Wednesday, August 6, 2008

A Silent Stirring of the Blood

The package will be in the mail as of this morning. And having finally finished that bit of weaving and blocking (I can't wait to get a reaction!), I am on a roll.

Still not touching the WIPs at the moment, though since we're currently in the move-out/move-in process of switching apartments, I've had ample opportunity to go through and see what's what. I reacquainted myself with the Fair Isle Sweater, which is still sin-of-pride-inspiringly lovely but tragically overlarge -- steek it into a cardigan? And I found several little projects I could finish quickly. More on that later.

No, I'm still on a lace craze. I have belatedly started the Goddess Knits Anniversary Mystery Shawl. What a mouthful! Here's the idea: a kind pattern designer sets up a group of knit-a-long-ers, and then once excitement is built to a fever pitch (knitters are crazy) the designer begins to release charts for the pattern, section by section. Knitters have no idea what the thing is going to look like. And with this one, neither does the designer: each clue I've seen so far has four charts, and knitters are instructed to choose one.

So, says the mathematician: assuming this trend continues, then with the four non-border clues, there are 4-to-the-sixth possible shawls! Damn!

Anyhow, that project's a-going down in an alpaca-silk laceweight yarn that I bought a cone of from Shuttles. They have a lovely policy of taking back unused portions. I've already used this same yarn to knit a grey Wisp, and I'll tell you: I'm starting to really understand what they mean when they say that alpaca does not have as much memory as wool. This stuff is determined to stay As Straight As Possible! Even after blocking, it does not lie nicely and neatly in its pattern. Not great stitch definition for lace. However, I have great dreams for a fall sweater design!

And I'm racing through this shawl as quickly as possible. Why? The Secret of the Stole begins in September :)

Friday, August 1, 2008

For the Queen of My Family

Every now and then, when I get around to actually finishing something, I am reminded of and once again surprised by the amazing transformation that projects undergo when they are done. The errors that you've spent the whole time eying, the little bits of unevenness, your concerns about pattern/needle/yarn choice, all disappear after the finishing touches are done. Your project becomes a thing that has a life separate from your hands and needles, and it becomes a whole other beast. How nice it is to finish!

And every now and then, even more rarely, I get to put those magical finishing touches on a project that went off without flaw to begin with. And that's a transcendent knitting experience.

I give you: the finished Queen Anne's Lace shawl.



I am in love with this. I could point out some things that I'm less-than-pleased with in terms of my execution, but I won't. I think this is the loveliest single object I have made to date. Mom, I love you! You are Queen of Everything, every day.