Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Alright Already

Cripes, what a pushy bunch. I take time out from a rare family holiday to write a post with photos of a finished project*and what happens? Almost as one, the readers rise up and shout,

"BUT WHERE'S THE PONCHO?"

Perhaps, like global warming and the war in Afghanistan, it's my own fault. I mustn't have been clear that the pink poncho is not, and was never intended to be, a Christmas gift. It's taking far too long for that, and anyhow it can't be worn in this beastly northern climate until May at the earliest. Not to mention that I am enjoying taking my time with it–finding my own way to shape the hood, experimenting with lace patterns, checking out late-1940s couture draping to figure shaping for the cloak.

Yes, cloak. Not poncho. I know–she asked for a poncho; but there's a problem. I hate ponchos. Hate them. I intend no offense to those who love them; I simply do not share your taste. I find them graceless and droopy. And as I am a child of the 1970s, they are forever associated in my mind with aesthetic nightmares like gloppy terra-cotta pottery, tourist-market serapes and macramé plant hangers. I'll be damned if I'll expose my niece to any of that, even if she begs.

I'm turning out to be a very old-fashioned sort of uncle. No–a very old-fashioned sort of aunt. I find that I have nothing but gender in common with the famous, old-fashioned uncles who spring to mind: Remus, Tom, Scrooge. However I closely resemble quite a few old-fashioned aunts: Polly, March, and especially Aunt Alicia in Gigi.

Auntie

Like Aunt Alicia, I adore my niece exactly as she is. And I intend to fix her. Indiscriminately catering to small children's natural sartorial whims is dangerous; it leads to college graduates who go grocery shopping in their pajamas. Noble savages are fine and dandy, but I have no intention of taking one to the ballet.

So though I wish dearly for her to love it, the Pink Thing will honor the spirit and not the letter of the request. For example, on my watch we do not wear clothing that sparkles unless we are going to an evening party. Therefore, in lieu of iridescent novelty yarn extruded from a unicorn's ass, I'm using a pretty but serviceable and sensible wool (Cascade 220 Sport) in pure pink.

We have just had a wholly successful fitting of the finished hood. I didn't want to proceed until I was certain it was the right size and shape, with enough drape to be romantic but not so much as to flop backwards and forwards willy-nilly.

A picture:

Pink Thing Preview

That's it, there ain't no more. I had to bargain to get this one, because the sun came out and the new (pink) snow saucer from L.L. Bean was calling. The client's response was extremely positive. She even attempted a twirl, but as there are still two balls of yarn attached you can guess what happened.

I hope this answers a bit of the curiosity. All kidding aside, I appreciate your interest in the progress of the design. It jolts me from the natural indolence that is my nature. More to come.

*Floradora V.1.0 made a successful maiden voyage today, carrying gift cards which I hear were used to purchase a hamburger.

76 comments:

Judi said...

That picture should be framed.

Knit Purl Gurl said...

EZ would be most proud!

Anonymous said...

will you be my aunty uncle ?

marie in florida
on Ravelry; i'm Mym

Ruby said...

That little one is a cute little angel. Should frame that shot. She is photogenic.

FiberQat said...

Oh!! The cute!! Please! That's covered under the Geneva convention as a limited use weapon. Put. It. Away!

Somehow I imagine you more as Auntie Mame than Aunt March.

Kat said...

What a precious and impish little face! And that non-poncho hooded cape will be glorious. I share your unfortunate childhood memories of the seventies, and was (thank God) never damaged by the fact that I was forced to wear a crocheted Granny square poncho in red, white, and blue with matching corduroy bell-bottomed pants. I loved my Granny dearly for teaching me to knit, but thankfully did not get my fashion sense from her. :)

Sara in WI said...

Of course it is perfect! Nothing less for your special little niece, who is exceptionally photogenic just like her uncle!

Carol said...

Oh dear God, I can't decide whether you are a better photographer, knitting designer or knitter. Exceptional at all three. She is gorgeous.

Suzanne said...

I share your view on ponchos...stemming from one I owned during the late '60's from Mexico...enough said about that. It did go nicely with the embroidered jeans. My favorite aunt....Auntie Mame! A great movie.

Marcy said...

Auntie....Mame? No Mame? She would say forgo the poncho and just get naked.

anita said...

I have forgotten the book, but there is a wonderful character called "Aunt Georgie" who does embroidery!

Anita said...

Here you are:

Aline said...

that pose could melt a deep freeze...the hood is beautiful!

Anita said...

Sorry wouldn't let me leave a link. But it is "The Freaks of Mayfair" by E.F. Benson. If you google, you'll find a link to a beautiful Folio version, with lovely illustrations, including one of Aunt Georgie doing his embroidery!

kelly klem said...

Adorable (with a glimmer of ornery). I like capelets.

vickib said...

Beautiful so far!

