Suki’s finished – and I’m totally happy with it – although really, how couldn’t I be?

The pattern was easy to work from beginning to end.  even the lace follows a simple geometric pattern that follows logically so you’re not a slave to the chart…

although even if it doesn’t make sense to you, it would be over quickly.

The yarn was a dream.  It’s Verb for Keeping Warm’s Kush.  65% Cashmere/35% silk, and it just can’t suck if it tries.  The scarf is ridiculously soft, and is probably only going to get softer with wear.

I asked Sam to model it before she went to school this morning, and as I was taking the pictures I thought to myself how funny it is that every time I put up pictures of one of the ladies (They can all vote. I’ve got to stop calling them "the girls") I straightaway get some really, really nice emails from some of you guys saying (and I’ll paraphrase here)  "Wow, it’s amazing how co-operative and lovely your daughters are about the knitting, my kids just roll their eyes and make annoyed faces and it’s so great that your children aren’t anything like that, you must be a great mum."

Then I laugh so hard at my desk that the cat looks at me funny.  Sam and I have an unspoken rule that she will model knitting if it takes no more than five minutes***, and I respect that – so the whole shoot happened in less than that.  Here’s the other pictures.

This is a shot I like to call  "How has my life come to this,  I feel dead inside".

This is an expression we like to call "That guy from down the street just saw us taking pictures of me in a shawl. I’d kill you, but I need to ask for $5.  Never mind. I’ll just kill you and take your purse."

Or this one? I’m pretty sure what she’s thinking in this instant is that she loves and respects my work so much that she jshe’s struggling to resist the urge to hug me….or strangle the very breath out of me with her bare hands… but I think it’s the first one. 

This is clearly either "I think I look fabulous in this, I hope it is my Christmas present" or maybe "SPREAD THE LACE OUT SO IT SHOWS BETTER???  YOU ARE SO WEIRD I CAN’T STAND IT."

This is obviously "I have the bestest mummy in the whole wide world."

and this one?
You might think this is thinly veiled rage that her mother can’t do something normal for a living, like run a meth lab or pole dance for tourists…

but it’s really just a normal, healthy reaction to the dawning realization that  wearing a shawl for your mum’s knit blog is actually what you’re going to have to do for bus fare. 

** If by "unspoken agreement" you understand that she said "I swear if this takes more than 5 minutes I’m going to kill you." 
She said it with love though.  She loves shawls.

128 thoughts on “Outtakes

  1. It is gorgeous. I get a similar response from my husband when it comes to taking pictures of my finished knits. Like, please find somebody else, I was enjoying my video game. He does it. The pictures take 5 minutes or so, and unfortunately often it looks that way too (my pictures are worse than his so I’ll take it).

  2. I am laughing silently at my desk and weeping slightly, this is so funny to me. Now I need to go find some yarn to make a Suki for myself. Will it make me look as beautiful as Sam?

  3. Love those pics. Just like when my 17 yo daughter models shawls for me. How long she puts up with it depends on how much I pay her. Every time she starts to complain I just tell her to think about the MONEY & how many hours she’d have to work in the coffee shop to get the same amount.

  4. Beautiful pictures and a beautiful daughter. I totally agree with all your interpretations of her expressions – I get those from my 20 year old daughter as well. The shawl is gorgeous.

  5. Your girls should be happy that you don’t face paint. My children have been serial painted on numerous occasions, and have learned to live with it. The up side? henna tattoos on demand. It works.

  6. I admire your strength and determination (and Joe’s) for dragging three girls through their teens without a manslaughter conviction. It’s funny to look back now and realise what an absolute horror I was at that age, but it’s always so in every generation. As my mother always said, it will be their turn someday. Anyway, beautiful daughter and beautiful shawl!

  7. I always say my daughter is 12, going on 17. You just provided supportive evidence. #4 of the outtakes looks just like her, pretty much all the time I’m in the room.

