day of reckoning . . .

boy, oh boy, the weather has been nothing but miserable here this week—rain every day, except for the few hours when i absolutely cannot get outside.

even if i could, everything is dripping wet; not the greatest conditions for planting onion sets or chard seeds. which is what i’d do if it would just dry out a little. haha, i had a look at the 10-day forecast, just see if the very weak sunlight trying to assert itself now would turn into any sort of trend. and i discovered that we are due for more heavy rain and thunderstorms every day EXCEPT the three days at the end of this week when i’ll be at spring fling. wouldn’t you know . . .

it’s still pretty though—the grass and flowers have taken on the most intense coloring from so must thirst-quenching rain. and it is warm—mostly in the high 60s and 70s; we can’t complain about that after the winter we had.

new growth is emerging everywhere i look—a row of parsley has come back along the edge of the asparagus bed (thanks jody m!). and our favorite, the may apple, has begun to poke its head out above ground, though not nearly as early or quickly as last year, when april was very warm and sunny.

soon, though, very soon . . .
everything is a little later this year than in the last couple of years; it stayed cold into april, much longer than we’ve gotten used to.

i do think we are headed toward warmer days now. maybe may will be brilliant for a change, to compensate. and, whether or not it rains, ’tis still the season for flowers . . .

it’s just as well it wasn’t nice this weekend, though—i had some indoor jobs i’d been putting off that really, REALLY needed to be done. namely, cleaning out my closet and sorting out my yarn stash.

i took care of the closet thing on friday night, got rid of a bunch of old clothes, and took stock of what needs replacing (i am much too big a fan of old, soft t-shirts and sweats; some is good, too many is not).

i took a day off from the organizing on saturday to block the crooked little scarf and cook for the coming week. that was really nice; it’s been absolutely ages since i spent the day puttering in the kitchen and i sorely missed it. i made an excellent vegetable curry for supper, which we ate with relish (and we’ll eat leftovers tonight, yay).

the scarf blocked out beautifully, too—knit up in great northern yarns yak/mink/merino/soy blend in charcoal gray, the yarn bloomed and relaxed into a soft, dense, but lightweight fabric that will be lovely to wear three seasons of the year. i’m actually planning to have david model it for the photo shoot to show off its versatility.

i knit the longer, wider version, but the pattern includes a regular size as well.

i also cast on for a couple of new lace scarf projects—this one is a somewhat-reversible pattern of soft, interlocking ovals that create a relaxed rib; i wanted a slightly-but-not-too fuzzy yarn to accentuate the zaftig curvature of the pattern and at the same time, hold its own in terms of stitch definition. i rooted through the stash and came up with several options, but this sweet georgia cashsilk lace in the gorgeous riptide colorway came out the winner of the swatch wars (there are no losers, only next times . . .).

you’ll be seeing much more of this project over the next couple of weeks—it’s the perfect size for traveling, and i’ll soon be on the road again.

speaking of the stash, my day of reckoning with my yarn room was long overdue and since the weather outside was frightful, it seemed a good time to bite the bullet and make some headway. not only had i been dropping new arrivals in a pile just inside the door, but the trunk show needed shake and refolding before being put away.

because i have to pack a wealth of tools, books, and materials into my work spaces, these kinds of piles really get to me in practically no time; they make me feel hemmed in, like a bull in a china shop.

and while it would be easier of all it amounted to was putting the yarn away in these bins, that was not the case this weekend—i need to make space by doing a serious sorting and culling of what was housed in my yarn closet—the equivalent of pulling out all the furniture and rolling up the rugs for a good spring cleaning.

it’s always worse at the start, before i have a sense of what the new organization should be. basically, some of my work stash is sorted by yarn weight or type and some by dyer, depending on how much i have from any one source.

i took out everything that was discontinued or truly not something i would knit with. i also put aside skeins that i love, that will be knit by someone else into samples for the trunk show (this is a great use of extra yarn for me, but it doe eventually come back in another form, haha).

slowly at first, and then faster, the skeins get sorted and re-stored; each bin gets labeled with a yarn type and the dyers included. but that’s not the end of it—they all still have to have a spot on the shelf when it’s over. i had four new boxes filled and not enough space

ok, make that NO space.
i got to work in another part of the closet, emptying a few bins of older novelty yarns (beautiful ones, i swear, or they wouldn’t still BE here). my mom and her friends have been knitting scarves with these yarns recently and i think they’ll get a lot more use out of them than i will.

