February 16, 2005

Down the Sleeve Hole.

Is this a sleeve cuff I see before me?

Soft, fluffy kid mohair. Oh, how I love thee!
Psst...see the tubular cast-on?
(I'm such a sucker for the tubular cast-on.)
[P.S. Here's another view of the fabric.]

Unbelievably enough, I have not been able to knit a single stitch for a few days. [Busy, busy b.] But! Last week was spent knitting the first pieces of this Fluffy Cardigan and you know what? THIS is one of the yarns I'd want to have with me if I were marooned on an island in the Arctic Sea. (If I were marooned on an island in the Caribbean, I'd want to have ten sweaters' worth of Calmer, a couple of bamboo circs and sunblock SPF 45, bay-bee.)

The cardigan is knit using two yarns held together: Phildar Sunset and Phildar Kid Mohair. I thought it would be a little slow on the needles due to the fluffiness of the yarn, but it's a smooth and soft knit. I cast on for one sleeve, thinking I'd complete that piece and then work on Salina, but before I knew it was casting off the sleeve cap. So I decided to jump down the Sleeve Hole and immediately cast on for the second sleeve, thinking I'd get bored with it once I got past the cuff. But nooooooo! Before you can say "Sleeve Happy Rabbit" I was binding off the cap on the second sleeve, too. I was on a roll, I tell you! And to prove it, here are both sleeves together, looking all weary and rumpled in their unblocked state. I just love its sparkly, heathery goodness.

But that's not all. Here's the extra bonus: I was able to use the tubular cast-on* for the ribbing at the sleeve cuffs! I usually save the tubular cast-on for fine-gauge items, but it happened to work for this particular yarn. I just love that invisible, rolled edge that the tubular cast-on creates and will never stop singing its praises on this site. When I saw it work for this fluffy wonder I actually had a little seizure of happiness. Clearly, I'm easily amused.

*Again, my favorite resources for tubular cast-on continue to be Montse Stanley's Knitter's Handbook and Katharina Buss's Big Book of Knitting. I use different techniques depending on yarn weight and type. For the ribbing on this particular project I'm using the yarn-over method described in Big Book of Knitting.

In other news, I have some snail mail surprises to share: My thoughtful pal Chelee and her son sent my Captain Destructo some Valentine candy! (The Captain was so excited to get a surprise in the mail with a note written especially to him. He insisted on writing back to Chelee's son right away and going with me to the post office.) And my other pal Heather sent a package containing some Paton's yarn in CHOCOLATE [drools madly], some Ironstone Mohair in a beautiful shade (Mountain Grass), and some - get ready for this - Almond Roca [drools even more]. Yarn and chocolate. My kinda combo.

And to end this entry with a surprise of my own, here's a sneaky peek of what's coming up later this week!

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43 comments to this entry:

