Is Starshower the new Honey Cowl? Only time will tell (but it looks good).

Starmania

Dear Kay,
While you are returning to the real world, I wanted to show you some sweaters which will remind us all of why Miss Starmore is suing everybody. If this entry were on Broadway, it would be called “Color! A Musical.” I cannot get over the vibrancy of these beauties.
Admire, if you will, this wee Starmore from Evelyn. Ach! Lurvly!
Evelynstarmore.jpg
She writes: “It is actually a Jade Starmore design, from Collector’s Item, knit in the old Starmore yarns (snapped up just before they were discontinued), and I made it for my younger son AJ, who just turned 5. This is size 2/3 and fit him for a little bit after I finished it last winter, because he is skinny. (And yes, I do know that is Stitch, not AJ, modelling the sweater. A variation on the Patented Becky Headless pix.) I honestly can’t tell you how long it took, because I have a minimum of 15 projects going at all times (there, I said it) and that provides a suitably pleasant blur as to the labor involved in any one particular knitted item.
“What did I learn? Well, first of all that shetland wool that looks kind of tame when you buy it comes alive, color-wise, when it gets into fair isle. Do not doubt the great Alice & Jade when you are looking at their yarns all lined up next to each other. I learned the two-handed fair isle method from the Philosopher’s Wool video (played in lieu of a chick flick one night when my husband was out of town and the kids were in bed), practiced by doing one sleeve on a (still unfinished) PW cardigan for practice, and then plunged into this sweater, learning the two circs method from Socks Soar when I got to the sleeves and really didn’t want to deal with dps after all that lovely circular stuff.”
Way to work it, Evelyn. Mason-Dixon Knitting Lifelong Learner Award to you.
Angela’s Stashes
The color in this pair of Starmores from Angela makes me crazy. The first is Erin:
angelaerin.jpg
She writes: “I’ve actually decided to rip out Erin, so I can’t say that I’ve completed this one yet. I’m going to re-knit and swap the yellow at the top of the beasties for the old-gold shade in the checked pattern. Otherwise, I will carry on as before. Her sweaters don’t take that long to complete, I finished Donegal in a couple of months–maybe 3? (It was the only thing I worked on though, now that I have entered the land of many WIPS, who knows how long it could take?)”
You know, Angela, I see what you mean about swapping out the old gold. I’m not sure I’d have the steam to rip and change, but then, I’m not the one knitting Starmores either.
This is her Donegal:
angeladonegal.jpg
Curves in knitting are always interesting. This Donegal is flat-out beautiful.
Thanks, y’all, for showing us your fantasmic things. Kay, I hope you’re one-tenth as inspired by these as I am. I’m heading out of my stockinette rut, I can just feel it.
Love,
Ann
PS If anyone else out there has Starmores to share, send us your tired, your poor, your Starmores yearning to breathe free.
PPS Puhlease, y’all, check out Polly’s headbanging tweedy aran Starmore at her weblog, All Tangled Up. Polly constantly amazes me with the complex work she does, and I have to give her credit for pointing me toward smaller and smaller needles. I need to ask her how small she has gone. Speaking of teeny, here’s a Tokyo knitter, Minako, who gets REALLY small: Tiny Stitches.

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16 Comments

16 Comments

  1. Ann–Thank goodness for our English friends, who taught us the word ‘gobsmacked’ and how to use it in a sentence, i.e., ‘I was gobsmacked to see these amazing Alice Morestar sweaters knitted by our friends Evelyn and Angela.’ I am caught between feeling inspired to greater effort and adventure, and feeling like laying down the old bamboos and taking up making melted plastic suncatchers to dangle from suction cups on my windows, since that is apparently the highest and best use of my meager handcrafting skills.
    Do ya spoze Evelyn will sue us if we start showing all our finished objects modelled by stuffed animals? And have you heard from Lady Voldemort yet? Love, Kay

  2. Kay–Did I mention that Hubbo has contracted mononucleosis? A 41-year-old Hubbo with kissing disease. Unbelievable–that’s a four-week kind of virus, for those of you not familiar with it. At his urging I have cancelled every appointment for ME, too, in order to minimize the possibility that I should get sick myself. Net of this is that I can now sit here, right smack in front of my computer, for hours at a time! I can unapologetically KNIT! Who knew potential illness could be so satisfying?
    Melted plastic suncatchers. I am in the process of spitting a half-filled cup of coffee (milk only) on my keyboard.
    Re Evelyn, I just hope she and Angela don’t figure out that I am pretending that I actually knitted these things. I’ll rewrite this entry once they stop looking.
    Re Lady Voldemort, surely to goodness her rovatron web bot will get to us eventually. As long as we keep writing Starmore, Starmore, Starmore, she’ll sniff us out.

  3. Hey Mister– yeah, YOU, Hubbo. How, exactly, did you manage to get mono AT YOUR AGE?!! It’s downright undignified.
    Hope you don’t get it Ann. Hear it’s nasty, and you can’t even really get much good blog material out of it now that Emma has taken full possession of all poxes, plagues, and pestilence with her recent vivid-to-the-point-of-itch-inducing post on Chicken Pox–one could never top it and why would one even want to try? Is Hubbo skulking around the house in moany husband-with-sniffles fashion, or is he able to somehow carry on with the manly duty of Going To Work? Keep us apprised. Love, Kay

  4. Ann, Kay.
    I did not fully confess. Donegal is not knit with the original yarns at all.
    It is knit with St. Ives sock yarn, 1 skein of variegated Regia (that bright pinky/orangey colour) and some Harrisville Shetland straight off the cone.
    Mono? I am shocked, and amused…

  5. Angela–Shocked? We’re the ones who are shocked–that you would confess, just like that, to SUBSTITUTING on a Starmore. Gulp. Call your lawyer.
    Your colors are so on the mark that I never considered the possibility that you’d cooked them up yourself. Beautimous!

