Monday, November 30, 2009

Comfort Knitting

I'm pretty sure I've found my knitting sweet spot: the Shetland Triangle. I finished my 6th last week:


Febrillious
Febrillious

I finished my 5th a week or so before that:


Eire Shetland
Eire Shetland

Knitting this pattern smooths out all of life's rough edges.

It kinda bothered me at little that I wanted to knit this pattern again and again. There was a seven month gap between my second and third shawl. Real knitters knit new patterns, real knitters try new, more challenging projects. I felt the capital K in my knitting persona slip to it's lower case cousin, like a kid eating their sandwich in a bathroom stall after a month sitting at the cool kid's table.

Once I realized what I was allowing to happen, I wised up. It felt good facing up to my knitting superego and asking her to kindly shut her high falutin' trap.


mosaicSHETLAND2
1. Febrillious, 2. Eire Shetland, 3. Spruce Baby Llama Shetland, 4. Another Shetland, 5. Pink Granite Shetland Triangle, 6. Shetland Triangle

Viva la Shetland Triangle!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Fangirl, schmangirl...

I have become such a fangirl of Sundara, I'm kinda making myself sick rereading some of these posts. Could I plug her yarns even more?

The answer to that would be yes.


Surfer's Wave

(Surfer's Wave ASM reshot)


If I can't be a slavish fangirl in my own small crevice of cyberspace, then I ought to hang up my blogging shingle now. I'm back blogging with the sole purpose of being honest and open and true, to wax melodic or moronic, as my fancy strikes. So, yes, I love her colors, and her yarn bases. They inspire me to knit nicer things, to be a better photographer.

My husband and sister's family chipped in to buy me a nice camera last Christmas and I still don't know half of what it can do. Everything I've coaxed out of that baby was with the intention of taking better pictures of yarn.

I can't help musing that is pretty darn odd. Not that I didn't know I was odd.

Still, to learn something new about oneself at my age is a blessing. I've entered what I hope to be the longer second half of my life. Knowing I'll never have the blessing of children and grandchildren, nor the comfort of a god, the future can sometimes feel turbid. Having a passion, an ambition to nourish, generates some clarity.


Western Landscapes

(Western Landscapes ASM reshot)





Friday, November 13, 2009

Comme Ci, Comme Ça

June Seasons Shipment

Not my best week, but not my worst either. I had a day off for Veteran's day on Wednesday and my mood didn't cooperate at all. The glory of a day off in the middle of the week escaped my grubby, chubby grasp, like a child digging for sand crabs.

I woke up discombobulated. I promptly became irritated, always being best at making things worse.

Ever since my seventh grade science and home room teacher, Mr. Longo, tried to teach us relaxation techniques in class, I have successfully failed at all types of meditation at least two handfuls of times. I just don't have a happy place and I just don't have the ability to keep the focus needed to relax my body.

In the past year, after attempting and failing once again at finding that mythical happy "place," it dawned on me that I have a happy "thing." Sometimes on Saturday mornings, when I lay in bed luxuriating in the fact I don't have to get up and take a shower and vacuum and do all the other irritating work week activities of daily living, I am happiest when I'm thinking about designing knits, or the visually stimulating colors of my stash, or the soft touch of one of my completed projects.

So now when I get into a bad place, I think about my stash, particularly my recently acquired Sundara stash, and specifically this poorly captured skein:


Surfer's Wave

This yarn can scare away all save the most pernicious stress arousal. I really need to take a few more shots to better capture the colors, and do this glorious yarn the justice it deserves.

Getting back to my whine, here I am Wednesday morning, faced with a free day stretched before me like a wanderer's open road, I wallowed, and then I considered a little fiber therapy would do me good.

I got up, vacuumed the spare bedroom floor, took out my three cubes of Sundara stash, and did a little ogling and a little fondling.

I took out my camera too, thinking I'd take a picture. But "it" didn't work. I felt better, but still not aright. Bleh.

So I cleared out my knitting basket and decided a fresh start would be a better place to start. Clean basket, clear mind. And wouldn't you know it, it kinda worked. Last night I cast on my umpteenth Shetland Triangle in this effulgent colorway of Sundara's sport merino:


Cakes of Sundara

And once again, all seems right in the world.

Friday, November 6, 2009

All about the gifts...

It's been a roller coaster week. The good news is that it seems to be ending on a sweeter note than it began.

I'm working on gift knitting, mostly. I expect to knit at least three pair of socks and one dishcloth for Christmas gifts. I would prefer if I could up the sock ante by two and the dishcloth ante by three, but I refuse to set myself up to fail. As long as I get the former amount done, any part of the latter finished will be gray-vay.

So far I have one pair done:


Sunday Ribalib

And a second pair on the needles (progress is from the weekend):


flinstone rib

Both are knit in heavyweight STR and knit up faster than one could say supercalifragilisticispyalidocious. Seriously, in the time it took you to read that word, I nearly completed one sock.

The past two weeks have been spent working on a hat and mitt set for the deserving husbeast. We celebrated our 10 year anniversary a little over a month ago and I thought I'd knit him a hat and mitt set in heavenly Sundara ASM to show my appreciation for all his support this year.

I picked up two awesomesauce skeins of the ASM in the colorway "Between Dusk and Dawn" in September. I wasn't too thrilled with the color for myself, but as soon as I visualized using it for the husbeast, the color became an instant fave.


Between Dusk and Dawn

So, I promptly knit my first Koolhaas, or as I like to call it, a Cool Haas Luke.


Cool Haas Luke

I began the mitts with the second skein on the way up to the Vermont Sheep and Wool festival. Somewhere between a diner in Quechee, VT and home in Massachusetts, the project bag went missing. I spent about 4 hours obsessing about what had become of it and how to get it back. All roads seemed like too much work, with little chance of success, so I decided to quit while I was ahead and just move on.

And really, surprisingly, I did move on, and with much more ease than I expected. As if the universe wanted to reinforce the notion the project had bad juju, the hat, once washed and blocked, fit neither my husband nor me.

The only sting the loss of the project left is the missing pair of US5 Knit Picks 16" circular needles. I really miss them. After playing foot loose and fancy free with the moolah in August and September, resulting in me having to rearange my stash closet, and co-opt the guest bed closet, because I ran out of room to house my zillion skeins of yarn, I decided to impose a spending diet. Sadly this has to include needles because buying one pair of needles from Knitpicks is not cost effective. I would pay as much in shipping as the needles cost and they would take 10 days to get to me.

A few weeks later I'm was impelled to begin the project anew. One sunny Sunday I head down to my favorite LYS, Butterfly Yarns, and picked up a few skeins of some more durable, more husbeast friendly, Cascade 220. Stealing inspiration from Anne Hanson's Hot Waffles I made one hubby very very happy.


Pumpkin Waffle knitting
Pumpkin Waffle knitting

My husband has the most beautiful nose.

 

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