Knits Summer 2009 Gallery: Filet Patch Blouse

Filet Patch Blouse

by Teva Durham

from Interweave Knits Summer 2009

  37.5" sample garment

The images above are from the magazine where the 37.5" size sweater is modeled with plenty of positive ease.

The images below are of our Interweave Gallery Gals wearing the same sample sweater.


 Interweave Gallery Gals
Trish says: I think this one is cute, but it's a little young for me. 🙂 I'd wear it with jeans for a casual gathering at my house with a tank under it in the summer or a turtleneck under it in the winter.
Bust 34"
Height 4' 11"
Toni says: I love the vintage comfort of this top. I would probably wear it with a couple of colorful tanks underneath and favorite, comfy jeans.
Bust 34.5”
Waist 28”
Hip 36.5”
Height 5’ 5.5”


Sharon says:
  I love that the colorblocks draw attention up to the face. Because there's already a lot of design and color at play here, I'd match it with a white tank and medium-wash jeans.
Bust 34.5"
Waist 27"
Hip 37.5"
Height 5' 8"

Sandi's Notes:
Those colorful squares aren't crocheted–they're knitted! Teva, whose cleverness takes knitting to all kinds of interesting places, has taken an old technique and made it new again: Filet knitting. Worked from a chart, where each square equals three stitches, filet knitting enables you to create intricate lace panels that can form geometric shapes, or even imagery. Here, the squares echo quilted designs, and bring a folksy air to this cute top. With its down-home style and interesting technique, this top calls to me…because I'm really just a country girl at heart.

Specific tips for our Gallery Gals:
– OK, Trish, I know you think this one is "a little young for you," but I think it is ADORABLE on you! It brings out your playful side, and the colors are great for your complexion. The shoulder "straps" need to be a bit wider so they sit better on your narrow shoulders; but everything else is perfect, perfect. (Maybe I ought to make this one for you, hm? Evil me.)
– Toni, stop that. Stop being so cute in every single sweater. You're not giving me a chance to write anything creative here if you just keep on being cute in everything.
– Although, you know…Sharon looks amazing here too. The size is perfect–see how the shoulders sit so well on her? Good stuff.

Here are some questions to consider as you look at these photos:

  • How do you think the garment compliments each woman's individual body type and personal style?
  • Which body type does this garment look best on?
  • If you wanted to knit a sweater straight out of the magazine, with no pattern adjustments except for sleeve and hem length, would this be the sweater for you and your body type?
  • Would it fit your personal style?

Leave your thoughts in the comments!


Some links you  might find helpful:

Measuring yourself and your clothing

About positive and negative ease

Measuring tutorial with photos


Other Things You May Like to Check Out:


Hats, Knitting Patterns

59 thoughts on “Knits Summer 2009 Gallery: Filet Patch Blouse

  1. I think it looks best on Trish. You don’t see the gaping openness of the armpits. I like the style, but it’s a little too open under the arms for my taste — It looks unfinished.

  2. I also think it looks best on Trish, but what is up with the depth of that armhole? Seems a little out of sync with the rest of the sweater. I really don’t think anyone over the age of 12 would actually wear this, though.

  3. Sorry, I have to say YUCK….I liked it in the magazine….and this was in my “to do” pile. ……I actualy picked the yarn to use….. It hink it only looks good on the original model….and Trish..I agree about the armpits……looks like a “mistake”….I guess you COULD throw an extra square under the armpit…that might work….

  4. I think adding another block under the arm would take care of the huge armhole. I’d make this for my 15 yr old granddaughter with that change. Reminds me of the late60s-early 70s hippie styles. Put it with a peasant skirt and it could be the “summer of love!”

  5. Does Toni have it on backwards? I noticed the colors of the squares are different on hers . . . but maybe it doesn’t matter for this design. I don’t care for the colors here, but I like the overall design and would probably make it in all-over white or tan for a more natural look.

  6. I (an old hippy) love this top. And even old would wear it if only for nostalgia sake. I love it on Sharon. She looks the right age and the style WITH the armholes looks appropriate. For myself I would add the extra squares and maybe line the open work so I could wear sans tank tops.

  7. UGH…I can’t stand anything that looks like all those granny squares I made in the 70’s with crochet. However, I think Sharon looks amazing and changes the look of this by it being long on her instead of squatty on everyone else (even the model).

  8. I have to agree with everyone on the armhole depth issue. I have to say that this seems to be indicative of the issues I have with many of Teva Durham’s designs: interesting concepts, but poor execution and a lack of forethought and wearability. The overall look is adorable, but up close, it just looks haphazard and poorly made.

