half-assed knit blog
half-assed knit blog
half-assed knit blog

Gigantic Gaping Fifi Chunks

Fifi is a whore. A filthy, diseased whore. I hate you, Fifi.

I have WIP guilt. Plus, if I do the NaKniSweMo thing, I’ll be ignoring Fifi for yet another month. So I thought I should at least get the body done, if not the stupid sleeves. My brilliant plan was to put in some little slits at the hip. I like side slits. They’re cute and give the Giant Hips a little extra wiggle room. But there was a problem.

I should have foreseen the problem.

I blame my rampant stupidity.

See, I knit Fifi with a whole lot of negative ease. That’s fine, because Calmer is stretchy. There isn’t very much waist and hip shaping in the pattern. That’s fiiiiine, because Calmer is stretchy. But guess what. If you introduce slits to the sides, Calmer stops stretching at that point, because there’s nothing pulling at it. The result is gigantic gaping chunks of non-shirt, instead of small, cute slits. Well, crap.

I tried Fifi on. Noted the gigantic gaping chunks. Noted the uneven stitches, the weird random wrinkles (how can it possibly wrinkle? Thanks to Exxxtreeeeeme Negative Ease, the thing is sized for a five-year-old), the armholes that appeared to be too big, and also the gigantic gaping chunks. Then I noted that I was trying it on with a sports bra and sweatpants and that surely couldn’t be helping things any.

Changed into a proper bra and pants, and things looked a little better. A little.


Yeah, I experimentally tied up a gigantic gaping chunk with some Unnecessary Ribbon. I don’t know what else to do. I can’t leave them as gigantic gaping chunks. That’s just not attractive.

I can rip back and reknit without the slits, but I think it’ll cling too much towards the bottom. I can reknit with extra hip increases, but that would draw a lot of attention to the messy-looking purl columns running down the sides. I don’t know why they’re messy-looking, but they are. I can shorten it to the point above the slits, since it fits okay up to there, but I think that would be a bit too short.

Or I can do the ribbon thing. Eh. I think it looks a bit trashy, especially given that the top is so fitted. But maybe a bright peach cutesy cable-knit top can’t look trashy. I don’t knoooow.


Fifi is an armless WHORE.

Thinking too much gives you wrinkles!

Ah, the wisdom of Malibu Stacy.

I do not feel like thinking lately. I just want to sit in front of the TV, a glazed look in my zombie eyes, and knit something. Something where I can follow a pattern as written and not have to think. Unfortunately I have reached a point in most of my WIPs where thinking is required.

· The Fake-astanje Cardigan needs sleeves, which means I have to figure out the sleeve decreases. Thinking!

· The monster hat still has to be written up (and knit), and although it’s an easy pattern, I can’t figure out a good way to do the teeth. More thinking!

· The Mini Maiden cardigan thing is currently taunting me via a tiny, unblocked swatch. “Are you sure this is going to work? Does this swatch really look right?” Shut up until I block you, swatch. But that cardigan needs to be transferred from idea to pattern, in any case. Lots of thinking!

· And then there’s Fifi. Oh, Fifi.

Doesn’t it look like it’s almost finished?


Guess what. It isn’t. I’ve done as much mindless work on it as I can, but now I have to think. I want some little slits at the bottom and I have to decide where to place them. I want to add 3/4 length sleeves, with big slits that are cinched together by more Unnecessary Ribbon, and I’m not quite sure how I’m going to work that.

Thinking! So much thinking! Even thinking about the amount of thinking requires too much thinking!

So I have turned to my only WIP that doesn’t require thinking. My good old shove-in-my-purse-when-I-need-a-portable-project, the Knotted Openwork Scarf. It’s been on the needles since winter, because I try not to work on it unless I want something mindless. Well, the time has come. Bring on the mindless!

I rescued it from yarn bin exile yesterday and I swear I’ve doubled its length in one evening of knitting. Enough that I had to scrunch it up to take a picture.


The pattern is here: Knotted Openwork Scarf. Go ahead and click on that. Look at the scarf shown there. Then look at mine again. It’s the same pattern. I swear it is. Can you see it?


No? How about now?


Just a little, maybe? I saw a gorgeous version of this scarf done in Manos, and that’s what prompted me to try it with my useless skein of Araucania Magallanes. Seriously, this yarn is useless. It’s very pretty, but useless. Scratchy, single-ply, thick-and-thin, completely impractical. But somehow it works for this scarf, even though I’ll probably have to soak it in hair conditioner to make it soft enough to wear.

Also, it requires no thinking. It’s a 4-row pattern; rows 1 and 3 are just purling, and row 4 is a repeat of row 2, just shifted over a few stitches.

The only problem is, it seems to knit up so quickly that soon it’ll be finished and I’ll have to… gulp… think again.

I think Malibu Stacy may be on to something. I’ve noticed some little wrinkles under my eyes already. I’m only 25 and my youth has already left me! DAMN YOU, THINKING! DAMN YOU TO CEREBRAL HELL!

I have an evil plan.

I’ve decided what to do about the monster hat. I’m going to rewrite the pattern completely – instead of trying to match my hat exactly – and then test-knit the new version. Because the only thing better than owning one ridiculous head-eating monster is owning two ridiculous head-eating monsters.

Of course I have no yarn. Some stasher I am. I rummaged through my yarn bin and the only appropriate thing I found was a gold-ish ball of Elann’s Highland Wool. Thing is, I’m not sure 109 yards is enough for a hat with earflaps and i-cord ties, and if I buy another ball I’ll have to place an Elann order, and if I place an Elann order, I will buy EVERYTHING.

