Salina, from Rowan's Vintage Style.

A quick post for all the cool people who visit on Wednesdays.

Dinner's a-callin', but here's a quick post so I can show you the lapel of one side of the front piece of Salina:


winter2005_salina_lapel.jpg
[See more! Click here to zoom out.]


I photographed it bathing in the sunlight, because the fabulousness that is Felted Tweed in Crush requires that it be so. And doesn't the sunlight look glorious? Well, don't let it fool you. It's nice and sunny out, but temperatures are the lowest they've been since the cold season began. I headed outdoors today and had to hold my hands over my ears in order to keep them from shrivelling up and falling off from the cold. Okay, I exaggerate. But it sure felt like my ears were gonna fall off! It really is that cold. Next time I'll wear a hat, even if it gives me hat hair and I look like a dork in it.

Back to Salina. As one can see, one side of the neck of the front piece of Salina is completed. [Please, click here to see an expanded view of the front piece. You must see more of the front piece, I tell you!] I had fun knitting it. The lapel is created by gradually increasing the number of stitches worked in moss stitch. (That's right; it's a knitted-on lapel. Finishing is going to be a breeze!) The other side of the neck still has to be completed, but I can't do that because it has a knitted-on buttonhole facing. And I can't work the buttonholes yet because oops! I forgot to buy buttons for Salina during my notions shopping on Saturday. I want to have the buttons in order to see what kind of buttonhole will work best, so I guess that means I'm going to have to mosey on down to La Droguerie to check out the buttons again. (Like I need my arm pulled to do that.)

And while we're on the subject of fiber bathing in sunlight, look at this:


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Crystal Palace Fizz Stardust sent as a surprise from my pal Silvia! This yarn makes me want to roller disco, bay-bee. (Here, look at this closeup of its glittery strands.) Wrist bands? Trim for a hat? Boa-like scarf? The very color of this yarn has got my niece's name all over it, but I think I'm going to end up using most of it for myself!

This just in: Skinny Rabbit suffers another Bonehead Knitting Moment.

Last night I happily bound off the sleeve cap of the SECOND sleeve of my Salina sweater, and this morning I thought I'd kick off my Monday with an entry showing a photo of both triumphant sleeves bathing in their own ray of sunlight. Well, there will be no sunlight for these sleeves because the second sleeve is naughty:


winter2005_salina_sleeves.jpg
Bad boys, bad boys, whatcha gonna do...
[Wanna see them both? Click to zoom out.]


Yes, yes...I know. I noticed it right away, too. The second sleeve is smaller than the first sleeve. Why? Because I unwittingly knit the entire second sleeve using size 3.25mm needles when I was supposed to use size 3.75mm needles. Of course, the first sleeve was knit using the correct size needles, 3.75mm. But when the time came to cast on for the second sleeve I grabbed the wrong needle, cast on, and knit through in complete and hopeless ignorance of my mistake. Which, of course, resulted in a second sleeve that is significantly smaller in both width and length compared to the first sleeve. YES, it's noticeable. And NO, I'm not going to attempt to block the dickens out of it, stretch it from here to Sunday, pin it to kingdom come, chant mantras over it or anything similar in the hopes it'll magically grow. I'm going to add this mistake to my list of Biggest Bonehead Moments in Skinny Rabbit Knitting History and knit the second sleeve all over again. No, no. I insist. And that's the end of the Salina sleeve incident.

But higher powers know when I need consolation. A surefire way to yank me out of the knitting blues is getting YARN all the way from Deutschland:


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Snapshots! Snapshots!


Seeing all that yarn spread out on the table for breakfast makes me want to run around the room in circles from excitement. GGH Scarlett in ice blue, GGH Samoa in pink, Rebecca 29 in English and Lang's Fatto a Mano No. 151 (in German with French insert). [Thanks to Alison from Virginia Wool for enabling me with this yarn!] So much to gush about I don't even know where to start. So how about some snapshots of it all?

[Free yarn plug: I regularly receive messages from people who want to know where, where, WHERE did I get the GGH yarn to knit my Rebecca cabled top and Apricot Jacket. The yarn and mags shown in the photo above, and the yarn used to knit the Rebecca projects shown on my site, were obtained from the same place in Germany: Rike's Wollmaus. This supplier has had a permanent link on my links page ever since I received my first order from them back in 2002. They are very friendly, have great prices, deliver promptly, and have special-ordered things for me (i.e. they obtained Rebecca 29 in English when I asked about it AND let me know via email when it came in a couple of days later). Plus, they include a small packet of gummy bears in their packages which makes my sweet tooth happy. And now you know where I get my Rebecca fixes. End of free yarn plug.]