in the end, i had three big bags of good-quality yarn that need to go elsewhere. some of it is for test knitters, some for my mom and her friends, and i’m considering a possible destash sale to benefit a good cause . . . we’ll see. i’m not sure i’ll have time for that . . .

the whole process took ALL DAY yesterday—no joke. i started this project around 10 am-ish and did not walk downstairs til 6 pm. i was floored when i saw the time; no wonder i was hungry!

i made a nice dinner of flounder and veg from our freezer stash, using some fresh scallions form the garden that wintered over.

after that, i rewarded myself by starting the second new project of the weekend, a lace stole that i am totally and undyingly in love with (sorry david).

are you ready for this??

the yarn is glint of goldfish lace from alisha goes around, in colorway octavian. alisha gave me this skein at TNNA in january and i have been dreaming on it ever since—it is SO me.

the stitch pattern is incredibly large for most yarns, but is perfectly proportioned for this fine laceweight. and the spidery interpretation of the dramatic line work within, when worked in the merino/silk blend just takes my breath away.

i’ll work each half toward the center and then graft for a beautiful center motif; i can’t wait to see more, can you??

39 Responses to “day of reckoning . . .”

  1. Kat says:

    Oh, do the yarn destash sale to benefit charity for all of your favorite yarn hoars. Not that you have the time, but that would be lots of fun and would be for a great cause.

    That Glint of Goldfish lace is gorgeous!!!! Can’t wait to see more of that project. But then all of your projects fascinate me. The new lace scarft in Riptide is beautiful too. As is the Crooked Little Shawl. You are one busy lady.

    Go, Anne, go!

  2. No, I can’t wait to see more of this lace stole, either! :) It’s stunning. And so is the crooked little scarf. AND the reversible in riptide. You’ve been busy!!

  3. Susan in Guelph says:

    Thank you so much for sharing pictures of your yarn stash/bins, Anne! I can show the photo to my partner Dave, with the hope that he will determine that I simply must go yarn shopping. Alternatively he might note that one of us requires yarn as a tool of her trade/to earn her living and hence requires an “inventory.” But it is worth a try, donchathink? I love the new scarf pattern!

  4. Pat says:

    Love it!!!!!

  5. Anne C. says:

    oh my goodness,,,,,,,wish i’d seen the new lace sample in person! love it! glad you’re home!

  6. nancy schwartz sternoff says:

    ooooh your yiddish is right on! and i am feeling zaftig after a week of Passover!
    and i cannot even believe the new lace project in alisha’s yarn. mmmmmm that will be a keeper.

  7. Marcia says:

    Just saw the alisha yarn at hill country when you were here. A friend just knit ur les abielles (sp?) from some of ur yarn. Lovely. I enjoy ur garden pictures. Please send rain our way (texas)!!!!

  8. mari says:

    the yarn from Alisha is amazing! The lace pattern really stands out in the swatch, can’t wait to see it grow :)

    The garden shots are lovely as always.

  9. donna says:

    Your stash organizing skills are truly enviable, Anne, but the shawl is TO DIE FOR!

  10. Robin V says:

    Beautiful scarf! I assume this is a pattern that (once blocked) will lie flat. I knit a scarf for my husband for Christmas, and today I unraveled it – it Wanted to Curl. So now I’m looking for a new pattern to try, that will Behave Itself. :)

  11. Lara says:

    I loved this post – it has everything! The flowers are amazing. Your garden is always so pretty.

    Ive wondered what your stash looks like and how you store/contain everything. This was a treat to see.

    The new shawl is stunning. The yarn and pattern go perfectly together.

  12. Mary says:

    Nice stash–and such an organized ho’! Love that Riptide yarn. Both projects look beautiful.

  13. Donna says:

    Your swatch is beautiful! I’m really anticipating what that will become!

    I had to scroll back up and look again – wow!

  14. z says:

    i know what you mean when you say you have planted some things and the weather is not doing too good.

    i planted carrots, and spinach, and beets and just hoping things will go well. i think my problem is not really weather, but if it’s the right time to plant those things now.

    the scarf looks really good. that color is nice.

  15. juniperjune says:

    such exciting lace beginnings! and i’m waiting impatiently for the crooked walking scarf, too. today is a day of reckoning for me, too: i’ve knitted a sleeve of my leaving cardigan & i’m going to block it to make sure it really stretches to the correct dimensions before going any further. wish me luck! ;)

  16. I am a fan of many of your designs, but that final lace pattern has rocketed to the top of my list. So beautiful!

  17. Torre says:

    Now that’s a stash – hahaha – I don’t feel so bad about mine!!!

