i was bad this weekend and i know it—i didn’t blog, i didn’t work on secret projects—but it was sooo good.
i knit all friday afternoon and evening on my little rose shawl while it snowed and snowed outside and a big pot of soup bubbled on the stove inside. they only predicted 1-2 inches, but by nightfall we could see we were in for it.
and on saturday i woke to this
the back yard transformed into a seussian world, decorated everywhere with blobs of soft, white snow, piled high to form all manner of sculpture.
it’s hard to tell just how much came down overnight—certainly over two feet in the back yard, but more like 15 inches out front. i shoveled for several hours just to get the walks cleared (i like shoveling, actually), while david put in another couple to get the snow off the roofs and driveway.
today there is more evidence of life out there than on saturday; the squirrels are finding their way around after all.
it’s the strangest day for weather; the sun is brilliant in the very cold air, but it must be pretty humid, too—a coating of hoarfrost covers every little crooked tree branch and twig, long into the day.
add to the picture a sifting of very light, crystalline snow flurries—just barely there, but enough to catch the light so that it looks like shaved glass flying in all directions.
it’s really magical; i’m so lucky i’m not stuck in an office where i’d miss the show.
we did manage to pull together a spinning class yesterday morning—hey, when you need to hang with your girls, you need to hang with your girls, snow or not.
i worked on my blue border leicester fiber—i’ve got half of it spun and plied and in class, i got the other half nearly spun up. i can ply it in wednesday evening’s class and then wash it. it’s a rather surreal spinning experience after all that fine stuff i worked with during the summer and fall. luxury fibers may have ruined me for this . . .
i’ve got to skein up what i have to empty these bobbins, before i can continue. somehow, in the scurry to empty my old workspace during the week before christmas, my numerous spare bobbins got packed away somewhere and i cannot find them. all i have are what’s in my work basket—mostly hi-speed ones, since i’ve been spinning more laceweight in the last year. and when i spin laceweight, two or three bobbins is almost more than i need for any single project. however, this chunky yarn is eating up bobbins like crazy and it’s becoming inconvenient (especially when i know how many empty ones i own). david may actually be able to locate what i need, but for now i’m making do with spinning a bobbin and emptying a bobbin as i go.
so the weekend was lost for all the usual routines as we huddled indoors to stay warm, then unburied ourselves as needed. i threw caution to the wind where my deadlines are concerned and did mostly selfish knitting.
. . . it was totally worth it.
i finished my shawl before going to bed on saturday night
after everyone went home on sunday afternoon, i put it on to soak and threaded it up for a good blocking.
you can see a lot more of the detail now, especially in the shoulder and back area
i always love the way all the patterns come together at that outermost corners—the scarfy part that you flip here and there when you wear it
or at the center back hem
once i had it all threaded and pinned out, i got the money shot
it was completely dry in just a few hours, but i let it sit til this morning. i was anxious to unpin it, so i didn’t stop to steam the fabric beforehand, but now i wish i had—i think this cashmere/silk might possibly look even better with the cashmere fiber bloomed out and fuzzing a bit over the surface (and i’ll certainly take the time to do that on the one i’m knitting in my cash/silk handspun).
i took a little time this morning to play with it on the dress form so you can get an idea of what it looks like on the body.
just a little shoulder shawl with a victorian flavor (but not too, too victorian). it is constructed like a faroese shawl with some shoulder shaping, but the back panel is less pronounced, so it fits more like a triangle shawl with neck shaping—a sort of hybrid, maybe?
the pattern will have three sizes; one even smaller than this to wear as a scarf, and one larger, but not too large; i don’t think the hem motif will hold its impact if the body area gets too big (it could always be knit in a heavier yarn on bigger needles to make it larger, too).
i like this size a lot—it’s about 64 inches across the widest part and 21 inches down the center back. perfect for scarfing up around my neck or to cover my shoulders when i need it, without trapping my arms underneath. i love it.
this size uses approximately 525 yards, i think. the yarn, by the way, is discontinued, but you can purchase a nearly identical yarn at zen yarn garden; jade sapphire cash/silk is also the same. and of course it would be gorgeous in any number of lovely laceweights that we talk about here.
for me, the hem is spectacular—i just love the way this motif knits up in laceweight yarn, so dramatic, with its contrasting foreground and background; the solid areas appear to actually float when knit in such fine yarn.
the best news of all is that it looks like i can knit an identically-sized one from the supply of handspun cash/silk i have, yay. in fact, i did not stop at merely getting the rose shawl done and then going back to my deadline projects—yesterday i stayed in “bad girl” mode just a little longer to cast on for the next one.
after all, sundays are for rest and recreation, right? there’s always monday just around the corner, for getting back to the grindstone . . .
and with that, it’s time to locate my secret knitting and get ready for my class to arrive.