7. January 2011 15:47
A friend (Kim over at A Tail of Two Goldens) suggested that we should do a post-holiday Knit-A-Long for fun to mellow out and enjoy some good knitterly company after the rat race that is the holidays. Perfect Idea!
So we met up last week for tea and treats... and chose a pattern and some yarn. In addition to the knitting and chatting... I finally got to meet our hero and golden champion, Ernie! (and his Little Bro Ollie too of course!)
After much deliberation and yarn fondling, we decided that whatever the KAL would be... it should include beads. That helped to narrow things down to probably a shawl. Names of fabulous designers were passed around (Jared Flood, Ysolda Teague, Rosemary Hill, and the like) when Kim suggested a great pattern by a relative newcomer - Kerry Milani. After browsing the rav pattern page, it was unanimous, we would be doing the crescent shawl Allegheny Muse... and maybe next time something from "Romi"
I have been sitting on a beautiful skein of Cashmere Blend fingering weight yarn from Barking Dog Yarns since the summer... and I think it fits this project beautifully! I had originally thought that maybe I would make fancy socks from it, but the squishy softness was just so irresistable, I think it's a better idea to make a shawl out of it. This way it will get touched and worn more often, and hopefully will have a long and useful life.
The color is "Oklahoma Rose" - and the yarn is 80% Merino / 10% Cashmere / 10% Nylon
And more about the pattern... "Allegheny Muse" is a crescent shaped shawl that is knit from the "bottom" up in a lacy beaded design, and then specially placed short rows create the upper plain knit portion and define the shape. This is a new construction technique for me... and to be quite honest, until I set out to cast on, I thought that the plain knitting part at the top would be worked first! oops! My Bad.
I opted for the beaded eyelet cast on... I decided that the plain cast on of 200+ stitches might put me off to a less than ideal start. I'm not great at being patient with ridiculously long cast-ons (*stamps feet and scrunches up face*) but somehow it seemed like a better idea to me to try and fandangle a crochet hook, a knitting needle, and a teensy-tiny beading crochet hook and a small bowl of size E seed beads all at the same time to make a *simpler* edging for myself. Sigh. I realize that I'm a little cracked.
Surprisingly enough, after the first repeat of chains and YO's (and one official spilling of the bead bowl) I got the hang of the cast on. I really like the way that the beads sit on the points. Even though this was the first time I've worked this shape of shawl, I think I am going to like doing the lacy part first! Save the boring basic knitting for later! Bring on the crazy beads and lace!
I've been trying not to get carried away and go too far on the shawl until Kim catches up... which hasn't been all that difficult with the number of other Works-in-Progress that are lying around the house these days. I've been quilting away, spinning, and knitting too! My goal is to do 2 - 4 rows a day on this, and just roll with it!
So here she is - "the Muse" posing with a sparkly holiday ornament (which coincidentally matches the silvery foil lined beads)
Want to join in? Pop on over to Kerry Milani's Ravelry page and pick up a copy of Allegheny Muse for yourself!