I am not really a fan of green, but that fluffy sweater is gorgeous! It reminds me of the Irish Bells I plant in the garden! Happy belated Valentines Day! Hugs to the Captain!
Very nice sleeve! I will look into this tubular caston... I need to learn some other methods! I was with Heather when she got that Ironstone for you--it is one of my favorite yarns. Enjoy!
I love doin' the tubular too! The Fluffa fluffy sweater is fab!
Glad you're a fellow tubular fan, Miss Wendy. Like, totally :-) Re the Ironstone Mohair: The choice in color is perfect. I can't wait to knit it up! Re the green: I don't think I've ever knit anything in green for myself because it isn't really my color. But I found this one to be so gorgeous when I saw it that I couldn't resist. Plus (to quote something the fabulous Ei from Ei Knit wrote me in an e-mail), it's good to "step out of the box" now and again. Hear, hear!
Another beautiful cardigan...and a mohair one at that. Yummy!! She's looking so lush. I need to try the Tubular cast on!
Nice work! I can't wait to see what's blockin'… ;-)
Wow! That green is wonderful and the little bit of shine just makes in an eyecatcher.
So fluffy, so shiny. A very nice thing to contemplate first thing in the morning.
I am totally tubular too dude! I am doing the collar for my Nordic sweater and will be doing it sewn-on a la our favorite Rabbit. I just love how the sleeves and sweater edge look in tubular. I tried it on a chunky hat and wasn't as pleased with it, too bulky. But it still works.
yay! you got it! I hope cap'n likes his m&m's!! Pixie picked those out for our fave space pirate! :O) ohhh...that mohair...is givin me mo'shivers! I am dying to use mohair (think union jack in sbNation) There is a phildar pattern from yonks ago that is that color that I lovingly pick up and coo over...I love that color! x/o!
Your cast-on is so impressive! Having done the tubular now, usually mine has a little bendy look to 1/2 of the knit stitches. Yours are so straight! Wow!
Yum, mohair! I'm making my own first forays with this fine fiber as I swatch for my wedding stole, and it's a lot of fun. I just hope I don't make any major mistakes, because frogging it is not so much fun. And now I'm dying for Willow dancing pics! Do you think if I start blowing air in its direction from New York it will dry faster? ;)
There's nothing more romantic than a wedding stole knit in mohair. So soft and feminine. Enjoy knitting it! Chris is spot on re yarn weights: I find the tubular just isn't as elastic in bulky yarns, can look wonky in really nubby yarns, and tends to crinkle in ribbon yarns. But there's nothing that beats that fine edge it gives to mostly everything else.
Serious cardigan envy over here. Cannot wait to see it on you so I can run out and get the leaftlet.
Becky, really really gorgeous. I am a huge green fan myself. I always gravitate towards it. Didn't I see this on Laetitia's website as well? Y'all are going to be all kinds of twins between this and your Chanel jacket if that is where I saw it!
Scrummy - I love that you are getting your colour on!
I really need to try the tubular dude! I keep hearing raves about it but I just haven't done one yet. Glad the Captain liked his loot. HBomb had a blast picking it out.
Oohh...is that a Willow I see? I'm so excited to see it finished. You've been making some beautiful sweaters lately, but I'm ready for some Spring knits! I'm already breaking out the cotton....c'mon, sunshine.
Since you sing the praises of tubular, I've tried it for 1x1 ribbing and LOVED it! But have not tried it for 2x2 which is mostly what I use. I have to find some instructions for 2x2. I have a soft spot for anything fluffy...hence the balls of kid mohair & blends in my stash. Unfortunately, I haven't figured out what to do with it yet...aside from petting it of course! I love that you start with the sleeves first. I'm working on a chunky jacket for my mom and I'm at the 2nd sleeve (I do mine last) and am so bored! My next project, I shall start with the sleeves. BTW, I love Almond Roca. Did you know they came out with Cashew Roca & Mocha Roca? Mocha Roca is a little too much....they shouldn't go taking a simple candy and complicate it.
This sweater looks so good. I want to make something with mohair. Looks yummy and has a glow about it. Can't wait to see it finished! Probably by tomorrow with your speed and skill. :)
Those sleeves look *scrumptious*...! I have a question about the tubular cast-on. Which one do you use? I have the Montse Stanley book, and there's a special tubular cast-on for 2x2 rib, but if I remember correctly, it slants one way... and looking at your pic, yours seems to sort of slant evenly both ways (the knit stitches, that is).
I am always a big fan of your knitted stuff. Very nice sleeves, so fluffy. I think I know what's blocking, it's the sweater in Rowan's ribbon twist mag. The one with the pompom. Did I guess it right?
wow, gotta try that tubular cast on for something, it looks so neat. beautiful knitting, with mohair no less! and the colour is gorgeous -- stepping out of the box is definitely a good thing! almond roca is a good thing too. i used to sleep on it, but then....:-)
Becky I have been following your blog lines for a while, you are such an inspiration!!! I noticed you are busy blocking the "Rowan" that you were working on. Do you have any tips or good web sites that gives one a step by step "how to block a garment with great results??"" I steam most of my knits but am still not happy,are there other ways that you find better? Tks Ilse