  8. Be happy u have girls….. I have sons who will only assist with the cat wrangling so that we can put the FO on the cat for pics instead of the guys…

  9. I think the last one is “It’s a shawl already. How many pictures does it take to show that?”

  10. Pretty shawl. Pretty girl. Sam couldn’t make an “unpretty” face if her life depended on it. Ahh…youth…Hope you gave her extra bus fare…

  11. I have 2 teens at home, which is why your post made me laugh so hard that I cried. It’s amazing how often my son’s need for a $5 bill is the thin thread holding his patience in place when he deals with me in the morning (not his favorite time of day). I do not think it would stretch to letting himself be photographed, however. Your Sam is an angel… and a lovely model for your exquisite shawl.

  12. Wow! I know what it’s like when your kids would rather live in fostercare than admit that you have a job or interest that is, so uncool. When I used to take (force) my kids to go to the gardening store with me, after whinging, crying and fighting they would just sit by the koi pool and try to bare-hand wrestle in the fish…using spit as bait…in front of the manager of the store. Maybe that was their evil plan…to be asked to never return….
    PS- Sam is beautiful! She looks alot like Christina Applegate.

  13. LOL!!! LOL!!! LOL!!! I think the second to last and the first are my favorites! She’s still pretty adorable!

  14. Daughter reactions are exactly why I just got used to using either inanimate objects or one of the pets as models. It was much easier on all of us!

  15. I love this post, and totally relate to what you go through to get photos of your grown kids modelling sweaters. I’d show the outtakes of my own efforts, but my kids would probably never speak to me again. Your daughters are all so beautiful!

  16. Kids the whole world over are soooo alike…”Awww, Mom, really? Can’t you, like, do it without me?”
    Though I really thought the punch line of this group of pictures was going to be that she wore the shawl that day.
    My son so wants me to be “normal” like all the other parents…right up until the time that he found out that all his fellow baseball players might really like a scarf like I knit for him (actually, two, because his school colors changed in college).
    And that I actually watch the game more closely when I am knitting because then, my mouth is engaged (which usually means that my head is turned AWAY from the baseball field!!!).

  17. My oldest is 9. She LOVES posing for pictures with my shawls (or even without them). I guess you’re telling me it’s not gonna last…
    Oh well, I also have a 5 year old. She likes posing for pictures too. 🙂 I guess I am covered for the next few years.
    Your daughter is beautiful! And the shawl is very pretty. I wish I could touch it – the softness you described is calling to me. 🙂

  18. When my son was little (maybe 5) I used him as a model for some of the sweaters I created for a shop in town. He had to be bribed into posing for sweaters, even though the pictures were only for my records. The fact that half of the sweaters were designed for ‘girls’ may have been part of the problem.

  19. Both shawl and daughter are beautiful, though one of them definitely has an attitude. I think the last look is,”Must find way to break Mom’s camera and make it look like an accident.” Ask me how I know this one!

  20. This is a really lovely knit. However I would like to remind you that you have a Catkin somewhere that needs butons. At least that is the excuse you have used in order to not have to show it on your blog. If you can’t be bothered to find buttons for it, I suppose you can’t be bothered enpough to mail it to me so I can get buttons for it and give it the proper love it deserves. 🙂

  21. No, No, No, No, No! I don’t want to knit one of these. However, how can I resist when it looks so lovely.

  22. This is beautiful. I am glad to see it finished, as I thought the colors were gorgeous.

  23. LOVE the outtakes. They are actually more inspiring than the elegant “beautiful” poses because they are more like what my family looks like….if the shawl still looks gorgeous when the person wearing it is being real and not trying to make it look good, then I trust that it really IS that gorgeous.

  24. Wow! I saw the earlier unfinished picture and I just couldn’t see the final project. It is so lovely. I really need someone to select colors for me. I second guess myself to death.
    I have a 17 year old. I wouldn’t dare ask for modeling before school. As always, thanks for the laughs.

