Saturday, October 4, 2008

Maxi Top/Dress

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This design was one of my most impulsive knits, one that you do not put down till it is done. It all started with some yarn from Cascade. I had 18 balls of this lovely yarn for a sweater for myself that I then decided not to make!
The idea for this top came to me all of a sudden, and I am very pleased with the result.
The garment is knitted completely in the round from top down.

This design is written for worsted weight yarns, for a smaller version in DK weight please see:  Maxi Top/Dress for babies.

Sizes available:

6-12 months (16-19 inch chest)
1-2 year old to fit 18-20 inch chest
2-3 year old to fit 20-22 inch chest (size shown)
3-4 year old to fit 21-23 inch chest
4-5T (22-24 inch chest)
5-7T (24-26 inch chest)
7-9T (25-28 inch chest)

1, 2, 2, 3, 3, 3, 4 balls of Mission Falls 1824 wool(100% merino;85 yards or 78m in 50g ball)
Main: 2, 2, 2, 3, 3, 4, 4 balls of Bollicine Maxi (70% merino, 30% acrylic;109 yards or 100 m in 50g ball) if you want it to be a top (add an extra 1-2 balls if you want it to be a dress)

19 sts per 4 inches on 4.5 mm needles over stockinette st with main color yarn


Increase 1 stitch = knit into the stitch below
yo= yarn over needle


4 mm/US #6 16" circular needles
4.5 mm 20" and 24" circular needles
stitch markers

Pattern Instructions:

Using 4 mm 16" circular needles and contrast color cast on 66 (70, 70, 76, 82, 88, 94) sts.
Place marker, join in the round
Knit 1x1 rib for 10 (12, 14, 14, 15, 16, 16) rnds
Next round knit.
New rnd: switch to main color and * knit1, yo* the end of the round.
Knit one rnd.
Switch to 4.5 mm 20" circular needles and knit 5 (6, 6, 8, 10, 11, 12) rnds
Switch to contrast color and knit following rounds as follows:
Rnd 1:Knit
Rnd 2:Purl
Rnd 3:Knit
Rnd 4:Purl
Rnd 5:Knit
Rnd 6:Purl
For size 4-5T repeat Rnd 5&6 one more time.
And for sizes 5-7T and up repeat Rnd 5&6 2 more times.
Next Rnd knit 36 (40, 40, 42, 46, 49, 52) sts, bind off 30 (30, 30, 34, 36, 39, 42) sts, knit 36 (40, 40, 42, 46, 49, 52) sts, bind off 30 (30, 30, 34, 36, 39, 42) sts.

Next rnd, purl 36 (40, 40, 42, 46, 49, 52) sts, cast on 3 (2, 5, 6, 8, 8, 11) sts, purl 36 (40, 40, 42, 46, 49, 52) sts, cast on 3 (2, 5, 6, 8, 8, 11) sts, place marker and continue knitting in the round with contrast color for 1 more round.
Next round switch to main color and knit 6 (8, 10, 12, 12, 14, 16) rnds.
Switch to contrast color and knit following rnds as follows:
Rnd 1:Knit
Rnd 2:Purl
Rnd 3:Knit
Rnd 4:Purl
Rnd 5:Knit
Rnd 6:Purl
Rnd 7:Knit.
Rnd 8:Purl.
For size 4-5T repeat Rnd 7&8 one more time.
And for sizes 5-7T and up repeat Rnd 7&8 2 more times.
Next round knit and place markers every 13 (14, 15, 16, 18, 19, 21) sts (78, 84, 90, 96, 108, 114, 126 sts).
Switch to main color.
Increase 1 sts on each side of each marker (90, 96, 102, 108, 120, 126, 138 sts).
Knit 9 rnds
Increase 1 sts on each side of each marker (102, 108, 114, 120, 132, 138, 150 sts).
Knit 9 rnds.
Continue in the following manner till the piece measures the length you want minus 1 inch. For the in between top and dress length it works out to be about 7 (8, 10, 11, 12, 13, 13, 14) inches from the underarm. (I would recommend to do 14 knitting rounds for the last 2-3 sets of increases if you are making a dress)
Switch to contrast yarn.

Hemline Version 1:

For sizes 6-12 months to 2-3T (Knit 1 round, purl 1 round) x5
For sizes 4-5T and up (knit1 round, purl 1 round) x 7
Bind off.

Hemline Version 2:

Switch to contrast color yarn.

1. knit one round
2. 1x1 rib (k1, p1) for 2 rnds.
3. *k1, pbaf (purl back and front)*.
4. *k1, p2* for 3 rounds.
5. *k1, pbaf, p1*….to the end.
6. *k1, p3* for 4 rounds.
7. Bind off in pattern.

Weave in ends.


  1. Everything that you knitted is beatiful!

  2. That's really really cute!

  3. Oh my goodness. Im in love with your blog. I love knitting as well, I have done so for my 1 yr old son. But now that I'm expecting the arrival of my baby girl in 4 months I cant wait to get started with all these wonderful ideas. You're truly talented and a God send :)
    Thank you so much!

    p.s.: This ones my fav!

  4. Absolutely LOVE your patterns...and your photos are beautiful! Thanks so much for sharing you patterns!!!! Kerry

  5. I adore this dress, I have an almost 2 year old niece, her birthday is Easter, and I decided to make her a hat for her birthday, but couldn't let it just be a hat. I found this, and I am in love. I think I might do the collar in a plain st st in an effort to prevent little B from fidgeting with it (ribbed sweater maker her fidgety) and as we will be doing Easter photos with the family, I'd like her to not be playing with her dress so much.

    Here is a link to the hat I made her.

    Thanks again for such a perfect pattern, I am doing the collar and the stripes in the green from the hat and doing the main part of the dress in the red tone. I'll post pictures in the projects section of that link when I finish it!

  6. I knit this for my daughter & my older nieces & aunt all want one. Any chance you'll be making grown up sizes for this?

  7. terrific! My granddaughter will be one this week and I've been knitting. Couldn't make a pair of booties when we were waiting for her but I started with scarves and learned systems and now I've made cool top down raglan sweaters (easy) and sundresses, halter tops with matching belts for this summer that look like little triangle bras - adorable - to wear with capris that I bought at the resale shop. I think I'm ready for this. Can't wait to make it. I've become an addict!


  8. Thanks for the pattern. I made this one last year for my godson's wee sister. I have so much yarn left over though, I think I'll make the dress version for her as well. Thanks for sharing!

  9. Such a lovely pattern. I'm casting it on right now :D Will be back to show you the results!

  10. I can't wait to try this one. I just finished a dress for my 20 month old. I have been looking for more simple patterns and this definitely works Thanks :)

  11. Thank you for this! I just made it for my littlest daughter and it's SO CUTE! Definitely going to be doing another!

  12. It's good that you also posted the instructions and the materials. I'd love to create one like this also. Thanks for the resource!:)

  13. Thankyou for a lovely pattern! It was a joy to knit. I changed the hemline to a "bubble" which worked nicely in my opinion=o)

  14. it's a lovely dress to make but i'm new at this could you explain it little more for please.

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