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Wheels Keep on Turning Tuesday May 18, 2010

While living in the reality of multiple WIPs, one’s head can start to spin! In just a couple of weeks, Chic Knits will be traveling to the TNNA show in Columbus (wave!) and we’re just about swimming as fast as we can, getting all the stuff ready and packed and woven in and photo’d. WHEW!

So instead of a cardigan, my personal wardrobe Cerisara is looking like, well, a vest! I thought I’d have at least one sleeve done by now but Duty Calls and it’s been lanquishing…


However, this is the perfect time to throw it up on the mannie and have a good look-see. Not only does that help spot any problems or detours, it actually helps motivate me to get going! I want to wear this!!

The yarn (Madril DENIM) is really great for this — the medallions of the lace pop out nicely and you can see that it is barely sheer (this is a DK weight yarn knit at a worsted gauge).

MODS: I made this 1″ shorter than what the pattern calls for, wanting a more cropped look for my short torso-ed frame.

I also knit two less rows of hem ribbing, to keep it in proportion.

Third mod: since my hips are slightly larger than my bust, everytime I made a side increase, I made an increase on the front edges just inside the band, for slightly more ease in the hips.

Other plans? Three-quarter length sleeves are in the works although I haven’t decided on an actual length, but will try it on as I go and go from there.

Who knows if it is going on the road as a FO or will become the road project? I’m at the mercy of the Muse! The Cerisara pattern has a small, easy to remember lace pattern — which is my kind of YO commitment — since my knitting time, especially for personal projects is so limited, so once I get going, it should go quickly.

Notes on Working New Stitches in Pattern: This lace stitch takes advantage of something called “Mirroring”, which in the world of lace is a common convention, when the lace pattern is so small and symmetrical.

If you haven’t done this before, it helps to spread your work out and look at how the lace is worked before and after any newly cast on sts. Your goal is to continue in the small medallion patterns you’ve already established. You will be working new repeats after (and before) established repeats, in the established stitch multiples.

“Thinking in Lace” is sometimes a “forest from the trees” kind of thing. Look at the big picture, then go in and do it stitch by stitch. If you are having trouble visualizing this, find the edge of a medallion and count off the number of stitches to be worked for the next pattern multiple, then mark that area off with a stitch marker. Repeat until all your stitches are used up. Repeat going in the other direction (towards the underarm), for the other side of the side markers.

You work the chart as given up to the end of the chart (from right to left), then for the section after the marker, you read the same row of the chart from left to right, substituting a SSK every time you see a K2TOG or a K2TOG every time you see a SSP (this is called mirroring the decreases). All of the other stitches stay the same.

If you look at the chart you see where the underarm area starts. It is marked by a double red line. The stitches we are going to begin working in the lace pattern are: the underarm st (double red lined), then every stitch to the left of that. Those are the newly cast on stitches and what was previously the edge st.

Count backwards from the stitch marker and you will see that the numbers absolutely correspond. If there are not enough stitches for a full repeat of the lace pattern, those stitches are worked in Stockinette St as shown. It is the same for both underarms.

To borrow another metaphor, it’s kind of like riding a bicycle. The first time you do this, it might feel a little wobbly! That’s natural! But, everything in knitting is one stitch at a time, and once you make it through your first repeat, it is just more of the same. :)

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Monday Morning Mirth May 17, 2010

  Monday Morning Mirth  


Every season there’s a Look that simply can’t be ignored. This year around town, there’s a lot of Acid Denim redux going on but frankly, we can’t be sure it’s just not the recession making people go a little recycle crazy, like I gotta be me, I gotta be green.

Heh. And now that the weather is getting warmer in the fickle Midwest, we’ve seen something that strikes fear into our hearts even MORE than harem pants or holey knees: The Romper.

Worn with mile-high heels and lots of spray tan, this garment yanks us right back to the swinging ’70’s and disco madness, but people, really, should we go there again?

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Fun Fridays May 14, 2010

Fridays, when I was growing up, were for doing the Stroll, shopping after school with my mother, going Downtown then walking home along the river. In fact, those strolls might not have ever taken place if it wasn’t for the first few between mother and dad, who walked very slowly, sharing a paper sack of deluxe mixed nuts, heavy on the pecans, with an extra pound in pocket to be delivered later to my grandma. She often times walked with the young couple, maybe a half-block behind, as if invisible, unannounced, and trailing.

I always looked forward to these retail adventures, where anything could happen, but most likely, it would be all about the shoe.

Now it’s a commonly known fact that I love shoes.

Shoes, however, do not particularly love me. I’ve had rheumatoid arthritis since the early days and after a surgery, have a pinned toe on my right foot. The derring-do of early womanhood with high, high, heels has been tempered to low and fabulous. But one only has to spend a few moments shopping the incredible online shoe sites to see that there’s a plethora of wonderfulness out there for those of us on the low-stroll.

In fact, needing some new party sandals, I found what I thought was the perfect pair on the Kenneth Cole site, shiny, textured quasi-gladiators, with some kind of comfort tech soles that just cried out buybuybuyME! But when I went to Cart and tried to: BAM! Not in my size! OH! What a piercing blow! So instantaneous, so final, so unlike those few moments when you are actually sitting in a Shoe Store and the associate disappears into the back room to check and see. At least, while you’re sitting there in your tubular, glorious peddies, the moment is still alive, it can still happen. And your toes, they wiggle.

So, with this in mind, I hot-footed it uptown aways to see if hope was still an option — there’s a Cole store on Michigan Ave and I ran up State Street, crossed the river, cut through the new (and fabulous) garden just north of Trump Tower, come out through the Wrigley Company arch on Michigan Ave and burst into Kenneth Cole paradise.

They didn’t have it either.

But they did have the will to make a sale. And they got on the phone. And moments later, speaking to Biscayne Bay FL, Aventura (wave!) the deed was done. Online handshakes landline via brick and mortar and happiness ensues!

But not in hand! Perhaps a consolation prize was in order, going up aways, dressing the “top layer” for the summer socials:


Maybe a little cocktail dress for that wedding, that musical, that dinner date: a shiny twill and polished cotton number from Club Monaco with the most intriguing appliqued grosgrain ribbon darts. The zippers, black front and back, are applied on the right side of the dress and although I wouldn’t unzip the back one, one could naughtify the front as needed, according to the function one was attending, or even how late you were into that wedding reception…

river-walk-P1000798I walked home along the river, seeing my shoes everywhere I looked.

Everything was shiny, reflective, metallic and textured. The Trump Tower was filled with a panorama of the skyscrapers on the south side of the river, rippling in the late afternoon sun.


I dreamt about the shoes that looked like the river that reflected in the walls and towers and eyes.


And now in Chicago, via Florida, via Cole and some really nice, nice people, my shoes


Ready to TGIF !!!


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