Tuesday, April 9, 2013


I spent a few days pondering my recently completed Bartok Tunic and decided that I needed to make it longer. As a  tunic, it should be longer, but the way it fell on my body, it ended right above my belly - just high enough to drive me nuts. If I lifted my arms even a little, my belly would show and in my head I'd hear my mother's incessant half-whispered, very bitchy command to "PULL DOWN YOUR SHIRT!" (My mother loved me but she absolutely hated my belly.)

A couple of nights ago, I pulled out the scissors and chopped off the bottom. Then I set about picking up stitches and picking out little bits of cut-up stitches. It's not as hard or as scary as it seems; in my experience, the surgical patient has never unraveled uncontrollably leaving me with a tangled-up mess. Note that I knit only in natural fibers, usually with wool content. If you knit with a slippery man-made yarn, all bets are off when it comes to this kind of modification.

After I picked up the stitches, I just started knitting downward. I added almost three inches and then finished it off with an inch of garter stitch, like the original design. Easy peasy.

I should be finished this evening. After some brief spray-bottle blocking, I will model it for you. The Bartok really is a beautiful sweater and worthy of this modification that will make it more comfortable for me to wear. Plus I'll never have to hear my mother's admonition again - at least with this garment. ;-)


  1. Way to go! I did surgery on my Radiate, which had no wool. I threaded a circular needle in like a lifeline before I cut and then unraveled down to it. I don't think it would have unraveled anyway.

  2. Maggie stole my comment! Well, almost. I always use an itsy-bitsy circ as a lifeline before cutting. You're gonna have to pick those stitches up anyway, and my theory is it might as well be done before as after. That helps calm my heebie-jeebies and works with any kind of yarn.

    I have a pullover that shrank lengthwise and now wants to play tummy peekaboo, so I very seldom wear it. Unfortunately, the original yarn I used has vanished, so the surgical lengthening option is no longer available.

    Enjoy your Bartok! it's lovely.

    --Lynda in Oregon

  3. Good job. I find patterns, and even ready made tops, are not long enough for my belly. I usually do make them longer if I am making a sweater for myself, even though this is not that often.


  4. I almost always add a few extra inches to my sweaters, and I'm of average height! I'm constantly lifting my kids, though, and I hate to flash innocent passers-by while doing so. ;) Better to tackle the surgery now and be happy with the finished product. (Which, by the way, looks fantastic!)

  5. Looks like there's a lot of sweater hacking going around.....