I have to go to Michaels to get some giant googly eyes, so I suppose I’ll just pick up a ball of Patons Classic Wool. Yes. Must be good. *twitch*

Maddy is almost done. Its pattern is, um, not.


Fifi is nowhere close to being almost done, possibly because I’ve been ignoring it and it stubbornly refuses to knit itself. But I’ve at least split the sleeves off and started the body.


My ball of Royal Bamboo has spontaneously sprouted a mouth (not pictured), and is using said mouth to yell at me for not knitting with it yet. But I have promised myself that I won’t start anything new until Maddy is done. No bamboo headband, no Monster Hat II: Electric Cliché-a-loo, no doing evil Diamond Mesh Lace type things to that skein of Mini Maiden in the yarn bin. I will be good. I will be good.

P.S. I fail at being good. It’s Sunday and I ordered yarn again. I only spent $25, and got something I’ve wanted for a long time, so I don’t feel too guilty, but – what is it about Sundays? I wonder if I can set my computer to block all yarn shops on Sundays.

I’m not saying what I bought, because it should make for some lovely yarn pr0n when it arrives.

A Tale of Two Boobies

Because I am not particularly well-endowed in the boobage department, I don’t have many garments that scream “HAY TITS!” I mean, my girls are just not conducive to that sort of thing. But one garment that does scream exactly that is my good old soul-eating Lelah.

I wore it today to go bra shopping, as it’s the sort of top that really highlights whether or not a bra is fulfilling its boob-trapping duty. Because of my aforementioned itty bitty titty club membership, I mostly wear sports bras, and have no real bras except for one poor, overworked black strapless. La Senza was having a sale, so off I went.

Since I keep wanting to knit things like Lelah and Coachella, I was on the lookout for strapless bras and halter bras and all those fancy torture device type things. I grabbed a handful of 34Bs and 34As and a few outliers just to be adventurous, a 32B, a 34C, and hit the changerooms.

Of course hardly anything fit. This was not surprising. Bras never fit me properly. What did surprise me was that the one bra that more or less fit was… the 34C. Er. Wait, what?

I got one of the saleswomen to measure me.

Her: Hmm… you’re in-between band sizes.
Me: Of course I am.
Her: You should be… a 32.
Me: I tried a 32 and I couldn’t even get into it.
Her: Yeah, well you’re probably (blah blah something squeeze something I don’t understand). So, 34 then. And let’s see…
*measuring tape around boobs*
Her: Well, you’re measuring as a D…
Her: Yeah, okay, I think you should try a 34C.

So there it is. Confirmed. I trudged back to the bins of bras and started acquainting myself with this scary, unfamiliar territory – the C-cup bin.

I used to believe that every woman in the world was a 34B, because that would explain why every store is always sold out of 34Bs. But now I know. Every woman in the world is a 34C. And I loathe all of you. Give me back my bras!

I found the last nude clear-strapped convertible 34C in the store. Not exaggerating. It was buried in a bin instead of hanging on the wall with the others. It was missing a strap and inserts, which a saleswomen kindly stole from a 36B for me. You’ve really got to scavenge for those 34Cs. I also scored a convertible racerback bra and a regular push-up.

All three bras yell “HAY TITS”, and quite loudly too. I may as well enjoy my newfound C-cups, at least until I go to a proper bra shop and they declare me a 36A and scoff at how mucky La Senza’s sizing is.

Now, all of this is tangentially related to knitting because I’m seeking out bras for my deliciously skanky knits and all, but here is some real knitting content:


Fifi has been started! That pic was from a couple of days ago; it’s now sitting on scrap yarn to see if it’s the right size for splitting off the sleeves, and also so that I could yoink the 24″ circ cord to start Coachella. I am loving the pattern, and of course the delicious Rowan Calmer. It looks crazy complex, but it’s so easy! Assuming that the pattern doesn’t suddenly become unintelligible, I highly recommend it.

Hooray for knits that do not make me want to stab things (ahem, Maddy-silk-thing-whatever, I am talking to you).

And no, Fifi is not supposed to have a ribbon ’round its neck. But I put one there. Because I can.

The long stockinette nightmare is (almost) over!

I really do barf on stockinette a lot in this blog. It’s just that it’s… not very interesting. Hullo, I’m Captain Obvious, nice to meet you.

But anyway…


I’ve gotten a little farther since that picture was taken, and just started the waist decreases. And when those are done, it means I get to start the interesting bit! You can sort of see it in the sketch:


The darker bits are the lace panels. Three of them; I don’t think I’m going to put one in the back. Or maybe I will. I do change my mind often about these things. The important thing is that they’re not stockinette. Well, there are stockinette triangles in there, but that’s all right. A little bit of stockinette is a pleasant break, a lot of stockinette is mind-numbingly, eye-stabbingly boring.

I need a name for this damn top. Everybody makes up cute names for their original designs, and I am not good with the cute names. The Silk Thing That Cost Too Damn Much And Will Probably Stretch Out Of Shape After Two Wears But Fuck It, I Don’t Care is much too long, and not very catchy, and not at all cute.

On a “screw you, stockinette” note, I’m all ready for my next project.


That’s Fifi, by French Girl. I nominated it for the next Sexy Knitters Club KAL and it looks like it’s going to get picked, so hurrah, I’ll have other people to knit it with. Look at all those delicious cables and ribby things and other bits that are definitely not plain stockinette. Weeee!