  25. I have two sons. I can’t even get them to model a sock!
    Honestly, sometimes this blog is the only bright spot in my day. I love you Stephanie.

  26. I love this post!!! I may send it to my daughter and see if it makes her laugh…I was once taking pictures of her in a sweater I knit her on Howard Park Avenue and she was embarassed. But she did it.

  27. The shawl is gorgeous! I would never have thought of putting those colors together but that’s why you’re the expert. Kudos to your daughter for tolerating the photo shoot. She’s a doll!

  28. The outtakes are always the best takes! Hope you gave Sam $10, not the $5 she asked for. She deserves it.

  29. I just sent an email to my 20 year old DD who’s away at college – containing a link to your post. I can relate. She can relate.
    Thanks for the laugh. From: a mother of a reluctant-model-daughter.

  30. I’m nearly 30. Love to knit, my mom doesn’t. This is still pretty much the same reaction I have to some of her “projects”. It’s a daughter thing.

  31. Your reply is “Shut up. I’m making you look luminous, dammit.” ‘Cause she does.

  32. P.S. It would never occur to a non-knitter that that’s a shawl. Even I think that’s wishful-nomenclature. The guy would have been thinking “scarf” if the luminous hadn’t blinded him.

  33. Love the shawl……….Your daughter is sweet to let you torture her with something so soft………….Poor child.

  34. Thanks for the chuckle – and Sam, thanks for the wonderful modeling (maybe you should ask for more than bus fare?)

  35. I think you might have made the whole thing even more embarrassing by showing the outtakes. ;P

  36. Laughing too hard to comment. Wish I’d had daughters!! (no disrespect to marvelous sons)

  37. Does she know how we all rave about how gorgeous she is?
    (Psst: Hey Sam, the going rate for models is way more than $5 an hour. You might think about negotiating the fee.)

  38. Gorgeous! The shawl and your daughter. I absolutely love this post. Had a great morning giggle as I scrolled down. 5 minutes? It could be worse. I dragged one of my daughters up into the Australian bush, bare foot for a photo shoot a while ago. It took a lot longer than 5 minutes, hehe. She was most concerned about snakes and even worse, ants. LOL Oh the things we do.

  39. Thankfully, my Rock Star friends are really good humored about posing with Socks-in-progress. I’m not sure they’d feel the same way if I asked them to model a lace shawl.

  40. Doesn’t she realize these are fashion shots she could add to her modelling portfolio? hahahahaha One thing I learned a long time ago, no experience is ever wasted if you get a good story out of it. Think of all the stories she gets out of being your beloved daughter?!
    The shawl is soooo gorgeous.

  41. Sounds about right.
    I suggested to The Fairy Godknitter a few weeks ago that her sons and your daughters get together as sock models. She liked the idea.

  42. 1. Sam is beautiful
    2. The Suki is beautiful
    3. Clearly Sam loves modeling – her nail polish matches the shawl – I’m sure she did that on purpose
    4. I forgot this wasn’t FB and kept looking for the “like” button

  43. Our daughters would get along just fine. Mine is so much more photogenic in knits than I am….She just won’t WEAR them. So really, yours is better. (I did NOT just say that!)

  44. Beautiful shawl and daughter,Stephanie. She’s a great model, and you’re a model Mom.

  45. Beautiful shawl! Great colors. My compliments to the chef, I mean knitter! Love the photos of your daughter and the comments. The best for me is your last comment. Hilarious!

  46. The first words out of my mouth when I saw that shawl was ‘that is gorgeous’ & I see that lots of people agree with that. Every one is knitting shawls & I want to too, but am busy with other things. Sooner or later tho, watch out!!

