Cabled Jacket for Fall.

New project alert!

I've got two projects well on their way to finishdom: Captain Destructo's Linen Jacket (I'm picking up the zipper tomorrow during my lunch hour and as soon as I get it I'm sewing it IN) and my Mystery Project (which is all knit up and ready for seaming, thanks to Ling), so I figured that I could get away with casting on for a new project:

Oh! Wee cables!
[Click here to ZOOM OUT.]

It's the beginnings of a sleeve of what I call the Buttoned Cabled Jacket from Phildar's Collections Automne, and I just started it so I'd have some knitting to take with me to school. This sleeve is small and fits safely in my bag; the CeCe Cardi sleeve with its double pointed needles and the Ultra Femme with its circular knitting are just not portable for me in consideration of the kind of stuff I carry. (If you saw all the tools I have to take with me to school you'd wonder how I even manage to carry any knitting at all, no matter how small.) I wish I had more to show on this sleeve, but I've been sneaking in just one or two rows here and there in between breaks. I'm not working on this project at home yet - my Mystery Project and my CeCe Cardi are the projects that are getting the attention during my evening knitting.

Speaking of school, I've got a BIG and BUSY year ahead of me - much busier than last year. In addition to the courses for Fashion Illustration/Design and Pattern Making (the dual degree I'm taking), I've got advanced levels of other courses I started taking last year, including Modèle Vivant (Life Drawing [with nude model]), Marketing, Textiles, Photoshop, Illustrator, Modaris (pattern design software) and Produit Mode (Fashion Product). I've also got courses to follow in Art and Fashion History at the Musée des Tissus, not to mention all the contests and competitions that we are invited to participate in. And as for designing and drafting, we are focusing on tailleurs (tailored suits), sportswear (jeans, jackets, skiwear, etc.), coats and trench coats, all which require detail and planning. I leave for school 7:15 a.m., and am in school all day - every day - and get out in time to pick up my Captain Destructo. (My son goes to a private school that lets out very late in the afternoon, like many other schools in France.) I'm still going to be knitting because I NEED MY KNITTING (it's cathartic, bay-bee), but there will be times when I won't be able to knit very much or will only do so sporadically. But even if I've got just a few centimeters of progress to show, I'll try to keep the blog updated frequently for all my blog friends who I know come by often to see what I'm up to. Love the blog friends!

Sleeve Island.

'Cause that's all I'm knitting right now. Here's one that's getting a lot of attention during pockets of free time:

Yep. Still playing pick-up-sticks.

It's the first CeCe Cardi sleeve, still stuck on those double-pointed needles. I'm doing the 3/4 sleeve version, so I've still got a few inches to go before I get ready to pull this bit of knitting off these double points. Looking forward to that, because quite frankly my dear, these double points are beginning to get on my nerves.

I've also got some sleevage on my Buttoned Cabled Jacket:

Ah. So love those wee cables.

I tell you, I've only been working on sleeves. It's totally Sleeve Island, dude! Remember Fantasy Island? If Mr. Roarke were hosting this place I'd ask for my own little personal robot to do all my double-pointed needle knitting for me.

That's pretty much all the knitting I've done lately because my second year at fashion school started off with a bang and I've got an illustration project to turn in on Thursday morning. This is the way my table looks right now, and the way it's going to look tomorrow:

(These are my drawings and sketches.)

Further stylized fashion figures for children, men and women with accompanying visuals, and the figures are to be highly individualistic with unique styling. Croquis as well as figures fully rendered in color (both nude and dressed), and the color rendering is supposed be done very quickly with the best results. It's fun. Plus, I get to watch Memoirs of a Geisha on DVD while I work today. Woo hoo.

This is what I have to show for now:

Wow! A coupla inches! Like, WOW! (Just humor me here.)

