Knitty: little purls of wisdom
beauty shot


Linen yarn is quite fascinating. It starts stiff and crispy, not exactly the “ooh I love the way this yarn feels” experience. But then after a few washings it becomes soft and graceful with a nice drape. So, I thought a roman style tunic with a billowing top and flowing bottom would be perfect for this yarn. Finished off with a lace edging, it becomes perfectly pretty and romanic.

The tunic is worked form the bottom up in the round until the bodice. Then it is worked back and forth in four different sections and then grafted at the shoulders.

The lace pattern is not complicated, making it suitable for a novice lace knitter. If you are new to lace knitting you may wish to use stitch markers between your repeats. This makes it easier to keep track of where you are in the lace repeat and helps you find mistakes.

spacer model: Jennifer Wood spacer photos: Katie Norrell

XS[S, M, L, 1X, 2X, 3X] (shown in size S)

Chest: 34.25[38, 41.75, 45.5, 49.5, 53.25, 57] inches
Length: 23.5[24.75, 25.5, 27.25, 28.25, 29.75, 30.25] inches



spacer Punta Yarns Montoya Beach Marled [100% Linen; 306yd/280m per 100g skein]; color: #1813; 2[2, 3, 3, 3, 4, 4] skeins.

Recommended needle size
[always use a needle size that gives you the gauge listed below -- every knitter's gauge is unique]
spacer 1 US #7/4.5mm circular needle - 24 or 32 inches for smaller sizes, 32 or 40 inches for larger sizes.

spacer Yarn needle
spacer Stitch markers
spacer Stitch holders or waste yarn

16 sts/24 rows = 4" in stockinette st before washing
20 sts/22 rows = 4" in stockinette st after washing

If substituting yarn, be sure the washed and blocked gauge of your swatch matches the gauge given after washing.

[Knitty's list of standard abbreviations and techniques can be found here.]

Instructions for grafting can be found here.

Instructions for the Backward Loop Cast On
can be found here.

Using backward loop method, CO 171[190, 209, 228, 247, 266, 285] sts. Place marker and join to begin working in the round, being careful not to twist.

Work Rounds 1-32 of chart; 19 sts of chart pattern will be worked 9[10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15] times in each round.

Work Rounds 33-34 of chart 20[22, 23, 25, 26, 28, 29] times.

Note: As written, length of skirt will be 13[13.75, 14, 15, 15.25, 16, 16.5] inches after washing. To change length, work more or fewer repeats of Rounds 33-34. A difference of 4 rounds will change length by approx. 0.75 inch. Tie Casing:
Round 1: K all sts, evenly decreasing 1[0, 3, 2, 1, 0, 3] sts. 170[190, 206, 226, 246, 266, 282]

Rounds 2-3: K all sts.

Round 4: K46, yo, k2tog, k to end.

Round 5: K46, k2tog, k to end. 169[189, 205, 225, 245, 265, 281] sts.

Rounds 6-7: K all sts.

Round 8: *Insert tip of left needle into purl bump at back of st 7 rounds below next st on left needle; k this st together with next st on left needle; repeat from * until all sts have been worked.

Next Round: K42[47, 51, 56, 61, 66, 70], BO 1 st, k41[46, 50, 55, 60, 65, 69]; 42[47, 51, 56, 61, 66, 70] sts on right needle after bound off st. Upper right front will be worked back and forth over these 42[47, 51, 56, 61, 66, 70] sts; place remaining 126[141, 153, 168, 183, 198, 210] sts on st holders or waste yarn.

**Work 11 rows in stockinette st, ending with a WS row.

Next Row [RS]: K1, ssk, k to last 3 sts, k2tog, k1.

Work 3 rows stockinette st.

Repeat these 4 rows 9[10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 14] times more. 22[25, 27, 30, 33, 36, 40] sts.

Next Row [RS]: K all sts, decreasing 1[1, 0, 0, 0, 0, 1] st. 21[24, 27, 30, 33, 36, 39] sts.

Work 4[2, 2, 2, 2, 2, 2] rows in stockinette st.
Note: As written, work will measure 10.5[11, 11.5, 12.25, 13, 13.75, 13.75] inches from under-bust to shoulder, after washing. If you have a very large bust, you may wish to make the upper front sections an inch or two longer than the upper back sections.

Next Row [WS]: [P3tog] to end. Place remaining 7[8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13] sts on st holder or waste yarn. Break yarn, leaving a tail approx. 18 inches long.**

With WS facing, place 42[47, 51, 56, 61, 66, 70] held sts of upper left front (sts next to bound off center front st, opposite right front sts) on needle. Join yarn at neckline edge (center front).

Work from ** to ** as for upper right front.

With WS facing, place 42[47, 51, 56, 61, 66, 70] held sts of upper right back on needle and join yarn at center back.

Work from ** to ** as for upper right front, but do not remove sts from needle after last row is worked. Graft remaining sts to held sts of upper right front.

With WS facing, place remaining 42[47, 51, 56, 61, 66, 70] held sts on needle and join yarn at side (underarm) edge.

Work from ** to ** as for upper right front, but do not remove sts from needle after last row is worked. Graft remaining sts to held sts of upper left front.


Weave in ends.

Cut four strands of yarn approx. three times desired length of tie. Tie strands together at one end, and secure to a fixed object. Twist strands together until they begin to curl tightly. Fold twisted strands in half so that ends meet and cord twists back in itself; knot ends securely together.

Attach safety pin to one end of cord and thread through casing, with ends emerging at center front opening.

Machine wash and dry garment at least three times to soften fabric.


Jennifer Wood designs for Wood House Knits. She taught herself to knit 10 years ago and loved it so much she began designing her own patterns.  It has been wonderful outlet for her creative energy. She has an absolutely wonderful  husband, three amazing children, a fine son-in-law, a sweet, sweet grand baby and two bad dogs. Recently, she began selling her patterns through her business Wood House Knits. Her patterns can be found on her website and through and on Raverly under woodhouseknits.