  9. Bodice is too high on Trish — turn the garment around; there’s no one correct “front”. Shoulders sag on Trish & Toni. I know it’s the current fashion, but I think tops with T-shirts underneath look sloppy. If I made this I’d add an armhole gusset and make the shoulders wider. I might also use the color patches as opportunity to try out different lace patterns — finally, a good use for swatches.

  10. Another old hippie here, I liked it in the magazine and bought the yarn.

    I like it still on the models. The underarm space doesn’t bother me since I’d always wear it with a shirt underneath. I think it would look good with jeans and shorts. Definitely a summer dresser-upper, i.e. an easy way to make a casual outfit look a little more pulled together.

  11. UCH! I hate this sweater! !!!! It manages to look fabulous on Sharon (maybe because she’s gorgeous!) but tahe model, Trish & Toni look positively dowdy. Back in the 70’s I also crocheted those awful granny squares, tried ’em on, and then dumped the whole project in the trash because it looked like … um …. well. And this does, too. Bleah. What a waste of paper and ink. (“Yeah, but Suzan, how do you really feel about it?”)

  12. I really like it! But I agree about the armhole thing. I’d want to knit a gusset(?) too in the main color, not with extra granny squares. I’d also want to line it. And maybe put a crocheted picot trim around the neck in the main color–or just slipstitch it, like what they have on the sleeves. For me, I’d put the bottom stitching in the main color. I think this would look nice on me, but I’d want to lengthen it so it would come to either mid thigh or just above the knees. It would be fabulous in black and silver and/or gold!

  13. I’m amazed at how well Sharon pulls off this hideous sweater. She actually looks great. Otherwise, this is exactly the type of “homemade”, “crafty”, “WalMart yarn-looking” thing that I avoid like the black plague and would never be caught dead making nor, god forbid, wearing. And this is coming from a crochet-er from way back who wore this stuff in the 70s. Even granny squares can be done in a classy way with great construction and judicious use of color. This is none of the above.

  14. I like how it looks on Sharon. It looks with the black tank she has on rather than the white tees the other two have on. I used to do filet crochet and it is very pretty. I think the color combos used would determine whether it looked “folksy” or like granny squares

  15. I love this sweater precisely because of its vintage hippie look – including the airy arms. And it looks so fabulous on Trish! I would not have chosen it for her, but it looks great.

  16. Sorry, ladies. But if you apply the evaluation of design to this particular project, it flunks on all counts. The design is not esthetically strong. It is unbalanced; the squares stand out, rather than blend in and compliment the style. The colors of the squares seem to be completely random. The arm holes, as noted by others are unshaped. The front panel is too small for the overall look, making it appear as if it were knit without directions or fit consideration. The sleeve caps are silly looking. It looks unfinished, and poorly considered. You’ve taught us too much, Sandy, for us to think that this design deserves ANY consideration for our precious stash or knitting time. Sorry. It’s a total loss.

  17. I like the sweater, and am intrigued by the knitted granny squares. I am thinking of knitting just the bodice, and attatching lightweight cotton fabric for the lower front body and sleeves. I think the top will have a nicer drape, and it will easily solve the armseye problem. This type of garmet with knit and woven mix is in all the stores now as a ‘boho’ look, so I think it is appropriate for the free-spirited of any age.

  18. I congratulate all of the wearers on their pregnancy – what? You say none of them are in the pudding club? But it looks like a maternity top one might have worn in the 60’s!

  19. Once again, too much clothing underneath. This should be worn with a snug-fitting tank underneath like Sharon is wearing it. And I think the armholes are supposed to be deep, because it’s assumed you will be wearing a tank or a sports bra underneath. The one think I don’t like is the tan shoulder patch on one side – looks like underwear. The comments on handmade vs. homemade are very interesting. Clearly this type of style evokes an emotional response that goes way beyond the style – people either seem to love or hate it. But what is bad about homemade? If I want perfect or machine-made, I’ll buy a sweater. I don’t want to go to all that work and end up with something a machine could recreate. To me, homemade and handmade are the same, both imperfect and beautiful.

  20. I hate to say it, but this shirt is hideous. I agree with the person that said no one over the age of 12 would (or should) wear it. Knitted granny squares? If I wanted granny squares I would have taught myself to crochet. Oh, and I guess this sweater is reversible? Or does Toni have it on backwards? The shirt is kind of cute on Sharon but the armholes are a nightmare and the construction is haphazard.

  21. I agree with Ellen, I thought it looked like a maternity top too. In my opinion it’s cute, and is a concept that needs a lot of further design work to make it more flattering and wearable. I agree with Tammy that the yarn and the colors lack the artistry of the work I expect from Knits Magazine. Despite it’s baggy shape and huge armholes, it’s appealing, and I might just fool around with it to see if I can make it work as a topper over either a tank top in the summer or a long sleeved turtleneck in the winter. It has a kind of “ethnic” look that I like, but it needs a lot of polishing before it’s wearable.

