January 23, 2006

Surprise! It's a Mystery Knit!

The Titania Sweater!*
See-through mohair pullover with lacy sleeves:

This is the "stand-still-like-a-mannequin" shot.
[Click here for the "Look, Ma! No hands!" shot.]
[There are other views and closeups, of course. Go on...CLICK to see.]

Project details: Raglan pullover in stockinette stitch with lacy sleeves in Jo Sharp Mohair shade 609 (given to me for my birthday by my thoughtful pal Jenny of High Energy Knits!). This pullover is my own design and construction. When I saw the color and softness of the yarn, I knew that it wanted to be something lightweight and feminine so I sketched out a fitted top with a wide neck and peek-a-boo pagode sleeves. I knit this at a large gauge (on size 7mms) because:

1) Mohair is warm and big stitches mean ventilation, bay-bee! Plus, it adds to the transparent look I wanted to achieve.

2) I had seven skeins of this mohair and I wanted to make sure I'd have enough to knit the sweater. And I did! I used just over six skeins and have one and a half to spare. The yarn gods are good to me.

Pattern? There is no pattern. My pattern consisted of my going to the mirror while wearing [whispers] nothing but my skivvies and taking my measurements. I added a bit of ease to my measurements, got my swatch and the sketch I drew and used a calculator to mark down shapings on a post-it note. Then giddy-ap! Let's get knittin'! (I admit: I love my pattern-drafting class at fashion school but it was so refreshing to crank out a garment like this after all the draping and pattern construction on paper I gotta do in that class. Curve rulers? We don't need no curve rulers for knitting needles, skippy.) What else? Oh yes, blocking. It was quick; I didn't even pin down on a blocking board and measure, yadda yadda. I simply put the pieces on my ironing board one by one, covered with a damp cloth and steamed for a few seconds. Then I started seaming. Clearly, one of the best blocking parties I've ever had.

And this is the "look-at-me-in-my-mohair" pose.
[What's that? Whack dancing shots? Oh, ALRIGHT.]

All in all: I love this little pullover and it feels good to take a moment to knit something of my own design. (I wish I had the time and patience to do this more often!) A big thank you to Jenny for sending me the yarn that inspired me to do that. I already wore this sweater to school and I'd be lying if I said that I didn't get a slight case of Big Head when a few people - including the school director [ahh!] - complimented me on it. I love being a hand-knitter who wears the schtuff she knits :-)

P.S. On another note, this finished project means I get to START A NEW KNIT. I've got a package waiting for me at the post office and I'm wagering it's some yarn I ordered for a new project. Woo hoo!

*Thanks to Sarah R. for coming up with the name for my design. Neat name, eh?

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104 comments to this entry:

bravo pour un ouvrage sans modèle ...

Very cool! I love the sleeves. One moment you think they're just plain sleeves, but then you realize they're bells!

I have a mohair pullover (Rowan KSH, no lace, just miles of stockinette), it barely weighs 150 g and is so so so warm. Lace was a good idea!

I LOVE MOHAIR! (Sorry for shouting ... ) but I really love mohair! ;)
Great details on the sleeves. Bell sleeves are not really convenient but they are so beautiful!

Thanks! And I agree re the warmth: Even though this pullover is peek-a-boo and has those flared sleeves with the holes in the cuff I didn't need to wear a scarf with my coat thanks to the warmth it provided. Viva mohair!

P.S. Secret to making bell sleeves wearable: Don't make them too long.

HOT! YOu are a sexy rabbit in your peekaboo sweater!

Nice design seriously.

Super lovely! I love the sleeves. Very nice :)

Too, too cute. Looks like it knit up fast too, in addition to being a dream to block! Gotta love that almost instant gratification.

Oooh... it's gorgeous! Upea! :-)

It knit up REALLY fast: There was one evening where I knit a whole sleeve in less than a couple of hours. 7mm needles, how I love thee!

