CeCe Cardi!

Just can't get enough*.

Apparently, I didn't get my fill of lace cardis with my Crinkle. (Any t-shirts out there that read, "Lace Cardi 'Ho"? If not, print one up in my size 'cause that's me.) Late Sunday night I cast on for the ChicKnits CeCe Cardi using Calmer in "Coffee Bean" - thinking I'd work a few rows just to get started - and before you can say "Hooked on Calmer" it was 1:00 in the morning and I was watching Three Comrades with Robert Taylor and Margaret Sullavan on late night cinema because I could not put the cardi down. Check it:

There's MORE. Click here to see the whole thing.

That's progress as of early yesterday morning. Add on a couple more inches because CeCe was the only thing I worked on during last night's knitting session. Yes! I'm addicted to lace cardis and Rowan Calmer.

What else? Oh, yes. My Captain Destructo's Linen Jacket.

Yo! Where's the seaming party?

Still need to seam that. During the weekend I blocked all the pieces and knit the zipper bands, but didn't start seaming. I think I'll have Monsieur Le Hubby hide the CeCe Cardi from me so I can start seaming the Linen Jacket pieces this evening, ALREADY.

P.S. If you're wondering about my Tea Blouse, let me tell you right now that it's still sitting on the mannequin buttonless. Ugh. Sewing on buttons. How fun...not. Will sew on the buttons soon, though. There's another design sewing project I want to make this week and I won't let myself start it until the Tea Blouse is officially finished with buttons.

*It's the Guess that Band Blog Game. This is an easy one. Who sang the song mentioned in this entry's title?

Chocolate truffles, anyone?

Last time I was in here, I was whining about the too-short zipper of Captain Destructo's Linen Jacket. Solution: I ordered a 40 cm zipper from my local Phildar boutique (I love how I can just call the owner on the phone and let her know what I want), and when it comes in next week I'll be exchanging the 35 cm one for it. I'll have to reknit the buttonbands so they suit the new length, but hey! At least the Linen Jacket will have a fancy zipper that'll look good. [Does happy dance.]

So. That's taken care of. Now let me tell you about something else that happened, and it ain't pretty. Yesterday, during my evening knitting session, I was happily finishing up the front piece of my Mystery Project (back piece is already done), and when it came time to join a new skein of yarn I discovered that I had NO MORE CORK. No more in the basket. No more in the stash closet. No more in the stash hidden under the bed. Curses flew about like a party of sailors as I yanked all my ziplocs out of my stash, thinking that I had at least one more skein hidden in there, somewhere, ANYWHERE. Zero. Zilch. Nada. Only good thing about this is that I found four stitch holders I thought I had lost two years ago, a bag of Plassard Merinos I forgot that I had, and an extra pair of 10mm Addi circulars. But...No. Freaking. Cork. Aaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhh! [Pigeons in the nearby park fly away, frightened, as my frustrated scream echos off the Alps.]

So...anybody out there got a skein of Cork lying around in the colorway Mouse?

Didn't think so.

Chill. There is a solution. After careful analysis of the Mystery Project, I discovered that my row gauge is almost 3 rows smaller than that called for in the pattern, but I knit to the lengths required. Which means that I used a more yarn than I should have. I did swatch, but my tension must have changed (and boy, did it) while I knit the project. Still, I'm not going to hide this in a closet and hope that a ball of Cork falls miraculously out of the sky. I'm going to RIP THIS OUT - yes, the whole thing - and REKNIT using a larger needle so that my row gauge matches up to the pattern. Good thing these needles are big, eh?

In the meantime, I drown my sorrows in my Faithful Tension Doesn't Change CeCe Cardi knit in Calmer.

Oh, Calmer! How I love thy mah-velous luxuriousness!

I think that Rowan should rename this color of Calmer "chocolate truffle" instead of "coffee bean". I mean, I have nothing against a good cup of java, but if you placed a coffee bean and a chocolate truffle before me and told me to pick one, my hand would be snapping at that chocolate truffle faster than you can say, "sugar rush". I look at this cardi as I'm knitting it and I think CHOCOLATE. Really, that's how it flashes in my mind, like a neon sign and all in caps. And after my faulty zipper and yarn shortage woes, I think I deserve a chocolate truffle even if it's disguised in the form of Calmer and a cute little CeCe cardi.