Dear Knitter Friends Who Visit My Blog,

The above photo reflects a few measly inches worked on the sleeve of the Cabled Jacket since we last chatted. While this may seem to be far from amazing, let it be known that my personal socks are officially rocked by those measly inches because I am, quite frankly, surprised that I even have any knitting to show you. Know why? Because from Monday to Thursday morning there was no knitting done AT ALL chez Skinny Rabbit. Zero, zilch, nada. All my free time was spent working on the fashion illustration project I mentioned the other day, and the only reason my knitting basket didn't gather dust is because I'm 99% sure that my dog Lucy has taken to sleeping in my knitting basket when I'm not home. The little dickens. [Bonus: Popup picture of Lucy chilling outdoors.] Anyway, the project has been turned in but before I assembled it I took a quick shot of a few of the female fashion figures I drew. (There's a lot more; the whole project is 15 pages, size A3 bristol paper, and includes children and male fashion figures and croquis.)

Hello. I am a small part of the Time Hog Fashion Illustration Project.
(Figures worked in different techniques. Paint, marker, etc.)

So! Fashion illustration project is turned in and other than a toile to prepare (we're constructing a jacket pattern in pattern-drafting) and a pair of bra and panties to customize (they're not mine, and yes, they are brand new; they are donated by a lingerie company) for fashion design I've got the whole weekend to take a breather and do some knitting! Woo hoo! I'd love to get some work done on my shexy Ultra Femme top, finish up a CeCe Cardi sleeve, and (I'm being optimistic here) maybe sew the Short Jacket. Plus, I've also got a Linen Jacket to stick on the Captain, so expect another finished object on the blog very soon. Hurrah.

That's all for now. Off to see what there is for dinner. Have a good weekend!


Two things to show you today...

You want your wee cables? I got your wee cables.

Slow but sure progress on my Cabled Jacket. It may not seem like much, but I only work on this at stolen free moments here and there, yet I'm just a few rows shy of the sleeve cap shaping! It's amazing how much progress one can make in little pockets of time.

What else? Oh, yes. A couple of inches on my chocolate CeCe Cardi:

Chocolate yarn. Yum.

I've had a big work load this week, so I've only managed to work a few rows since last weekend. I'm hoping to get some good progress on it on Sunday, though. I'd love to have this ready so I can wear it*, ALREADY. But I'm enjoying the knitting in the meantime, and working it in Calmer is a big time bonus because it's such a forgiving yarn. I tend to knit my CeCe Cardi in the evening while I read (yep, I still do that) or while I watch television which has led to my making a few mistakes which I notice when I examine my work every once in a while. I never rip out rows to fix, though. I just drop groups of stitches and rework the lace using a crochet hook. (Once, I was too lazy to get the crochet hook so I fixed with my fingers. For reals.) The elasticity in Calmer makes fixing easy and my knitting stays even, to boot. I love the lovely Calmer.

october_veste_thumb.jpgThat's it for today because my work table is a-callin' again. Second year in fashion school is in full acceleration now. I've got a UNICEF doll to make for Monday. I've also got a big streetwear fashion design project that I work on everyday, and I have to make some samples and colored drawings ready for Tuesday. Plus, there's a big project due on Thursday for pattern-drafting: A long jacket with patch pockets drafted by looking at an illustration. I finished the construction and pattern last week and managed to cut into the fabric yesterday. I'm taking this afternoon to dive into the assembly, which is time-consuming as there's a lot of attention to detail, like the seams. All seams on the wrong side must be covered with seam tape - 9 meters worth. [Gulp.] I'm making this a Colin Firth afternoon as I'll be putting Girl With a Pearl Earring and Nanny McPhee into the DVD player while I sew on that seam tape. Colin, take me away.

*Things I wore to school over the last three weeks: Crinkle and Bustier, Fluffy Amelie Bolero, Butterfly Camisole, Fiery Bolero, Cat in the Hat (layered). Crinkle, Bustier and Cat in the Hat garnered the most compliments. (Crinkle interested everyone the most; they loved the crinkability of it.) Yeah! Viva knitting.