  6. Oh gosh, there’s my sweater! On Mason-Dixon! (I have just closed my office door to squeal and revel in privacy.) Kay, I promise no copyright will ever be claimed in Stuffed Animal Models. Although if you really want to do the Evelyn Method of Animal Modelling, you will pick one that matches your child’s personality. In his mind, my son AJ IS Stitch. (“He is bulletproof, fireproof and can think faster than supercomputer!”) I just know it.

  7. Kissing disease? Is that what we call glandular fever? What teenagers get? Oh, well……..
    St.Ives sock wool? In an A.S.? Well done you – has anyone ever done an acrylic Starmore? Does that warrant capital punishment?

  8. LOL, Jill, at the thought, the very NOTION of an acrylic Starmore. Or Fassett, for that matter. In fact, you might be stoned or burned at the stake for suggesting the concept. If I were you, I wouldn’t answer the doorbell for a while.
    I for one think Morestar should emulate Kaffe in his openhearted encouragement of knitters in choosing their own colourways. I think in his most recent Rowan patchwork book he is quoted saying something like, ‘I can’t wait to see the interpretations of this pattern that quilters come up with on their own’–presumably with or without Kaffe’s own line of fabrics. And he doesn’t seem to be suffering, economically, from people substituting away on his designs, or selling the occasional fruit of their labor on eBay. To the contrary–his legend grows, untainted by nasty and probably somewhat embellished tales of lawyers’ threats.
    That’s what I think, anyway. Generosity is fun AND profitable! xox Kay

  9. Well said, Kay. I agree completely. Generosity repays itself. Now, ladies (and gentlemen–has Jon started knitting yet?) I have a technical question.
    I am a right-hand-all-the-way-off-the-needle knitter. People used to laugh until I showed them how June HH said to do it this way. Slower, but more consistent tension. Anyway, she recommends doing FI by knitting one color, slipping the other color, then going around a second time with second color, slipping the first. Has anyone ever done this? Is it harder to keep up with the pattern? I am an INCREDIBLY slow FI knitter with all that picking up and putting down, and I’m not coordinated enough to learn the 2-handed way.

  10. Mary Neal–That’s exactly how I do Fair Isle, courtesy of the same book, the beloved Principles of Knitting. I’m a one-handed knitter, too, have tried two-handed Fair Isle but am fatally spazzy about it. And forget knitting continental left-handed. It’s like walking on my hands. Slip stitch Fair Isle is the only way I can manage. This method gets hairy when you’re doing purlside Fair Isle on a garment that is not worked in the round, so it’s not ideal in terms of keeping easy track of where you are. I did a cardigan for niece Ann worked flat, and it was a real Alzheimer’s buster to get the hang of that. The confusing part comes when you’re on the back side, you’ve slipped the first color stitches, and you’re doing the second color. The stitches on the left needle are a crazy color mix of stitches you have already knit and slipped stitches which reflect the pattern row BELOW the one you’re working on. So you have to count very carefully and not pay attention to the colors on the left needle. But in the round, where you never purl, it’s fine.
    Apologies to dudes and non-knitters. I’m done now.
    Kay–Well put indeed about generosity.

  11. You guys totally lost me with that discussion of the one-handed slip-stitch Fair Isle. It’s like you lapsed into an obscure sister-in-law dialect in which there are 35 different words for ‘snow’. I’m sure the dudes and non-knitters are crossing the border as we speak. They’re thinking, well now, THAT was fun. But hey, if you managed to help Mary Neal with whatever the hell she was perplexed about, more power to ya.
    Love,
    Kay who has done a tiny bit of fair isle but couldn’t begin to explain her method and doesn’t know if she uses one hand, two, or some combination of one and two.

  12. Ann,there’s a good reason that traditional Fair Isle and Norwegian knitters knit with both colours,stranding across the back and in the round.It’s to avoid madness.
    Slip Stitch Fair Isle madness.
    Very sad…
    x

  13. Wow. I’d never even consider doing it any way other than in the round. I was wondering if THAT was too hard to keep up with. Just thinking about doing it both K and P is making my head hurt. I hope Ann loves her sweater. (Of course she doesn’t. Kids don’t.) I hope Buffy loves Ann’s sweater. Of course she does.

  14. That colorwork is beyond my abilitites at the moment so no advice to share, I’m afraid. The most I can muster is “wish I could do thaaaaaaaaaaat”. Wow.

  15. Lawson and Ann got into a hanger fight today, so Ann took all of her sweaters off of the hangers in order to protect herself from her crazed brother (these are the child-sized plastic hangers). Later I discovered her closet floor covered with these sweaters and had Ann put them back on the hangers. Shortly after she came into my room with that very sweater Aunt Ann knitted for Niece Ann and asked for help putting it back on the hanger. She told me she wants to wear this one to school when it gets cold. AOT.
    Love ya,
    Buffelda

  16. Buffy–I love the matter-of-fact way you say, “Lawson and Ann got into a hanger fight today.” Sort of like, “So, after Buffy finished pouring maple syrup over my head . . .” as if that were an OK thing to DO. Glad to hear Niece Ann has figured out what a pain those purlside slip-stitch Fair Isle rows were, and that she should be pathetically grateful to her addled aunt.
    x0x0 Aunt Ann