Sunday, 5 February 2006

The Frogging Chronicles

Or, why it’s a good idea to try something on before you wear it to an important and dressy event in which you will be surrounded by architecture students

I knit a top to wear to my sister’s 21st birthday party. I really wanted to wear something I’d made (for my 21st, she glued hundreds of rhinestone, vintage beads and plastic pearls onto a pair of old shoes. My sister is significantly more creative than I am, and considerably cooler). Rushed for time and low on inspiration I chose a top I found in the copy of Stitch’n’Bitch a friend lent me over a year ago. I chose special yarn to make it a more special top, and blithely knit away, learning the make one increase and wrap-and-turn short rows as I went. I loved the fabric that grew as I flashed my pointy sticks and listened to Radio 4 (yes, I am a granny in training), I loved watching each section take shape, I loved that I (me! the uncreative one) was making something to wear to my dear sister’s party. I finished it the night before the party, lightly blocked it overnight and got up early to seam it, sewing in the ends on the train to Sheffield. Ta da!

I didn’t try it on ’til we were already late for the party. I felt so frumpy next to all her elegant friends I wore my outdoor scarf throughout the party, and on arriving home next day buried it in the deepest darkest drawer next to the Eucalan and all my other hidden treasures. Until today.

I love the yarn. Although I was disappointed to find three knots in the five balls that I used, it was really a pleasure to knit with and the fabric is beautiful: cool, smooth, heavy, very soft. I really like the look of contrasting garter stitch with the plain stockinette for a very simple graphic effect.

I also like the keyhole opening at the back, and the lovely button I found at the Button Queen (the kind man there taught me how to make a shank. I did that too on the train, proudly using the last match I had snatched from beside the cooker as we dashed out of the door).

I do not, however, like it on.

I also don’t like the shaping. The bottom is too wide and the decreases into the waist too marked for me. It’s just about OK with jeans but atop my flouncy 1950s skirt it makes me look like an upside down columbine flower.

The final nail in its coffin is this. (Ignore the lumpy seaming. As I sewed in a hurry I determined to come back and redo them when I had time to learn matress stitch properly).

I really really really do not like any morsel of bra peeping out of my clothing, and certainly not in my armpit. No no no, no thank you. Grumperina seems to be the only designer who has noticed this most ugly crime of hideousness, and has thereby gained my undying readership (and determination to knit the Picovoli, if only the yarn would arrive).

So in the course of today, Froggety the Top that Shall be Ripped, has turned from this:

Into this:

Mwahahaha. Ha ha.

1 comment:

Ashley said...

Ugh, there is nothing so discouraging as finishing something and then having to rip it right out. But well done for having the courage to do it and get it over with! (I wonder how Jemima would look in Alpaca Silk?)