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Of Shawls … and Things…

Of Shawls … and Things…

Well, of one shawl really.  I have finished knitting my Line Break Shawl!  Took much longer than I’d hoped for (one month vs 2-3 weeks), but when you have to redo the same section 3 times due to mistakes, you get a bit ‘meh’ with the project.  All I have to do now is dye it.  I may, however, wear it a bit before I dye it.  This yarn was wonderful to knit with, but the high bamboo content made it grow exponentially, which for this project was just fine with me.  But as it is supposed to be a sock yarn (thus machine washable.. yay!), I would have dreaded to have knit socks for myself, only to have them fit my husband who has a size 16 foot.  As a guideline the top edge was about 65” (165.1cm)  across before I blocked it, and is now measuring 87” (221cm).  Well over half a metre extra!  It really will be the perfect windbreak for the slightly cool evenings that we get between now and winter hitting.



And onto other things… the sewing of a maxi dress seems to be an unmitigated disaster!  My new pattern, the supposed “1 hour dress” is a nightmare to do a FBA on!  I think I will have to practically redraft a new bodice from scratch.  Might be less painful!  Once my son starts school, I will get to redrafting so that the next attempt is not so painful.

So yet again, there has been a pattern swap.  I’m still going to use the sleeves and skirt from the McCall pattern, but the bodice is being constructed from a Burda pattern my MIL happened to have already done a fair bit of adjusting to, and the top she made from it (also a knit fabric top), fits me quite well.  I will be altering the neckline too, as it’s way too high for the dress.  The bodice has been cut and the darts stitched.  I’m starting to get excited as it’s the furthest we’ve really gotten towards a completed dress!  I may actually have a summer dress before the end of summer!


Getting My Knitting Organised

Getting My Knitting Organised

I had an epiphany.

I don’t finish projects because I get distracted by the new shiny, which causes me to become unhappy with my current projects. When I’m unhappy with current projects, I stop working on them… then after about a year they get frogged and the yarn either goes back into stash, or recycled into a new, new shiny.

While I know that I am a process crafter, and not necessarily a project crafter, it’s rather annoying at times, that for all this time that I spend on knitting, crochet or sewing, I rarely have any finished thing to show for it.

Damned annoying.

I see so many other knitters (and crocheters) who complete so many (in comparison) lovely things, and I get frustrated with myself that I’m not even completing one large item a year, when they are able to knit at least 3 cardigans/sweaters or something of equivalent magnitude. So the first thing, is to list what it is that I’m working on RIGHT now.

1. BeeKeepers Quilt – this is an ongoing over more than a year type ‘in between’ or ‘travel’ knitting. I have my box of 4ply yarn, and my owl bag of needles/stuffing to put into any handbag/tote that I might be carrying around.

2. Crochet Hooded scarf – Laceweight and large hook. Using a basic stitch pattern and modifying it to make a gorgeous hooded scarf. Scarf component is already 2/3 finished, after which it needs blocking so I can “pick up” and crochet on a hood. This is an “easy” pattern and requires very little attention. Good for a social project.

3. Lace Circular Shawl – I’ve only really JUST started this, and quite frankly I’m already a little scared by it. It’s rather advanced, and takes a lot of concentration. It’s definitely a “sit by yourself and not even have music playing” kind of knit. I haven’t advanced much with this, as something always distracts me.

I have other things around on needles, I’m sure of it, but I have no intention or desire to dig them out and get moving on them.

Shall I declare a crafting bankruptcy?

Anything that is not of the three projects above gets ripped out and yarn is either put back into the stash, or destashed? I think it’s a good idea. Then there is what I WANT to work on. I really want some good, useable pieces to add to my wardrobe. Not just clothing, but well thought out accessories. Hats, gloves, scarves and a shawl or four.

So I figured the next step was figuring out WHAT it was that I wanted to accomplish in my knitting for 2012.  Apart from plodding along with the projects that I have listed above I have decided that I want (at least) a cardigan, hat, gloves and shawl.  So I went through my favourites and really tried to find pieces that were in the ‘not too hard’ category, things that I could knit without having to check a chart every 2 seconds.  I also tried to find pieces that would work well together.  Less so with the shawl, as that is really a piece unto itself.

What I have ended up with is:-

1. Shawl – La Crumparsita
Whilst not strictly an “easy” knit, the pattern repeats are apparently easy to read in the knitting, so shouldn’t be impossible to knit while watching TV.  My friend Lisa gave me the pattern as a gift, and I’d really like to knit it up.

2. Hat – Morgan
I’ve long adored this shape of hat.  But with my HUGE head, it’s impossible to go and buy one, without either spending a lot of money at a milliners/hattery or making one myself.  I do actually own a vintage pattern to sew a hat similar to this from the 1940’s, so I may end up having a summer and a winter one.

3. Gloves –  SnapDragon Gloves
I think the idea behind these are just cute as!  Make snap on flowers and change them out to match an outfit or give your gloves a mini makeover.

4. Cardigan – Audrey in Unst
I’ve had friends that have made this cardigan and it is a stunning knit.  I also love that it’s seamless with a knit in “set in” sleeve.  It, of course, doesn’t hurt that it’s gorgeously vintage looking and will work well with gloves and a Morgan hat.

Four very workable, pretty and slightly vintage looking knits.  All I need to do now, is figure out some yarn.