Wednesday, May 19, 2010

A Light Bout of Startitis

I've been ruminating on what to do for a posh tropical wrap for the upcoming trip to Tahiti. A seacell/silk shawl or stole seemed right, and white was the first choice, but it was next to impossible to find white seasilk.  When I got some from a place that supplies it for dyeing I found out why.  It's natural color is a kind of yellowy brown-tan.  It's the color of white things that have aged from too much sun exposure (paper, cloth).  It might be an ironic match for yours truly by the end of the voyage, but I don't think we'll go there.  I quickly understood why it is mainly available in beautiful handpainted colors.  (I should get myself hand-painted?  I think it's called tattooing, and it's a specialty of the South Seas, but I don't think I'll go there, either!!)

Then I had a thing for fancy sea island cotton, which only comes in white, but the yarn was extremely thin and would have to be doubled, which would double the expense, and I just wasn't in love with it somehow.
 The skeins of seasilk actually look creamier in the photo than in real life.  Think dirty cream.  The cotton is laid on top of the seasilk for size contrast.  It seems more of a thick thread than a yarn.

And then I was evaluating the micro area of my closet devoted to dress up clothing suitable for the tropics and realized that aqua would be a cool color that would go with everything.  Eureka!  A new quest began and ended with a kit that contains a pattern and this:

Handmaiden seasilk in Blue Lagoon.  I just had to wind the balls and cast on.  I love how the pattern is lace, but with cables on the borders.  And I think the stole shape will be more versatile (a mega-scarf?) than the traditional triangle-y traditional shawl shape.  I don't even care if I don't get the thing done before we go in July.  What with the small amount of yarn and its light, slippery feel, it would make a good take-along project for the trip.

Meanwhile, the neck and front edges are on the Winter Sunset.  Ends are being woven in; facings tacked down, and then, I think, the ends of the sleeves will need to be whacked off and the cuffs re-knitted to make a more reasonable length.  Great thing about having cut your sweater up the middle from stem to stern--you're much less shy about taking the scissors to it again!

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