Friday, 26 May 2017

Ten More

On or about May 26 or 27 of 2007, I started to knit.

I have been knitting for 10 years.  I have knit for almost every single one of those for 3650 days.

In those 10 years, I have knit slightly more than 300 projects.  For several years now, I have listed all my sock knitting as one sock parade but only count them as one on going project on Ravelry, where I track my projects. I knit between 8 and 10 pairs of socks per year so added to Ravelrys 279, plus the socks, I feel pretty comfortable with the number.

In 10 years I have accumulated enough yarn to keep me knitting for the rest of my life.  I could knit 10 sweaters a year for 10 years and 10 pairs of socks and 5 shawls and I would still have a bit left.  Incoming yarn doesn't quite keep up to outgoing yarn, and that's ok.  I can knit as much as I want and I will still have yarn.

I have a library of wonderful inspiring books about yarn and yarn things.  It keeps the creative juices going and the dreams going even when I can't knit.

It changed my life in a hundred ways, and I am thankful.  

Thursday, 25 May 2017

And back to our regularly scheduled knitting!

I've been pecking away at the red sweater and really am pleased with where it seems to be heading.  It might be a good day today to sit down and really blow out some inches.

It is near waist level so about half done, and overall I am pretty pleased.

I love the stitch pattern I have used, Lace Wings from The Complete Encyclopedia of Stitchery by Mildred Graves Ryan.  

It's just the right amount of delicate and exactly what I was hoping for.  It is the perfect little stitch for a fancy cover up for the wedding but not so fancy that it is out of place with the rest of my wardrobe.

I also love how the edging detail is turning out.

It rolls and then stays put exactly so.  Beats an applied icord edging yet still give you that nice crisp edge.

And I love how the increases look at the sides.  

Isn't that neat?  After all the fuss and bother I had working the lace as the stitches increased, I left this area plain.  In a perfect world, lace would just seamlessly flow out  of the increases.  I can see it in my head, but just really didn't flow so easily out of my hand.  Smarter people would have graphed it out on paper to give themselves a pattern to follow.  If I was doing it again, that would be done.  For this top, c'est le vie.  

There aren't quite enough stitches being added for a nice looking fit at my hips.  I knew that going in.  I don't want the top to pull back so I will be switching out to a larger needle shortly to add what I need.  The bonus to this, over faster increases, is that the bottom of the sweater will drape and flow just a little more softly than the top.  Upping needle sizes worked so very well for me on my version of Myliu Lino and it seemed right for a sweater where adding increases across the back is not an option such as this is.

The only sad thing is that this red is so hard to get a good picture of so you can see it's true deep cherry.  It's called Persian red if that helps any.  I have tried switching out background colours and daylight versus flash, but it never quite captures the depth and intensity I see in front of me. 

I am so pleased with the way it is coming together and might make one for my mum.  I have some lovely yarn from Hemp for Knitting for a top for her, but I don't think it is quite enough.  It would make a shortie  cover up but as fashionable as my mom is, shortie is not an option.  But this pattern would be exactly what she wanted when we first talked about the design.

So knitting on going and knitting future. Always something to play with and I am going to take every advantage of single minute.  

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Still Standing

'I'm still standing 
Better than I ever did
Looking like a true survivor
Feeling like a little kid
I'm still standing after all this time
Picking up the pieces of my life'

That song was stuck in my head this morning. Of course in my head, what I hear is the original version but I thought you would appreciate how you will hear it on the movie soundtrack, Sing.
Now, back to our regularly scheduled joy.

I have yarn.

Yes, I know you know this.  But I have new yarn and I love and adore it and I have a purpose for every metre.

This is a lot of yarn.  Each skein of Sport is 430 yards, a whopping 393 metres of yummy goodness.  There are 9 skeins.  It is a lot of yarn.  But I have a reason and an excuse.  

I made a wonderful shawl a few years ago the Fir Cone Square Shawl from Cheryl Oberle's Folk Shawls.

 It was knit for my daughter in law's grandmother, who gave me a set of sheets of linen when we were in Kiev.  This is a woman who understands shawls and who has appreciated it for all these years.  But old buildings and moths and pretty constant use and wear means it is in need of replacement.

I have some of the same yarn left, but not enough for a shawl of this size again and my finances are not what they were in 2010.  Buying the quantity of what I believe this yarn to be, to make a similar shawl, is just not in the cards.  

Brigg's & Little Sport has a lot of the same qualities as the original yarn though it is a bit heavier.    I think that's a plus.  Knitting will go a little faster and on a larger than sweater project, time to completion is no small thing.  It is also a warm yarn.  It is airy and superb at making you feel snuggly wool warmth  in a way that a smooth soft yarn is never going to do.  The loftiness of it is exactly what I want in a yarn for a big warm shawl. Plus it is soft.  It isn't soft in a Madelinetosh way.  That just isn't it's character at all, but it is soft in a 'proper' wool way.  Proper wool - a term from a British Canadian friend who was looking for the right kind of yarn for a shawl.  She used sport for a truly lovely version of Miralda's Shawl from Nancy Bush's masterful Knitted Lace of Estonia. 

I do have several sets of Sport for various shawls and other projects in my stash already, but they are already spoken for.  By me!  For this shawl for Grandma, I wanted a gradient as a starting point and I don't want to run out.  Plus, I would like to have enough left over for a simple hap for me with these colours.  There may be colours added from my stashed Sport, but it would be used as an accent, not a major feature.  

I don't have a pattern set for it yet, and there is inspiration for ways to use gradients everywhere I turn.  Lovely Haps in the Sheltand traditon.  Inspiring colour gradients for the Icelandic tradition.   I know the yarn, but the pattern is going to take some work.  I am looking forward to this.  I just love to work this yarn and love the play the soft grays play off one another.  

It needs to be done by November, and while that may seem like a lot of time, we are already almost half way through the year and there are several other shawls to knit too.  Lots to do.  Lots to work on. 

Not only do I feel as if I am still standing after all the things that have been, I am standing with inspiration, with good yarn, and with joy planning the days ahead.