That green is too faboo. I love that cardi. Major, major yarn envy going on over here now.
well i'm lovin' the green. i was just going through my ggh kid soft kid stash to cast on for a project. next project tubular it is. ummm, i wish i had kid soft in green. i guess orange will have to do. ei is right.
Post for you, Becky! http://www.livejournal.com/users/_calendula_/107853.html
So, I'm knitting Knitty's 'Tempting', reworked for my handspun. I admire its all-over ribbing, and your raptures over the tubular cast on float through my head. A few tries later...I have a beautiful tubular edge. hooray! I used the 'wrap waste yarn around twice, knit with main yarn, pick up purls from below elongated stitches' method. It worked nicely, and I can now do it off the top of my head. Hooray! Thank you, Skinny Rabbit, you adventurous knitter, you. =) -Brianna
anyone else notice this SAME EXACT pattern is in the new Spring tenances? what is it with phildar and recycling patterns?
Me thinks Fluffa is living up to her fiber name with her recent fiber projects...hey, I'm droolin' here.
Re "recycling": This ISN'T the same exact pattern. It's the same design with different pattern details. The Kid Mohair leaflet was issued around the same time as the Tendances, and Kid Mohair is 1) a cold season yarn and 2) worsted. The design in the Tendances is 1) mid-season yarn and 2) fingering. As a result, pattern details are different between the two. And as it turns out, I plan on doing the finer-gauge one as well. Frankly, I find this type of "recycling" useful as it saves us time from doing the math. (And that means more knitting time for me.) Visitors to Laėtitia site will see the same cardigan; she and I are knitting this one together, too. We chose the same colors for it, but our Chanel inspired jackets will be different colors. (And I certainly wouldn't mind being her twin. I've seen her in person and she's a golden goddess :-)) Re blocking: I usually cover the pieces with a damp cloth and gently steam, or just lightly wet-block to smooth things out. I find that Vogue Knitting gives excellent step-by-steps on blocking. And Miss B-M over at chicknits.com gives great blocking tips. I didn't even know that a garment should be blocked until I came upon her site back in...I think it was 2001. [Thanks, B-M!]
I was just wondering about this kid mohair/sunset yarn combo. Looks great, sounds great too. Now I've got to try. That cache-coeur will look spectacular on you. Even on a tropical island... ;) bisou.
I always look the stuff you come up with...:) Can't wait to see your surprise.
Hi Becky, thank you for leaving such a nice comment in my blog! "Very cool neckband" in finnish: makee kauluri. Hope you find this information useful. :-D I'm a huge fan of your blog - I really should have left a comment earlier. Thanks for sharing your beautiful knits with us. Terhi
Man, you choose the most beautiful sweaters to knit! Whenever I see them I want to knit them too. I love the green yarn - and can't wait to see the finished cache-coeur. And your finished Willow!
I finally had to try the tubular caston after hearing how much you like it. It looks confusing, but Montse Stanley's book (you again) was incredibly clear. I wasn't convinced it would actually work-held my breath when I removed the waste yarn-I'm a believer!
Ooh, I have the Big Book of Knitting. I only use the long tail cast on, so maybe I should expand my horizons and check it out. thanks.
Hey Becky, what wonderful projects you've been finishing and starting over here! I've been swamped keeping up with blogs in my knitalongs and haven't stopped by in a while. And as is the case whenever I stay away, I return and think, how could I have missed all this! You are amazing! (My son's new favorite word. He uses it to describe every new thing he sees. "That's amaaazin'!" Oh the ethusiasm of a three and a half year-old.) :0)
That sweater was MADE for you, Miss Becky. Perfect for chasing the last of the winter blahs. I have a fuzzy green thing project going for the same purpose. (The Amelie bolero from the winter Rebecca.) Whizzed through the body and got several inches up on the sleeves...er, then I just got distracted and started a tank. (Hey, I had my reasons.) By your next post I suppose you'll be all done with yours and that will shame me back to mine!
Great post - lots to think about here. Love that wrap cardigan - gotta find me a Phildar source! Must be so fun to knit the sparkly, fuzzy, soft, scrummy fabric.
love love love your gorgeous things...if you have been asked a zillion times already, i apologize, but where can i get the fluffy pattern from? i have added a link to you on my blog, as i just figured out how to do so...
Hi Becky! I just recently found your blog and I must say you have EXCELLENT taste. I love all the patterns, they are fab. You've inspired me! I was on a knitting lull through summer but now I'm just raring to go. First project is gonna be the fluffy kid mohair cardi. I hope you can help a not so french gal with some of the pattern.
let me say you have FINE taste! I love all the patterns on your blog, they are all wonderful. I had taken a knitting break during the summer but after seeing your work I'm inspired to crack out hte needles again and get knitting. Kid mohair sweater is first on my list! Can't wait! Thanks for the inspiration!

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