BODY Begin knitting in the round. CO 180 sts in MC, PM. Knit 12.5 cm (5 in) in stockinette. *Switch to CC1, knit 1 round. To create a jog‑less stripe, slip the first stitch of the second round without knitting it. Knit stockinette for 5 cm (2 in).* Repeat from * to *, switching between main and contrasting colours until you have a stripe of each contrasting colour (body measures 37.5 cm or 15 in). Switch back to MC and knit for a further 12.5 cm (5 in).
SHAPE ARMHOLES From first marker, K90 sts and place a second marker. K rem 90 sts. You will be work on the front and back separately from this point on. Do what feels best or most comfortable for you; place the nonworking stitches on waste yarn or a stitch holder, or simply leave them on the circular needle.
FRONT Continue in MC. Row 1 (RS): BO6, K84. Row 2 (WS): BO6, P78. Row 3: BO3, K75. Row 4: BO3, P72. Row 5: BO3, K69. Row 6: BO3, P66. Row 8: BO3, K63. Row 9: BO3, P60. Knit 5 cm (2 in) in stockinette, ending on the WS (purl row).
CREATE NECKLINE Row 1: K15 and place on a stitch holder. BO 30sts. K15.
RIGHT STRAP Row 2 (and all even rows): Purl all stitches. Row 3 (and all odd rows): K2tog, knit to end. Decrease on odd rows until 10 sts rem. Continue knitting stockinette on rem sts until strap measures 20 cm (8 in) or desired length from final decrease. Place rem sts on waste yarn or stitch holder.
LEFT STRAP Row 2 (and all even rows): Knit all stitches. Row 3 (and all odd rows): SSK, purl to end. Decrease on odd rows until 10 sts rem. Continue knitting stockinetteon rem sts until strap measures 20 cm (8 in) or desired length from final decrease. Place rem sts on waste yarn or stitch holder.
BACK Now you will begin to work the 90 sts for the back of the tank. Continue in MC. Row 1 (RS): BO 6 sts, K84. Row 2 (WS): BO 6, P78. Row 3: BO 3, K75. Row 4: BO 3, P72. Row 5: BO 3, K69. Row 6: BO 3, P66. Row 8: BO 3, K63. Row 9: BO 3, P60. Knit 12.5 cm (5 in) in stockinette, ending on a purl row. Next row: K10, BO 40, K10. Using Kitchener stitch, stitch together 10 live stitches from the straps to the 10 live stitches on the back of tank.
HEM At this point the tank top probably looks pretty great, but it’s not lying particularly well, is it? By incorporating a knitted hem on the bottom edge, we can fix that. Pick up and knit all 180 sts on the bottom edge of your tank top from the wrong side (inside). On the sample we used CC1 for the hem. To decrease the bulk of the hem we need to get rid of some of those stitches. For an entire round, *K8, K2tog* (162 sts rem). Knit 2.5 cm (1 in) in stockinette. With tank top inside out and lying flat, stitch live stitches from the needle carefully to the inside of the knitted fabric, skipping every 10th stitch. Weave in ends and hit the beach (or the backyard) and get some sun!
This tank top knitting pattern is excerpted with permission from <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/174270459X/ref=as_li_qf_sp_asin_il_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=174270459X&linkCode=as2&tag=craftfocom-20">"The Knitster: 20 Patterns for Hip Knitters"</a> by Robbie Dulaney and published by Hardie Grant.