Frog in knots

Knitting, knots and frogging.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Tickled Pink

Only those who lived through the 80s will understand the horrendous fashion crimes that were committed. Puffball skirts, psychedelic colours and shell suits were only the surface of the problem.

Who could forgive a mother for this?

Your eyes do not deceive you, that really is a turquoise jumpsuit and white slouch boots. I look like I was auditioning for Star Trek.

I won't even go there on 80s knitting except to say that I have some horrendous patterns knocking about that I can't see ever getting made. No wonder knitting has a bad name. I seem to remember a lot of mohair happening around that time and having a peach (PEACH!) mohair jumper that itched and itched and itched. It put me off for life - until now!

I had a great dilemma. I really wanted to make the Lily Chin Reversible Rib Shawl, but needed the dreaded mohair for it. 600g of mohair. You don't seem to see mohair about much these days, especially not in the way you used to in the 80s - it was everywhere, so I decided if I came across some for a reasonable price in my travels then I would get it. As chance had it my last visit to a craft warehouse yielded this - for a grand sum of 65p per 50g ball.

As much as I tried to avoid buying it, it called to me. It's my colour and I had to have it. For 3 glorious years in my late teens to early 20s I had hair this exact colour down to my waist (it's a bit deeper than it appears in the photo). It would have been rude not to get it. It's surprisingly soft too, no more itching like a dog with fleas.

I'm about 9" in of the whole 72" and am aiming to work at least 12 rows of the pattern every day. In true homage to the 80s I'm knitting it on bright yellow needles, clash-tastic!

My top tip of the day - if you have to knit with something like mohair that's hairy, clingy and grabby, put it in the fridge for a bit first. Your SO may think you've finally cracked up, but it does make it easier to work with.

Right, where's that Bananarama album....

31 Comments:

At 11:16 am, Blogger Minnieknits said...

I loved my white slouch boots - I thought I was hot, hot, HOT, but then I do hail from Essex !
I can't forgive you for the Banarama though - it has got to be Duran Duran (ahh, she gazes into the distance with fond teenage angst memories!)

 
At 11:23 am, Blogger Seahorse said...

LOVE that pic! At least you can blame your mother - I was old enough to choose my own clothes in the 80s and didn't do much better, lol!

I noticed recently that mohair seems to be masquerading under a couple of different names these days ('haze' being a popular one). Perhaps no-one who remembers it from the first time around will buy it under it's real name!

 
At 11:29 am, Blogger reluctantMANGO said...

My 80's moment - maroon corduroy pants with a matching pullover that had a snap-up/snap-down panel at the neck, a la Michael Jackson. And of course, the matching maroon suede slouch boots. Oh, the shame.

The shawl is coming along nicely! I can't wait to see how it turns out!

 
At 11:48 am, Blogger KnitYoga said...

Well, I think you look really cute in that photo. LOL What a bargain with the mohair. I admire your shrewdness when it comes to buying yarn. The colour's glorious and the shawl so far looks fab. Reckon it's going to be a stunner. I do really like most of Lily Chin's work.

 
At 11:51 am, Blogger dreamcatcher said...

Love that 80s styleeee :-) I had a purply-pink jumpsuit (I was early teens at that point) and I loved it. I wanted a camo one too but my mother wouldn't buy it :-D Then there was the Adam Ant outfit - ruffled white shirt, red sash and black cropped trousers. And I did go out in public like that :-) Ooh the nostalgia.

I love the Lily Chin pattern, it looks great in the pink mohair. Can't get much better than that price either! (which outlet/mill did you go to, sounds like it is worth a visit).

 
At 12:38 pm, Blogger Rain said...

Mwahaha! I love your 80s outfit tales. It sounds like slouch boots were very popular. I remember my sister touching them up with white shoe paint. It was definitely the decade that fashion forgot.

Knityoga, I just think knitting has gone way overpriced for something that used to be a way to save money. I tend to seek out the bargains and buy a lot together and stash it. Plus I'm a cheapskate! My mother lived throught the post war rationing period and I got my frugal nature from her.