P.S. Seaming was quick, too. (Thank you, raglan shaping.)

So, so pretty! I love the sleeves, especially. Did you seam with the same yarn (isn't it sticky?), or did you use something else?

Lovely Becky! Those sleeves are fantastic.

You are too cool for school! Looks very chic. I just knit up a lace shawl in mohair, I know what you mean it is very warm, even with the holes. My hubster doesn't believe me, but it is warm!

Wow, Becky, that's just gorgeous! Can't wait till you publish your first book of patterns....(hint, hint). Maybe you'll even sign copies for us loyal blog readers????
Seriously, that is a really lovely sweater. It really flatters you, and the handwork is impeccable.

Love it! it's tres chic and extremely flattering. I love the bell sleeves - your comments about keeping them a not-long length have my brain wheels a-turning.... brava dear!

Bea: I used the same yarn to seam because the seam shows due to the large stitches and I wanted to make the seam blend in as much as possible. Thankfully, I didn't find it problematic in the least. (Probably because of the large stitches; I have a feeling that seaming this yarn with small, tight stitches might not be as fun.)

Punkie: My art professor asked me if I was cold (I was sitting next to an open window while sketching) and I was like, "Dude...clearly, you've never worn mohair."

Ann: I usually like my sleeves to hit mid-hand or even up to my knuckles, but I kept these sleeves above my wrists. Really, it makes a difference.

Echoing everyone sentiments: it's just gorgeous, and I love the laciness of the bell sleeves.

Yes, gorgeous and inspiring! I have a bag of variegated Joe Sharp mohair waiting for me at home... Looks like it's coming out of the stash soon.

Oooh, it's sooo pretty. I love the simplicity of the design and the great way it fits. You did good little Rabbit.

It's beautiful! I'm on a bit of a mohair kick right now thanks to a sweater I bought this fall, so I'm really loving your new sweater, especially the sleeves.

This is clearly a winner! So beautiful. Jo Sharp mohair is some nice stuff. It's too bad I'm allergic to the stuff, but I do love it. That's an awesome sweater and the sleeves really make the difference. I love the design and it's really something special when your director comments on it, isn't it?

Ooh, VERY nice. Classy, even!

Yay to Jenny for the yarn. Yay to Rabbit for the design. And about the whack dancing shots? Just YAY!

Tres chic! Another gorgeous fluffa knit. Nice detail with the lacey bell sleeves!

Very pretty. It's fun to design your own, isn't it? Fabulous job!

You have to love knitting! Compared to sewing, much less worry about ease and darts and fitting and whatnot. It's all about winging it, bay-bee!

As always, you rock! Lovely done and all that.

I love the sleeves, i love the neck, i love the color - perfection! Beautiful job - once again!

what a lovely top, becky. congrats on the design and the choice of yarn. pale grey mohair, so pretty!

Dude. The sleeves on that baby are fabulous, and the shape is *perfect*! Love love love it!!!

aren't you just too fab?! that's gorgeous and i love the swank grey. nice work, girl!

So pretty and ethereal! I wonder if the yarn is itchy at all, or if it's soft as clouds like it looks. It looks like a great fit for you.

It looks amazing!! I'm so impressed (but not surprised) by your designing skills. Oh, and I own something similar but without the great detailing that I spent $$$ on at DKNY!

Beautiful creation ! Clever of you to think of knitting it with 7mm needles to give the "light as air" look. I simply love it...

Thanks! I'm happy to see that the pretty pearl gray color is getting some thumbs up; it's one of my favorite things about the yarn.

Re the itchy factor: I personally don't find this particular mohair to be itchy; I think the wool/polyamide content and the way it's spun helps. Plus, I hand-washed it before I wore it and that softened it up even more.

P.S. I'm wearing a camisole underneath it. I rarely wear sweaters without wearing a camisole underneath. Just a bit of insurance to avoid the itchies :-)

What a great design, Becky! I particularly like the design vents that are dancing up your sleeves. Is it crazy that I wish I could sniff that yarn? It just looks so dreamy!