  47. Sam is beautiful. The captions are hilarious.
    The “shawl”. . .meh. The pattern stitches are nice, and I’m sure the yarn is scrumptious to knit with. However, I’m not wild about the color choices. They certainly don’t enhance Sam’s beauty. And this seems a bit too small to be called a “shawl” — maybe a “shawl-ette” instead.
    Besides, I think Sam would look better in a knitted stole, rather than a triangular shawl.
    Would you let Sam guest-blog on her opinion of the piece? And on being one of your fave knitwear models?

  48. As a 21-yo daughter, I can commiserate with Sam. While my mom might not ask me to model knitwear (it’s actually the other way around most times), she has her obsessions, which she asks me to partake in from time to time. Let’s just say that all the expressions in the not-happy Sam pictures have been worn many a time on my face.

  49. And it comes down to, she’s really beautiful in all the pictures. I’m fairly positive she loves you whether there is money involved or not.

  50. My son decided early on he wasn’t going to wear anything handknit, but would gladly accept polar fleece vests sewn by my mom every Christmas! With zip, pockets, and lining, they were very snazzy (he picked the material). At least we kept it in the family!

  51. How to save the dress: Make it a pencil skirt, lose the sleeves or make them capped, make the neck a wider /lower scoop or a ballet neck with a v-back. Put some definition in the waist. Her hair and makeup are nice, the dress is a hideous bathrobe.

  52. So I’ve finally finished reading the Yarn Harlot blog, in it’s entirety and here’s what I’ve garnered: I wish I lived down the road from Lettuce Knits, I’ll never knit as fast as Stephanie, the YH clan seem like lovely people, I too get the odd bad seed and Stephanie has the weirdest toilet seat I’ve ever seen!
    Many thanks Stephanie 🙂

  53. Lovely shawl, great colours and Sam’s nail polish matches. I think she likes to pose in your shawls more then she lets on.

  54. Mmmmm cashmere…… Great shawl and great model. I love the colors you picked. I have to confess that when you first showed us the WIP, I couldn’t figure out why you would choose those colors. Now that I get to see the finished shawl its perfectly obvious why you chose those colors. What a beautiful shawl. Thanks for sharing your daughter and for the great laugh. It’s a great way to start my day!

  55. you are so funny. your daughter is a great model and good sport. make sure you tell her that everyone in blog land loves her pics and thinks shes cute.
    your shawl is lovely, too. i really like the colors you chose. its going to be a fun one to wear.

  56. SO SO hilarious! My 2 sons are grown up and away, so no models here. Lucky you, she’s still home. I laughed out loud !!!

  57. Love the shawl!! Love the beautiful model. Nice to have a young “cooperative” woman to model. And if you did do something like run a meth lab, pole dance, were a lawyer, world famous chef, she would still feel the same. I think it’s a rule the kids have to follow to be embarrassed by their parents.

  58. I read the post yesterday and am still laughing. It’s more like a chuckle now. Beautiful shawl. Beautiful daughter.

  59. I’m not sure that shawl could take a BAD picture!! LOL Totally IS her shawl though, don’t be surprised if it disappears . . .

  60. I embarrass my daughter by my simple existance..It has nothing to do with what I do…Love this shawl..what are the colors of the yarn?

  61. Love the shawl! My girls flat out refuse to pose, even for money. I use the cats and the dog now and hope the recipient of the item doesn’t mind a few wayward, non-sheep hairs.

  62. Sam is beautiful and so is the shawl—-did she ask to keep it? LOL
    The color is perfect for her—
    I always told my sons that parents were placed on this earth to embarrass them, so get used to it!!!

  63. I have to admit, when I first saw your WIP, I wasn’t enamored of the pattern or the choice of red/green – no matter what shade, those colors always ‘shout’ Christmas to me and I don’t usually like theme colored knits. BUT… now that the shawl is complete, I can see how gorgeous it is. You really have the knack for showing a project off in all it’s beauty – great draping! And that scarf looks like it was made for Sam, it looks perfect on her.

