I frogged the sidepanels of Passe-Partout Sprookjesvest and measured the width of the frontpanel:
Measured deliberately over the widest part since that’s the part I use most for breathing. My, look at those gorgeous bustdarts!
I measured the back, it was smaller than the front. Bustdarts + extra stitches? What a clever knitter I was back in 2011. Pity I did not believe in wearing ease in those days.
I then put a centimeter around my chest and huffed and puffed and read the measurement. Then I reasoned thusly:
The front panel is 38 cm wide at the apex
back panel is 33 cm wide
together 71 cm.
My bust sans wearing ease = 94 cm.
Need at least 23 extra cm (94-71).
Adding some ease I think I want a total of 28 to 30 centimeters added to the width of the panels. That’s 14 to 15 centimeter per side seam.
The original panels were knitted bottom up, picking up stitches on either side with every row:
I really liked that look. But honestly, it was too much of a bother this time. I opted for the easy way which is still visually acceptable: knit the panels sideways.
“Leave well enough alone” is an expression I believe? In Dutch the phrase I’m trying to live by nowadays is “ongeveer goed is ook goed.” (“About right is also right.”)
A major change from all the phrases I used to live by when I was still the perfectionist warrior woman!
But in my 30’s my adrenals gave out and I acquired the mysterious illness ME. Two invitations to grow wiser and more content. Luckily I believe humans can change their habits and their cerebral pathways at any age. I’ve been growing more yoda-like ever since. Ear fluff galore!
Anyway. Sideways knitted panels are very easy and well enough/about right. I picked up 1 stitch for every 2 rows. Normally in sideways knitting you do 3 stitches for every 4 rows but the darker yarn is a tad thicker than the Passe-Partout handspun. I did use smaller needles though because my gauge has changed over the years (thanks to shoulder impingement and new live-by-phrases).
I then knitted until I had a panel of about 15 cm wide. And then added 2 more rows because I changed my mind about how to attach it to the existing knitting. Changed my mind twice, hence two extra rows. That’s fine because I shall not be skimpy with wearing ease ever again, the goal is to make things that can be worn comfortably. While breathing without thinking about it.
I fudged the live stitches of the side panel together with the knitted fabric of the front panel. Don’t ask me how I did, it’s like I crocheted with my needle? Bind off through an existing plane? You had to be there. One of those things. Monkey sees monkey does. It looks acceptable. Kitchener stitch would have been perfect but this is about right.
I didn’t break yarn but parked it to knit the lower hem with after I knitted the second panel with the second ball of yarn (which I parked to use for the ribbing around the arm hole border later).
The hem is in plain 1×1 ribbing (which I don’t like to knit very much) because the bit around the neck is like that too and was never frogged:
I tried it on and it sits very comfortable! I’m looking forward to wearing this!
Here’s where I am now, picking up stitches around the armhole for 1×1 ribbing. I take 3 stitches for every 4 rows this time because it’s not proper sideways knitting but on a diagonal and because I’m growing a bit nervous because I cannot remember or deduce whether I should decrease as I go in the round or not.
When I grow nervous my tension tenses.
But the side panels are great! Job well done!