Dreamcatcher, I go to Abakhans, it's mostly fabrics but they do have yarn sections. The Liverpool one is big and well stocked and easy to navigate but the yarn bargains are a bit pot luck. I also go to the Manchester one which tends to have more unusual stock, but not as much variety. A lot of it is similar prices to the average LYS. The fabrics sold by weight work out quite cheap. There's one in Preston plus a few others.

http://www.abakhanfabrics.co.uk/

 
At 12:41 pm, Blogger Stickbloggen said...

I had peach, turqoise, purple, cerise.. you name it! the 80's was my boppin youth time *lol*

High pink heels, pants that could fill a whale draped down the hips, and shoulders like towers, and the perm and hair... hahahaha!

Sorry i haven't saved any pics!

Mmm... the 80's...

Thansk for the cooling tip on mohair, it sounds worth trying.

 
At 2:04 pm, Blogger Samantha said...

Ah yes, the 80's ... I was born in 1978 so my memories of the 80's are vague (or maybe I have just subconsciously blocked them), though I do remember being dressed in horrid 80's outfits. My mother seemed to have similar taste to your mother. Egads! Were they trying to wreck us? LOL

Love the yarn! It's a gorgeous colour. I can't wait to see your knit finished up. :)

 
At 2:24 pm, Blogger Bonnie said...

I love that color!!! Also the pattern. it's going to be beautiful.

I'm glad you're making a mohair shawl and not a sweater with poofy leg-o-mutton sleeves--or worse--shoulder pads! Those are the most horrendous 80s fashion crimes that I can remember.

Let's be shawl cheerleaders! I'm working on the Kimono Shawl (from Folk Shawls) with a goal of finishing by August 1st. It will be about 70 inches.

 
At 2:46 pm, Blogger nanatoo said...

Thing is, you had to wear those horrid clothes, that's all there was available. I hated it all with a passion and just wore jumpers and jeans rather than get into it. I'm lying - I wore a white jumpsuit to my hen night in 1985 (first marriage.) You are a sweety in that photo.

Dreamcatcher, you are knitting a fresh Adam Ant outfit now (Sgt. Pepper) so it'll start all over! So am I. So's Seahorse ;)

I love that shawl Rain (I looked inside the book on amazon.com) and the colour is a great cheerer-upper. I have some mohair patterns from the 80's that I need to never see again ;)

 
At 3:24 pm, Blogger turtlegirl76 said...

The shawl is turning out nicely. Someday I might give it a go myself, but I have way too much in the queue I want to do first.

Fortunately, leg warmers is not one of them. That's one trend from the 80s I just don't understand why it's returning.

 
At 3:45 pm, Blogger Melissa said...

I had that outfit....honestly. And dammit I looked good.
I. love. the. pink. It's a great color...really.
Can't wait to see the FO!

 
At 3:54 pm, Anonymous lucy said...

I had 2 (oh, yes!) corduroy jumpsuits with loads of zips on - bizarre but I really loved them!

I can't wait to see what your finished shawl looks like as it's on my list of things to make :)

 
At 4:02 pm, Blogger Stefaneener said...

Your hair sounds glorious. My specialty was puffy sleeves and really big hair, with large glasses. Oh well. I wonder if we'll look back and shudder about today's clothes?

The shawl is glorious.

 
At 4:32 pm, Blogger Bezzie said...

I shouldn't laugh at your picture, because we ALL have a picture just like that!

I admire your fortitude in knitting with mohair. I'll have to try the freezer trick--If I ever replace the ball that I just gave away because it drove me mad trying to knit it!

 
At 4:57 pm, Blogger allisonmariecat said...

I had *just* managed to block all memories of spiral-permed hair, blue eyeshadow, leggings, and legwarmers (oh, and those slouchy socks!), and you had to go and bring it all back :)

Gorgeous shawl--lovely color, very non-'80s.

 
At 5:06 pm, Blogger Diane said...