I do share the poncho disdain. Owned one in the 70's myself. meh.

KnitNana said...

Oh, what a sweet little princess...and yes, Aunt you are absolutely right, especially about the ballet.

Those eyes are played up beautifully by the PINK THING in progress! Frame that for posterity!
:)

The Foggy Knitter said...

I'm with you on the poncho issue.

Confession time: I thought of the same book Anita - have you read the Lucia books by the same author?

quietdanmn said...

A lovely photo of a beautiful child, that shares with us your multitude of talents as photographer, designer and craftsman.

You're going to be a great aunt/uncle/whatever label you wish to use. She is going to be one very lucky girl to have you in her life!

Eileen said...

I'm an Auntie Mame. And I like it that way...I'm not so sure if my nephews do...I approve of your means to a fix.

All joking aside, that is a lovely, lovely Pink Thing. Exquisite.

Maux said...

Just a warning, Franklin. If you actually make a tasteful but girly cape, you're going to be asked to scale it up for the rest of us.

Jan E said...

She's lovely. And very fortunate to have someone with good taste in her life. Thanks for the peek.

Fujiyamamama said...

Clearly the look on that child's face is saying, "Well, where's the rest of the d*mned pink poncho I requested already?"

Crochet Goddess said...

I love the hood. The color is great and she is a very pretty model.

WonderMike said...

That photo is PERFECT!! I can't wait to see what royal bit of couture you create. That's one lucky princess. :)

Lisa said...

That's all well and good if you like pink yarn but what I really want to know is what Dolores is up to for New Years. Spill.

Barb said...

I had to pick myself up off the floor to write this, I was laughing so hard! You sound like a perfect uncle!! And the hood is amazing -- I'm sure she will love it far and away more than anything she's seen in catalogs or Disney movies.

And thanks for the update -- I've been wondering!

Gail said...

Good for you! If this was Ravelry, I would be clicking on "agree."

Anyway, you can always tell Abigail she is her own version of a "Little [Pink] Riding Hood." Or, tell her a princess wore something like it. Then let her twirl!

Sarah said...

I always thought the things that made an artist were cigars and jewelry, but apparently it's Cascade 220. Beautiful!!

Riin said...

So that's where novelty yarn comes from.

Syd said...

I always wondered how iridescent novelty yarn was made! Hood is yummy, Niece is adorable.

Phyllis said...

I really like the white edging on the hood. Clearly this garment has a lot more going for it than an ordinary poncho would. And it is very pink.

Rach said...

I too despise ponchos. I'm hoping that this pattern would cure me of it just enough to knit one for my daughter who loves them. She was given one by my mother ( who also dressed me in uncountable 70's horrors. Which were hideous even at the time.) Child O'mine also loves pink. "Pink is in my heart" Needless to say I look forward to the pattern, that challenge that I know it will be and seeing my child's smile.

Seanna Lea said...

I now want to make a framed poster (or maybe a plush) unicorn extruding the sparkliest pinkest nastiest yarn (from the fun fur era) from its behind.

Madame Leiderhosen said...

Welcome to the International League of Aunties. Your cape and auntie-gravity boots should arrive shortly.

It's a lovely hood, but the girl is a wonder. Knit on!

Rosi G. said...

Luckily you are nothing like my hoochie mama twin aunts who, even at age 50, are still prancing about in mini skirts and stilletos, dancing salsa until the wee hours of the morn.

Oh wait....you aren't right??

Abigail is SO adorable.

Harpa Jónsdóttir said...

A cloak like this is perfectly suited for the ballet. Or a trip to the ice cream store.

HipDroppedStitches said...

Franklin, that must be the most perfectly delicate, perfectly drapey, perfectly lacey, and perfectly pink hood ever... Abigail is such a lucky little girl... thank you for sharing that precious photo with us!

Anonymous said...

Please forgive my impatience -- I have not been nagging you in the form of comments (okay, maybe just once), but "Where's the poncho?" has figured largely in my internal comments ever since you first mentioned it. The hood is perfection itself, and well worth the wait. And of course Abigail is perfection personified as well!

Denise L.

Nik said...

I love her face and eyes as they are framed by that hood. They could be read as either angelic or mischievous. That's the perfect pink for little girls.

Moondancer5 said...

I'd like to caption that picture:
"A novelty yarn!? In MY collection?!!"

Oh, my favorite Aunt! "With teeth like that I could have devoured half of Europe. But I can't complain, I had a good bite!"

A beautiful hood. I hope I get a better look at Vogue next month...

Karen in VA said...

The 70's were not a good fashion decade - I know I owned at least one crocheted poncho...If the hood is any indication, this cape is going to be gorgeous...And that is one precious picture; I agree with previous posters, it needs to be framed....

Kathy Put said...

How can you look at those eyes and refuse her anything? She is so cute!

Michele said...