  22. My kids, who are adults, call this look “granola” — I call it hippy. It looks good on Sharon not only because she is gorgeous, but also it provides a nice contrast to the black she wears under it. It dies and just looks sloppy over the white Ts. It reminds me of some of the folksy clothing that I see in Mexico, and so IF I were thin, and thought I could pull this look off, I would knit it. Since I am fluffy, and couldn’t pull it off, forget this one. Maybe for a child.

  23. My goodness!! The armholes are too deep. The fit does not quite seem right on any of the models. Looks like the designer got tired of making squares and totally changed the design mid-stream, and failed to really consider the changes. Add my ditto to what BetteN says above.

  24. I agree with the other comments that noticed the sloppy shoulders of the top, the huge armholes, and the poor execution of what could be a cute top. Although I find it interesting that knitting can resemble crochet, in this top it didnt quite make it as far as execution. I was also considering tweeking the pattern to create something I would actually wear as the loose lower part makes it more wearable in summer. Much as I can appreciate the layered look, even in Canada it is too hot in the summer to wear another top under a knit outfit!

  25. I don’t really like it though it looks best on Sharon with something dark underneath to show up the “filet” holes better. But what’s wrong with making actual crochet filet squares for the yoke with knit sleeves & bodice? It might givea bit more stability to the yoke & allow the knit parts to float from it.

  26. UGH UGH UGH! It’s schlumpy, the squares make the neckline and armholes look awful, and it doesn’t fit anyone. It makes all of them look pregnant! BetteN’s comments are right on. I can’t believe this piece even made it into the magazine.

  27. This ol’ hippie falls on the “love it” side of the opinion chart. Out here in Southern California it’s a perfect garment for its colorful, layered look. And I don’t think the bodice looks like “granny squares”–they’re lighter, looser and better designed. Being of a certain age, however, I might add something to the underarm–or not, since I’d wear a camisole underneath.

  28. The construction of this top is all wrong. It looks very sloppy, like the designer got tired of knitting and just “fudged it”. This could be a very cute top and very on trend if it didn’t look so half-pulled-together. Not only does it look bad on all of the gallery girls but bad on the model as well. The colors are not so great either.

  29. Sounds like this is a love it or hate it top.
    Personally I would do only one row of the squares in the bodice, and I am not too sure about multicolor, maybe a monochromatic scheme which I could change my mind on that too. With one row of squares then you could shape the armhole and it wouldn’t hang down so low, which is a turn off for me too. All the shoulder squares would have to be the same color though. I like symmetry. And I don’t like anything that hang off my shoulders. To me that says “ill fit”, not trendy or cute for that matter.

    The cool thing is those squares are knit! Get out! The hippie in me wants to make up a scrap afghan out that design alone.

    And all tops like that look like maternity tops, especially if you are well endowed!

  30. I am so glad my mother taught me to have a mind of my own and not bow to the “fashion police” I think I would crochet the squares just to make them neater. The lower half could be knitted. Tell us you don’t like it, tell us you wouldn’t be caught dead in it. We get it, but unless you want to look like EVERYBODY ELSE; to heck with structure, esthetics and so on. If it covers what you want covered and you like it.. HOORAY FOR YOU!

  31. There is a reason knitting and crochet vanished for a while in the mid-70s. People started making half-baked rags like this. It’s completely shapeless. Anti-sexy. And can you explain the odd insertion of beige squares in the midst of all the fiesta brights? Ugh! Ugly! Very, very, “homemade”.

  32. Yet another old hippy – I quite like this one, and thank you Sharon for taking your t shirt off, it makes all the difference. Hippy style is coming back, or didn’t you know, ladies? And for once, it’s not unflattering either for bust or tummy. Fun and comfy for summer, good for winter over a thin rollneck. Useful I’d say. BUT the design is dreadful, with those armholes, I’m sort of surprised the editor accepted it like that.

  33. My dd would never let me leave the house in that. Nor would I want to! I’d be afraid of an ambush by Stacey and Clinton! That’s really nasty. Very sloppy looking on everyone, sadly.

  34. I think it’s a very cute sweater, but it really is something for a certain body type. On me, it would look like a maternity smock, and frankly it would be a bit of “mutton dressed as lamb” as well. I think the armholes are too deep an give it an unflattering shape and signal “loving hands at home” rather than something fashionable. The colors are lovely, though it reminds me far too much of my childhood in the early seventies I figure if I can remember the first time it was in fashion, or wore it the first time it was in fashion it’s probably best that I don’t wear it again.

