Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Botticelli Belly

Oh happy day! I have discovered that my figure type is just fine…for about 500 years back. Is it my fault that 21st Century fashion revolves around a different female form? One that isn’t particularly feminine really, with no hips and a flat stomach. Who knew? I have a Botticelli Belly!


(Detail from “Primavera” aka “Allegory of Spring”, circa 1482.)

No, they are not pregnant either. (But I’d love to have their gorgeous hair.) Not convinced? How about this Guercino from a later period:


(detail from “Susanna and the Elders”, 1617.)

Or even better, in honour of St. Valentine’s Day (which I pretty much don’t celebrate, it being one of those Hallmark Holidays) here’s another Guercino:


(“Venus, Mars and Cupid”, 1633)

See? Small bust, round shoulders, thick waist – so totally me. I’m a Venus!

Moving right along. I played in my studio yesterday afternoon and traced off my favourite pair of silk knit undies:


I have to learn to ease up a bit on the tracing wheel! It pierced the paper so much that it almost fell apart and left deep impressions in my foam blocking mat. Oops. But I was able to get a good pattern after tracing and truing:


I’m always surprised at how ginormous pants patterns look without the elastic to draw in the edges. Well, OK. These are huge! Full briefs and supremely comfy. (Those who don’t have a Beautiful Botticelli Belly can wear teensy thongs or boy-cut shorts if you like. I’m sticking with my little-old-lady panties.) Can’t wait to make a hopefully-wearable muslin today. Sure wish I could get some of that lovely Chinese silk knit though. I’ve never seen it available as yardage anywhere.

I also have a Finished Object:

Embers Cowl


Begun:  January 9, 2012
Completed:  February 12, 2012

Yarn:  Jacques Cartier Qiviuk 2/14, 100% qiviut, colour 1065 (dark warm red), 28g = 218 yds.

Beads:  Seed beads, size 8, transparent brown AB.

Needles:  Addi Lace Cliks interchangeable, 3.5mm and 3.75mm tips, 16” cord.

Pattern:  Abstract Leaves Cowl by Deb Muller.

Mods:  My yarn was somewhat thinner than suggested but I used one-size larger needles and cast on an extra pattern repeat. Total of 8. I knit 3 repeats in the larger size needle tips and 3 in the smaller ones, plus an extra couple of pattern rows in an attempt to use up all the yarn. I still had lots left though so I single-crocheted an edging with bead picots every 3rd stitch on top and bottom.

Comments: My dear MIL gave me this ball of yarn for my birthday in November. She bought it in Inuvik on her Arctic trip. I found out later that it’s worth nearly $100! Yikes. That’s twice as much as my bison shawl cost (not counting the spinning part). Guess I had better take extremely good care of it, huh? I still had a few yards left so could probably have knit another 2 rows. But I didn’t want to run out on the bind-off. I blocked the finished cowl without pins.

There surprisingly wasn’t a whole lot of difference in the knitting between the two needle sizes. I probably could have gone up to a 4mm for the large one. The finished cowl is only slightly trapezoid. It’s certainly yummy and soft though. I still hope to get some wear out of it this season.

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