  64. Oh, and I have to say I chuckled when I saw Sam’s t-shirt. She may not knit, and may grumble a bit about your obsession, but look at what she’s wearing – a t-shirt with what looks like a knitting chart on it! Is it bunnies? 🙂

  65. Love it! And she’s gorgeous however she wraps the wrap.
    When my youngest was still living at home, he was willing to take pictures of me modeling my knitting–but only one shot any pose, and only a couple of those, sink or swim.
    Somehow he quickly developed a knack for capturing the very best shots. Go figure.

  66. Thanks for the photo shoot and thanks Sam! I have a daughter who lives a continent, maybe 2, away and we don’t get to be with each other often. And these expressions just brought her right here with me. Thank you Sam!!

  67. That shawl is STUNNING. It’s getting added to my already way too long ravelry queue. Although I have some reclaimed sky blue heathered wool that might be just the thing…

  68. Well, regardless of what her reaction really is, she is lovely and does a great job modeling for you. I believe that is just the nature of the beast to be upset over anything asked.

  69. What adjustments if any did you make knitting this pattern in a DK wt. yarn? I love your color choices!!!! I just bought the pattern after seeing how your Suki turned out – and I love it!!
    Your daughter is absolutely BEAUTIFUL and makes a lovely model. Did she do her nails to match the shawl or do you both just gravitate to the same colors 🙂

  70. Sam is hilarious; scarf is stupendous! Happy Thanksgiving. Thanks for giving your time, talent and creativity so faithfully. I’m thankful for you!

  71. I think I have this one figured out. I model the finished knitted object and get the 20 year old to take the photos. I then end up with photos of me misbehavin’ which I can NOT put on the blog (as well as the beauty shots). Works for all!

  72. I would think it risky having any of your daughters model something that beautiful, they might not give it back! (I wouldn’t want to!)

  73. Your daughter & the shawl are beautiful. As I’m reading your captions I can’t help but think of a movie A Christmas Story with the kid having to go up and put on what his grandmother had made for him. A pink bunny suit with matching slippers. Ha!

  74. I’ll have to remember these when I use my children as models. I have two things done for the boys that I need to take pics of and then post. We’ll see what types of expressions I get. 🙂

  75. Happy Thanksgiving! I watched Steven & Chris on CBC yesterday and have lots of menu ideas for our Thanksgiving. That bread pudding sounds WONDERFUL! (The turkey comfit sounds scarey.)

  76. Hey, that’s the best way to make $5 in 5 minutes (legally of course)! Talk about skilled labor!

  77. And now I’m the one laughing at my desk–no cat to look at me funny though. Lovely shawlette and lovely lady.

  78. Umm, I think you photographed my daughter by mistake. Oh, wait, maybe I’m just confused because of the identical reactions that I get from my daughter (and she doesn’t save these for when she is modeling knitwear, mind you!).
    Anyway, your daughter is beautiful – even in her thinly veiled rage/outrage. So is your shawl.

  79. Fortunately, my daughter is only 4. She still gets a bit of a kick out of playing with my knits. It sounds like I had better cherish these days before they are gone. 😉 Shawl is absolutely gorgeous. Might have to add this onto the list of Christmas knitting ideas hehe

  80. My boys roll their eyes, but pose pretty good-naturedly… They like the Christmas sweaters… come the first football game, they start “Mom, is that my sweater?” This year, tho, I fooled them. Made my sisters and nieces presents first. They’re starting to get anxious… “Haven’t you started my sweater yet?”
    When I see pictures of your girls, I can’t believe how grown up they are… time sure flies.

  81. When my daughter was alive, she would snatch the finished knitting out of my hands and put it on then go out and brag to her friends, “My mom knit this.” She never minded modeling for the camera. She was a bit of a diva. Then her friends would come to me begging for a hat or a scarf or a pair of socks. I require modeling pictures for everything I knit for others.
    And, Stephanie, your daughters have the most lovely skin and teeth and they are soooo pretty. And snarky. We want them tough and opinionated!!

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