Choosing the name for my piece, Amimono Kimono, was easy considering that I’m constantly championing for knitters and crocheters to get along and stop acting like 'the Sharks and the Jets'. Amimono in Japanese means “yarn thing” and is used interchangeably for crochet and knitting. Perfect, if you ask me, because I named my blog and podcast Yarn Thing so that I did not have to choose between crocheting and knitting. Because I am a crocheter who knits, the Amimono Kimono is fitting.
My biggest frustration as a larger woman is the lack of quality crochet projects that actually look good on me. I am always searching for garments that not only fit well but use a yarn that is not worsted weight orheaven forbidbulkier. Call me crazy but I don't need any more padding on my upper body, thank you very much.
When I designed this Amimono Kimono I had a few things in mind from the start. The first was the construction. I am not a fan of sewing, therefore I knew I wanted to make a garment that could be made in one piece and seamed up the sides. The other thing I wanted was a stitch that wouldn’t create horizontal lines. Using an asymmetrical stitch that takes the eye on a diagonal path is flattering on larger figures. Last but not least, I wanted to design something that I could use as a layering piece. Living in Colorado where the weather can be 45 degrees at 7am and 70 degrees by 3pm, it is important that I dress in layers. Most of the time I like to wear a long sleeve shirt and a cardigan or sweater over top. This garment is exactly what I like to wear.
I chose a very simple button closure that allows for extra ease if needed or can be pulled closer for less ease. I like the way the openness of the cardigan allows the kimono to flow over the hips as I move (often to chase after kids and yarn).
I often hear that knitters have a really hard time reading crochet patterns and find it easier to use charts with symbols. Therefore, I had a tech editor help me create charts for this garment so you knitters out there who want to try your hand at the hook can jump right in!
Marlaina Bird aka Marly
Visit Marly's blog to see what else she's up to.
Cotton Bam Boo
52% cotton, 48% bamboo
Cotton Bam Boo is a smooth, sportweight, multi-strand yarn that shows off pattern stitches particularly well. Its fine gauge makes it perfect for crochet, and as Marly mentions above, great for those of us who don’t need the extra padding.
The beautiful drape of Cotton Bam Boo shows off delicate, loosely crocheted stitch patterns, like the asymmetrical pattern Marly choose for her kimono.
Here is the free downloadable Amimono Kimono pattern.
If you have difficulty downloading or printing the PDF pattern above, try these:
page 1, page 2, page 3
Marly’s Kimono uses some basic shaping techniques. The sleeves and neck are shaped by ending the row prematurely, and rejoining the yarn in a new location. The charts in the pattern help to illustrate how this is done, but there are some terms used in the pattern that we would like to elaborate on“fasten off” and “join yarn with a slip stitch.” These are relatively common crochet terms that every crocheter should learn.
A securely fastened off stitch helps to keep the yarn from unraveling once the hook is removed, and likewise, a securely joined stitch helps to keep the yarn from unraveling at the join.
Learn how to fasten off.
Learn how to join yarn with a slip stitch.