theraineysisters knitting and so much more

September 12, 2007

From Sally — Not Quite Silver Not Quite Belle

Filed under: Silver Belle,Tangled Yoke — surly @ 9:50 am

I’ve kind of but not quite finished Silver Belle. I need to weave in all of the ends because the Cashmerino Aran yarn doesn’t lend itself well to felted splicing. I also need to sew on the buttons. I’m not thrilled with the sweater, though, in all honesty. It measures out to the correct size, but it fits as if it’s way too large. I think I could have made the small, with a 32-inch bust, and it would have fit better (even though I’m a 34). Part of it is that I think the yarn is too heavy for this sweater, even though it’s the yarn called for. I’ll wear it, but it’s much more oversized than I would have liked. It will be something that I throw on over something else if it’s cold, which is not really what I was looking for. That, plus boredom, is not making me rush to do the little bit of finishing I have left. Here are few photos.

Sewing in the bodice:

Starting to attach the back yoke:

The back pre-collar:

The front with collar (I’ve just pinned one of the buttons on for show):

The back:

Yeah — I’m feeling pretty meh about the whole thing. The good news is that there is always some magical perfect sweater just waiting to be ruined knit. So my next project (while I decide exactly what to do with the lovely Betsy) is the Tangled Yoke Cardigan from the most recent issue of Interweave Knits.

I’m knitting it in Rowan’s Felted Tweed in a color called Watery. The color is a bit more interesting and subtle than it looks here.

I’m making several changes to the pattern. First, and most important, I’m knitting it as a pullover rather than a cardigan. I don’t like the skimpy looking button band in the original pattern. I could alter it, but I’d rather just make it into a pullover. Therefore, I’ll be making a few changes in the neckline as well. I’ll worry about exactly what I’m doing later.


  1. From Susan — Your collar is by far the nicest I’ve seen. I do wish it was something that you loved because it is truly gorgeous! But sweaters are funny. Remember the sweater I made for Mattie? It was sized identically to several of his favorites but then I had to make it 3″ shorter because of the weight and the hang. It does bother me that you made the correct size in the exact yarn called for and knitted it to perfection and it still isn’t “right.” To me that is a design flaw and not worthy of DB or Vogue.

    PS — the new yarn will be beautiful…

    Comment by lv2knit — September 12, 2007 @ 10:12 am

  2. I hate it when perfectly good knits go bad. It is such a beautiful sweater though. After all that cabled goodness of the last one I hope your not bored with the tangled yoke. There’s a lot of stocking stitch till you get to the beautiful cabled part. πŸ™‚
    It’s going to make a wonderful pullover and I love the color you chose. I’m working on this one now and just started the sleeves a couple of days ago.

    Comment by michelle — September 12, 2007 @ 10:50 am

  3. You are so smart to plan your Tangled Yoke as a pullover, I’m having fits with the button bands on mine although I love the sweater otherwise and I seldom wear pullovers, needing the ventilation that a cardigan facilitates.
    I think Silver Bell is lovely and hope that you grow to like it more.

    Comment by Joan — September 12, 2007 @ 10:54 am

  4. It’s too bad you’re not happy with Silver Belle — it’s lovely just hanging on the mannequin. When it’s done will you model it? Despite it’s not being perfect, I’d love to see it on a real person.

    Comment by anmiryam — September 12, 2007 @ 11:04 am

  5. It really is a beautiful sweater, and the work looks wonderful. How disappointing about the fit. Susan’s comments are spot on.

    Comment by Gale — September 12, 2007 @ 11:20 am

  6. Sorry the joy is gone from Belle. Sure is pretty though.

    The Rowan felted tweed yarn is beautiful! Hope this next sweater works out better for you. I’ll be gorgeous.

    Comment by Wendy O — September 12, 2007 @ 11:29 am

  7. Your Belle is breathtaking! I’m real sorry to hear the fit’s not as great you’d have liked it, though.

    Watery is a great colour! That’s the one I would have picked for Tangled Yoke, too… if only my queue were not overly long already.

    Comment by ann — September 12, 2007 @ 11:32 am

  8. Belle really is beautiful, and I am constantly amazed by your incredible skills….I love working with Felted Tweed – hope this is going to be a keeper/wearer…

    Comment by karen — September 12, 2007 @ 11:37 am

  9. I am making tangled yoke too! mine is in purple felted tweed. I nearly chose the color you are using–its fabulous and vivid (but not too vivid.) Now that you point that out about the buttonbands……

    Comment by suzanne — September 12, 2007 @ 12:02 pm

  10. I love the Silver Belle. What do you mean by too big? I would like to make that sweater but would like to know what to look for in changes. It looks a little like the weight of the sleeves pull down on the shoulders but without being on a maniquin with arms, it is hard to tell. I would love to see it on a person. Thanks for any help you can offer.

