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March 3, 2004

Long Story, Little Tank!

In honor of Alison's entry about the impending season of tanks, I invite you to sit down and get comfortable as I spin a good, long yarn about my newest tank project.

Last June, Jason's family and I threw him a birthday/farewell surprise party. I chose that special occasion to debut my Waikiki tank, and it was very well received. As I noted at the time, my mother paid me the ultimate compliment: she asked me to make her one. She offered to buy the yarn if I would provide the labor. What knitter has ever passed up such an offer?

In August, not long after Jason and I moved to Boston, my parents came to visit for the weekend and my mom and I went to Woolcott & Co. to find yarn for her tank. As you might recall, mine was knit with Crystal Palace Waikiki (left) and Filatura Di Crosa's Millefilli Fine (right).

flame.jpg mffred.jpg

Never ones to fix what ain't broke, my mom and I began our search with these same yarns. She was immediately drawn to the Waikiki in Cool Jazz, which is a groovy combination of cool blues, purples and turquoise. Now all we needed was the Millefilli Fine in a color that complemented the Waikiki.

Here's where things started to go wrong. None of the Millefilli colors that the store had in stock were good candidates and we couldn't find any good colors in substitute yarns either. Eventually, one of the store employees brought us a Millefilli color card and told us that if we found a good match we could order it through the store. We didn't just find a good match, we found a damn-near-perfect match: the Waikiki in Cool Jazz on the left, Millefilli Fine in Turquoise, color no. 249 on the right.

cooljazz.jpg mffturq.jpg

Nice combo, no? We paid for both yarns, I put the Waikiki in my stash and waited for the store to call when the Millefilli came in. About a month later, they called to tell me that they had just gotten around to placing the order (!!!) only to learn that shipping from their supplier was delayed 4-6 weeks. The woman I talked to apologized profusely for the delay in placing the order, and asked me if I still wanted her to order it. This was in late September, but our goal had always been to get the tank done in time for next summer (2004), so a 4-6 week delay didn't inconvenience us overmuch.

In the flurry of holidays and political activism, I admit that I completely forgot about the yarn. It was only a few weeks ago, while cleaning out my stash, that I found the Waikiki and recalled that four months had passed since I'd last heard from the store. One day last week, after some teasing from Jason and Alison, I looked up their phone number and resolved to call them after work. When I got home that very day, there was a message on our voicemail from the store telling me that the yarn had finally, finally arrived.

Total wait: over six months. I loved making this tank the first time, and it looks like I'll be able to get my mom's done in time for Mothers' Day. Goodness knows she deserves it -- she did teach me how to knit, after all!

momwaikikiyarn.jpg Click to make me big!

Posted by shannon at March 3, 2004 11:08 PM | For related posts: For Mom, Mom's Waikiki Tank


Thank goodness it's here! Hooray! The yarn is beautiful, but wow, does that store suck. (Just my personal opinion, Woolcott fans feel free to disagree.) So glad that you can finally get started.

Posted by: alison at March 4, 2004 10:41 AM

Alison: I tried to stay neutral about Woolcott in the post because I'm sure some people really love it. But based on my experience -- not to mention YOURS -- I won't be rushing to give them any of my business any time soon.

Posted by: shannon at March 4, 2004 11:02 AM

Awwww - I wanted to see your Waikiki Tank but your link's broken. All that yarn looked gorgeous though.

Posted by: peggy at March 5, 2004 9:46 PM


Sorry 'bout that, it's all fixed now! (When in doubt, check out the Finished Projects in the right hand column!)

Posted by: shannon at March 6, 2004 10:11 AM