Stash in the mail is almost as good as a big box of chocolate truffles. And that, my friends, is why I kinda don't mind about having to knit the second Salina sleeve all over again.

The Naughty Sleeve Saga, Part Deux.

winter2005_salina_centerpullball.jpg
Look, just look at what she's done to me!
I have become a center-pull ball.


Take out a red marker and circle this day on your calendar, friends, because I decided to not procrastinate with my failed second sleeve of Salina and, instead of keeping said failed sleeve stuffed in a bag until next winter [yes, I was very tempted to stick that bad boy in the closet], I went ahead and just ripped out. Rip, rip, rip. Like the Phoenix from the ashes the sleeve will arise from the center-pull ball.

To further motivate myself I've gone ahead and started steam-blocking the other completed pieces of Salina, so my apartment smells like a barn right now. (Oh, the tweedy freshness of Rowan Felted Tweed!) Strangely enough, blocking made me feel like completion of Salina isn't so far away. The mind works in mysterious ways.

I'm doing other knitting, too. I decided to ROCK ON with the right front piece of the Kid Mohair cardigan and knit right through it over a couple of evenings. (I can't help using the phrase "rock on" because the sparkle in the fabric makes me want to do it. Sparkle in the knits = rock star.) And here's the right front piece looking all rumpled and in need of a session with the blocking board:


winter2005_kidmohair_front.jpg


Now that I've rocked the right front piece I will rock on with the left front piece and maybe even ROCK OUT with the seaming. [Insert loud guitar screech, big hair band from the 80s style.]

I've also got chocolate to motivate me. Hang onto your taste buds for this shot:


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They're SEE'S CANDIES.
[Heart beats faster.]


My pal Evelyn, a.k.a. Golden Goddess of Skinny Rabbit Universe, sent those over to me along with some peanut butter/chocolate chips [!] and a copy of IK. The batch of See's Candies has my favorites: Peanut clusters. Oh, See's peanut clusters! For you I will rip out five Salina sleeves. Six, maybe.

Rock on.

A Triumphant Sleeve Cometh.

winter2005_salina_sleeves2.jpg
Expand: Sleeve one and sleeve two.
And they're both the same size!
(Yeah. She showed that naughty sleeve who's boss.)


NEWSFLASH! This just in: Our sources reveal that Skinny Rabbit had two straight late-night knitting sessions in a row - one session consisting of a torturous 2+ hours in front of Eyes Wide Shut starring Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman's bubs - which resulted in a second Salina sleeve knit using the correct needle size of 3.75mm. The sleeve got pulled off the needle before the credits of aforesaid too-bizarre-to-be-artsy film appeared on the television screen and a Kacha Kacha measuring tape confirmed that said sleeve measures the same as the first sleeve. To celebrate her victory Skinny Rabbit ran triumphantly around the block with hands in the air, theme music from Rocky I blaring in the background. "Flying high now..."

Upon successfully finishing the second sleeve, Skinny Rabbit immediately started backstitching the shoulders of the front and back pieces even though she has yet to knit the blasted sleeve cuffs in moss stitch. The correct needle size (3.25mm) has already been tagged in order to ensure that she doesn't flub AGAIN by knitting the cuffs in the wrong needle size. Evidence of Skinny Rabbit backstitching the shoulders has been documented in the form of yet another slideshow, of course.

[Footnote: Skinny Rabbit learned how to backstitch in 2001 using Monste Stanley's Knitter's Handbook as a reference. Skinny Rabbit hearts this book and would probably lug it with her to the North Pole if she had to move there. Which, thankfully, she doesn't plan on doing any time in the near future.]

This also in: Skinny Rabbit stashes again! Sources reveal that Skinny Rabbit became an auntie again [congrats to her little bro on becoming a father to another little girl last week!] so an emergency weekend yarn run was in order. Of course, this means that she didn't break her lenten no-stash rule as the yarn obtained is for gifts and not for her own greedy self.


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In the batch: Phildar layette pattern book, Phil Eponge for the new niece's flowery cardigan and some gray flannel Quietude for a vest for Skinny Rabbit's dad. The vest is going to be a Father's Day present, and as Skinny Rabbit's dad is built like a linebacker she felt that she better get an early start on it in order to ensure that it be, in effect, a Father's Day gift and not an early Christmas gift. And doesn't her new yarn look all lovely bathing in its own ray of sunlight on the table? We think so, too.

