Wednesday, July 31, 2013

memory keeper

Today, I'm feeling grateful for knitting.  I'm grateful that knitting is a slow process.  I'm grateful that any project takes a long time, and that becoming a Knitter happens over many years, or even a lifetime.

There are a lot of changes happening in my life right now, and some of them are a bit challenging.  But knitting helps me take the long view.

March 2011
I browsed through ravelry today, looking at my previous projects.  I looked at a simple scarf.  No one has favorited it, and it's such a simple project, it's rather forgettable.  Except that at the time I knit it, I was so delighted with so many things, and when I look at those project pictures, I see how happy I am.  I remember winding the ball with my infant daughter in the back seat, and that memory is precious.  I'm so grateful for that little forgettable scarf, because it's helped me remember something very valuable.

October 2010
I looked at pictures of my first wearable sweater.  I'm amazed how long it took me to knit that sweater--months and months!  I know now that I could knock it out in three weeks.  And I would take more care with fit and modifications and yarn selection.  But I was so proud of that garment.  And I see in those pictures that I was still dealing with baby weight 6 months after my daughter was born.  So I should be patient with myself, 3 months after my son is born, and give myself a break for not being down to my pre-pregnancy size.

I like to write, but I've always felt guilty that I don't journal.  I just can't get into a rhythm.  But I knit.  And my knitting is turning out to be a pretty good memory keeper, reminding me of who I was, and the good things and the struggles.  It reminds me of who I want to be, who I've planned to be, how those plans have changed and what things I need to rediscover.

I'm grateful for my queue, and even though it becomes overwhelming occasionally, I'm grateful that it's so long.  I'm glad that there is more out there that I want to do, things to learn, simple projects that just look like fun, things that will trap memories I've yet to make.

I'm grateful for the long view, and I'm grateful that knitting is one thing that keeps me looking up, toward the person I was and to the life greeting me on the horizon. 

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

FO: Girasole shawl

Wonder of wonders, I finished something!  And by finished, I mean blocked and photographed and uploaded the pictures.  Those last three steps are the hard part!

This is Girasole by Jared Flood.  I used the May installment of the Tanis Fiber Arts Year in Colour Club, a laceweight yarn in a colorway called Moonmist.  I think the colorway is perfect for this pattern, and I love it.  There are about a dozen other patterns I'd love to knit with this colorway.  The stockinette portions are gorgeous.

I knit this on US size 2 needles, and I love the stitch definition and the density of the lace.  It is, however, only 41" in diameter, a bit small for throwing on and wrapping around.  I'll still figure out a way to wear it, but I may have to have a shawl pin.  I have plans to knit Leaves of Grass this fall, so I'll keep in mind that bigger needle = bigger shawl.

This was a really fun knit, even when there were 640 stitches per round!  I love knitting things with a knit on border.  I love the process of the FO slowly falling off your needles and watching all those scrunched up stitches take shape.  I have yarn and plans to knit this pattern as a blanket.  I'm thinking I'll use size 9 needles, so it should be huge!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

day dreaming

Moving is hard!  I'm sorry to say that moving has disrupted my sewing and knitting life more than having a baby did.  What does that say about me?  Or moving?

We've been in the new house for ten days, and I just put my sewing machine back on its desk this evening.  I've unpacked some of my yarn, but not all.  I've had a few internal temper tantrums over all the things I don't have time to be making.

Photo from the olden days before the move.

I have, though, been plodding away on my beautiful Girasole.  I'm about three-quarters of the way through the edging, and I'm worried it's going to be too small.  I'll block the daylights out of it, so I know it will grow, but I'm still a little discouraged.  When you only have time for one project, you want it to be kind of perfect. 

In the meantime, I keep seeing all these amazing garments and projects in the blogosphere!  And have you seen this amazing men's collection from the incomaprable Brooklyn Tweed?

Since my knitting and sewing dreams are already exponentially greater than my knitting and sewing reality, I might as well dream of knitting a sweater that requires 1600 yards of worsted weight wool.  Can you imagine?  But oh, how amazing!  When we retire, honey!