What a wonderful photo :) And I do hope there will be a pattern to purchase when you are finished. My little princess would love such a cape.

Kath said...

You are absolutely right, I mean if you didn't intervene could you forgive yourself if she ended up wearing something like shorts with ugg boots? ;)

Susan said...

good luck finding ortolans at your local Kroger.

tricotchick said...

Oh, it's loverly! As is darling Abby. Thank you!

=Tamar said...

Oh, what a picture. *sigh*
I want the pattern for the cloak...

It's just as well you're not
like Aunt Dahlia, even though
she is the good and deserving aunt.

Gail H said...

That hood is absolutely gorgeous! Tastefully feminine for a charming girl!

Jules said...

Abigail gets prettier every time we see her!

I just read your article in the new issue of Piecework, and it is wonderful and hysterically funny! I may have to knit a set of reins now. The expression on little Savannah's face is priceless. :)

Jeanne said...

Franklin, I love you! You are perfect in every way!

MJ said...

I am so relieved. I could not picture you knitting a pink poncho.

Elizabeth said...

It looks lovely. Perfect drape!

tamara said...

Wow. The hood is beautiful!

Not to jump all over you, but would a "Big Girl" version make it's way into the world, (in a more subdued colour, of course) when the small version is complete?

There's something very Audrey Hepburn about the fall of that hood....love it!

Bonnita said...

What a twinkle in her eye! She is so lucky to have an uncle like you.

Quilting Mama said...

It is a beautiful hood and her face is precious. The final result should be just as princess perfect.

Marin (AntiM) said...

From the Society of Girls Raised in Texas Society and Forced to Wear Ponchos for All Dress Occasions,* thank you, thank you, and stick to your guns on the poncho thing.

*even though some of us were a little tomboyish and always losing our ponchos under the bed or besmirching their snowy-white fringe with cactus bits. I am not making any of this up.

Tracy said...

"Indiscriminately catering to small children's natural sartorial whims is dangerous; it leads to college graduates who go grocery shopping in their pajamas."

Absolutely, this. Could you please uncle a few hundred more children, for the benefit of society?

And Abigail has got the Audrey Hepburn ingenue glance DOWN. Could not have a better mug for that hood, and vice versa.

Lee Bernstein said...

Loved your interview on Fiber Beat. Happy to find this blog. Best wishes for a great New Year.

Pásztohy Lili said...

hi bookcrafty franklin? i picked you so will receive the gift but i need to know your address and i can tell you there's no moon out here cloudy and freezing cold but sure the moon can see me thanks for commenting my doodledog you surely deserve the gift you are one of the lucky trio bye and thanks for coming and finding me and saying hi and this and that is great and i like your things and knitting and words and your niece is looking a bit like my luca cousin and her voice is the funniest part see you bookcrafty later and don't forget the address bye bye-bye

Anonymous, too said...

The hood is cute, the model is even cuter.

But, if you're so in touch with your "auntie" side, why does a night out with Dolores leave you looking like Uncle Fester??

Cheryl said...

That's a beautiful hood. Not to whine or anything, but where's the rest of it? I really, really need to knit one. And then an adult-sized version, please?

dale-harriet said...

Franklin - that's as lovely, gentle, feminine and beautiful child (and PICTURE of a child) that I can imagine; she is the soul of Victorian fresh beauty. Be sure to save that one to put in a silver frame on the table on her wedding day!

Emmy -.^ said...

I'm inspired by your blog^^

Gail (nosenabook) said...

I admit to curiosity, although I didn't ask. I'm glad to know of this resolution.
The drape of the hood was certainly worth the trouble you took with it.

AgTigress said...

I think that when the garment is complete, as a gorgeous hooded cloak, its fortunate recipient will love it even more than a poncho!
And I echo what others have said about that photograph; it is beautiful.

KarenJ said...

Very cute. Very pink. A very Happy New Year to you!

Anonymous said...

Thank God no Poncho for Miss Lovely.

A cape/cloak will be sooooo much better for twirling! I will forever see in my mind . . .a unicorn with iridescent novelty yarn extruded from it's ass whenever I see it on the shelf again! Thank you.

Lilly said...

I see a Twirlstar knock-off in your future...
http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/twirlstar

Brad Fallon said...

Sweet little princess! This pic should really be framed...

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StringGeek said...

She is adorable. I can't wait to see the finished product.

Liz said...

That third tag brings back (bad) memories! Lovely hood, and a great picture as ever...

Terri said...

Cute pink hat. Your niece has grown up to quite a young lady. It seems like yesterday that I was reading about her as baby. Time flies.

Molly said...

I heard you on the radio talk about how you knit for your 4 year old niece who has you wrapped around her little finger. I laughed - I also have a 4 year old niece who similarly has me wrapped! I wish I could post a picture of her wearing the first sweater I ever knit. for her. You would LUV HER. :) Happy Niece Knitting.

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