I see cables, I see glazed donut twists.

Hey! Remember the sleeve of the Cabled Jacket that I started almost two months ago? You know, the one that I was leisurely, and I mean BIG TIME leisurely (read: being pokey about) knitting? Well, I finally got a sleeve cap to show you. Yeah!

I see cables, I see glazed donut twists.
[Tummy rumbles.]

Here, check out the sleeve cap from this angle. It might be because it's snacktime for me but when I look at those cables, I don't really see cables. I see the glazed donut twists that the highschool I attended would sell during our 10:00 a.m. rest period. At least once a week, from when I was a freshman up until I graduated, I'd buy myself one of those glazed donut twists and scarf it down. Yum, yum. It's been a really long time since I had one of those twists and no thanks to my sleeve cap I now have an intense craving for one. Those cables really look like them, only smaller. Man, oh man. I'd knit a sock on teeny tiny double pointed needles in exchange for a dozen of those particular glazed donut twists right about now.

Okay, I'm kidding. About knitting the sock, that is. But not about wanting to eat a dozen glazed twists. Yum, yum.

Ah! Seven days till Christmas!

I've been wanting to update with an entry since last week but I've been getting home too late every day; no time to go online. Among other things, this is what I've been doing:

Working on a tailored suit and drawing lace motifs. (Two separate projects.)

Shopping and getting ready for family members who are coming to spend the holidays with us.

And this is what I've NOT been doing:

Working on the poor, neglected shexy top. But I want to wear that for Christmas Eve or Christmas day, so I will work on that as soon as I have some quality free time. Turning in the tailored suit will free up my schedule, so let's all give a big Mexican wave for when that day comes. Ready, set, wave! And speaking of the tailored suit, I'm gonna show another in progress shot of the jacket (there are trousers, too) even though it needs pressing, finished top pocket, lining, hem, shoulder pads, buttonhole and button, more get the idea.

Ah! I feel like you've caught me in bathrobe and avocado mask.
Please pardon my sloppy unfinished state.

But believe it or not, I do have a wee bit of knitting to show. Remember my Cabled Jacket? I needed something small to carry around and work on here and there, so I decided to start the second sleeve for my Cabled Jacket.

I still think donut twists when I see those cables.
Donuts...yum. (I gotta stop updating before I've had lunch.)

I'm so glad that I'm able to get at least some knitting done. Really, I do need to knit a few rows every now and then on SOMETHING otherwise I get twitchy and I twiddle my fingers around in mock imitation of knitting, even in public.

Okay, I'm kidding about the twiddling fingers part.

What else? Oh, yes. I promised to show some holiday lights and a few things I saw during the Fête des Lumiéres. We love Lyon holiday lights. So fabulous. Check 'em:

Slideshow, slideshow!

Of course, that's not the only shot I took. There are more, and I put them in a slideshow. Come knew I would :-)

Knitting? What's that?

Just kidding :-)

I still know what knitting is. But I've done so very little that I sometimes forget how to hold the needles!

Alright. I'm kidding again. About forgetting how to hold the needles, that is. I still know how to do that. (And work the yarn, too!) But I'm not kidding about getting the chance to knit as much as I'd like. Sometimes whole days go by without my being able to knit a stitch. I'll explain more about that below. In the meantime, I do have proof that I still knit when I get the chance, and here it is:

(Yep. Been watching the Cars DVD lately.)

Still-life photo entitled: "One sleeve on another resting on table", or
"Please, let's reach that sleeve cap ALREADY."
[Click here to zoom out.]

Remember my Cabled Jacket? That last time we talked about it I had finished one single, solitary sleeve. Well, it isn't all single and solitary anymore. In spare moments here and there I've been working on the second sleeve, and the last time I checked I was about to reach the sleeve cap. Can't wait for that moment, because once we reach a sleeve cap with its gradual decreases we're looking at an almost finished sleeve. Kaaaaa-CHOW.

