My Belle top is almost finished. I’m so, so, so close! As we speak it’s lying on the living room couch waiting for me to whip stitch the underarm & sides. Then it’s done! Whoo-hoo!

When you saw it last it was in the video and didn’t look like much. My oh my how it has grown!

In the video I talked about making a modification to the width – changing it from 23cm to 20cm. I was spot on. Taking the 3cm off each side has made a huge difference and definitely streamlined the top.

This photo of Belle being blocked, shows you all the changes I’ve made. Please note the 23cm 20cm is specific to size M.  The pattern dimensions are given in red and what I hooked, is given in purple (to match my purple Crocs of course).

Apart form the sides that I changed from 23cm to 20cm, I made two other changes:

  1. I added 3cm to the hem lace panel. To achieve this, my foundation chain was 39 stitches instead of 33 stitches. The panel is only 3cm wider, but that makes a big difference to the overall look. Remember, the hem panel is attached to the body on its side, so the panel had to be made wider, in order to lengthen the top.
  2. The other change (mentioned in the video), was to join my front and back panels 9.5cm from the edge of the central panel, in stead of 5.5cm from the edge of the central panel. My neckline is now wider than the pattern instructions. I’m very happy with my decision to do this, as you have to finish off the neckline with two rows of sc (American) / dc (English), so that decreases the neck opening even more.  Unless you have a very thin neck, I would suggest you also join the front and the back at roughly 9.5cm from the central panel.  You can always use whip stitch to make the neckline smaller if it’s too wide, but you can’t make it any wider once you’ve joined you front and back!

By the way, once again I’m so impressed with  my blocking boards. I’ve seen many other crochets and knitters use these. They really are so handy. It’s EVA foam interlocking mats. As you can see, you can place them to suit the size and shape of your crochet piece. I bought mine on eBay but you can get them at toy shops, like this one.

I’ll be whip stitching at the speed of light tonight so that I can do a Ta-daah post tomorrow.  Uhm, I wonder what I’ll be wearing to work tomorrow…?