14. May 2010 10:57
The Knitting and Spinning Continues... but so does the Cleaning and Real Estate Saga...
I have continued to work on my long color gradient spinning experiment, but unfortunately, it has been slow going with all of the house showings and chores necessary to keep a home in show condition (while working 45 hours a week, and driving 10 hours a week too!) Basically I am progressing one handful of fiber at a time. I hope this weekend to finish the last of it up and prepare the finished yarn and choose a pattern.
Also, in efforts to remain sane in the face of uncertainty, and in remembrance of a friend who suddenly passed away, I have started another straightforward lace shawl. I just felt like I needed something new to work on that would draw me in and hold my attention. This person was a very kind soul, and though I did not know him as well as I would have liked to, he was kind of like a role model to me and my husband. I'm not sure what I will do with the shawl when I'm done, but maybe I will give it to his wife. I can only imagine the horrible loss she is feeling, and I'm not sure if she is the type that would like a hand knit item, but maybe it might keep her warm and remind her that people really care. Sappy? probably.
Here is a little preview for you... I decided on testing out the Shetland Triangle on some manufactured yarn before trying it out of handspun singles (which I don't think will frog very smoothly) and I had some skeins of Knit Picks Shadow Heather in colorway Vineyard. As well as being very soft and light, this yarn has a beautiful blend of Wines and Plums and even a shimmer of gold undertones. The color is hard to describe, and also hard to capture on camera, but I think you'll get the basic idea.
I am really enjoying the repetitiveness of the pattern, and the simplicity of the design. Honestly, I love the fact that you basically repeat the same 10 stitches over and over, and somehow when you block it, the waffle weave appearance of the lace smoothes out and pulls itself into romantic curves of fir cones. Lace knitting never ceases to amaze me really.
I also have a few dark and shiny glass beads lying around leftover from another project... and I think they will match very well with this plummy yarn. A little shine paired with soft luxurious Merino? no problem.
Surprisingly, one day while shopping at the local dollar store I found some really tiny crochet hooks! (for a dollar? seriously! I bought all 6 teensy sizes!) The one in the photo is a 0.75mm hook and it fits through the beads perfectly! This will be my first time beading a shawl with a hook so I am a little excited to see how much easier this technique will be than using a piece of thread and a needle to thread the bead onto the stitch each time (basically did the same as a hook, but not very efficiently)
Now the only difficult decision is to decide where in the design I want to actually place the beads. I think I want the majority of the shawl to be beadless, and maybe just introduce the sparkle a few pattern repeats from the edge, and then put lots on the edging. I guess that means I need to decide how many pattern repeats I will do in total and start sketching it out. If anyone has any placement suggestions, feel free to pipe up ! ;)
I will likely have this shawl completed in another day or two, since it is chugging along so quickly. Expect photos soon.