Madera sleeveless top by K Joel

Does anyone know if this top would be difficult to knit for an intermediate knitter? I want to purchase the pattern but I’m concerned about the difficulty of the back lace.

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I have not made this top so can’t comment on whether it is difficult but I can share my experience of knitting my first lace top.
I first practised some different lace patterns with scrap yarn, I looked for tutorials or charts and cast on multiples of however many it said to use and went ahead with knitting a test swatch.
Personally I found this gave me the confidence to go on to a project. I made a fitted top where the yoke is lace and that went pretty well then I made a top where there is a panel of lace up the front and back and I struggled with one part of this which drove me round the bend for several days… but I got help here and finally overcame the problem and from there it was a breeze.
I used a lot of life lines. I keft all my life lines in until the seaming stage and they helped as markers to keep the seaming lined up correctly.

These patterns are not exactly the one you want to buy but maybe some practice pieces using these free charts will help you decide if you want to go ahead?

There are lots of charts available for free if you don’t like these 2.

That’s a really lovely top you have chosen. I have something similar in my favourites for getting to one day.

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Another factor to consider is how well the pattern is written - some designers are very generous in their notes and explanations and others not so much. If it’s possible to read reviews by others who have knitted the piece, that may give you a clue. I have bailed on more than one project when I could not make sense of what the designer was trying to convey.


Thank you for the great suggestions and encouragement. I think it’s a good idea to try the vertical lace sample first. Unfortunately there are no reviews on the pattern so I’m not really sure if it’s easy to follow or not. Appreciate your input.

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Thank you for the great advice and the sample patterns to try doing a lacey stitch. I really appreciate your feedback.

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Oh you’re welcome. Hope you enjoy the lacy learning process.

Thank you for taking time to try and help me. I will try the Chevron lace pattern just to see if I can get the hang of it. I appreciate your time.

One thing to consider is whether the lace pattern is worked only on the right-side rows (with wrong-side rows just being purled), or on both sides.

If it has simple WS rows, that gives your brain a break from concentrating! The designer should be able to tell you this (you can’t always tell just by looking at a photo) or it may be in the pattern description.

Well I wanted to let you all know I decided to go for it and bought the pattern. The directions are very well written. It’s a Vine lace pattern and the wrong side is purl. The front of the top is stockinette stitch. Wish me luck!


Sounds like a good start. Enjoy working it and remember to use markers and a lifeline. They are real time and aggravation savers especially with lace.

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Lovely! Happy knitting!

How exciting!
Good luck and happy life lines.
For what it’s worth I have started to use a much thinner thread for my life lines, it effects the tension less. I have embroidery thread which is nice as it is also smooth so pulls out smoothly, no grippy fuzz.