  18. Gina says:

    oh anne…i’m so happy to see all those bins full of yarn….it’s so nice to think i’m not the only one =)

  19. Alicia says:

    3 simple words: EXTREME stash envy!

  20. josiekitten says:

    I’m sorry that you weren’t able to get out into your garden over the weekend. At least the ground will have plenty of moisture, and should have warmed up ready for planting.
    I can see that you need to be uber-organised with your stash – otherwise it would take you forever to find what you were looking for, when starting a project. Do you ever feel that you have almost too much choice? Your Mum and her friends must enjoy rummaging through the bags of yarn you gove them – what a lovely idea.
    Happy travels (again!!)

  21. Lune says:

    My, this is some serious stash indeed ! Now i’m feeling much less ashamed with my own ☺ And please show us more of this wonderful lace pattern…

  22. Kim says:

    That swatch reminds me of a peacock eye on a peacock feather!

    And looking at all that yarn organizing just makes me so tired for you. . . . .

  23. Marianne says:

    That Glint of Goldfish lace is gorgeous – beautiful yarn, beautiful pattern! Can’t wait to see that when it’s finished

  24. Dalyn says:

    The Glint of Golfish lace is beautiful. Your projects offer such great inspiration. Your posts for me are just the right amount of pictures and journalling.

  25. Brandi says:

    wow great stash I need to stalk you….I have my stuff basically as organized as I can get it until I get the fiber studio done. I can’t wait to see your finished scarf.

  26. Liz in Missouri says:

    Oh My~ You DID have a busy day! But doesn’t it feel great to be cleaned up and organized again? Can’t wait to see the finished stole pattern. I see a leaf there in the middle – but had to giggle, since the swatch looks like a little turtle. The sheen on the yarn is just beautiful in the pictures – it must be stunning to have in your hands.
    I wish I could make it to St. Louis this weekend – unfortunately it catches us at end-of-month at work, ~~~~sigh~~~~ Better check your flights, as the St Louis Airport got hit by a tornado this past week. I bet it’s good now, though.

  27. Tara says:

    OK, that shot of your yarn bins has suddenly made me feel like I’ve TOTALLY been slacking as far as yarn stashing goes!

  28. Word Lily says:

    Love, love, LOVE that second new lace project!

  29. Jody says:

    That new lace project is lovely–I’ll look forward to seeing the progress you make on it. My stash is currently all bagged–I’m waiting for June when my daughter moves out and takes all of her stash before I even attempt to organize it.

    It’s raining in Chicago–I heard we’ve gotten only 33% of our possible sunshine this month, and that it’s been cloudy 18 out of 26 days. We have standing water in some spots-there will be no more spring yardwork until things dry out considerably. More time for indoor projects I guess!

  30. Bev says:

    The lace swatch is amazing! Can’t wait to see this one.

  31. Carol says:

    Hi Anne,
    I love your lace stole! You are amazing! The yarn is pretty too!
    Love your blog!

  32. Bobbie in AK says:

    As part of my “spring” cleaning efforts, I have been organizing and going through my stash. My plan is to try to use what I have before I buy more (yeah right). One thing I can say for sure — I thought I had a lot of yarn, but Anne, you win!!
    BTW, your flowers are lovely. I know I can always come here to see the beautiful colors – we are still very gray, rainy, cool, cloudy. Notice I put spring above in quotations.

  33. Steve says:

    That is one great swatch. Can’t wait to see how you work it into a finished project.

    I’m already thinking about it as a Christmas present for a friend of mine.

  34. Helen says:

    I spy a Jennie the Potter needle holder being used as a vase.
    Whoa! Your yarn room is unbelievable. Your organization skills are top notch!

  35. Vicki says:

    Just like everyone else I am looking forward to seeing more of the lace. Congratulations on sorting all of your yarn, what a huge job.

  36. Ann says:

    That’s a gigantic stash but so organised. We had our 1st rain in 3 months & I am so happy for the very dry garden.

  37. nancy schwartz sternoff says:

    ooooh that lace. i have been hankering for a lace project. i might have to wait for this one!!

  38. Deb says:

    This time of year is so full of joy, watching the emergence of new plants and flora. Beautiful! Love the lace stole, too! Can’t wait to see what emerges there.

  39. Anne says:

    Congrats on sorting out that stash so well. Looks fantastic even when hidden in plastic boxes. Love your garden photos. Hope you enjoy Knit Nation this year. I had a great class with you on finishing last year: can’t believe it was way back in July; where did the time go?