That's the only project I'm working on right now, but that's gonna change soon because I've got a two week vacation coming up in mid-February and I plan on just kicking back and knit, knit, knit. I haven't seen any of the new spring/summer knitting stuff that's come out so I don't know if I'll shop around and start something for that season, or just cast on for another winter project from my stash. However, I'm tempted to do the former because I'm getting so little knitting done that I figure I'd better start something for spring soon so I can have it ready by the time the warm weather comes around. In any event, I'm getting the urge to start something fresh and get it done during vacation because I miss knitting. [Forlorn violin music starts playing in background.] Sniff!

just a small peek at one of my projectsNow, as to why I'm getting so little knitting done. My second year in fashion school is BUSY, but really productive. An average of two big projects are due once a month, so much of my free time is spent on school projects and my inspiration sketchbooks. I want to take a haute couture specialization for my third year, and a rare few students are selected for it. So that's why I've been working particularly hard on my projects and developing my creativity to the max. And even though my knitting is getting neglected in the interim, my efforts are paying off. We just got our first semester results in and, if I say so myself, mine aren't half bad. They're even better than last year's :-) Margaritas all around!

Anyway. Back to knitting. In preparation for my mid-February vacation where I'll get a chance to just kick back and KNIT like a fiend, are there any cool new knitting patterns for spring and summer worth my checking out?

We got sleevage. Oh, yeah.

My Cabled Jacket now has two complete sleeves:

Progress! Sleeves that match! Must celebrate!
Let's have a margarita now.

And the sleeves match perfectly! Believe me, after the infamous Let's Make Unmatching Sleeves Bonehead Moment I once experienced with Salina I always measure my sleeves together when I pull the second one off the needle. I don't even have to think about it; it's like an anti-Bonehead Moment reflex that kicks in automatically. As soon as the second sleeve of a project is knit, I pull it off the needle, grab the first sleeve, and superimpose them to see if they're a perfect match. It's always a teeny bit of a eureka moment when I see that no boneheadedness occurred and that the sleeves are exactly the same size. Really, it is. Sometimes I even get up and do a little happy dance like a fool dancing alone. She's a maniac, maniac on the floor...

Just a very small peek!In "It would be fun if I could knit all day but I must work on a big fashion design project due when vacation is over" news, here's your daily thumbnail sneak peek at one of the many things on my messy work table.

Where is my mind?*

This morning as I'm doing some more of my pre-spring cleaning [we're talking major stash cleanse, peoples] I pull a cloth dust bag out from the depths of the closet. When I open it, these little guys pop out:

I could've sworn I heard them say "BOIIIIING!" as they sprang from the bag.

I'm like, "Castel? Don't even remember buying that. Alright, up in the eBay you go."

Then as I pull the last skein out of the cloth dust bag, I see the edge of what I initially thought was a swatch. I pull it out, and the swatch magically turned into a sleeve! As I pull him out I ask him, "Dude! Where'd you come from?" And he's all like, "Ask questions brother is right behind me and he's all smooshed up. Pull him out, quick." And I reach back in the bag and pull out another sleeve. It was like magic, only instead of pulling a rabbit out of hat I was pulling two fully knit sleeves who were kinda teed off that I had stuffed them in a bag a few years ago and left them to sit in a dark closet.

We're back, b*tches.

At first I couldn't place the sleeves, and then I remembered the Cabled Jacket that I started when I was still in fashion school. I was really chugging away during that time, studying all day and often staying up all night to finish collections. I must have put the whole thing in the cloth bag and stuffed it on the top shelf of a closet, which made me promptly forget about it.

I can't possibly put the yarn up on eBay. I mean: Two. Whole. Sleeves. I have to finish that jacket! Even if I do it at a snail's pace, and it takes me all summer. Now, if only I can remember what size I started knitting...

*Thank you, Pixies. That song came on right as I started writing this entry, and oh how aprops!