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New Threads Retro Style September 15, 2011

Lots of people, when I tell them how much I love knitting, make a little puckery face, and go “Not for me – I just don’t have the patience.”

This always makes me smile. Heh. :)

Being a rather Type A sort of person, the irony is either lost on me, or knitting really isn’t something that needs an extraordinary, grit your teeth kind of commitment, at least from my POV.

It’s so modular, it breaks down into two states: knit or purl.

But then, then, a project can get interesting. And it has nothing to do with the knitting.

Take my little trip to my personal button store the other day when I tossed a variety of disks onto a neutral surface and let nature play.

Who won the most pleasing (and most functional) round?

The buttons dubbed Copper Penny, a lovely umber metal with a deeper grey center.

These were the ones my eye went to in the pictures as being the most organic, with a little kick. That umber was grinning after all.

So, I sat down with my coffee early one morning, and proceeded to start sewing them on the sweater, and before I knew it, three buttons were on. But, just like in the multiple-choice test in junior high, I got a sinking feeling that I should’ve gone with my first answer. Holding just one disk in my hand, it felt even heavier than a US nickel, certainly heavier than a dime (just what is our money cast from lately, plastic?).

I tried the sweater on and watched in the mirror with yet another sinking feeling as the button side of the sweater dragged down and flopped around.


But even with this obvious fail, I still wanted to avoid trying to take those three buttons off the band. As if wishing would magically lighten them, because the yarn in the garment might fight me when I went backwards in time and tried to undo my fabulous sewing – yes, I mean it when I attach buttons; they’re really not going anywhere.

So I weighed the buttons.

All of them, in groups.

And, weirdly enough, this Geek-Much? Moment revealed that the Copper Penny buttons were not only heavier, they were 3.5 times heavier. They weighed 0.7 ounces and all the rest about 0.2 ounces.

So off they went.

And on?

Why the lovely ocher colored disks…

Now, these came in third, but since then the second placers have found a new home (!), just like Miss USA waiting in the wings at the pageant, the next runner-up had to step up and do its duty.

And a lovely duty it is. It was hard to take a picture of these that minimized the shine – because these actually look a lot like they’re made from Bakelite-type material, the world’s first plastic fantastique.

Bakelite is one of my favorite things! Here’s a search on google on the word: Bakelite. Check out these bracelets! Here’s the color of my buttons in the classic yellow as a pair of earrings…

Short history of different major Bakelite products invented before 1930
– 1912 – A Bakelite record invented by Thomas Edison. (USA
– 1912 – Bakelite billiard balls invented by Hyat Burroughs. (UK)
– 1914 – The telephone receiver made in Bakelite by Western Electric. (USA)
– 1915 – Eastman Kodak camera gets a Bakelite case. (USA)

I like!

It’s a retro-looking cardigan and now, it has retro-looking buttons.

16 responses to “New Threads Retro Style September 15, 2011”

  1. JelliDonut says:

    It’s lovely!

  2. Risa says:

    That comment always makes me smile. Its always made by someone who sees me sitting serenely on the train and doesn’t know the type A person that I am. I knit BECAUSE I don’t have patience. I cannot just sit here and do nothing without wanting to rip the heads off those around me. Heck, I don’t have the patience to just sit and read, which is why I knit while reading! I really don’t get why patience is necessary for knitting.

  3. Bonne Marie says:

    Exactly: “I knit BECAUSE I don’t have patience.” Well said!

    It is my smoother, too.

    I always enjoy the face pucker/tiny shake of head that happens with the other Non-Patient types, though. ;p

  4. LinzKnitsNow says:

    Oooooh my faves buttons did chosen lol – I think it looks fabulous!

  5. LinzKnitsNow says:

    Sorry for really shocking typing lol (guess I got a tad excited over the buttons ;) )

  6. Ellen says:

    Those were the buttons I chose too! They’re unexpected, friendly, and the color will complement just about any other color. Makes me smile.

  7. Kitten With A Whiplash says:

    Looking great, and like I said – only you can make the final determination!

  8. Kendra says:

    This makes me even more of a geek but it is 350% heavier, not 3.5%.
    The cardigan looks amazing and love the buttons.

  9. Cindy in Happy Valley says:

    I always say that one doesn’t need patience if you love what you’re doing. And how do you get that lovely shaping in the sweater? Is it short rows or just negative ease?

  10. meppybn says:

    Yay, those were my choice too :) really notches up the look 350% !!!

  11. Becky Ganzhorn says:

    Point well taken @ weight of buttons! Thanks! As to patience, I knit in part because I have little patience… Sitting in meetings or watching tv or waiting make me antsy! Knitting (or English paper piecing) to the rescue! Thanks for your blog.

  12. Pam says:

    It’s a beautiful sweater, and those buttons look great on it. I have a fair number of buttons in my collection because I WILL keep buying buttons mid-sweater, and somehow, you can never know till the end what the sweater needs.

  13. Tricia says:

    Simple Goodness! I love it. So copper penny will just have to wait for it’s perfect debut…I feel fall weather today which means lots of fabulous knitting on the horizon. WooHoo!

  14. Robin F. says:

    Great looking sweater. The buttons are perfect as I imagined they would be. I love Bakelite and have many pieces of jewelry made of it. The colors are wonderful and keep their luster thru the years.

  15. Ruthanne says:

    Those are beautiful and really look terrific on the sweater. By the way – will you be releasing this pattern for anyone to buy??? Pretty please?? Beautiful work.

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