OMG! stop! not the 80's what fashion disasters we all had then!shoulder pads and brightly coloured court shoes with equally brightly coloured patterned tights!We all had a decade of colour blindness i think...and i too remember the itchy mohair especially a bat wing jumper my mum made for me....at the time i WAS the bees knees! :0)
I absolutely LOVE the Lily Chin shawl you're knitting now and the yarn looks beautiful knitted up!

 
At 7:09 pm, Blogger Areli said...

Haha I have pictures like that hiding at my mom's house! I love the yarn for the shawl, that pattern is beautiful and I am really going to enjoy watching your progress! Loverly!!

 
At 7:56 pm, Blogger KnitPastis said...

Ahhh the 80'S. You were a cutie. Haha, I had a blue jumpsuit too. The details in the shawl are really showing up so nicely.

 
At 8:47 pm, Blogger DomesticOverlord said...

Looks fab so far. Forgive your mother for the picture and the outfit, there's a kid out there you knit a sheep suit for that will have to fogive you someday. ;)

 
At 9:03 pm, Blogger Rain said...

I think you should all go and dig out your 80s photos and post them on your blogs - that will teach you to laugh!

Bonnie, I think being shawl cheerleaders is a great idea, all that knitting is scaring me.

Nanatoo, I didn't believe you for a second. I can just see you in a white jumpsuit!

TG, I remember my legwarmers, I had some pink ones and some red and white striped ones. I think they were my sister's. Whatever possessed us?

Melissa, it sounds like we all had that outfit!

Diane, the worst thing is, it's coming back. Ha ha - batwing jumpers, I had one of those too and I loved it.

Areli, I had to good sense to gain possession of all my dodgy childhood photos, I have all the eveidence.

DO, you go tme on that one. My Mum insists it was the height of fashion at the time, I get the feeling the sheepsuit won't be quite as convincing.

 
At 9:08 pm, Blogger acrylik said...

Ahhh, the 80s... this lass was a fan of American lycra-clad rock bands and shamefully copied their fashions - yup, lycra trousers and all...

The colour of the mohair would have screamed to me though too - who can resist such a gorgeous pink?!

 
At 10:48 pm, Blogger KnitPastis said...

Are you daring us Rain to post old 80's photos of ourselves? Could be interesting.

 
At 10:56 pm, Blogger aija said...

OMG, for me it was the parachute pants...

Love the reversible rib shawl so far :)

 
At 12:38 am, Blogger Rain said...

I am indeed daring you. Now dig out your best (worst) 80s outfit pics!

Come on, admit it, who had the perm?

 
At 3:05 am, Blogger Sphilange said...

I like your picture of the eighties clothes. I had some boots like that except that were brown suede and fringed. I wore them with pants that I pegged, folding and rolling up the cuffs. I thought it looked so cool! The shawl looks nice so far.

 
At 5:51 am, Anonymous kimberly said...

Great picture, I remember those 80's well. LOL
That pink is great, I have some of the same color left over from Flora. I don't think I could have passed it up either.

 
At 6:26 am, Blogger aurora said...

The shawl! It's so pretty!

I had a nylon bubble skirt. And a denim cowgirl outfit with fake rhinestones on it. And gingham with ruffles.

 
At 7:08 am, Blogger veritas said...

oh the 80's. it was a beautiful time.

a part of me still wants to look like robert smith. only, you know, a girl...

 
At 2:30 am, Blogger String Bean said...

I had the most horrendous pair of hot pink canvas shoes that I wore with (Guess!) probably the tightest pair of hot pink stretch pants. Sexy! Although I was 10 or 11 at the time and not many people (?) would think it sexy. I don't miss the pink, I don't wear pink, I don't want to look at pink. Not hot pink, anyway. The trauma..

 
At 4:49 am, Blogger Jerry & Maxy said...

Rain! You look phenomonal in that photo. I love it!

The 80s, such fond fashion memories...

The pink is bright and loverly! Go shawl!

 

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