Sweet Vicious Top Pattern

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This shell tank uses a variation on a smock stitch to create a luxurious and elegant fabric. It’s not hard to do, but it does require working with two yarns at once, so experience with stranded knitting is an asset.

The pattern offers two lengths, a crop version and a full length version that will hit the hips. The body is worked in the round, with bust increases, and then knit flat to the shoulders, which are joined using a three-needle bind off. The neck and hem are finished with an I-cord bind off.

A modification guide at the end of the pattern offers tips for adjusting the shaping by creating an A-line silhouette, an hour-glass silhouette and for adding width to the sleeves to create more of a tee shirt style.

Choosing Yarns:
 A lace-weight mohair yarn is important for achieving the effect shown here. Any fingering weight yarn will work for Yarn A. Many dyers, like the Hedgehog Fibers used in my samples, offer the same colourway on both mohair and merino bases, and this can make choosing colours much easier. There will still be some variation due to the different ways these bases take dye.


5 Women’s Sizes: 35.5/40.5/45/50/55” finished bust. All measurements given in inches.

Choosing a Size:
 This garment is designed to be worn with little to no ease - meaning the bust measurement of the garment is close to your actual measurements. However, it can easily be worn with more ease - a bit oversized for a looser, more casual look. If you are adding ease to the smallest or largest size, you may wish to work the armhole depth for a size closer to your true measurements to prevent gaping.

Tools & Materials


  • Yarn A: 

full length 235/297/336/376/452 yards 

crop 178/231/261/292/359 yards

  • Yarn B

full length 479/605/685/764/919 yards

crop 363/470/533/595/731 yards

  • US 8 (5 mm) needles, 32” or 40” circular
  • additional needles for 3-needle bind off
  • Darning needle
  • Stitch holders
  • 2 stitch markers

GAUGE: 20 stitches and 22 rows = 10 cm in pattern stitch

Full length sample shown in Tanis Fiber Arts Red Label (75% merino, 15% cashmere, 10% silk; 115g; 385 m/420 y) in Natural | Hedgehog Fibers Kidsilk Lace (70% kid mohair, 30% silk; 50g; 420 m/459 y) in Cereal

Crop sample shown in Hedgehog Fibers Skinny Singles (100% merino; 100g; 366 m/400 y) in Purple Reign | Hedgehog Fibers Kidsilk Lace (70% kid mohair, 30% silk; 50g; 420 m/459 y) in Raku

Full length sample shown in size 40.5” on 35” bust
Crop sample shown in size 35.5” on 35” bust

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