And speaking of the CeCe cardi, I worked two more inches since the photo above, worked the buttonhole* and just started the neck shaping. [Runs around the room waving arms triumphantly, like Rocky.]

*This is the buttonhole I used, thanks to Miss B-M of ChicKnits for passing on that link to me.

That's all for today. Before I go, I leave you with the Fabulous Corset Image in Popup Window of the day. Just for the heck of it.

Fancy a game of pick up sticks*?

Take out a red marker and circle this day on your calendar, friends. I finally decided to give in to my inner sock knitter and for the first time ever, have cast on for - get ready for this - a SOCK.

Just kidding. Me no knit socks. Actually, what you see on my needles there is the wee beginnings of the first SLEEVE of my CeCe Cardi. Such a jokester, I am. Hee hee!

*Double points always make me feel like I'm playing a game of pick up sticks.

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.

Sweater on a needle for ya!

Dude! It's a semi-finished CeCe on the table.
Can I get a "woot, woot!"?

Ta-da! Last time we chatted about my CeCe Cardi I was still playing pick up sticks with the FIRST sleeve. Well, hang on to your double points because not only did I finish BOTH sleeves of my CeCe Cardi yesterday, but I already put all the pieces on a needle and am now knitting across the whole enchilada. I am on a roll*, bay-bee! Strike while the iron's hot, and all. (And thanks to the movies The Parent Trap and Just Like Heaven for added entertainment value. Light Movies + Glass of Sparkling Wine = Good Knitting Progress.)

*It also helps that Miss Bonne Marie of ChicKnits herself is knitting a 3/4 sleeved Chocolat [yum] CeCe along with me. Seeing how she flies on her needles gives me added motivation. Love the tandem knitting.

What else? Oh yes. I recently fed the Stash Monster. Had to do it...dude was hungry and his tummy was rumbling something awful. This is what I gave him:

Mmm...yarn. Yum, yum, yum.

Load of Phildar Castel so I can knit Captain Destructo a winter jacket. How could I not want to knit another jacket for my boy? He really deserves it. He's been wearing the Linen Jacket I knit him every single day this week. For reals; it is now his favorite garment and he won't wear any other jacket even though he's got more than a few that he usually alternates. But he's rebuffed the other jackets and his Linen Jacket is practically glued onto his back right now. [Bonus action shot taken of the Captain when I picked him up this afternoon. He's wearing, of course, the Linen Jacket.] I figure I'd better knit him a new jacket soon otherwise he'll start looking like a photograph of himself. Such a nice mommy, I am :-)

Finished CeCe!

*Alternatively titled: "Psst...I was too eager to show it so I haven't blocked it yet. Don't tell anyone."

This is the stand-still-like-a-mannequin shot.
[Hey! Click here for the jazz hands pose and other show-off shots.]

P.S. I'm showing this cardi over a plain white tee so
that the cardi remains in the spotlight for this entry, but
I plan on wearing it over something more funky. I like the funky.

Project details: CeCe Cardi by ChicKnits, 3/4 sleeves version. I knit the smallest size and used about 6 and a half skeins of Calmer [Caaaalmer....drools like Homer Simpson] in a luverly chocolate truffle color that Rowan calls "Coffee Bean". I used the needle size recommended in the pattern and got gauge, spot on. I love it when that happens.

[P.S. Don't miss the REALLY BIG CLOSEUP.]

I made no alterations or modifications whatsoever to this pattern because I thought the sizing and construction were perfect as they were. And it truly is an ingenious construction: Finishing was minimal and the result looks really professional. When the cardi was fresh off the needles on Saturday I took it with me to the notions shop [my haunt is La Mercerie in La Croix Rousse; I've been going there for about six years now] to pick out a button and the ladies there gave compliments on it even though it still had ends hanging out of it. Yep...playing pick up sticks is definitely worth it. Now, how about the gratuitous silly shots?

All in all, I am love with this little cardi. The length and sleeves are perfect for the way I wear my clothes and it can be mixed and matched with a lot of things I have in my wardrobe. Plus, it's in Calmer. Oh! So love the Calmer :-)