    Comment by Michele with 1 L — September 12, 2007 @ 12:05 pm

  11. I LOVE YOUR BLOG!!! I am presently finishing an Elspeth Lavold sweater, and when I’m done with that, I’m going to do the Bohus Blue Shimmer (I’ve already got the yarn, which I ordered from Sweden), and then the Sunrise Circle jacket. And then I want to do the Bohus Wild Apple sweater.

    So I love your blog because I feel as though I’ve stumbled into the brain of someone who is attracted to exactly the same patterns that attract me, but who is clearly a much, much more experienced and gifted knitter whose experience with these patterns can help me over the rough patches.

    So, thank you! Thank you for putting your passion and wisdom and experience on the internet!

    Comment by victoria — September 12, 2007 @ 12:13 pm

  12. That’s sad because it’s quite lovely! Good to see you’re moving on πŸ˜‰ Love the colour of the felted tweed.

    Comment by Marina — September 12, 2007 @ 12:23 pm

  13. Your Silver Belle is truly beautiful! I have a question about blocking. It doesn’t look like it needs blocking to me. Will you block it? I would always block stockinette st things, but I’m not sure how to treat something with a lot of texture like your sweater. I love you and your sister’s blog because I always learn so much. Thanks in advance.

    Comment by Bonnie — September 12, 2007 @ 2:46 pm

  14. I’m sorry that the joy from Belle is gone. It’s beautiful though! Good luck on the Tangled Yoke, it’s another beautiful knit. I am currently working on the Cobblestone Pullover for my hubby, it’s dreamy πŸ™‚

    Comment by Shannon — September 12, 2007 @ 4:20 pm

  15. Your Silver Belle is beautifully knit, even if it is no lightweight! What would you recommend, in the way of yarn, as a good substitute? I am still thinking about making this sweater, but I agree with you–from the beginning it seems weighted down by this yarn…and I wouldn’t want to go to the effort without something slightly more lofty… good thing you can move on so easily!

    Comment by Joanne — September 12, 2007 @ 4:21 pm

  16. Silver Belle does look lovely. Too bad she’s not what you wanted. Knits. They just disappoint us after all that time we spent raising them……er, knitting them. πŸ™‚

    Tangled Yoke will look pretty in that color and as a pullover! Serial monogamy means there’s one right after the other.

    Comment by Carrie K — September 12, 2007 @ 4:47 pm

  17. Silver Belle looks lovely, sorry you’re not that pleased with it. If you ever decide you really hate it, bet it’ll fit me! πŸ˜‰
    Maybe a chilly day will help to like her a little more πŸ™‚ Beautiful knitting!

    Comment by Carol — September 12, 2007 @ 5:11 pm

  18. Sally, you have no idea how your comments have heartened me. I’m knitting mine in a lighter weight yarn and toyed with the idea of adjusting it to a 34″ instead of the small 32″. I’ll now feel confident with the smaller size. Your silver belle looks wonderful and I love the modifications you’ve made such as reversing the sleeve cable (I never would have thought to do that).

    I’ve now frogged my first attempt after a struggle with the chart but it’s now going swimmingly in its second life.

    I look forward to being a regular reader of your posts!

    Comment by Vicki — September 12, 2007 @ 6:35 pm

  19. Silver Belle looks wonderful. I’m sorry to hear that you’re not completely happy with it.

    Tangled Yoke will look great as a pullover and the color would be perfect πŸ™‚ Can’t wait to see how it comes together.

    You and your sister both do beautiful work. I am inspired every time I read your blog. You both seem to find projects that I want to knit. I can’t believe you find so many projects that make me wish I had so much more time to knit!!

    Looking forward to your future projects and inspriations!!

    Comment by Betsy — September 12, 2007 @ 9:13 pm

  20. Wow I still love your SB! But understand about feeling “meh” about a knitted project. You put so much work into it I hope your feelings will change about it soon!

    I LOVE the yarn/color you are using for your Tangled Yoke Pullover (smart!!) Hope this project gets you back into happy warm and fuzzy knitting feelings! :o)

    Comment by Stacey_CrimsonPurl — September 12, 2007 @ 9:30 pm

  21. Too bad that you feel so hmmm about the Silver Belle, as she does look lovely. However I am delighted that you are doing the Tangled Yoke cardigan as a pullover. I have quite a lot of Felted Tweed and also intend to knit the design as a pullover so will be following your journey with interest.

