Lotta Dress, Two Ways

Winter Lotta Dress

I love love love my Lotta Dress by Marie Greene. It’s the reason I bought Laine Magazine No. 5. It's so cute yet cozy looking, I just had to make one. I used the Tukuwool wool with acrylic sock yarn the pattern called for in a blueish grey color, and I added a striped detail at the bottom in a mossy green. The yarn was a dream to work with, the pattern was easy to follow, it knit up pretty quickly, fits great, is ridiculously comfortable to wear, and you just can’t help looking and feeling adorable in it. What is not to love?! I wore it at the end of December with tights and boots and a short sleeved t-shirt underneath and I was warm outside. Granted we don’t get much snow in the SF Bay Area, but it can get pretty darn cold. And I’m one of those always cold people, and I was warm.

But as the weather has warmed, I am unable to wear my cute Lotta! It’s much, much too hot for our pleasantly warm summertime weather. But it’s the comfiest thing I have, so I decided to knit one in a more appropriate fiber. Because I know I’m going to wear this a lot, I wanted something inexpensive so I don’t worry about ruining it, and something that wears well so it lasts. I decided on KnitPicks CotLin, a 70% cotton/30% linen blend. I think I chose wisely. It feels very durable, but it’s also nice and soft. I’m using the same size needle (US4) as I did for the sock weight Tukuwool even though CotLin is a DK weight. I just wasn’t happy with the fabric using a larger needle. So my swatch gauge is a few stitches off, but I’ve adjusted by knitting a size down and closely checking my rows/length.

Knitting with cotton, linen, hemp or blends of the like is much different than knitting with wool because there is basically no stretch and no memory, so it’s less “forgiving”. Uneven stitches won’t become less visible with blocking. I find I get nicer stitches using my Foursquare needles when knitting with this type of fiber, especially in reverse stockinette. My stitches stay nice and snug while my hands can remain relaxed. But I do take more breaks and knit for a shorter duration because my hands and fingers will get tired faster.

Another thing I found out was that in the horizontal stitch band I needed to really snug the stitch down to the needle after slipping it back to the left hand. I failed to do so and ended up with very loose stitches to knit into the following round resulting in a fairly see-through fabric. That could be a cool design option, but it wasn’t what I was going for, and even if it was it definitely was not in the right spot! Frogging back to the sleeve separation was totally worth it. The horizontal band is such a pretty braid now, and there’s no concern of accidental peek-through.

I missed a step on my winter version in the neckline, but because of the nature of the wool it's a non-issue. But that detail really shows in the CotLin and I'm glad I got it right. I've worn this dress so many times this summer, but I just recently got photos of me in it. I'm super pleased with how it turned out, and it just keeps getting softer and softer every time it comes out of the washer/dryer - without losing shape! 

Summer Lotta Dress

What garment would you (or have you) knit more than once? Let us know in the comments below.

Yep, it's my favorite!

Happy Knitting!


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