Moss stitch island

This weekend I triumphantly finished the sleeves on my Ossel dress in progress, which I made sure to complete before doing the body. I like getting the sleeves out of the way first if I can, because it’s a nice safe re-indication of gauge if for some reason my swatch was way off, and then when you later finish the body you can actually feel the accomplishment of being almost done, rather than the sagging realization that you’re only about 2/3 done or so.


I started on the back next, partly because it’s all moss stitch and no cabling, so that means the more interesting piece (the front, with cables all down the centre) will up on deck at the time when I am most likely to be flagging due to boredom. I also like doing the back first because, again, in the event of a gauge mishap, it is easier to recover from a too-small back (you just make the front a bit bigger – proportionally there is often likely to be more of you on the front than on the back) than a too-small front, so here I am.

I’m a few inches in to the back, which on a sweater would normally be close to starting the decreases to shape the waist. Because this is a dress and not a sweater, though, I have about a zillion more inches (approximately) to go before I start the decreases for the waist, so I guess I’ll be here on moss stitch island for a while.

Good thing I’ve got some travel knitting time coming up! I am lucky enough to be headed to Vogue Knitting Live NYC this weekend for workshops and a bit of tourist time, and am glad I booked it months ago for a New Year’s surprise. I just have to, uh, pack. And knit some swatches for homework. Minor details, details.

Stay warm and cozy, knitter friends!


Pattern: Ossel, by Allison Green for Twist Collective
Yarn: Cascade 220 Heathers, #8401 Silver Grey





  1. eatcoastal · ·

    Is “a zillion” the technical term? I’ve never made a dress and would love to…but that is my fear…

  2. Missy's Crafty Mess · ·

    Wow a dress. Get er done so I can see pictures. 🙂

  3. knittedblissjc · ·

    that dress is going to be so beautiful, and having recently returned from a tour of moss stitch island myself, I find it takes a lot longer than other stitches (maybe it’s just me). That’s fantastic that you are going to Vogue Knitting Live in NYC, have an amazing time!

  4. It looks like an excellent plan to keep things interesting! Have fun at Vogue!

  5. That looks amazing, I cant wait to see it when you have it finished

  6. Great plan of attack for knitting a sweater. I may have to rethink my approach.

  7. slippedstitches · ·

    Knitting an entire dress is quite an undertaking. I admire your bravery. Plan to bring warm clothing when visiting NYC, we are positively frozen here.

  8. That’s coming along nicely, Glenna. Stitch pattern pops. I love the look
    of moss stitch though don’t particularly like working it … other than on something small. You’ll be the moss stitch pro once done with this one!

  9. twistedsticks · ·

    I love moss stitch!! That dress is going to be a knockout!!

  10. What a trooper! That’s gonna look absolutely fantastic when finished. And I’m understanding the logic of your working the back first, even if I’ve yet to really work on a sweater pattern as involved as that one there.

  11. Lovely lovely, as always.

  12. So envious of your trip to NYC … take lots of pics for us!!!! xxx ps am sending lots of love and light to get you off Moss St Island! x

  13. V o n n a · ·

    Smart. Ill keep these tips in mind when I’m bold enough to make a garment other than a shawl for myself.

  14. the dress looks like it is going to be super gorgeous! I would love to knit a dress, perhaps inspired by you I will work on one for next Winter 🙂 thanks for hints on which sections you knit first/guage questions 🙂 I really will try and bear that in mind next time I start a garment – I’m currently knitting a jumper, on the back which is a lot of stocking stitch and I’m fluffing already waaa jenny xx

  15. I love moss stitch! …at least, for the first zillion rows…

  16. and to think I got annoyed with the ten rows or so of moss stitch I just put on the hat I just designed…. I do love how it looks though!

  17. leslieileen · ·

    I’m also on the Isle of Moss – making the Laurel Textured Shrugigan (link to Ravelry here: I love using this stitch since I’ve got a fondness for reversible anything.

  18. I work as a hospital receptionist, and this week a lady was knitting whilst waiting for her appointment; doing both front panels for a cardigan at the same time. Somehow that, and your advice about doing sleeves first all ended up in a horrible muddle in my dreams last night….

    Can’t wait to see the finished dress. Good luck with the rest of it.

  19. Sleeves first is a brilliant concept. I wish I could extend that to thumbs first for mitts. I guess weaving in ends first is sort of out of the question.

  20. I can’t wait to see the finished dress! Hmm…maybe after all my WIPs, maybe a dress. Very inspiring!

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