25 February, 2006

Finishing a UFO!

Thank you so much for all your kind comments! I really feel very welcomed by the high tech knitters out there. I feel so inspired to see all the beautiful work you are all doing. And thank you to my good friend Blossom for getting me involved!

This is a vest called Bettie from Rowan magazine 19. I loved it so much in the picture, but when it was almost finished (I won't say how many years ago), I was disappointed in the fit. The only thing I had left to do was sew the shoulder seams, but I let it languish. So, my figure is not like the model in the picture, which should have thrown up a red flag, but it also highlighted every flaw. The thought was to rip it back half way, and shorten the v-neck. It was too deep on me, which was surprising, but maybe this model is really, really tall. The thought of ripping out, though, was too much for me.

It has taken a shift in my thinking to realize I can wear it after all, so this story has a happy ending. This week, I went ahead and finished the shoulder seams and attached the back neckband. I will wear it over a t-shirt, and unbuttoned. The effect will not be quite the same, but I just do not have the heart to rip it out. The backgound fabric in the photo will be an A-line skirt to wear with it. It's Amy Butler (thank you for the tip, Blossom), and now I can't wait for summer. I think A-line, but maybe wrap would be better for stripes?

It really was quite fun to knit this vest. The yarn is Rowan Cotton Glace, which is a beautful quality. It's firm and silky, with a slight sheen. It stood up to a lot of handling, since I did most of this knitting while commuting on a train.

I admit to not liking finishing very much, all those ends to darn and making your fabric thicker. The knotty seams. It reminds me of the Norwegian word "knotete", which means something like awkward and inelegant ;) I resented the finishing, which was taking me away from the fun knitting. So to overcome this, I am from now on going to allow myself to start on the next knitting project while the previous is still in the finishing phase. I just want to knit!

14 February, 2006

Lace shawl in progress

Some pictures of Birch underway. I love working with this project. It is working up into a frothy cloud of soft, warm lace, and I am really enjoying holding it in my hands. The beauty of making a triangular shawl, is that it gets smaller and smaller as you are working, and therefore each row is faster to knit than the previous!

The version I am making is the garter stitch version. It is not so easy to see this in the pictures, but I thought the stockinette version looked too smooth. The garter stitch looks warmer, and a little fuzzier, more cozy.

It took a while to get going, because when you first cast on, you can't see the pattern, and you are forced to keep counting to make sure you are on the right track. Kind of difficult when you have 299 stitches on your needle. I was doing the first pattern row on a three hour plane ride, and the flight attendant was very interested, and would check in with me every time she passed by, but she was never able to see any progress, as I kept counting and going back again and again. The perils of starting on a project in public, you won't impress anybody :)

The pattern calls for yfwd, but I am just translating that as a regular yarn-over. Also, it calls for K2tog tbl, but it is much easier to just use s1 k1 psso. The look is the same.

Knitting in Cyber-Space

I have been inspired by my dear friend Blossom to create a blog. I love knitting and since knitting is a very social art, I hope to meet more knitting friends. I have been knitting for a very long time, I have an extensive knitting library, a large stash of yarns, and too many UFOs.

I also have two retired greyhounds, who are currently curled up and snoozing on their cushy beds on the floor of my workroom. They are very sweet girls, they are very affectionate, and endlessly entertaining.

At the moment, I am working on Birch from Rowan magazine 34. It is a lace shawl, and I am about 25 percent done. Photo will be forthcoming. Rowan is definitely one of my favorite yarn companies, their patterns are beautiful.