  35. I wasn’t a fan of granny squares when they were fashionable and I didn’t especially like this pattern in the magazine, but the gallery has changed my mind. I think it looks great on Sharon and Trish — and worn with a tank or camisole it would work as well for Toni. I will probably make mine without the edging on the steeves and the hem, but I think it will be great summer wear.

  36. Like Trish, I thought this top would be too young for me, but she looks dynamite in it! That has altered my perception of the top entirely. I think, though, that it looks best on Sharon, whose colouring is dramatic and brings out the colours used in the top. And Toni, well, she just looks adorable, as Sandi said.

    Be well,


  37. RE: “homemade” While not a dirty word as applied to BREAD, when someone says this about your knitting, I have found, it is without exception an insult. The only sweater I’ve ever made that prompted someone to comment, “You must have made that. It looks homemade.” is now in the frog pond. She was right. The sweater is shapeless and my finishing was sloppy. I’ve noticed that when people admire your knitting they generally use the word “handmade” if they think it looks like a sloppy rag they say, “homemade”. Just an observation.

  38. Again, I agree with many or the other comments. Armscye design and fit are dreadful, shoulder fit is poor and overall execution is not impressive. I actually made a similar sweater back in the 1970’s for a roommate-however, I adjusted the squares forming the shoulders and under the arms in order to achieve a standard and well fitting upper bodice. Oh, Teva, this top is not your best work!

  39. These galleries used to work when your models were of different sizes. All of these women have essentially the same (very small) bust size — which isn’t much use to full-busted women.

  40. I like what Audrey did said. Take the general pattern and make it personal adding trim and such. In fact, her comments have made me reconsider this project. It’s cute, colorful, and with some tweaks here and there it could work for this middle aged woman.

  41. Love the colors and the fiber- but will echo my fellow IK commentors- armholes are a miss. Also, I am not a fan of how the blocks are put together; I like it a little more polished. I think the idea is great for summer- it’s just that I’m not into showing off my bra or having to have to wear a tshirt under my summer top.

  42. I agree with BetteN: This is one ugly sweater! Never did like the idea of combining crochet with knitting. When I was a kid – crochet was what your grandma made for you if you couldn’t afford to buy clothing in a store. No offense to crocheters here – many modern crochet items are lovely. This one “bites”!!

  43. What if it were made in shades of natural colors – like ecru, oatmeal, buckskin, linen, etc? It would have a whole different look and may be suitable for a wider age-range of women.
    It’s designed to be fun to wear, and I think it would be.

  44. This is one of those garments that inspire people to say “Oh, you’re learning how to knit. How nice.” Not a comment I’m seaking. (I must say, I’m rather disappointed with all of the sweaters in this issue. Either too arty or too homemade. I didn’t see anything that I would want to make.)

  45. Unflattering, maternity-styling, home-made – what else can I say? I can’t imagine investing time to make this design. There is something so unappealing about child-like designs worn by grown women. Can anyone honestly believe you would get a sincere compliment if you made this then had the nerve to wear it? I think not.

  46. One of the worst designs I’ve seen in a long time. It’s unfortunate that there have been more and more unwearable designs appearing in Interweave Knits. A major reason I haven’t purchased the last two issues.

  47. Love it and hate it, all at the same time… It shows the inspiration of what COULD have been a great design if refined just a little.

    I really think you could keep the feel of this garment while improving it a LOT by making just a few minor changes:

    First, ditch at least one of the colors! Either get rid of the orange or beige, or both… the beige and orange both are just “ick” next to the main color (pink)! There may be shades of one or both colors that would work with this pink but those aren’t them!

    Next, the armholes…. If you like the deep armhole look, make it obvious that is what you intended by carrying it a lot further! Leaving the armhole end where it’s at just looks like sloppy tailoring and just makes flat-chested women look pregnant and well-endowed women look frumpy! Either make the armholes very low and breezy, like some styles of swimsuit coverup, or else close them up, either with a section of the main color, or by carrying the lower row of squares all the way around the garment under the arms instead of ending at the armhole.

  48. Ugly, ugly, ugly.  Very sloppy and unattractive.  Why not just drape an old granny square afghan around your shoulders and save yourself the time and money.

  49. I loved this pattern.  But, really–two mistakes in each of two charts.  And who picked the yarns and why???? the wool in the body of the blouse is so heavy (even though it’s knit in a loose gauge) that it drags the filet patches down.  They start at 3 1/2 inches and get dragged down to 5 inches.  I’m very disappointed.  I put it away and maybe will try to re-design it later.  Or maybe not.