New (partially revealed)

Where has the Grumperina gone?

Simply, this knitting thing… all of a sudden I feel like I have two left needles, just like Monica. Lots of frogging doesn’t make good blogging :).

I’ll reveal the Big Project in a second (the one for which I got all that Tilli Tomas silk), but first allow me to publicly congratulate Ms. Bestitched on the arrival of her daughter, LL. My needles are clicking very quickly to outfit the little angel, and although I won’t show you all the details until the “thing” is done, it’s the project for which I’ve selected the Classic Silk.

I’m still loving this yarn. It knits up so easily, and produces such a lovely fabric. Curious about the 20% nylon content, I was playing with the yarn the other day, untwisting the plies. It ends up that this yarn has some elastic in it! Very thin white elastic, plied together with the cotton and silk. No wonder it’s so wonderfully stretchy! And I still can’t stop petting the washed swatch, all fluffed up and filled out. Here’s a photo of the density of fabric before and after washing:

The tweedy goodness is almost too much to handle!

Now, the Big Tilli Tomas project. I loved (loved!) reading your guesses, but, alas, they were all wrong (save for Lauren, who I think had insider info). You all should have immediately known that the project isn’t for me, of course. For starters, I don’t wear brown. I dislike brown so much, that with the exception of a pair of hiking boots, I don’t think I own one article of brown… anything. Second, since when would I be able to afford 9 skeins of luscious silk, $28 each? Uhm, not on a graduate student stipend!

So. I’m knitting a sample for Annie Modesitt‘s new book Romantic Hand Knits (remember when I knit the felted dog bed for MWKDWLT? Same idea.). Annie has given me permission to blog about this project, so here I go!

I’m making a full-length (to the ankles), Egyptian style, silk dress in a gorgeous eyelet/chevron pattern, with a slit. Annie showed me the inspiration in one of her numerous “attire throughout history” books when I visited her house in January, and I think my drooling back then combined with her knack for spoiling me rotten assured that this project would be assigned to me.

Now, to be perfectly clear, I don’t think I would ever wear a garment like this myself. The “no knitted fabric over my butt” rule simply won’t be broken, not even by Annie :). And as I mentioned, I would have never chosen this autumnal palette, nor this expensive silk. This makes the Egyptian dress project that much more exciting for me! I’m the ultimate process knitter (remember the one and only Meg Swansen sock?), and it’s simply unbelievable that I’m getting paid to work with this incredible yarn, and to knit this gorgeous dress. Whether I’ll get to wear the thing after all is said and done is irrelevant, as it has always been.

About the Tilli Tomas Pure and Simple yarn. In one sentence, it is everything you imagine 100% silk to be. But on top of that, it smells like green tea. Well, it actually smells like green tea ice cream from Ginza in Chinatown, but now we’re getting a bit specific. For a yarn sniffer like me, this is a heavenly bonus ;).

36 thoughts on “New (partially revealed)

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  1. carrie

    that sounds like it will be a dream to knit — i adore chevron patterns.

    and while i totally appreciate your “no knit fabric over the butt” stance, surely you will have to try it on once!

  2. rene

    Wow! That looks beautiful! And the way you describe the smell… this is the second time this morning I have wished for scratch and sniff computers. The slight variations in the color are gorgeous.

    Also, I absolutely adore your schematic. :)

  3. Jennifer

    WoW! I agree that horizontal lines knit across my hips and butt would not be the best idea, but boy is that a knockout! And the yarn – I can smell it from here. I may need to go buy some green tea truffles now…

  4. twig

    I love “autumn” colors. I don’t have a rule about no knitted fabric over the butt.

    Therefore, being the generous and selfless person I am, I volunteer to be the recipient of the dress when it’s done. *laugh*

  5. Cara

    That’s going to be SOME dress. Can’t wait to see it finished – are you going to model it ONCE at least?

  6. blossom

    i was looking for some silk yarn and there you are, blogging about this. but at 28/skein i really have to pass… still, working on this yarn must be heavenly!

  7. Kenny

    Oh my gosh!!! How exciting. Annie is getting me to knit her a silk scarf. I just started swatching and am really liking the Tili Thomas yarn. Awesome.