What a great combination of materials and design details. Those sleeves are really great.

I love it - especially the lacy sleeves. It's simple yet elegant and fits you perfectly. Lovely job, as usual!

Wow! The amazing knitting rabbit strikes again!

Very pretty, simple and classy!

That's one great looking sweater. It's such a perfect shape. Is it itchy at all?

Oh, how I wish I could wear mohair! That's a beautiful sweater, I love the sleeves.

LOVE it! I really dig the simple neckline and the cool bell sleeves. Hope fashion school is going well!!!

Tres cute! I'm moving from my angora kick into a mohair kick just in time for the Knitting Olympics -- the perfect yarn for the last months of winter.

Beautiful! Bravo on it being your own design!

Oh la la! I love the sleeves on that sweater. What a beautiful new addition to your wardrobe. You need more things in pale blue!

Gorgeous! Bravo! Those lace bell sleeves are loverly - I just love 'em. :)

SO beautiful, Becky.

Very cute and sassy!

Lovely sweater. What a designer you are! I want to see some of you fashion school projects. I'm sure they are just as gorgeous and imaginative!

Oh, Becky, you clever rabbit. That is just a beautiful little bit of delicate frippery. And all out of your own little brain...you are too talented.

The color is lovely. The sleeves are lovely. The neckline is lovely.

Man, you're good.

Excellent! What a nice pullover! Tres Chic!

That is a lovely sweater, and who knew it would even work for dancing? Yay! I've been lurking for months and thought I would delurk and say "You are a great designer."

I am SO EXCITED that you like the yarn so much!!!! You make us do a high energy dance of JOY. What a beautiful top and you designed it yourself!!! We bow down to you, master of your designing and knitting and sewing universe!

Well done all the way around: color, design, drape. I'm sure you've guessed there would be great interest in the pattern - you can add me to the list! Great handknit - congrats!

Wow, that's pretty! I've been on a mohair kick for a month or so, knitting a scarf and a stole and I love it... a sweater though, now you're talking!!!!

I had plans to do a very similar sweater with some yarn in my stash - yours turned out so well, Becky! Love the transparency and lightness of the garment.

Stunning. Just. Stunning.

I am doing something similar but different. Am I allowed to say that great minds think alike.

Oh Becky, I just love this sweater. You look chic and cozy all at the same time. And, BTW, very cool jeans/pants. The whole look is fab. Is the Jo Sharp mohair similar to LaGran, or totally different? (In weight, etc.?) Anyway, nice job, especially on the design.

Becky, You are going to have to carry a stick with you when you wear it out, to slap away all the hands that want to touch your sweater. Mohair sends out the same vibes as baby bunnies (touch me!)

You never cease to inspire!

Ooooh - how chic! That looks so warm and comfy. What a great job! :)

Mmmm... Super! :)

Love it! Are you thinking of writing the pattern? I'd buy one.

If you haven't already named your design, I think you should name it the Titania sweater. It really does look as though it's knit from moon-lit spiderwebs...something fit for the Queen of the Fairies.

That is the loveliest thing I have seen in a long time. Even more perfect that it came from YOU and not a pattern. Very, very pretty.

Oh, I hope you do end up writing a pattern for this. It's absolutely beautiful!


Love it, Love it, Love it!

oooh! I especially dig the bell sleeves with the lacework! and the wack dancing shots made me smile!!

beautiful! happy new year.

Super sexy cute!

Oooooh, I love this, I want one, it's so delicate and lovely and I should add that you are rockin' it my dear! *pat on the back* for fluffa!!! By the way I'm slowly transferring myself to a new blog if you ever feel like coming to visit... www.notaplainjane.com

lovely, lovely, lovely work! i like the titania/midsummer night's dream name idea.