Still reading? Good. Skinny Rabbit's unforeseen stash run and project reorganization for spring means that there's yarn up on the stash-o-mat page. Take a look!

What's this? Another finishing party?

This morning was a foggy, misty, chilly morning so I got to wear my PULL PONCHO. It was all about Ponchos in the Mist, my friends! I felt the need to share because it gives me a kick when an ideal weather moment occurs for wearing my knits.

And that is all.

Just kidding. There's more. I've been finishing up my Salina! Thankfully, without incident. I sincerely thought that after my severe case of bonehead-itis with my Kid Mohair cardi I'd have a couple of bonehead moments or, at least, a finishing stumbling block with Salina. Alas, Salina is a good girl. And that's why I am showing her moss stitch neckband bathing in its own ray of sunshine:


winter2005_salina_finishing_neckband.jpg
I'm a good girl.
And that's why I won't be pinned to the blocking board.


And because I'm on a roll, I knit the moss stitch cuffs and am on my way to sewing them:


winter2005_salina_finishing_sleeve.jpg
Sunshine! 'Cause we behave, too.


Take note, Salina knitters! If you want to wear the sleeves the way the model wears them in Vintage Style, you will need to fold them up. Otherwise, they will reach slightly past your wrists. Which is a good length, but not the length shown as photographed. I like the way the model is wearing them so I am REVERSING the cuff seam so I can fold them up. And that's the end of my two cents re the Salina cuffs.

In other news, I've got a knitting confession: I am disappointed that I did not finish my son's ribbed jacket by Easter. Unfortunately, my finishing nightmare with my mohair cardi and the birth of all these babies in the family (yep, knitting some baby things - will show later) really slowed my knitting schedule down. So, my son will probably wear the Boyish Jacket I knit for him in fall or his store bought [GASP!] raincoat. Although, to be honest, I would have preferred that he wear the cotton ribbed jacket I'm knitting now. 'Tis okay. I will console myself by eating all these candies my Dad sent me. [Now he REALLY deserves a knitted vest.] Next year I will start my son's Easter knit earlier and I will try to avoid boneheaded moments with knits that might possibly cause my scheduled knitting time to slow up.

Why, it's a finished Salina!

This is the stand-still-as-a-mannequin shot.
[Click here for the big "Look, Ma! No hands!" shot.]
[What's that? Whack dance shots? Oh, ALRIGHT.]


Project details and finishing notes: "Salina", from Rowan's Vintage Style. I knit the XS size and used less than 6 skeins of Felted Tweed in Crush. No alterations to the pattern or sizing were made. In spite of one boneheaded knitting moment, the whole thing was pretty straighforward and easy knitting. Don't you love those kinds of knits for movie watching? Me too. And you want to know what my favorite part of this sweater is? Well, let me show you:


[Wanna see some CLOSE-UPS? Oh, go on!]
P.S. I got those buttons at La Droguerie.
(a.k.a. Craft Heaven.)


Oh! Tailored-looking lapel and collar, how I love thee. Your simple and classic detail is timeless. I shall wear you now, I shall wear you next year, and I shall probably get to wear you the year after that. That, paired with the cuffs, makes the sweater almost resemble a man's shirt, but the shaping makes it feminine. And I couldn't resist using slightly reddish shiny buttons (with a hint of "pearly" to them) to give the whole thing some "oomph". Those cheeky buttons make me want to dance. So I did, of course. (Come on...you knew I was gonna.)

Unfortunately, I haven't been able to give Salina a proper debut yet because spring-like weather has made its way to Lyon. The color I chose makes it seem more suitable for fall, but I bet I could pair it with a pair of jeans or a skirt in a lighter color for spring. I love how all the different-colored flecks in the yarn make that possible. Still, Felted Tweed seems more cold weather wear for me (I always have to wear something underneath it to keep from feeling itchy; I'm wearing a camisole under it in the photos) so I'll probably tuck this away until later this year. But you can bet your yarn that when the first chill of fall comes I'll be wearing Salina, oh yes I will.

*I'd like to insert another thank you to Tiffany for enabling me with the book and to Froggy for enabling me with the yarn. Swaps with my online knit buds is what enables me to knit a lot of my projects. And that is why my online knit buds rock my knitting universe.