Summer Knit Now

What could be more tropical than a guayabera? I found this pattern in a fit of pique over the lack of summer-weight patterns for men. The original pattern was in a murky size of M/L...meaning wouldn't fit anybody.

So, I took things into my own hands...swatched, measured, used the pattern as a guide, got over the vapors from combining knitting and crochet with a Jack Daniels, got over the catarrh coughing fit from the fear of lace for men (real fast cure), and there you have it.

I found a great woven linen yarn that was one quarter the price of Louet, mixed up a color formula, and dove in.


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ronhuber's picture

Gorgeous work. I would like to know more about it. What kind of edging is at the bottom? Have you worn it and is it comfortable? How does the linen wash and block? I made a knitted jean jacket once using as a pattern an old jacket I had taken apart. The construction of your guayabera looks much the same. I seen many guayberas in the stores here but none as beautiful as yours.

New York Built's picture

Hey Ron:

The edging is a turned hem from picked up stitches, purl first row, knit three rows, hand sewn through loops on purl bumps on the back. Classic Zimmermann.

I wear it so often...linen gets softer and softer with every wash. Wet block, turned the crap on the needles into pure gold.

Thank you for the compliment. I basically rewrote the pattern to fit myself, and the linen stretches beautifully. Ponte Del Estes Light Rope. Haven't seen much of it lately, but Shibui's new linen line should be a great substitute.

Every person I encounter teaches me more about myself. Without whom not.

Joe-in Wyoming's picture

Very nice work. Congrats on making a difficult project look great.

Books, knitting, cats, fountain pens...Life is Good.

CLABBERS's picture

Hi Mark,
Amazing work. Just beautiful! You should model it for us.

Thunderhorse54's picture

I agree, he should model it.

New York Built's picture

You are both making me blush!

Every person I encounter teaches me more about myself. Without whom not.

Thunderhorse54's picture

You are an excellent craftsman sir!

New York Built's picture

Thank you for your kind words.

Every person I encounter teaches me more about myself. Without whom not.

Bill's picture

This may be the perfect example of "just because you can doesn't mean you should"....

vplane's picture

It's fantastic NYBB. Where'd you get the pattern? You don't see many opportunities to use lace patterns in menswear...this is one I hadn't thought about but seems so obvious.

Now, to make it much MUCH lighter for LA...

New York Built's picture

Punch in Guayabera into the search box for Patterns on Ravelry. I found it the now defunct mag spin-off from Vogue, Knit1. I used a woven linen yarn that has a hollow core...Shibui makes a good one, and there are others, but I am not certain who has them yet. It is a proprietary process held by the Punta Del Estes, in Uruguay.

This baby is Cubano and cool! Sweat is my middle name.

Every person I encounter teaches me more about myself. Without whom not.

smmikkel's picture

I'm currently trying to figure out a good summer shirt pattern. Even though I can appreciate the construction and design I'm not sure I could get away w wearing that up here in Vermont. I also like the combining of different techniques. Makes it very interesting....and challenging.

New York Built's picture

Having lived in Freedom, New Hampshire, I know from whence you speak. However, the times-they-are-a-changin...

Perhaps this idea might work for you. Make the simplest shirt you can do. Let call this shirt Elizabeth Zimmermann's Open Collared Pullover, from her inexpensive and small but chock-full book Knitter's Almanac. However, make it in any yarn of your choosing, it does not matter...but do not make it in wool.

Choose anything else but wool...go crazy. The beauty of this idea is the loving but stern hand-holding from the author. Her ideas will work in any yarn, with minor tweaking, in my experience. There are propably several men on here who have done just that.

Try it once. Then branch out into other summer weights. Berocco Yarns is a nationally distributed yarn, with several light-weight, low or moderate cost yarns, like Seduce, that make awesome shirts.

While the shirt you make for Vermont might be worn by the stand ins for the Bobby Trippe character in Deliverance, I tend to have other acquired tastes.

Every person I encounter teaches me more about myself. Without whom not.

Hey there New York Built, your Cuban Shirt looks great. I got the pattern last summer, knit it and threw it into the "I'll get back to this soon"pile. Well, I haven't gotten back to it yet but yours looks good enough that I'll finish it before summer comes. Maybe I'll try my hand at the Lover's Tank too--good excuse to show some skin and hair! LOL

New York Built's picture

Thank you, Stefarino! I appreciate your kind words. I was frustrated, too, at first "lace" project. I am planning to make others, with different panels and shapes. The pattern also runs smallish, so alter the size as needed.

The Lover Tank is awesome...but again, that English Mesh drove me crazy until I put stitch markers at each repeat...and then it flowed onward by itself, especially doing the top! The designer's grid for the top of the garment is for each stitch...increase the copy by 100% and save it for other work.

As to skin and hair...well, Silvio Berlusconi gave you all permission for that. Follow his lead!

Every person I encounter teaches me more about myself. Without whom not.

Your pictures of the Cuban shirt look great, how's the fit since you had to make major alterations? Thanks for the advice with the lace chart on the Tank, the Cuban Shirt is my first attempt at lace--the 'no stitch in this space' symbol on lace charts still has me confused but I'll go ahead and try it.

As far as Silvio, I guess if I ate a Viagra the size of a birthday cake I could do it too. I don't know how he finds that time and energy. God bless him. LOL

New York Built's picture

It is one of the truely "creative" moments in decrease or "lean" a stitch out of existence. This just means from out of the line of stitiches below, pulling one side of the line inward. The art of lace is based on the direction of the "lean" you make, right, left or both...correspondingly, Right (K2tog), Left (SSK), or Both (double decrease of your choice).

Because of ying and yang, you usually have to bring the stitch back into exisitence to keep the shape controlled...Yarn Over (YO) or Make one (M1), or other method (I like divine goddess powers, myself!), but petitioning goddesses with prayer can be tricky...speaking of poor Silvio...tsk, tsk.

Every person I encounter teaches me more about myself. Without whom not.

Thanks for explaining it. I think I've got more perspective now. I'm ok with my ying, but I think I'm going to need help with my yang on this one:)