    Comment by WendyM — September 12, 2007 @ 11:27 pm

  22. That is just a beautiful piece of work. I understand that it is heavy but the texture, yarn and the knitting make it very appealing to me. Its fit does seem like it would certainly require something worn underneath, otherwise, you might catch quite a breeze. But the workmanship is so expert-you really ought to be proud. Will you block it?
    That might make it larger. It really looks as if it doesn’t need it. I admire that you are moving right along!

    Comment by kellistarr — September 13, 2007 @ 12:31 am

  23. Sally- It is a lovely design – and expertly executed- but I do
    understand when it doesn’t float your boat.
    Heavy cables can make us feel like wooly mammoth yetti’s-
    though I’m sure it looks great on, it’s how it makes you feel.

    Onward and upward.

    Comment by Lorraine — September 13, 2007 @ 8:56 am

  24. I had always intended to wear Belle over something else and it DOES look delicious but you are making me have a pause about knitting mine in the wool and cotton blend I had planned to use–it will probably hang even more heavily. A knitting buddy of mine actually suggested cutting the sleeves down a bit–she felt they were too bulky just by looking at the original photo. What do you think?

    As for the tweed, well it is a MOST scrumptious colourway and I wish you happy knitting with it.

    Cheers, Barbie O.

    Comment by Barbie O. in Montreal — September 13, 2007 @ 10:35 am

  25. I think the Silver Belle is lovely – I’m sorry you’re not pleased with it. And on a completely unrelated note – I am seriously loving those two chairs in the background. They’ve got me suffering from a wretched case of chair-envy at the moment.

    Comment by Marti — September 13, 2007 @ 12:21 pm

  26. I am about to start the Tangled Yoke Cardi. I like as is, though. I’m using Rowanspun dk in a dark grey.

    Comment by Erin — September 13, 2007 @ 2:12 pm

  27. Sally, I think it’s really lovely! πŸ™‚

    And my dear Susan, you must read the story and all will become clear to you.


    Comment by Romi — September 13, 2007 @ 8:32 pm

  28. Susan: I love Muir Woods and the shawl has leaves and mesh that makes it look like the light filtering through the trees in Muir Woods. Hence, I named it Muir, for Muir Woods. πŸ™‚

    You’re gonna knit it, right? Right?! πŸ˜‰

    Comment by Romi — September 13, 2007 @ 11:41 pm

  29. Your Belle is beautiful, but I know just how you feel. It’s frustrating to work on a project and not be happy at the end. I completed Oat Couture’s Penelope Blouse in Shire Silk and it looked terrible on me (augh!). I’m substituting yarn for my Belle.
    P.S. The Shire Silk/Penelope disaster is now morphing into Bianca’s Jacket from IK Fall 2006.

    Comment by Deborah — September 15, 2007 @ 1:52 pm

  30. I wasn’t taken with Silver Belle until I saw your version of it and I am disappointed to hear that you aren’t pleased with it. Can we see it on you? How oversized is it? Do you think it could be worked as a pullover instead of a cardi – not crazy about the collar. Robyn

    Comment by Robyn Red Bird — September 15, 2007 @ 11:15 pm

  31. Your Belle looks lovely on the dress form, and all that cable work is beautiful! It’s so hard to tell how something’s going to fit/look on you ahead of time.

    I look forward to seeing what you do with the Tangled Yoke pattern!

    Comment by Octopus Knits — September 15, 2007 @ 11:27 pm

  32. votre silver belle est magnifique, serait il possible d’avoir les explications en français merci

    Comment by natalia campos — October 10, 2007 @ 2:49 am

  33. your belle cardigan is a beauty, the color so delicate. if you are size 34″ the i guess you are slim?! all those models wear clothes that are quite big on them… so i don’t know how your fits you. is there a way to shrink it? i have seen a newsletter on knitting daily where sandi wiseheart has a tank that turns out too big after blocking it. she had just steamed it and it got enlarged. she after that soaked it and let it dry and it shrank to fit her perfectly … you may want to knit a sampler and give it this treatment, see how it reacts to soaking?!
    i feel for you, really i do, yours is the most beautiful silver i have seen on the blogs.

    Comment by zaz — November 1, 2007 @ 12:13 am

  34. Where can I get this amazing pattern?

    Comment by Lo — November 22, 2009 @ 4:34 pm

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