Thanks everyone! It's always so encouraging to read comments from my online knitting pals, because you all appreciate the work that goes behind knitting.

Sarah R. is just too clever. I *love* the name "Titania" for the design! I hereby christian it "The Titania Sweater". (P.S. to Sarah R.: Rowan needs to hire someone like you to name their designs.)

aaaaaaahhhhhh this one is really naaaiiiiice! (got to knit one like this for myself! thanks for the inspiration! :)))

Becky, the sweater is amazing. The world of design had better watch out for you! We'll all be able to say "We knew her way back when!"

see! superior intelligence is its own reward. It's beautiful becky :)

Gorgeous, gorgeous sweater - I'd knit that in a flash if there was a pattern published! I've been looking for exactly that kind of sweater in the shops but is seems the best way is to get out the needles!

You're a very clever lady - beautiful work.

Titania is lovely - great job!! I am once again impressed...rabbit is good. rabbit is wise. ;-)

Becky, that looks FANTASTIC!

I love this sweater. Beautiful, Beautiful!!!!!

I cannot possibly convey how thrilled I am that you chose Titania for the sweater's name. I'm blushing here in Baltimore.

Beautiful! Very delicate and sexy.

I have read and enjoyed your blog many times in the past, but this is my first time posting. It is a gorgeous sweater and I am having one of those smack your head on the forehead moments - the secret of wearable bell sleeves. So simple, less length means less dragging in your soup, Stevie Nicks-esque sleeves. Thank you for showing the way!

Faboo-baboo! You continue to be an inspiration to me and my needles.

What a beautiful design Becky! I love The Titania Sweater!! You are very talented. I've often wanted to design my own knit, but it is way too overwelming a task for me. I have some blocking coming up for my classic jacket and was wondering if you could let me in on your blocking secrets. I have never blocked before, so I'm assuming I will need to pick up some materials for that little endeavour.

Wowser! Fab! There are not adjectives effusive enough for this gorgeous sweater. You ROCK!!!! And what an inspiration you are to all us knitters in blogland.

oh wow, so lovely and delicate! the sleeves are beautiful, and it looks like it fits like a dream.

I love it!

Becky, Titiana is BEAUTIFUL, and you look great in it. Well, when are you opening your design studio so we can flock to buy Designs by SkinnyRabbit? I loved the H2O hat and scarf you knitted--I LOVE the color! xoxoxo to you and the fam!

So beautiful and gossamer sings the Titania to the world!

Congratulations on your breathtaking design - the color and drape suit you so very well :)

Brava!!!! Titania is perfection. (And the name is definitely perfect!) Congratulations on both your design and how wonderful it looks on you.

Like you need another comment, but looove your sweater design! How fabulous is that?! I'm so proud of you rabbit *weep*!

beautiful! I love the sleeves : )

I love your sweater design the sleeves are beautiful! Oh, and your jeans rock! I love the pockets.

Thanks! And I'm glad that others like my trousers; it doesn't show too much in the photos but they're of a black velour-like fabric and the top-stitching on the pockets is a light gray that matches with Titania. Such a coordinatin' fool, I am :-)

If it were me, I would look for ANY opportunity to do the "Look, Ma! No hands!" pose because of the gorgeous, lacy bell sleeves.

Case of Big Head well deserved. You probably need it to fill out those teeny egghead hats.

Hope Titania doesn't cause you to fall in love with a donkey-headed guy. ;-)

Beautiful! I just don't know how you do it. You are my knitting idol. I bow to you.

the sweater you made is gorgeous! wait a second....everything you make is gorgeous! wow! the sleeves are my favorite part!

that is sooooo beautiful!!! wow i am just in awe!

Can I ask you a bit more about the ease? I've long had a similar sweater in my mind, but haven't been sure how much ease to build in. Your sweater inspired me to buy some KSH, and now my head is whirling. Did you give yourself 1-2" of ease? More? Less?

It's really great looking--thanks for the inspiration!

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