Monday, October 2, 2006

A trip down memory lane

Thanks to you gals for all the compliments on the white lace bamboo top. I pondered on how best to answer many of you who queried if I have designed it.

What constitutes a designer? Does that mean you start totally from scratch and sketch out what you have in mind? Then do swatching and proceed to knit from start to finish?

I get inspired by the various things I see...this lace top came about as I wanted to try something top down. And then I browsed pattern books that provided lace charts and see which ones I liked. Then worked out gauge and fit; adding the shaping according to my own body measurements.

The cute picot edging came about as I wanted some color constrast. I noticed that I knit mostly single colored garments. I am sure the bottom edge would look just as purty with plain ribbing but then again, it's always fun to test out your own ideas right?

There is also a lot of frogging involved. Especially with the sleeves as I wasn't sure how I wanted it to look. I tried the matching picot but it was a major disaster as it made the lace bits way too over the top! (I am sure some of you would have figured it out but I just had to *try* it to be convinced.)

I love putting things together and I find that I am such a fusspot that even before I start a pattern, I usually try to visualize how the pattern would look when worn on me.

There are times when I don't get it (the style) right -- like the red blouse I gave to Mom; it's so femine and conservatively delicate that it's not me. (But you can't say I didn't try!) LOL.

Or this light lilac cardigan with scalloped edges but a short body fit.

My friend gave me a snort when I wore this. (You know what that means.)

I am not even sure if I am a designer of sorts or perhaps I can be called Queen of Improvisation - as the other students like to call me. [Yup....we always alter and improvise on patterns to improve fit and change certain elements.]

The pattern is scribbled in a few pieces of scraps as I did the number crunching using my trusty calculator. There's 3 in the living room already but I still can't find them whenever I need them! I'll get around to consolidating and writing them one of these days hopefully.

Just over the weekend, I decided that with no projects on hand, it's best that I start reviving one of the oldest WIPs I've got.

This is my 12 year old baby -- to be precise, in Singapore education standards, as a child, it would be a Primary 6 student, taking its PSLE (Primary School Leaving Examination) this year!

I remembered why I ditched it aside then:
It was going to be a dress but I wasn't sure if I could find a seamstress who could help me create a lining for it as it's meant to be off-shoulder.

So going at it for one night, I managed to work some ribbing and cast off; deciding that a tube dress should work well. But alas, it was just too roomy (no, I weigh about the same as I did 12 years ago) and completely shapeless on me. That's what you get when you do not learn to swatch! [Hey, but I've learnt now -- all the ladies who are learning from me start with swatching! And yes, be comforted that I started out pretty much like you all too! (grin)]

Armed with the skills I have in hand now, I started taking a few measurements. Imagine the waist is 4 inches way too big! I have a schematic and decided that I might have enough yarn to do some design on the neckline. And off I ripped.

Happier? Definitely! It looks like this baby would be finished after all!

So what's your oldest WIP?

As if it isn't enough, I also re-started the red mohair jacket again!

A pattern that requires deep concentration as there is action on both the front and back! Did I just ask for more trouble again?


Becky on Tue Oct 03, 01:12:00 AM GMT+8 said...

My oldest WIP is a teddy bear knit using fingering yarn. Been on the needles for like THREE years. [Hangs head in shame.]

ruth on Tue Oct 03, 02:31:00 AM GMT+8 said...

Ok, my oldest WIP is probably 2 years, but that's because I haven't been knitting for over 3 years yet. =)

I'm having trouble with top garments and getting them to fit me just right. Still trying to figure out the gauge/fit/body measurements in a way that it'll fit me just right (probably because I have always been terrible with math). You seem to do it well. =)

Ling on Wed Oct 04, 04:51:00 AM GMT+8 said...

My oldest WIP is about 3 years old! Most of my WIPs are stuff for the kids which are now way too small for them. I need to frog and recycle the yarn!

I think you should call yourself a designer - putting the stitch pattern, yarn, design details, maths (esp the maths!!) and getting a beautiful completed garment at the end. WOW!

Catherine Kerth on Sun Oct 08, 11:44:00 AM GMT+8 said...

love all your knits! beautiful! my oldest WIP is an irish hiking scarf... 20 inches in and i got bored! 1 + years.... you have me beat by a long way!

JoanM on Mon Oct 09, 06:59:00 PM GMT+8 said...

Hi Emy,
Its been a while since we said "hello". Thanks for stopping by my blog. I love your lace designs. I love knitting lace, and I guess I tweak designs a bit, but I am not as talented as you. I am afraid I can top your 12 year old UFO. It is posted on my blog somewhere, but it is also on the UFO Anonymous site It is not strictly my UFO as my mum started it somewhere in the forties or fifties.

craftybernie on Fri Oct 20, 01:11:00 AM GMT+8 said...

Hiya - You are welcome to join the Knit1BlogToo Ring.

If you can kindly join Ringsurf and add the navigation code to your sidebar, then we can get you on board. Please don't forget to read the rules & guidelines etc.

Thanks for your interest.


Peggy on Wed Oct 25, 12:03:00 AM GMT+8 said...

I think I am much like you... I still have WIPs from 10 years ago in my parents house... and stuff I made years ago in general are way too big. I guess baggy was in, way back when?


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