The Lily Chin Lace Dress

This is the Lily Chin Lace Dress from Interweave Crochet 2004 magazine and also still available online at the Interweave Store.  You can see all the details on the Ravelry Pattern Page for it.  It is a huge amount of work, with nearly every line of the pattern different from the one before, but not difficult in that the pattern has a real logic to it.  I am so happy be one of the ones that have made it. 

Comment on the Yarn

Sombre is a beautiful organic cotton. I would give it 5 stars but for the REALLY IRRITATING break joined with a KNOT I often found halfway through the ball, sometimes more often than that. Its a pain in the neck, especially when doing lace, as you end up with way more ends to run-in than is necessary.

Comment on the Pattern

This is a fantastic pattern, the cleverness of the design in the way the bodice is made and how the skirt design incorporates the increases is brilliant. There are quite a few minor errors in the orginal pattern but common sense usually means that it doesn’t create a problem.

The pattern errata can be found by looking at some of the finished projects on Ravelry, including mine here.  You can also get it from Interweave here.

I did find the gauge to be a bit large for me and had to drop my hook size down to 2.5mm to get it to meet guage.  I made the 34″ even though at the time I made this I was a 36″ and it still was big on my frame, so I would advise people to size down.

How to Shrink a Crochet Dress

Over time, even though I did not really wear this dress, it seemed to grow and grow.  The armholes ended up inches too low.  That combined with losing the baby weight (18kg in total) meant that this dress was unwearable, it was just too big and the armholes were too gaping.

As it is 100% cotton, I decided to throw caution to the wind and attempt to shrink the dress (praying I didn’t destroy it).

I did this by throwing it in the washing machine on a hot wash and then throwing it in the tumble dryer on the hot setting to dry it.  It freaked me out to do this as I would normally never treat a handmade treasure like this so roughly.

But the result was better than I hoped for: it came out perfectly shrunk about 3 sizes smaller.  It is still a little roomy so if the dress stretches/drops again I will do the process again.

If you notice the sleeves – I added them some time later, after I found I wasn’t wearing the dress at all due to the gaping armholes. I just joined on the armholes and continued the bodice pattern in the round until I got to my chosen length, making sure I had an even stitch count on both sleeves.

I also dyed the dress a rich navy as I never felt quite right about the dusty blue colour, and I find this dress is now really wearable for me and I wear it often for dressy occasions. I put too much work into this dress for it to be a beach cover-up.