  8. jennifer

    Congratulations. That sounds so exciting. I’m really excited to see you blog the process. I’m sure the dress will be gorgeous when you’re finished.

  9. Rachel

    You’re the second knitblogger I’ve seen this week who is sample-knitting a dress for Annie…I wonder how many dresses her new book will have? And what kind of market there is for knitted dress patterns? I’m pretty sure you aren’t unique in your rule re: knitted fabric vis-a-vis your butt.

    The color is lovely and the yarn sounds divine, though!

  10. Kristen

    Sounds/looks fab. Since you’re not planning to wear it yourself (I’d offer but I’m a 3X!)where are the diminsions coming from? Do you have a mannequin? Does Annie specify? Why is the sky blue? ;)

  11. Jen the Knittingspaz

    The Annie Modesitt dress looks intriguing. And you get to play with $28/skein yarn for the whole thing? Huzzah!

    Aaah… Ginza. I miss the baked crabmeat/scallop and enoki mushrooms with japanese mayonnaise on the half scallop shell. Wish I could find that out here!

  12. shelly

    THAT is a gorgeous dress! I’m sure your fabulous knitting will do the pattern justice. Can’t wait to see it done. Go go go!

  13. Stephanie

    Wow. What a great project. I can’t wait to see how it turns out. Sounds gorgeous, but I’m not sure I could ever wear something like that either.

  14. Beth S.

    No brown, ever, in anything? You’re breaking my heart over here. I LOVE brown! Oh well, at least we agree on pink. ;-)

    This “Egyptian” project is going to be amazing. Looking forward to watching it take shape. The color in that little scrap of ribbing is heavenly.

  15. Angela

    Re knitted fabric over the butt: the proper undergarments make all the difference. Plus, it’s a little hard to tell from that picture, but it seems like those chevrons might skim quite forgivingly over butt imperfections.

  16. J Strizzy

    Aahhhh, the smell of silk yarn… It very well might be the reason I seem to accumulate silk yarn whenever I come across it. I’ve loved it ever since I first tried on a knit silk top as a teenager.

  17. freecia

    Aw man, that’s a once in a lifetime knit! Lucky you to be able to do it for someone else and get paid for it! And it smells like green tea? I just might have to figure out a project for a single skein.

  18. Monica

    Wow wow wow, what a cool project! That silk looks simply luscious, I’ve had it in my mind to try to spin some up to look the same.

  19. Alison

    What is it with dresses made of yarn? The other day I got the most recent issue of “Crochet!” magazine with has a gorgeous chevron dress on the cover. They don’t seem to have updated their website with the new issue yet, but someday when they do you can see a pic of the dress on the cover: http://www.crochetmagazine.com/

    I’d love to think that I could make it someday but I’d never wear something like that. Although maybe shorter, as a tunic . . . hmm…

  20. heatherly

    have you tried the aroma therapy yarns that smell like lavender? i have only seen them online. but the scent is supposed to last 30+ washes.

  21. diana

    Wow, what a great new project and I too love the chevrons. And thanks for the happy welcome for LL and she’s thrilled to be getting a little something from Ms. Grumperina!

  22. anne

    oh yeah! about the clasic silk! and the elastic. this totally slipped my mind when i commented the other day, but be very cautious about ironing it!!

    i was trying out your ironing techniques on my classic silk swatch (ALWAYS save the swatch), and i did not like the results; sort-of like when you iron acrylic kinda. gotta be real real careful . . .

  23. marie in florida

    oh ah and ahh…i have ONE skein of 28$ purple silk; La Luz color “cabernet” yummy and yes, green tea is what it smells like.

    you have a fine figure, i think the dress would look good on you.

  24. Kate

    Wow! It will be gorgeous. I think with your beautiful coloring the autumn colors would look fabulous on you.

  25. lorinda

    Lucky you that you get to knit the to-die-for dress. I wish I weighed thirty-six pounds so I could wear it.

    Wish I could justify knitting one for my skinny nine year old. If I’m going to spend that much money on yarn, it will be mine, all mine.

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