I'm not one to run to the store for a particular item simply because I read it's the trend for the season. Don't get me wrong -- I love updating my wardrobe with something new (or should I say, a few new things) each season. I run trends through a test in my head before I purchase or start a project. Is it a color that looks good on me? Will it work with my body shape? Is this a lasting trend, or will it be out of style before I get to the store? Does it work with my existing wardrobe?
When I read mesh knits were the trend this spring and summer, the trend got put to the test. Yes, yes, yes and yes! This is a trend worth investing in. Here's my five reasons why you should add this knitting trend to your wardrobe.
1. It's versatile through the seasons.
A mesh knit sweater is a versatile transition piece from one season to the next. In the spring, wear it over a sleeveless top and pair with shorts and sandals. In the summer it can be used at the beach as a bathing suit cover-up. And when the leaves start to change in the autumn, wear it with a long sleeve shirt, jeans, scarf and boots.
2. It layers colors well.
Take a mesh sweater in a neutral color like gray and add a gray sleeveless top underneath. That's a nice, clean look. Now switch that gray sleeveless top to a neon pink. It's a completely new look. If you're like me, you have just about every color sleeveless top in your closet and endless possibilities.
3. It's sexy!
With peeks of skin showing, it's sexy in the leave-something-to-the-imagination way. Try creating stripes of mesh and stockinette stitch, only making the back of your knitwear mesh, or use mesh for pretty, lace-like details on the sleeves and hem.
4. It looks great on a variety of body types.
Once you've found a pattern that is a shape that works for your body type, replace the stitch pattern with mesh in places that highlight your best assets. Love your decolletage? Make the top third of the sweater mesh. Great arms? Mesh out the sleeves!
5. It's easy to modify a pattern to include mesh.
The key to replacing the stitch pattern of an existing pattern with mesh is gauge. Select the mesh pattern you want to use (my favorite is below). Make gauge swatches of the mesh pattern using needles of different sizes until you have a gauge that matches the gauge of your pattern. I've gone down as many as four needles sizes. Now all you have to do is replace the sections where you want mesh with the mesh stitch pattern. Just remember to switch needle sizes as you work!
Ready to try knitting mesh?
Here's my favorite mesh pattern.
Worked over an odd number of stitches.
Rows 1 and 3 (RS): Knit.
Row 2 (WS): K1, *yo, k2tog, repeat from * to end.
Row 4 (WS): K2, *yo, k2tog, repeat from * to last stitch, k1.