went on my merry way thrilled with the accomplishment and eager to continue designing. Until…
Four years later I got a message from a lovely knitter who enlightened me to the fact that every 2nd size in the pattern had an error at the increase to bust section. This error ran through to the end. I was totally devasted! I pulled it from market immediately and had a long think.
Concurrently I was taking Jill Wolcott’s “A System of Grading Class” – who knew grading was actually a “thing”?! This philosophy major had no clue ?. And up until that point had been writing each garment design pattern individually for all the sizes presented and then taking the sizes to create the standard “string” of directions.
Determined to rewrite it and seeing how it would fit into our look at the 3 R’s, I set to work… again. Let me tell you it was no easy feet! On the one hand I had this design that worked in every other size, on the other hand I had these set of grading tools I learned in the class, and the two didn’t mesh.
Months of excel work and exercise finally resulted in a pattern that matched the original design following the principles of grading learned in the class. 6.5 lbs later I finally fit back into the sample as originally fitted and I have never been so relieved to send something to a TE… ever.
TE 1 and I worked through several drafts until my eyes felt like they would fall out of the sockets and I really began to hate excel. When the final version was ready to go, I decided to send it to a 2nd TE for fresh eyes. Like me, TE 1 had seen too many errors and previous versions were running into new versions. TE 2 found areas of correction, which sent me back to my nemesis excel.
And then the victorious email – “PERFECT” – Lake Breeze Tank was finally in right and proper shape with a fully explained pattern presented both in language and charts.
As I pull this boat into the cove and re-release Lake Breeze Tank, I wanted to take a minute to thank each one of you who’ve supported and paddled through this with me. The lovely knitter who alerted me to the error in the first place, Jill Wolcott who taught this philosophy grad about garment grading, TE 1 who paddled through the roughest rapids as I sought to bring together an original vision with new methodology, and TE 2 who emptied the little water that spilled into the canoe in the process to create a crisp and dry final pattern!
Though my original yarn label shows only cotton, subsequent skeins of Americo Original Cotton Flamme shows organic cotton. Whether this was a waiting on verification, since the yarn is identical, or what, I know not. But I love how this yarn has held up! I’ve worn it many times over the years and through wash after wash, the yarn’s held up beautifully! Americo Original is dedicated in their commitment to social consciousness and supports farmers in South America in their business.
Party in the Cove!
To celebrate the end of this design journey, Puddles and I will be having a bundle sale for summer tank designs on Ravelry! Full details here ?. Aside: for all of you who purchased Lake Breeze tank before it was deactivated, I’ve placed the updated versions in your pattern libraries and set the sale to past purchase enabled as a thank you for your support and understanding. Happy tank knitting!