I posted this as a WIP a little while ago, and I'm pleased to report that it's finally all finished. Now all it needs is a special occasion for a trip out of the house! (Hint to Tim: hmmmm, how about for dinner for Valentine's Day?)
The pictures aren't really that exciting - it's been colder than usual here, so I wimped out and took pictures inside.
I'll try to get an actual action shot sometime :)
Pattern: Little Green Clutch from the 2007 IK Holiday Issue
Yarn: SWTC Yin (#820) and Yang (#836), used less than a skein of each. NOTE: Even though the yarn colorways have different numbers, they are the exact same colorway - SWTC would have done better to match the colorway number between the two yarns since they intend for them to pair together. Also, the photos on the SWTC of the different colorways are horrible, very non-representative of what this yarn offers (although as my efforts attest, it's hard to get a picture that really shows how pretty this yarn is).
Needles: #10 Brittany Birch straight needles and #6 Addi Natura 16" circulars
Started: December 2007
Finished: January 2008
Will I make this again? Maybe, but probably not. This is an awesome pattern for a little clutch and would work with a wide variety of yarns (even non-sparkly ones, LOL). I'm more of a big purse person though. I think this particular clutch will get plenty of use, but not sure I need more than one :) This was the first pattern that I thought of when I opened the present and saw the Yang, and I think one of the better patterns out there for this style of yarn.
My only alterations from the pattern were related to yarn substitution. The pattern calls for you to hold two strands of Tilli Tomas Disco Lights (another yarn with sequins) together for the body of the clutch and then a single strand of the Disco Lights for the upper edge of the purse and the little strap. That would definitely be too sparkly for me. I also didn't think I had enough of the Yang for that to work and I had a skein of the Yin anyway, so I used one strand of Yang with one strand of Yin. The resulting fabric texture and degree of sparkliness was perfect. Also, I decided that even though I had enough Yang left to do the handle and upper edge of the clutch, it would be better (ie less scratchy) to use the Yin instead. Worked great, and my wrist doesn't get scratched by sequins.
The Yang is definitely not a yarn that I would normally knit with but it was interesting to experiment with it, and I can see now where this type of yarn can be useful. The Yin on the other hand is really a wonderful yarn, probably the best yarn that I've seen from SWTC. I'm not a huge fan of SWTC yarns, but the fiber blend in this case results in a soft yarn with pretty drape. I'm not sure how durable it will be, but I can see using it for a special hat or scarf, or even for lining stranded colorwork hats.
I found a wonderful iridescent silk fabric (on sale at Textile Fabrics) for the lining. When you look at the fabric straight on, it looks sort of blue/purple, but when you look from above it's more red/purple. Very interesting fabric. It's impossible to get a picture that shows off the lining, but here's an attempt:
This project, like a million others, highlights that the place where I need the most work with my knitting (and with my sewing too) is in finishing. I get all twitchy to be DONE and so I have to take a deep breath to calmly work through the finishing details. I had to take plenty of deep breaths while finishing this! I sewed in the zipper and tried to zip the purse closed... oops! Too close to the knit fabric. Rip the zipper out. Sew it in again. Try to zip it closed... oops! Knitting still getting caught in the zipper. Finally get the zipper right. Add the lining... oops! Lining fabric getting sucked into the zipper because it's too close. Rip it out.... etc.
I think I set the entire project aside 5 or 6 times just to give it some breathing space. Hand sewing is not my forte. Zippers are not my forte. Combining the two? Definitely not an ideal activity for me.
Thankfully, I love the finished product. The yarn was nice to knit with. Once I finally worked out all the finishing details, the lining is gorgeous. I love how everything goes together. Thank you to Tim for getting me this yarn for Christmas!